Providing a safe and comfortable environment is essential when welcoming new pets into a home. Animals have different needs depending on the species, but many furry companions can benefit from cozy bedding.
It has become commonplace for pets to share their owners’ beds. According to a recent survey of pet owners by the American Pet Products Association, nearly half of dogs sleep in their owner’s beds. The survey found that 62 percent of small dogs, 41 percent of medium-sized dogs and 32 percent of large dogs sleep with their owners. Cats, too, snuggle up under the covers.
While pet owners might like sharing beds with their pets, it may be better to give pets their own space. Pets can disrupt their owners’ sleep and even cause health issues, such as asthma, to escalate. A study released by the Mayo Clinic Sleep Disorders Center found that about half the patients in the study had a dog or cat, and 53 percent of those pet owners said their pets disturbed their sleep in some way every night.
Pet owners can give pets their own place to lay their heads to avoid restless nights. Pet beds are now available in many different materials and styles. Here’s what to look for in a pet bed.
A popular option is a “nest” style bed. Nesting beds have raised sides that offer privacy and help smaller animals feel contained and secure. This containment also can help pets feel warmer and be less susceptible to drafty conditions on the floor.
Classic beds are essentially mattress-style beds. They’re flat and filled with a variety of materials, including polyfil, baffled polyfil, solid foam, and memory foam. Pay attention to the fill, especially for larger animals. Owners will get more for their money by investing in a quality item that will retain its shape.
Orthopedic beds offer maximum support to cradle aging or ailing animals. They tend to feature medical-grade foam. Some orthopedic beds may be higher up from the ground so that pets can maneuver on them more easily.
Be sure to weigh and measure the length of a pet before purchasing a bed. The pet should be able to stretch out, but you do not want the bed to be so large that the animal does not feel secure.
In addition, keep in mind the fabric type, paying particular attention to its durability and how it can be washed. Many beds are covered with machine-washable materials, but you may want to be able to wash the rest of the bed as well. Washing the bed regularly is essential to prevent odors and even parasites.
Pet beds offer comfort to companion animals and can help keep pets off of the furniture and out of their owners’ beds.