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Have you been thinking about getting an elevated dog bed for your large breed? Raised beds for dogs aren’t the first thing you think of when looking at dog beds, but they have a lot of benefits.
However, not all elevated dog beds are created equal. Some are flimsy and won’t withstand regular use.
How do you know which is the best raised dog bed?
We’ve done the research coming up with our top 6 recommendations for the best elevated dog beds for large dogs so you can find the right one for your pup.
An elevated dog bed is basically a cot for your dog. It gets them off the ground, which keeps them warmer in cold weather and cooler in hot weather. They’re great for indoor or outdoor use, too, and prevent the growth of bacteria, mold, and mildew when placed outdoors.
There are a lot of reasons you should invest in an elevated dog bed. Here are some of the top reasons you should buy raised beds for dogs.
The primary reason to get an elevated dog bed is that it keeps your dog off the floor. Many of the other benefits (like temperature regulation and being easy on sore joints) stem from the fact that the bed doesn’t sit right on the ground like traditional dog beds.
Another great benefit of elevated dog beds is that they’re usually harder for dogs to chew up than a regular soft dog bed. Really determined dogs will still chew on an elevated dog bed, but overall, raised dog beds stand up to much more chewing and other destructive behavior than different types of dog beds.
Air circulation is key to helping your dog regulate their body temperature, which is one of the critical features of raised dog beds.
The ground can become very cold in the winter, which then seeps into your dog and makes them cold. Keeping them off the ground with a raised dog bed can help your dog stay warm in cold weather.
More commonly, though, people use elevated dog beds to help keep their dog cool. Since air is able to circulate around all sides of your dog, they can stay much cooler in a raised pet bed than they would if they slept on the ground or in a regular bed.
Many senior dogs are prone to hip dysplasia, arthritis, and other painful joint conditions. For larger dogs, stepping into or out of a pet cot is much easier than trying to stand all the way up after lying on the ground.
In addition, the “give” in the mesh of elevated dog beds reduces pressure on painful joints compared to sleeping on a hard surface.
Some raised dog beds fold flat, which makes them great for traveling. A folded-up flat elevated dog bed should take up less room than a traditional fluffy bed.
Elevated dog beds are easy to clean, which makes them an excellent choice for camping and other outdoor uses. Just spray it with a garden hose, and leaves, dirt, and other debris easily slide off.
With traditional dog beds, you may struggle to wash them if they don’t have removable covers. Even removable covers can be challenging to get off of and back onto a foam or other type of bed. Most elevated dog beds can be washed with a simple hose spray.
If you have an older dog with joint problems, you have probably already considered an orthopedic dog bed to relieve pressure on your dog’s joints.
However, orthopedic beds can be costly – especially if your dog decides to chew it up.
About: The most highly rated all aluminum elevated dog bed we found was this chewproof Kuranda dog bed. If you have a large dog who likes to chew everything in sight, this is the bed for you.
It’s made in America and comes with a 1-year warranty. Additionally, the 250-pound weight limit means it’s excellent for giant dog breeds (or large dogs who like to snuggle together).
User Reviews: A handful of people complained that they had a difficult time assembling the bed, and another handful had dogs who did manage to destroy the bed. However, the vast majority of people claim it’s the best dog bed they’ve ever bought, and it stands up to most chewing.
Bottom Line: While this bed is much pricier than most other elevated beds, it is well worth the cost since few dogs destroy it, and most dogs love laying on it. This bed should last long enough to pay for itself if you’ve been replacing cheaper dog beds on a regular basis.
About: If you’re looking for something a little cheaper, the Coolaroo comes in 6 colors, and the large size holds dogs up to 100 pounds. It’s easy to clean and keeps your dog cool with its breathable fabric.
User Reviews: There are a fair number of people who complained about how hard it was to assemble the bed (even if they and their dog were happy with the bed once it was assembled). It isn’t sturdy enough to hold up to strong chewers, but it should do the trick for a calm, older dog.
Bottom Line: At this low of a price point, you can’t expect an elevated dog bed to be totally chewproof. However, if you don’t need to worry about that, it can be a good choice.
User Reviews: There seem to be a lot of manufacturing and shipping problems with this bed that can make assembly extremely difficult. Another common complaint is that the bed is larger than they expect since the legs extend out beyond the edge of the fabric. However, many people and dogs love this elevated bed.
Bottom Line: This bed is on the cheap side, and you get what you pay for. Still, if you need a cheap elevated dog bed, hopefully, you can get one of these with everything necessary to assemble it.
