Dogs sleep differently than we do
The usual amount of shut-eye for dogs is 13 hours a day or so, but it’s important to realize that dogs sleep differently than we humans do. They nap often. But once they wake, they’re eager to carry out their assigned tasks. Choosing the right dog bed is important for your dog’s comfort and health.
These can vary from affection and companionship inside, to fierce defense of what your dog considers his territory outside
Sleep depends upon the amount of activity and exercise a dog gets during his waking hours, adjusted to coincide with his human owners.
In short, dogs are active when we are. Quality sleep helps maintain your dog’s health. The types of beds dogs sleep in have a lasting affect on their health and well-being.
Why do dogs need dog beds?
Dogs are territorial critters who like designated areas just for them. One size does not fit all. There are 493 different dog breeds worldwide. Each breed has a different size, shape, weight and wired-in sleep behavior.
If you haven’t done this already, take the time to observe your dog’s behavior as he prepares for sleep. Several breeds display various nesting behaviors. The most common of these is when the dog circles his bed three or four times before finally plopping down.
The type of bed your dog prefers will depend upon his needs. Some dogs curl into a ball with their backs resting against a padded cushion for an extra sense of security. Bigger dogs need to stretch out, so a larger bed is a must. Other dogs prefer to be enclosed for an additional sense of comfort and security.
What to look for when choosing a dog bed
When choosing the size of your dog bed, consider your dog’s breed, size and the weight he’ll achieve once full grown. Here’s a video that will help.
Weight up to 25 pounds
Breeds: Jack Russell, Beagles, Cocker Spaniels, Terriers
Weight up to 45 pounds
Breeds: German Shorthair Pointers, English Setters, Springer’s and Border Collies
Weight up to 70 pounds
Breeds: Labrador, Weimaraner, Irish Setters, Golden Retrievers
Weight up to 100 pounds
Breeds: St Bernard’s, Newfoundland, Bernese Mountain Dogs, Pyrenees
Sturdy construction is an absolute
Quality means you’ll get what you pay for. As you shop, give every prospective dog bed a test for sturdy joints. Grab the bed and jiggle it.
“Give” means the joints move or wiggle, an indication of shoddy assembly. Wooden joints or metal welds must be solid to stand up to years of use as your dog climbs in and out of his bed several times a day.
Raised beds prevent chills
Dogs suffer cold just as we do. Cold drafts flow low over the surface of floors. Beds raised three to six inches will provide some insulation, so cold won’t seep into your dog as it does when beds are laid directly on a cold floor.
The opposite is true in hot weather. A raised bed helps the dog sleep cooler, by providing some air circulation that whisks excess heat away.
Durable fabrics last longer
If your dog chews or claws the cushion before reclining, you need a strong material that resists this abuse. Cheap fabrics will soon shred.
One size does not fit all
Then size of the bed you choose must suit your pet. It should be large enough for him to comfortably stretch out, yet tight enough to make him feel secure.
What about puppies?
If you have a puppy, it’s really important to know what final size and weight it will be when fully grown. This is where breed research is needed before you shop. There’s no point in buying a smaller bed that Fido will outgrow in just a couple of months.
There are two options when buying for your full-size Fido to be. The first is, buy a large bed, anticipating growth spurts. Anticipating growth is good, but there’s a downside. Some pups may become overwhelmed in a large bed. Too much space may result in the little critters feeling lost and insecure.
Another option is to buy two beds. One that fits the puppy now and one that will fit him a few months down the road. The other bed will be for a couple of months of additional growth spurts, that will fit him comfortably when he becomes an adult.
Exposing your puppy to a bed early-on allows for better training, so that the dog knows the bed is his turf and his alone. If you have several puppies, you’ll need a bed for each one.
Your dog bed shape depends upon your dog’s sleep behavior
Observation of your dog’s sleeping habits and behavior will soon reveal the type of bed she prefers.
Some dogs curl into a ball, so a bed with high thick sides would be the best choice. Others prefer sleeping on their backs, paws in the air. And some like to hang their heads off the edge. If your dog stretches out, a flat bed or one with lower sides would be ideal. In any case you need to measure your dog’s width and length before you shop.
Older dogs have special needs
Older dogs sometimes develop painful age-onset degenerative joint diseases and disorders such as canine hip dysplasia. Low beds make it easy for them to get in and out. A thick cushion and supportive sides are good. Orvis makes a line of memory foam dog beds for your elderly dog’s comfort. The foam has a “memory” which means it won’t’ pack down, but rebounds once the dog moves off of it.
Colors don’t matter to dogs since they’re color blind. But you’re not. Orvis dog beds come in a variety of colors and covers, so you can choose one to match your existing decor. Or change it at a whim, as your style changes, when you repaint or when you move the dog bed to another room.
Looking for more Orvis dog beds?
Orvis makes a full line of quality dog beds perfect for your dog’s specific needs. Click the link to see other selections Orvis dog beds