Best Orthopedic Dog Beds in 2019

Comfort for your dog is one thing, but the true purpose of orthopedic dog beds lies in their use for ailing canines and those who might suffer from joint issues in the future. For elderly dogs they can be one of the best ways to improve their quality of life, and your dog deserves only the best at the end of things. Really though, the only reason not to go with an orthopedic dog bed is their cost.

So let’s dive right into some plush memory foam with your canine and we’ll show you how to make the right decision.

Why Use an Orthopedic Dog Bed?

Orthopedic dog beds aren’t just a gimmick. They’ve been proven time and time again to help dogs with joint issues and arthritis. Most dogs will simply sleep better on them as well, resulting in a more well-rested canine, especially as they get up there in the years.

They’re also of a lot of benefit to working dogs, or even just those dogs who are kept particularly active by their owners. Service dogs and basically any canine who serves their people as more than just a companion will benefit.

Basically, if your dog falls into any of the following categories then they’re going to get a lot of benefit:

  • Older dogs
  • Breeds prone to joint problems
  • Any dog with existing joint issues like hip dysplasia
  • Working dogs
  • Service dogs

Really though, even if your dog is still a pup they’ll receive a lot of benefit over the course of their life by using an orthopedic bed.

If you’ve ever slept on a memory foam bed, then you probably remember waking up feeling a whole lot better the next morning. Your dog will get the same benefits in both the short and the long run.

What Defines an Orthopedic Dog Bed?

A lot of dog beds are sold as being “orthopedic.” Most of them are plush and comfortable as well and a dog who doesn’t need the special support will absolutely love them.

But the truth is that orthopedic dog beds are defined within a relatively narrow band. The bed has to be made of orthopedic foam, especially if your pup needs the special support provided.

Basically, memory foam is the defining factor behind an orthopedic bed. Some beds made with things like egg crate foam or thick layers of polyfill and other cheaper materials are sold as being orthopedic.

Unfortunately, this claim does not stand up to scrutiny in the real world. If your dog absolutely needs the extra support for arthritic joints or hip dysplasia then make sure that your new dog bed is made of memory foam. Layers of different “hardness” in particular are of a benefit.

Some of the cheaper orthopedic beds will be made with a thinner layer of memory foam over egg foam or something else which is cheaper. These are still of benefit, but for the best end results you want to make sure that you have a thick bed made of memory foam.

So, What Am I Looking For?

The first thing you’ll need to determine is if your dog actually requires memory foam as the base material. Younger, healthier dogs can get away with something cheaper if you’re not able to budget properly.

Types of Dog Beds

There are a few different types of dog bed that exist. For most dogs, a simple pad will work quite well, but for added support, a pillow or bolsters are a good idea.

Full bolsters, essentially a doggie “couch” are great for those dogs with anxiety since they’ll be able to snuggle into them.

For those dogs who prefer to snuggle deep under the covers, it can be quite hard to find a cave-style bed. In this case, we recommend tossing a blanket over a bolster bed with high sides so they can get in and out easily and burrow down like they prefer.

Sizing

Finding the appropriate size of bed is pretty simple.

As always, we recommend laying tape down on the floor and seeing if your dog fits before actually purchasing the bed.

For orthopedic dog beds, you should probably go a little bit bigger than you’d think since many dogs with joint conditions find themselves sleeping in rather odd positions.

Ease of Cleaning

Dogs can make a real mess of their beds and that means having a removable cover which can be easily cleaned is rather important.

Waterproof liners are also recommended, especially for elderly dogs who may be suffering from incontinence.

Aesthetics

Most high-end dog beds are available in a ton of different colors. Since an orthopedic dog bed is usually quite the investment it does make sense to make sure it won’t be an eye-sore.

Obviously, this shouldn’t be the main thing on your mind, but for many people, it’s important to at least match their decor.

If you can’t get an exact match, many people prefer to get neutral tones.

Pricing

Real orthopedic dog beds can be rather expensive. They’re usually worth the investment over the course of a dog’s lifespan, however.

If your dog has serious issues then try to avoid fake orthopedic beds. While they can be quite comfortable for your pet, and most dogs will love them, materials like polyfill simply don’t offer the support needed for a dog with joint issues and you’re going to end up being disappointed with the results.

The Best Orthopedic Dog Beds

We’ve done the research, so you may want to take a look at the beds which we’ve picked out before you go off-label. As long as you keep our little buyer’s guide in mind, however, and know how to make a discerning purchase you should be fine.

Best Orthopedic Dog Bed for Large Dogs

Big Barker 7″ Pillow Top Orthopedic Dog Bed

Big Barker produces this excellent pillowed bed which is available in three sizes. All of them are primarily suitable for large dogs, ranging from big to absolutely massive.

These beds provide excellent support for your dog, but keep in mind that they’re calibrated for larger dogs. Frankly, the seven-inch mat is probably rather overkill for any dog under fifty or sixty pounds. The branding says “too powerful” for smaller dogs and we’d be inclined to agree.

