The 5 Best Heated Cat Beds in 2021
Our cats deserve comfort, too, especially when the weather takes a turn for the worse later in the year. If you’re looking for the best heated cat bed around, then you’re in the right place. We’ve taken it upon ourselves to do the research and bring you only the best.
There are a ton of them out there, however, and knowing which is right for you and your feline can be difficult. If you’re in a hurry, we already know what our favorite is, but we strongly recommend taking a look at our list to find the right heated cat bed or pad. It’s all about suiting the bed to the situation.
|Best Overall||K&H Pet Products Thermo-Kitty Heated Pet Bed Deluxe||4.9|
|Best Outdoor Heated Cat Bed||K&H Pet Products Mod Thermo-Kitty Shelter||4.7|
|Best Heating Pad for Cats||K&H Pet Products Outdoor Heated Kitty Pad||4.6|
|Best Self Warming Cat Bed||Pet Magasin Self Warming Cat Cave Bed||4.4|
|Budget Pick||Milliard Thermal Cat Mat||4.1|
Our Top Pick
Table of Contents
Top 5 Heated Cat Beds
K&H Pet Products Thermo-Kitty Heated Pet Bed Deluxe
Coming in two different sizes with an attractive cave-style design, this was our favorite bed. That said, skip down a bit if you’re looking for something better suited for the outdoors… this isn’t it.
The cover is easily removable for machine washing, and the top can be unzipped and removed easily if your cat doesn’t like sleeping with a roof over their heads. The heating element only uses 4W, making it cheap to keep the plug in.
In addition to the core features, the bed is extremely comfortable. Most cats won’t want to leave it even without the heater.
That said, it’s not suitable for outdoor use due to the lower wattage and material construction. It’s also a bit on the pricer end of things.
Best Outdoor Heated Cat Bed
K&H Pet Products Mod Thermo-Kitty Shelter
For those who need to keep their kitty warm while they’re out in the cold, this is the best option around. It’s a small cat shelter with electric heating, all made of great materials, and put together well for a feline.
The exterior is made of heavy-duty polyester. The material is waterproof and scratch-resistant, meaning it will last a long time. Polyester also does well with UV light, so direct sunlight shouldn’t be a problem within the warranty length.
The interior material is a faux-fur that cats love. The whole thing also unzips and can be removed for easier cleaning.
It’s not the best for truly extreme weather, however. In that case, just bring the cat indoors, but the heater felt a bit weak for any truly cold temperatures. It makes sense since the heating element is only rated at 25W. Not a lot of power, but enough to keep things nice and toasty in non-extreme weather.
Best Heating Pad for Cats
K&H Pet Products Outdoor Heated Kitty Pad
Pads are great for some cats, and they’re even better for cats, which already have a beloved sleeping area. Adding a pad just makes it warmer and even more appealing.
This model is suited for outdoors as well, although we’d certainly see no problem with pulling it into the house. It also heats really well, with the heating element contained within the pad being rated for 40W.
The pad is created from rugged ABS plastic, which is about as close to cat-proof as you can get and also keeps the internals dry. It’s tough stuff and perfectly made for the application. Coming with that, however, is a great fleece top that’s comfortable and resists water a bit.
They do seem prone to failure over long term use, but regular checking up is a good policy with any electrically heated item. Keep an eye on it, and you’ll be fine.
Best Self Warming Cat Bed
Pet Magasin Self Warming Cat Cave Bed
For those who aren’t comfortable with electrical pads, self-warming beds are the way to go. And this is the pick of the litter.
It’s a cozy, cave style design with internals lined with insulating material. Your cat crawls in, and they’ll quickly find themselves nice, snuggled, and warm. Obviously, this one is only for indoor use, but it’s a great way to save on heating bills in the winter.
The cave is actually a bit misleading. The whole bed can be made into four different configurations to suit the chosen feline: the cave, a flat bed, a “cup” design, and a “pod” design. That alone put it on top of our list as one of those is sure to please every cat.
The bad news? Well, it’s not electric for one. The other problem is that the “cave” configuration ends up being more of a sock since there’s no support. That keeps some cats from using it, but changing the style should do the trick.
Milliard Thermal Cat Mat
If you’re just looking for a great way to beat minor heat without spending a lot of money, you’ll be pleased with Milliard’s Thermal Cat Mat. Of the budget options out there, this is one of the few that we found both effective and affordable.
It’s a simple pad overall, great for mild cold weather. Don’t expect it to match an electric or keep your kitty warm when they’re patrolling the neighborhood for birds and mice, and you’ll do well. There are also two sizes to choose from.
The pad itself is nice and soft, made of high-quality materials with a bit of scratch-resistance. Since it’s only a pad, it can also be added to an existing cat bed for comfort and warmth.
That said, it’s less durable and not as warm as the others on our list. Well suited for mild-to-moderate cold… but not great if you’re looking at subfreezing winter weather.
Why Use a Heated Cat Bed?
Those who are invested in their pet’s comfort often find that heated cat beds are great. It depends on the climate, of course, they’re much more useful in a Michigan winter than living on the California coast, for instance.
