Little or Large?
The size of your dog will, of course, reflect the cost of the bed you buy, and it must be the perfect size for him to be comfortable in. Even though many dogs like to curl up to sleep, there should always be enough room to stretch out like a starfish if this is how he likes to sleep. This table provides a rough guide:
Dog Bed Sizes
|Bed Size||Average dimensions (cm)||Average dimensions (inches)||Suits dog breeds|
|Small Beds||63cm - 90cm||25"- 35”||such as Chihuahua, small terriers and Pugs|
|Medium Beds||90cm - 105cm||36" - 41”||medium size breeds like Springer Spaniel, Poodle, Staffies, Schnauzer|
|Large Beds||105cm+||42”+||Labrador, Border Collie, Weimaraner sized-dogs|
|Extra Large Beds||120cm +||48” +||Great Dane, St Bernard etc,|
It may seem obvious that a small dog will need a small bed and a large dog a large bed but you have to consider how your dog sleeps and where he likes to sleep. For example, does he prefer to sleep in a cool place like the kitchen floor or is he always to be found curled up on the fireside rug?
Dog beds come in a vast range of sizes and compositions ranging from extra small (xs) right up to massive (xxxl); from simple plastic dog beds to wooden dog beds to the ultimate luxury wool dog beds. It all depends on how much you want to pay.
Is Your Dog a Giant Breed?
Large dogs like Irish Wolfhounds, Great Danes, Newfoundlands and Mastiffs may be more comfortable on a raised dog bed (reviews here) . Not only are these easier to get on to and rise from, a raised bed can protect them from draughts and can be moved for easier cleaning. Another aspect to consider concerns your dog’s changing health as he grows older. Many of the larger breeds develop conditions like arthritis and this can change the way they sleep; they may need to stretch out more and they may have difficulty getting into and out of their bed. This will have an impact not only on the type of bed you buy but also on the size which may need to increase to accommodate any mobility difficulties – our memory foam / orthopaedic dog bed reviews will help you here.
Where is His Safe Space?
Dogs generally prefer to be in a noise-free and draught-free part of the house where they can snooze undisturbed. Take this into account along with the size you need before buying. After all, although pet beds for small dogs can fit just about anywhere an oversized dog bed is a different proposition altogether and you may need to consider moving furniture around to accommodate this, or choosing which room to place the dog bed in. So while your Pug bed looks adorable in front of the fire a Great Dane bed perhaps less so.
Beds for Puppies and Small Dogs
Smaller breeds like the Bichon Frise, Jack Russell Terrier or Pug often feel more secure when they can burrow into an igloo dog bed and these can be good for puppies too. However your puppy is going to grow (and grow) so unless you buy one big enough for all his life stages you’ll need to buy several as he develops in which case look for cheap dog beds initially. Whichever you choose for your puppy make sure it is washable and quick to dry because there will inevitably be accidents from one end or the other – see our reviews of good puppy beds.
Large Dogs from Small Puppies Grow
We know that all puppies are tiny – or not so tiny – and adorable bundles of fluff. Unfortunately some of those teeny tiny furries grow very quickly into very large dogs! That cute Great Dane pup weighing around 9kg at 8 weeks will over 2-3 years reach anything up to 81cm tall for a male or 54cm tall for a female and can weigh a whopping 54-62kg. The English Bulldog will grow to a muscular 23-25kg and 40cm in height. The tiny Chihuahua on the other hand thankfully doesn’t make more than a manageable 3kg in weight and 23cm in height. Chihuahua puppy beds will more than likely be suitable for full-grown adults. The good old Labrador, our favourite breed of dog, will reach a maximum height of 60-62cm and a maximum desired weight of 32-36kg.
So as you can see a dog bed for a Labrador and a Chihuahua dog bed may look pretty similar, size notwithstanding, but must fulfil very different needs. However, one thing you’ll need for a puppy is a robust bed that is cosy as well as durable – we’ve listed some of the best puppy bed options on the market in our reviews of puppy beds.
Pedigree dogs then are pretty easy to cater for when it comes to deciding what size dog bed is going to suit them. The many crossbreeds on the market are perhaps more difficult because you can’t always predict how big they are going to grow.
Whichever breed, or otherwise, your dog is, the beds you buy for him will probably have to get larger over time to accommodate him as he goes through his growth cycles so you will need to take this into account when setting your budget.