The outer cover of the bed is made of an easy-to-clean faux-suede microfiber material which also feels good to the touch. Of course, the ability to clean it easily is the primary draw for most people and the material also doesn’t hold hair which is nice. The cover unzips and is 100% machine washable as well.

Keep in mind that due to the materials and quality of the bed, they’re also quite expensive.

4.8/5
Our Opinion:

While not suitable for small, or really even medium sized, dogs this is the best way to soothe the joints of your large canine and ensure that they’re able to get both the rest and support they need to remain healthy.

  • Seven inches of memory foam
  • Specifically engineered for large to giant dogs
  • Long lasting guarantee
  • Four attractive colors
  • Rather expensive
  • Not suitable for smaller dogs

Best Memory Foam Bed for All Sizes

PetFusion Ultimate Dog Lounge

If you’re still looking for something high-quality but don’t own a dog who’ll be able to use the Big Barker you’ll love this bed from PetFusion. It’s extremely well suited for all dogs and comes in sizes which will work for just about any dog, from tiny terriers to massive mastiffs.

When you’re looking at this bed, the first thing most people will notice is that it’s comprised of memory foam. The beds are engineered in different sizes, with the small bed being 2.5” and growing up to 6” for the XXL size.

The bolsters are one of the best parts, allowing your dog to cuddle up or for you to throw a blanket over them for dogs which prefer to have a cave-stlye bed.

Like most high-quality dog beds this line is fairly easy to clean. It also has a waterproof liner which you’ll find can help especially with those dogs who might have some urinary incontinence issues.

Of course, they also run pretty expensive. They’re well-engineered and made with extremely high quality materials.

4.8/5
Our Opinion:

For those looking for an excellent, real memory foam bed you should take a look at the PetFusion Ultimate Dog Lounge. These high-end dog beds are a bit expensive but your dog will benefit greatly.

  • Real orthopedic foam
  • Great bolsters
  • Engineered sizing
  • Easy to clean
  • Rather expensive
  • Not all dogs enjoy bolsters

Best Orthopedic Bolster Bed

Friends Forever Orthopedic Dog Bed Lounge Sofa

While we really like the PetFusion and certify its high-quality, we found the bolsters a bit lacking. That’s not the case here, the main problem is that there isn’t quite as much range in sizing although there are still plenty of sizes available.

The bolsters are overstuffed, making them a great support for those dogs who prefer to use them. It also comes with a waterproof liner, which is a nice touch for those dogs who might suffer from urinary incontinence.

The memory-foam contained within is actually considered to be “human-grade” which, in our experience, just means that it’s the real deal. That makes this a great bed for those canines who actually have joint issues.

Thankfully, this particular bed is a little bit cheaper than our top two as well. It’s still not cheap, but you’ll be able to save a couple of bucks if you go down this route.

It’s tear resistant as well, making it a good option for those dogs who like to paw their beds excessively.

4.8/5
Our Opinion:

For those who prefer thick, full bolsters this is a great option. It’s also a bit tougher than our second favorite, which is a nice touch.

  • Excellent overfilled bolsters
  • Human-grade memory foam
  • Several sizes available
  • Water-resistant liner
  • Still a bit expensive
  • Not all canines like bolsters

Best Budget Memory Foam Pillow Bed

KOPEKS – Orthopedic Memory Foam Dog Bed with Pillow

If you’re looking for an excellent orthopedic pillow bed but you don’t have the money for the Big Barker you’ll find this one from KOPEKS to be an attractive option. It has 7 inches of real memory foam and a waterproof liner.

It’s a bit more “generic” than the handmade Big Barker, but there are sizes available for smaller dogs as well. The sizes also don’t really run to those appropriate for a giant dog unfortunately.

On the other hand, it usually runs about half of the price as our favorite.

The cover zips off and is machine washable. It also has an anti-skid bottom, which is nice for those dogs who seem to be a little bit too energetic. It’s made of nearly the same microfiber material as the high end beds, meaning it resists hair and filth pretty well.

The only real problem we found with it was that the stitching doesn’t quite match up to the more expensive beds. It should still be a long lasting bed for the most part, but you’re likely to end up buying another one if you have a long lived dog.

The memory-foam contained within is actually considered to be “human-grade” which, in our experience, just means that it’s the real deal. That makes this a great bed for those canines who actually have joint issues.

Thankfully, this particular bed is a little bit cheaper than our top two as well. It’s still not cheap, but you’ll be able to save a couple of bucks if you go down this route.

It’s tear resistant as well, making it a good option for those dogs who like to paw their beds excessively.

4.8/5
Our Opinion:

There’s a whole lot to like here, but the really good news is that this bed is available for a fraction of the cost of our favorites.