About: If you’re looking for a portable elevated pet bed, this one is tough to beat. There’s no assembly required, and the legs fold in to store in an included heavy-duty storage bag for easy transportation.
User Reviews: Some dogs can tear through the fabric pretty quickly. However, the frame is generally sturdy, so you can use a piece of different material and it should be reliable.
Bottom Line: If you need a portable dog cot bed for camping or other temporary uses, this is a great option. It’s convenient not to have to assemble the bed when it first arrives.
About: Sometimes, an elevated dog bed isn’t cooling enough by itself. That’s why this raised dog bed includes a shade canopy to help keep your dog out of the sun and even cooler than they would without shade.
User Reviews: The primary complaint is that the canopy makes it easy for this lightweight bed to blow away. Otherwise, dogs love this cot.
Bottom Line: If your pup likes to spend a lot of time outside but doesn’t have access to much shade, this canopy bed is the perfect solution to help keep your dog cool on hot summer days.
K9 Ballistics produces a number of durable dog beds, and this cot style bed is their top-of-the-line model. Made with ballistic ripstop nylon and an aluminum frame, it is incredibly durable and, according to the manufacturer, is designed to be ‘stronger than Kevlar’.
They are so confident in the strength of its fabrics and design that this raised bed carries a 180-day chew proof warranty, which allows you to buy with confidence.
User Reviews: The K9 Ballistics raised dog bed received positive reviews from the majority of owners who have owned it and most concluded that the bed is as durable as the manufacturer claims. It appears to be strong enough to stand up to large dogs, and most big breeds seemed to like the bed and found it quite comfortable. Additionally, several stated that the raised pet bed was easy to keep clean.
Bottom Line: The K9 Ballistics is one of the best elevated dog beds for owners looking for the most durable bed possible, especially considering the extended warranty that it provides. It carries a higher price point than other models, but it is priced comparably to other large, heavy-duty elevated dog beds. Furthermore, due to its durability, it provides great long-lasting value.
There are a lot of factors to consider when picking the right raised dog bed for your pup. Here are some things you should keep in mind.
How tall is your dog? Do they like to stretch out when they sleep? How much does your dog weigh, and are they a growing puppy whose weight will change?
When looking at elevated dog beds, make sure you are looking at the “sleeping” dimensions and not just the product dimensions to ensure it will be big enough for your pup.
Most raised dog beds also have a weight limit, so if you have a large dog, make sure the bed you’re looking at can support their weight.
Even for dogs who aren’t prone to chewing their beds, the fabric or mesh support is often the weakest part of the bed.
When you read the reviews, are there a lot of comments about the fabric easily tearing? Look for beds with strong mesh support that will hold your dog for a long time without ripping or drooping.
Most elevated dog beds can be cleaned with just a spray of the garden hose. However, some raised dog beds may have other special requirements.
Make sure you understand how to clean an elevated dog bed before you buy one and discover it’s harder to clean than you anticipated.
Often, the durability of the materials is reflected in the price of elevated dog beds. The cheaper the raised bed you buy, the weaker the materials are likely to be, and the sooner you will have to replace the bed.
Ideally, you want a bed made from durable materials that will last for years to come.
Do you plan on setting up the elevated bed inside or outside, then leaving it there? Or are you looking for something you can fold up and take with you on adventures? It’s crucial to decide ahead of time how portable you need the raised pet bed to be.
If your dog has never seen a raised dog bed before, they may be confused and need help understanding its purpose. If your dog is reluctant to get into their new elevated dog bed, try the following.
If your dog doesn’t already know an “up” command, train them by luring them up onto something (like the raised dog bed) with a treat and the “up” command. This is a better way of getting your dog onto the raised bed for the first time rather than wrestling your dog onto it.
“I’m up here; now what?” your dog may be thinking. A “down” command lets your dog know that they should lay down and relax. Your dog may not relax right after the down command, so you may need to give it a few times.
It can be handy to have a spot where your dog knows to go under certain circumstances. It’s easy enough to teach your dog to go to “bed” in preparation for sleeping at night.
But have you thought about using the “bed” command to get your dog to go to their spot anytime you ask, like if you have guests over and your dog is prone to jumping on them?
With all 3 of these dog commands, your dog will quickly understand that their elevated dog bed is where you want them to sleep. It may take a couple of days for your dog to adjust to the bed, but most dogs love elevated dog beds once they get used to them.
Hopefully, we’ve given you some great suggestions of the best elevated dog beds and you have found one that’s just right for your pup. Raised dog beds can be a great addition to the inside or outside of your home to help keep your large breed dog comfortable, cool, and happy.