Most people use them simply to keep their catty companions warm during the colder months of Fall and Winter. The hidden benefit is that you can allow your cat to remain at a comfortable temperature even if you’re not running your heating system, thus saving a bit of money on power.
Outdoor cats, in particular, are a good fit for heated pads. The hardier models can stand up to being placed outsides, and it’ll allow even a short-haired breed to get a well-deserved warm nap during the day or evening as they prefer.
Indeed, short-haired cats will benefit the most from a heated cat bed, but if the climate regularly gets super cold in your area, then a heated cat bed is a minimal investment to make sure your feline always has a place to go to warm up.
What to Look for in a Heated Cat Bed
Heated beds allow cats to keep warm no matter what the climate is, but there are a few things to keep in mind.
Not every “heated” bed is up to par, so keep a close eye on the following to make sure you’re getting what you and your pet actually need.
Types of Heated Cat Bed and Pads
Not all heated cat beds are created equally, of course, but there are two main types of bed which should be looked at so that you’ll be able to get the right bed for your climate and pet.
Electric beds heat better but are more expensive. Even a cheap electric will be more expensive than a good self-heated bed, but they allow for more heating since they have some input energy. Like all pet beds, they come in a variety of different designs, but caves and pads are the most common.
The other issue with them is that not all are rated to be outdoors. Make sure that the bed you’re specifically looking at can do so without issues before you make a final choice if you’re planning on using it outside.
If you’re comparing power between heated beds, be aware that the wattage rating is what you’re looking for. Higher wattage means a bed that has more warming potential.
Self-heating beds are cheaper but less warming. Self-heating beds use a variety of materials to help a cat get warm. These range from simple pads that absorb and spread a cat’s body-heat to entire caved beds with a heatsink material contained within an otherwise “normal” looking pad.
The best can still get up there in price, but they’ll only get to be about on par with cheap electric heated cat beds. The disadvantage? They’re not suitable for truly cold climates since your cat likely doesn’t produce enough furred heat to counter sub-freezing weather.
Most cat beds are covered in some sort of material, and those which come with heating are no different.
The material should, ideally, do the following:
- Stand up to a cat’s claws and teeth
- Be comfortable to lie on
- Be waterproof
- Allow for easy cleaning
As long as all of those are in order, the outside material matters less to your cat than it does to you for the most part.
It should be noted that many cat beds allow you to slide off the cover for machine washing. This makes it a lot easier to handle cleanliness than it would be otherwise. Fortunately, cats tend to be cleaner than dogs, so being able to spot wash isn’t an absolute necessity.
Like all varieties of pet beds, cat beds come in a few different designs.
Electric models come in basically every shape you would associate with a cat bed. Sadly, we found it impossible to find a heated cat tree, so you’ll need to find a pad that fits your feline’s favorite place to make that one work.
On the other hand, there are pads, beds, and cave style designs available. Even bolster beds can be found if you look hard enough, although, in our experience, the majority of cats don’t find them overly appealing.
Most heated cat beds are cheap enough that people aren’t too worried about failure. There are no moving parts, and barring a break in the electrical connection, there’s not a whole lot that can go wrong.
Instead, a warranty shows that the company has a lot of faith in their product. It’s a good indicator that the brand is willing to stand behind their offerings, which means only good things for the end consumer.
Safety and Heated Cat Beds
There’s been much ado about the safety of electrically heated devices for some time now. While some have used them for years with no issue, others insist that they’re an absolute fire hazard.
It’s really up to the customer whether or not they feel comfortable with an electric heating bed running in their home while they’re away. Most are quite safe, but over time, even the best devices can begin to break down.
Take note of the following, and you’ll be able to avoid any serious mishaps:
- Inspect the electrically heated bed thoroughly on a regular basis. If it feels hotter than usual, it may be time to look for a replacement. If anything looks burned, warped, or otherwise out of place, then be careful about plugging it back in.
- Do not place anything on top of the bed or pad, which wasn’t designed to go there. This is the cause of many problems, particularly for those who throw them in barns where straw presents a serious fire hazard.
- Keep outdoor heated beds away from areas where water can pool if it rains. While many are waterproof, it presents an unnecessary hazard if the shielding over the element and electronics fails.
- Check the cord connection frequently, especially if your pet is a known chewer. These represent the single biggest possible point of failure in the electrical system in the bed.
As long as you do the above, you should be fine. Just remember there are other options out there if these make you wary.
Heated Cat Bed FAQ
Are heated cat beds safe?
For the most part, heated cat beds are a safe bet. They’re simple devices, should have an auto cut-off built in and have comparatively low wattage when you’re looking at almost any other appliance. Follow the guidelines above, and you’ll be fine, but if you’re particularly anxious about it, then a self-heated cat bed may be the way to go.
How much will a heated cat bed increase my electricity costs?
Less than an incandescent light bulb by a factor of about ten. Even high-end electrically heated pet beds will use only 25W of power or so. The fact of the matter is that in most locations, the increase in cost is going to be around a dollar per month even if you keep it plugged in at all times.
Can I run my heated cat bad 24/7?
Check with the manufacturer, but we know for a fact that K&H designs their electric beds with 24/7 use in mind. Since they should have a negligible cost on your utility bills, you’ll be in good hands as long as you’re careful.