  • Great price
  • Quality memory foam
  • Pillow-style bed
  • Excellent cover
  • Stitching lacks some quality
  • Looks a bit generic

Best Orthopedic Bed for Small Dogs

Serta Ortho Cuddler Dog Bed

If you have a small dog you might find it hard to find a proper orthopedic bed. There’s a lot here that needs a closer look but the first thing we’ll attract your attention to is that it has a genuine memory foam bottom.

This bed has high bolsters around the sides as well, allowing you to ensure that you’ve got what you need. It has a rubber, skid-proof bottom as well which is nice since smaller dogs are usually a bit boisterous.

The whole thing is remarkably well-built but we don’t know how well we’d trust it with chewers. The fabric is considered to be “upholstery-grade” but we’re not sure that’s saying all that much in the end since most fabric could be considered that way.

The high bolsters are actually pretty awesome. They allow you to drape a blanket easily for those dogs who like to burrow in when they’re sleeping and can also provide comfort to your dog if they’re the anxious type.

4.8/5
Our Opinion:

For those with small dogs, take a look at this one before you dedicate yourself to a more expensive bed since it really does seem to be the best option for smaller canines.

  • Real memory foam
  • High bolstered sides
  • Soft interior
  • Great for cuddlers and burrowers
  • Probably not tough enough for destructive dogs
  • Not all dogs will like the high sides

Best Budget Orthopedic Bed

Go Pet Club Orthopedic Memory Foam Pet Bed

Orthopedic dog beds tend to run extremely high in price, as you’ll have noticed if you’ve looked at any of our other options thus far. If you’re willing to put up with a cover that’s not of the highest quality then you’ll find it to be a great option.

The cover is made of similar microfiber suede materials to the higher end beds but there’s a bit of a difference in that the stitching is a bit lower in quality and it has easily chewable or scratchable corners.

It’s still a respectable option for providing your dog with relief. The smaller sizes might even make a good first dog bed for puppies of particularly large breeds.

4.8/5
Our Opinion:

While it’s quite cheap, the quality on this dog bed is still quite respectable. Just remember that you get what you pay for.

  • Super cheap
  • Real memory foam
  • Tons of sizes
  • Cover resists dirt
  • A bit on the “cheap” side
  • Corners are easy to tear apart for chewers

Orthopedic Dog Bed FAQ

You know the drill, before you hit the comments section let’s see if we can answer your questions right here. People have a lot of questions about memory foam beds, so we’ve anticipated some of them.

Q: Is memory foam a gimmick?

A: Absolutely not. If it works for humans then it will work for dogs in this case, since many of us suffer from the same problems with joints, getting old, and sometimes just not getting enough sleep. Many people have tried cheap “orthopedic” beds made with egg crate foam or even polyfill and have some complaints.

Q: Why are these beds so expensive?

A: Mostly because of the memory foam. Compared to a human sized memory foam mattress they actually end up being cheap.

Q: Should I get one for my dog before there’s a problem?

A: Absolutely. It’s especially important with breeds like German Shepherds which are prone to joint problems as they get older. We’d actually recommend starting with them being a pup, but every dog will enjoy some benefits from their bed.

Q: Do orthopedic beds really help with hip dysplasia?

A: Yes, they come highly recommended by veterinarians for this very purpose. In fact, it’s one of the best ways to help keep your dog from hurting if they suffer from this condition. Indeed, any joint issues like arthritis or elbow dysplasia are a good recommendation for your dog.

Q: Why do you recommend them for working dogs?

A: The simple answer is that your dog will sleep better. Working dogs tend to have sore muscles, and they will help with recovery.

Q: Should I add a blanket to my dog’s bed?

A:It’s usually a good idea to do so. By draping a blanket you’ll help to protect the bed and make it last for longer. We’ve found this to be particularly helpful if your dog likes to scratch and chew, as a thick horse blanket can greatly extend the life of your bed and considering the occasional high costs of these beds it’s definitely a good idea.

Q: Can I find an orthopedic cave bed?

A: Dogs like dachshund really prefer to sleep burrowed. We couldn’t find one worth the price for this article, but we can recommend using a bed with high bolsters and wrapping a blanket around them.

Q: How can I be sure the bed is real memory foam?

A: Memory foam has a particularly squishy quality but quickly comes back up when pressure is let off. We personally tested all of the beds we recommend but if you’re going into a pet store then you should definitely poke at it a few times.

Q: Do orthopedic dog beds wear out quickly?

A: Not all memory foams are equal. Look for a guarantee when you’re buying for the best results.

Q: Can I use a large orthopedic dog bed for multiple small dogs?

A: We know some dogs like to sleep together, but the truth is that too much memory foam is “hard” for a dog that’s not at the appropriate weight level for the bed. If you’re going to go ahead and do this look for a cheaper memory foam bed which is no more than 4” thick.

Relieve Pain and Keep Your Dog Healthy

If you’re ready to make a serious investment in your dog’s health then you should definitely take a look into making sure you get them the best orthopedic dog bed possible. Even if they’re still a pup a small one will keep them well rested and ready to go. Elderly dogs and those with arthritis or joint problems will benefit even more.

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