If your once-limber dog has matured into a limited-mobility senior, it may be time to consider getting her a new bed. Unfortunately, many older dogs suffer from joint pain, stiffness and a host of other conditions that may make hitting the hay less pleasant than it used to be. Fortunately, increased comfort can be as simple as a bed designed for her needs.
Orthopedic Dog Beds
For a dog with creaking, painful joints, an orthopedic bed can be a little slice of heaven. These beds typically have a memory-foam mattress that provides extra support for older dogs. Not only does the increased firmness help your pooch stand up a little easier after laying down, it helps her avoid painful pressure points.
Warming Dog Beds
Whether it's frosty outside or only in your house, cold temperatures can make your older furkid ache. A warming dog bed provides a safe spot for your senior to gain relief and to relax. Warming dog beds come in a few different styles and may have an insert that needs to be microwaved, be self-warming with a core that reflects your dog's body heat, or have an internal electric pad that needs plugged in.
Elevated Dog Beds
When your dog has a difficult time either standing up after a nap or she just can't seem to stay cool enough, an elevated dog bed may be the answer. These raised beds look quite a bit like a cot, and because they're several inches off the floor, your senior doesn't have nearly as far to go to lay down. Additionally, the extra air flow under the bed helps your pup stay cooler and it prevents build-up of odor-causing moisture under the bed.
Liquid-, Stain- and Odor-Resistant Dog Beds
It's an unfortunate fact many older dogs can't hold their bladder and bowels like their younger selves could. For those dogs, a liquid-, stain- or odor-resistant bed will likely help you and them. Oftentimes, these beds have an orthopedic core with a waterproof lining and a stain-resistent cover. You can purchase multiple covers so when one is washing, you've got another on hand.
By Kea Grace
About the Author
Since 2001, Kea Grace has published in "Dog Fancy," "Clean Run," "Front and Finish" and an international Czechoslovakian agility enthusiast magazine. Grace is the head trainer for Gimme Grace Dog Training and holds her CPDT-KA and CTDI certifications. She is a member of the APDT and is a recognized CLASS instructor. She's seeking German certification from the Goethe Institut.