How to choose the best bed for your dog ?

A good quality sleep time during the night hours helps dogs to remain in good health and resume their energy during the waking hours. They need a good relaxing sleep to help the bodily functions, rest their brain and relax the muscles. Resting and sleeping aids the brain development, nurtures the entire well being of your pet.

A well rested dog will be more content, playful and ready for its duties be it as a working dog (farming, police training, guard dog), companion for children, elderly or emotional support. It will continue to explore and develop its intelligence, will be easier to train and will learn how to respond to stimuli appropriately.

How much sleep do dogs need?

Dogs sleep averagely between 12 to 14 hours a day. Ther sleep pattern is different than in humans, as the dog can make up the sleep hours during the day through short naps.

Puppies tend to get tired quite quickly, just like our babies, so they will sleep more, to an amount of 18 hours a day.

Adult dogs and bigger sized breeds need more hours of sleep time so that they can regain their energy.

Changes in routine, spending time in dog kennels, recovery from illness will also affect the way a dog sleeps.

An unrestful sleep will lead in time to developing some health issues

  • Dogs can suffer from sleep disorders. This can be noticed by whining, crying, or repeatedly waking up during the night. During the day they might seem less keen for being outdoors, become more apathetic or appear off-track on following their daily routine.
  • Behavioural issues - sleep deprivation causes an accumulation of stress hormones. This will result in increased irritability and aggressive behaviour.
  • Anxiety in dogs may lead to broken sleep patterns.
  • Illnesses - too little sleep can weaken their immunity, leaving the dogs exposed to the risk of infections.

On the other hand, some issues might be noticed in dogs that might spend too many hours sleeping.Excessive sleeping could be caused by canine depression, diabetes, or possible hearing loss.

If there is an usual change in your dog’s sleeping pattern, refer immediately to your vet’s advice as there might be some underlying health issues that can aggravate in time.

How to get your dog to sleep better

  • Train your dog to maintain a regular schedule - This is highly important especially for dogs that are kept indoors. Maintain the same timings for feeding, cleaning, exercising, play time and daily walks.
  • Create a sleeping routine especially for night time sleep and leave enough time for their daylight naps.
  • Daily physical activity is of utmost necessity for a healthy dog: it balances body and mind, maintaining muscles in good form and takes care of the joints. Play time, walking, running will also tire its body and will affect sleeping positively.
  • Regular health checks to spot any health related issues that may affect your dog’s sleep. Canine dementia for example, can make your dog confused and will awake during the night time to check its surroundings.
  • Allow nap times during the day to achieve better welfare.
  • Watch its diet. Overeating especially before bed time might result in indigestion, toileting needs and disrupted sleep.
  • Creating a safe, warm and cosy environment will benefit your dog, alleviating any possible anxieties or stress. The right temperature, the way the place makes the dog feel safe and cared for, helps your pet to relax, unwind and fall asleep easier.
  • Reduce the noise in the dog’s sleeping area.
  • Avoid light stimulus during sleep time. Research studies showed how light can alter and influence the sleep pattern in dogs. The sleep quality is directly impacted by changes in luminous intensity.
  • Same bed in the same place every night. Train your dog starting with its first day (be it as a young puppy or grown-up addition) into your home, to sleep in a chosen spot on its own. Some owners opt in for a dog crate, some would choose a sleeping bag for a dog or a dog pillow. The vets highly recommend using a dog bed as it allows the dog to sleep in the most comfortable positions, achieving high quality sleep.
  • Use comfortable bedding items suitable for dogs. Soft fluffy blankets, pillows.
  • Clean bed and bedding is important for the general wellbeing of your pet. Cleanliness relaxes the body for a deep sleep.
  • Avoid allowing your dog to sleep on your pillow or in your bed. Sleeping with your dog can lead to a disruptive sleep pattern (due to increased body heat, lack of space, body odours).
  • Say good night - cuddle your dog, give it a light massage before saying good night and leaving its room. Your dog will learn that this is its normal bed routine, will feel loved and cared for. It will help relieve its separation anxiety.

How to choose the best bed for your dog

Take these few tips into consideration before buying a new dog bed for your treasured pet:

  • The size of the bed - it should be the right sizing for the dog breed you have. For example, large enough so that the dog can change its position during the night comfortably.
  • Sturdiness - the bed should resist chewing and long term daily use. A well-constructed, good quality bed will be sturdy enough to carry your dog’s weight.
  • Soft mattress - to create a warm and cozy bed.
  • Supportive for the dog’s joints. Necessary especially for older dogs suffering from arthritis, or during surgical recovery. Puppies also need good support for a healthy development of their joints and body posture.
  • Natural sleeping aid - a good, relaxing and comfortable bed is the best sleep aid for any dog.
  • Safe materials - without toxic chemicals or bits that could eventually get stuck into their throats.
  • Fire retardant material - it would be the safest option for your household.
  • Easy to clean - choose a bed that is easy to clean from dirt and bacteria that can grow on its surface. The best option would be a bed that has removable and washable coverings.

Where to place a dog’s bed in the house?

Keeping in mind the fact that a dog needs its rest during the day, its bed should be placed in an area where there isn’t too much noise either during the night or during the day.

The bed can be placed into the owner’s bedroom, close to the master’s bed as long as the dog will remain sleeping in its bed. Positive results came from a Mayo Clinic research in terms of how both owners and their dogs achieved a better sleep during the night due to this particular bed arrangement.

In families with autistic children, it was noticed the calming effect that leads to undisturbed longer sleep in children due to the proximity of their dog companion.

Choose a bed that your dog will love

Consider online research to find and compare different dog beds. You can choose then to visit a physical shop to help you decide what is the best option for your dog.

You probably know already that you usually search products online, go to the store to see them and eventually you decide to buy those items online because it offers a cheaper price as well as unlimited choices in terms of sizing, materials, colours, shape etc.

Sometimes you see an interesting bed bought by your neighbor or a friend and you decide to buy a similar one. You might even choose another with better and more alluring features for your dog.

If your dog could test some of these beds and tell you which one he likes the most, I don't think it would matter the price and you would buy it straight away (of course, assuming that it fits your budget).

Dog beds can come in different sizes and shapes, different colors, patterns and fabric options. They can be made from soft furnishing or leather and it’s up to you what you would choose to suit your home decor and of course, your canine family member.

Let’s see, for example, an online store dedicated to selling beds for dogs : They offer different sized sofa beds for dogs covered with fabric or leather in a variety of colors.

They have three dog bed collections :

  • Stark - this line offers sofa beds made from durable, breathable and easy cleaning leather.

The cushioning is utterly supportive for the neck and paws consequently offering the best quality of sleep for your adored furry family member. It also has adjustable headrests that adapt to your pet’s favourite rest position.

  • Ada - offering stylish PU leather sofa beds. This is a sturdy material that is wear resistant.

The leather is removable and easy to clean. Its surface has a cooling effect making it the best choice for pets with sensitive skin during the hot weather season.

With two flexible sides, the sofa can be folded to be used as a bed or as a sofa during the day. Ada is great for larger sized dogs as it holds up to 220lbs/100kgs weight due to its steel framing.

  • Wickman - The beds in these collections are made of dog friendly fabric material in lavender purple, serenity blue and classic beige.

Easy cleaning and removable, the sofa cloth can be machine washed, making it a conveniable choice especially for puppy owners.

Wickman series has the advantage of offering the opportunity to remove the cushioning to create a summer bed for your dog. It also has three-sided headrests increasing the comfort for your pet.

The best bed will ensure the quality of sleep during the day or night for a dog. Hoping that the information presented here will help you or someone else choose the best one, please share the article.

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