How to Choose a Dog Bed: A Comprehensive Guide
Does your dog share your bed? We’re not judging; we invite our dogs up, too. Still, he needs his own place to sleep, and not just at night: he’ll spend about 12 to 14 hours or more of every 24 sleeping. He really does sleep half the day, and there are some excellent reasons he should do it in his own dog bed, at least sometimes:
Occasionally he prefers the floor, but other times he wants something more forgiving than your hardwoods or even carpets. Before you buy your trusted companion his very own dog bed, consider the variables.
I. What size dog bed should I get?
Start with his weight, using these general guidelines:
Measure him, too: his dimensions will indicate the surface area he needs. While he’s sleeping start at the tip of his nose and measure all the way to his rump, and from the crown of his head to his pads. Alternately, obtain these same measurements while he is standing. If he sleeps in a ball, measure his diameter side to side, and top to bottom. And if he is a back sleeper, measure from the crown of his head to the tip of his tail.
There may be other factors to consider: the size of your living space, for example, or buying a traditional dog bed for your car, where a smaller bed will suffice for shorter periods. But as a general rule of thumb, use your dog’s weight and dimensions as the most reliable parameters for choosing the best size bed for him. And when in doubt, size up.
II. Dog Bed Shapes
If your dog curls up AND sprawls out, choose a rectangular pillow-style bed. Or treat her to both a round and a rectangular dog bed—sometimes it’s good to have choices.
III. What’s in a dog bed?
You can’t judge a book by its cover, nor a dog bed. Dog beds come with a variety of fill materials to meet the specific needs of every dog.
We’re talking architecture here: your dog may have a preference, although it’s probably less about curb appeal to her than it is about functionality and comfort. Again, let her habits influence your decision. Does she need the security of walls around her, or does she let it all hang out? Maybe a compromise is in order: an open design with a bolster that offers support and doubles as a chin prop, in much the same way as the arm of your sofa. Orvis has options:
While your dog may not care one lick about the looks of her bed, you probably do. You’ll find a wide variety of dog bed covers in our collection of beds, all made to zip off and throw into the wash for easy care and maintenance. And they look beautiful with any home décor.
V. Special Needs
Choose a special dog bed for extraordinary circumstances:
VI. Beyond Dog Beds
Do you travel with your dog? We do: explore our complete line of products made to make a dog’s life (and your own) easier on the road. From backseat protectors to car gates, pet ramps to folding travel crates and more, we’ve got you covered. You’ll also find replacement dog bed liners and covers, toys, treats, clothing, grooming products, feeding and training aids, and useful tools for the mudroom and beyond.
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