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Choose The Best Dog Beds For Your Pet

Sep 16, 2008
Some people pamper their pets, whereas others wouldn't consider that their dog would have any use for a bed. However, even if you are not inclined to pamper your dog, dog beds can improve your dog's quality of life in many ways.

Dog beds keep your dog or puppy warm by keeping him or her off the floor. This is especially nice during winter months, especially if your dog is old, fat, or arthritic.

It will also give your dog a 'den' or his own personal space. Dogs are territorial, and having a space of their own gives them a proper sense of belonging in your "pack." Dog beds give your pet a familiar sign of membership when you are not around.

Choose a bed that is suitable and comfortable for your dog. Dog beds are trickier to buy than human beds because you can't have your dog test out several beds in the store and choose one, nor can you discuss beds with him.

Getting the Right Size Dog Beds

Size matters when choosing dog beds. It should be big enough to fit your dog comfortably. This may seem obvious, but don't shop for beds without actually measuring your dog. Leave room for your dog to grow if your dog is young, and leave room for your dog to get fatter if he is older. Also, dog beds should leave dogs with enough room to turn and move around in them.

If your dog curls up to sleep, measure him or her then. Measure the widest point. Add fifteen centimeters to that. Also, get a measurement when your dog is standing, starting at the head and measuring to the base of the tail. If your dog tends to be spread out when he or she sleeps, add at least another twenty-five centimeters to the measurement.

Does your dog chew furniture? There are beds available that are specially designed to survive your dog's chewing fits. If your dog lives outdoors, you may need to shop for dog beds that fit in dog houses. Dog houses limit the size of the bed, but you should ideally choose one that is as big as possible without encroaching on dogs' feeding area within dog houses.

Choosing Dog Beds by Shape

Standard dog beds are usually sorted into the following types: mattresses, balls, or nests. The style of bed that suits your dog depends on his or her sleeping habits. If your dog tends to curl up when sleeping, nests or balls are the best style of dog beds to choose from. Nests provide extra insulation, good for dogs sleeping outdoors.

Dogs that sprawl or spread out when asleep need dog beds that give them room to move around, stretch, or sleep in whatever position suits them at any particular moment.

What's inside Dog Beds

Filler for dog beds is typically solid foam or stuffing. Poly foam is typically used to make stuffing for dog beds. Look for beds with "high loft" stuffing, as they will be less likely to get squashed or otherwise lose their shape and fluffiness. Stuffing is more suitable for a small dog than a large one.

Solid foam beds are a better choice for larger dogs, and healthy older dogs. For a dog with serious back or hip problems, you should look into orthopedic foam dog beds. Be aware of the firmness or density of the foam. Firmness indicates how hard or soft the bed is, whereas density is the springiness. Better quality foam beds tend to have higher firmness and density.

Lastly, make sure you choose a bed that is easy to clean. Dogs aren't self-cleaning pets the way that cats are, and dog beds get dirty.
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