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A Bed For Your Best Friend

Updated on March 10, 2012

Today's Dogs Live Longer!

What kind of bed does your dog sleep on? Have you given it any thought? I know when I was a kid, dogs slept on old blankets, towels, or even pieces of cardboard box! Outdoor dogs might sleep on hay or pine needles. Of course, back in those days, no one expected a dog to live more than 8 or 10 years, and they usually didn't. These days, dogs live a lot longer. Most of my dogs have lived to be in their late teens. Many dogs, especially smaller breeds, live to be in their twenties. For this reason, your dog may go through a number of types of beds in its lifetime. Even though you may think of this as a luxury, the fact is, the right kind of dog bed can prolong your dog's life and reduce your vet bills. I think that if I had been more aware of the importance of providing a good dog bed, my old dogs would have been even healthier and happier than they were. As it was, my old fellas, Freckles and Skip, both had problems with arthritis when they got older. I think if I had known to provide them with better bedding, they would have been more comfortable.

Your Dog Will Appreciate The Perfect Bed!

Is Your Dog An Athlete or an Octagenarian?

There are lots of things to keep in mind when you are choosing the right bed for your dog. You will want to think about his age, size, level of fitness, and the way he sleeps. Lots of dogs are quite athletic. They love to go for bike rides, chase Frisbees, fetch balls, go swimming, and so on. This kind of strenuous physical activity can be just as tough on (and good for) your dog as it is for you! If your dog is a real athlete, you may want to get him an orthopedic type bed. Some of these beds even come equipped with memory foam! Just as this kind of bed is helpful for giving a human athlete full support for overworked joints and muscles, it can help your athletic dog get complete rest and recovery from a hard day at the dog park or on the job if you have a working dog. Older dogs who have problems with arthritis will also benefit from orthopedic beds with memory foam. A bed that provides full support and good warming can cut down on vet bills related to lameness caused by over-exercise or stiff joints.

Some Dogs Like A Snuggly Bed!

A dog that likes to nest will enjoy a larger bed with a few throw pillows or bolsters included. If your dog is not particularly destructive, you can satisfy the nesting urge by giving him your old bed pillows when you get new ones or making a trip to the local thrift store for throw pillows and stuffed toys he can snuggle with. If your dog likes to tear things up; however, you may want to go the more expensive route and get pillows and bolsters and stuffed toys designed for dogs in tougher fabrics with stronger seams. This will end up saving you money and clean-up in the long run.

A Big Enough Bed Provides Good Support

No matter what kind of bed you decide on, be sure to get one that is big enough. Your dog won't be comfortable or get the full benefit of a nice bed if parts of him are hanging off on the cold floor! Measure your dog when he is lying down, completely stretched out. When you go to the store or order your dog's bed online, be sure to select one that has a good foot of space all the way around. In this way, you will be sure your dog is properly supported and warmed by the bed, and you will reap the most benefits in lowered vet bills! You won't save money on a dog bed, if it doesn't cushion your dog and protect him from the cold floor. You will just end up with a $75 a month Rimadyl bill when your dog develops arthritis.

Dogloo Is A Great Dog House

Special Outdoor Dog Beds

Outdoor Dogs Need Special Consideration

If you have an outdoor dog, your choice of bedding is even more important than for an indoor dog. You will want to choose bedding that breathes and does not hold in moisture. It should hold him well up off the ground. Of course, you will want to provide a good house to put the bed in. My outdoor cats sleep in a Dogloo set up on a table and filled with pillows. The dogloo is equipped with a flap door to keep rain and wind out. They seem to be quite comfortable with this arrangement. If I had an outdoor dog, I would certainly get him a dogloo and place it up on the porch so that it would be even more protected from rain and rising water. I would add a good quality outdoor bed that would both repel water and allow air circulation to prevent mold and mildew. But honestly, I would never have an outdoor dog. The only reason I have outdoor cats is because I have a few who just won't come inside.

Two-Dog Night!

Now, having said all that, you may be wondering what kind of bed I selected for my dogs. It is a double sized posture-pedic with a human warmer! I expect my current dogs to live long, happy, healthy, arthritis-free lives!

These are not my critters, but they might as well be!

Title:Gang  Attribution License:  Photographer: John:
Title:Gang Attribution License: Photographer: John:


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  • justmesuzanne profile image

    justmesuzanne 8 years ago from Texas

    Oh, probably not! But that's OK! :)

  • Shalini Kagal profile image

    Shalini Kagal 8 years ago from India

    Nice choice of beds Suzanne - our dogs sleep with our daughter and come to us early in the morning - wonder if they'll ever sleep on their own bed *sigh*

  • justmesuzanne profile image

    justmesuzanne 8 years ago from Texas

    Thanks, you guys! Yes, I usually have 2 big dogs and at least one cat (an orange fluffy one, like the one pictured above) on my bed! I am considering the king size dog bed option, since there is very little room left for me by the time morning arrives. I usually get up because I am forcibly ejected!

  • BkCreative profile image

    BkCreative 8 years ago from Brooklyn, New York City

    Ooooh, loved the dog going to sleep vid on youtube.

    Hey, we all need a good comfy restful secure place to sleep, to nestle in, to cover up, to sigh! - perchance to dream - and all that good stuff.

  • profile image

    C. C. Riter 8 years ago

    Hmmm, we have chosen the same bed for our dogs, posturepedic king size. The oldest one now sleeps on the couch, the chairs, the floor and his own bed in our bedroom and sometimes their own couch we have in it for them. We normally have 3 dogs in our bed, and once in awhile if she can go undetected the one cat. good hub dear