Choosing a dog bed

April 19 2016

The dog bed you choose for your best friend depends of a number of key factors

… including size, health and personality. Obviously your own taste comes into it too, you want a dog bed that looks good in your home (at a good price!).

Dogs sleep for a surprisingly long time. Many sleep for at least 12 hours a day and some sleep up to 18 hours. So a good comfy dog bed is very important to their overall wellbeing. Older dogs will generally need more sleep, as well as more comfort than young pups. But every dog, young or old, needs a comfy space to call their own.

When choosing a dog bed, start by measuring your dog

You want them to be able to stretch comfortably, so add about an extra foot to the length of your dog lying down when considering the size of the dog bed. The ideal dog bed will allow your dog to lie stretched out and flat on their side without dangling off of the dog bed.
Next, think about the right fabric for your dog. For heavy dogs as well as dogs who sleep actively or like to chew, you need a durable material. Smaller dogs, and those who feel the cold, will benefit from plush and fluffy fabrics. Always consider a dog bed with a removable cover that is easy to clean. Some smaller dog beds can be put in the washing machine as is to give the whole bed a thorough clean. Just check that the dog bed is machine washable.
Wallington’s Pet Supplies stock a variety of different styles of dog beds, in a range of sizes to suit different breeds and personalities.

Pillow Beds, or Donut Dog Beds are great for smaller to medium sized dogs

Dog Bed - pillow bedMany smaller dog breeds enjoy snuggling and tend to feel the cold. Dog Bed - donut bed
These dog beds have raised cushioned sides and are usually made from plush fabrics that are great for nestling into. While you want to make sure your dog can stretch comfortably, you don’t want this style of bed to be too large. This style of dog bed is designed to be like a warm hug. If it’s too large, your dog might feel insecure and lose out on the snuggling benefits. Make sure you chose a bed with plenty of quality filling to provide comfort against a hard floor. Overtime, even a small dog will compress the filling. Something of quality can be readily puffed up and returned to comfort.

Dog bed - dog mat

Larger dogs may prefer a Dog Mat

On a Dog Mat, larger dogs can stretch out and roll around. Dog mats come in various thicknesses, depending on the level of comfort your dog requires. Some dog mats are covered in a hessian or sturdy outdoor fabric ideal for outdoor or working dogs. Many dog mats have removable covers for easy cleaning.
A dog mat can be good for dogs with arthritis or mobility issues as they are close to the ground and easy to climb on and off of. Just make sure it offers enough support and protection from cold floors.
Choose a dog mat with firm quality foam, especially if they are for outdoor use. A denser foam will offer better protection against the cold ground and will last longer. If you are using your dog bed outside, look for something with a fabric that resists mould and mildew.
Dog bed - dog cot

A Dog Cot is another good outdoor dog bed option

These dog beds have legs with a mesh bed suspended off the ground. This keeps your dog off the cold ground. Cot dog beds are also great in the heat as they allow air to circulate around the dog to help keep them cool.
If you have a dog with thick or long hair, then a cot style bed is ideal. This style of dog bed helps to keep dogs who tend to overheat, cooler because the air circulates all around them. Being easy to clean and dry quickly, cot beds can be a good choice for older dogs with incontinence. You just need to be sure your older dog can climb comfortably onto this style of dog bed. Cot beds can be tricky for older dogs with arthritis.

Dog Bed - Bolster

A bolster dog bed provides comfort

Some larger dogs still like to snuggle or need a bed that offers protection from drafts. For them a bolster bed with sturdy raised sides is a good choice. These dog beds are usually lined with a plush fabric and offer a similar level of comfort and security of a nest pillow bed while being much sturdier. This makes them more suitable for larger breeds. They are like a personal couch for your dog! Look for a bed with heavy-duty stuffing that will support a heavy dog.


Heated and self warming dog beds

If you have an older dogs or a dog with arthritis or mobility issues you need to take particular care choosing the right sort of dog bed. You need a bed that is close to the ground so your dog can easily get on and off the bed as necessary. You also need to look for a dog bed that offers adequate support and comfort for aching joints. If your dog has incontinence issues, make sure you choose a dog bed that is easy to clean. While many dog beds have removable covers, you also want a dog bed with a waterproof inner cover that will protect the stuffing and you can wipe clean.Self warming dog bed

Wallington’s Pet Supplies have a selection of heated dog beds that are ideal for dogs with arthritis. Our new range of heated dog beds are self-warming. These self-warming dog beds are made of a thermo reflective fibre warming core that holds your dog’s body heat. These dog beds are safe and require electricity. The heat from your dog’s body warms to bed and because that heat is retained the bed then warms your dog. This provides great pain relief for sore bones.

Fuzz-yardOnce you’ve decided on the right size, type and fabric for your dog bed, next you can consider the look. Wallington’s Pet Supplies has a great range of colours and patterns to brighten up or coordinate with your home, whatever your style! Our fashion range from Fuzz Yard coordinates with the full range of accessories including dog bowls, collars and leads.


Dogs are welcome in store (on a lead of course!) seven days a week. Bring your best friend with you next time you visit and get expert advice from one of our experienced staff in the pet department.