When your dog receives an arthritis diagnosis from the vet, it can often be an overwhelming experience. After all, a word like "incurable" often scares owners into thinking there is nothing they can do to help their furry friend. However, while a cure is not available, many treatments exist to reduce pain and pressure.
Arthritis is a disease that harms joint health. It often stems from a combination of genetic and environmental factors including overweight and injuries, and first takes the form of other conditions like dysplasia.
Understandably, dogs with joint issues spend a majority of their time sitting and laying down to avoid painful movements. This makes orthopedic dog beds the ideal treatment to soothe damaged joints.
Besides providing superior comfort and support, these arthritic beds help alleviate pain for senior pups, canines with chronic conditions including arthritis and hip dysplasia, and dogs after surgery.
Unfortunately, canine arthritis is extremely common. The National Center for Biotechnology Information reports 20% of dogs older than 1 year suffer from the disease, with the number increasing to 50% for dogs over age seven.
At the same time, this means the market is flooded with orthopedic dog bed options. So, what is the best dog bed for arthritis? Keep reading to check out our quick picks, find out which beds made the top 9 list, and read more about the importance of dog beds for arthritis
Our Top 4 Picks (Quick Look)
9 Best Orthopedic Dog Beds
1. KOPEKS Orthopedic Memory Foam Dog Bed With Pillow
Best Overall for Arthritis
The KOPEKS Memory Foam dog bed checks every box when it comes to finding the ideal bed for large breeds. Moreover, the brand is a Best-Seller of pet accessories.
With multiple color choices, the bed comes in both brown and gray, and offers a micro-suede plush option. It measures 50 x 34 inches with 7-inch memory foam and a 3-inch pillow that perfectly conforms to your dog's body relieving aching joints and muscles.
Despite only having one size, the bed comes out on top because its size offers adequate room for many different breeds and can be used by different dogs in the house. With small dogs, this can even be at the same time.
However, the real stand-out features with the KOPEKS orthopedic bed are its hypoallergenic memory foam mattress and two water-resistant zippered covers. The thick mattress provides the best joint support for your dog while the washable features offer you easy cleaning options.
In addition, the bed's rubber bottom provides the non-slip safety you are looking for.
While one reviewer warns of small holes developing in the covers after a few months of use. the majority of customers call it the best bed for aging pups and dogs that suffer from chronic joint conditions.
2. Big Barker 7" Pillow Top Orthopedic Dog Bed
The high-end Big Barker bed shows that orthopedic dog beds come in all sizes and can even accommodate the biggest dogs out there. This allows breeds like Great Danes, Dobermans, Labrador Retrievers, Golden Retrievers, Rottweilers and Huskies to lounge comfortably.
Its size range categorizes the bed into large, extra large and XXL options. The respective size dimensions for each are 48 x 30 inches, followed by 52 x 36 inches and 60 x 48 inches. Each option has a 7-inch cushion and is offered in burgundy, charcoal gray, chocolate or khaki colors.
However, don't be too quick to rule out Big Barker if you have a small or medium-sized dog. The great thing about this bed is that it also comes in mini options. The small measures 27 x 18 inches, the medium 33 x 21 inches and the large 39 x 25.5 inches with the same color options and a 4-inch cushion.
Big Barker dog beds stray away from typical China-made memory foam options. Their orthopedic dog bed combines two layers of two-inch comfort foam with a middle three-inch layer of dense support foam. This provides pressure point relief for your aging dog's joints while still supporting your pup from sinking too deeply into the bed.
The company prides themselves on American-made foam that is resistant to flattening and backs their products with a 10-year warranty. This is important for relieving your dog's painful pressure points and protecting your investment.
Naturally, products with various useful features come at a cost. The downside with the Big Barker bed is its high price. In addition to the initial product being expensive, items like the waterproof liner are sold separately, further driving up the cost.
3. The Dog’s Bed Orthopedic Dog Bed
Best for Small Dogs
When it comes to orthopedic dog beds, most of the market caters to large dogs because of their high likelihood to suffer from dysplasia and arthritis conditions. However, small dogs, especially those that were genetically-modified into a "teacup" size, are at equal risk.
The Dog's Bed Premium Memory Foam bed offers the best option for small dogs because of its inclusive size range. The small size starts at 28 x 19 inches, then goes up to a XXL at 54 x 36 inches.
The small and medium options have a 4-inch cushion, while the larger options have a 6" inch cushion. This makes it most accommodating to small and average sized dogs, rather than extra heavy dogs.
Equally inclusive, the bed's color range includes grey options like plush, black trim, orange trim, pink trim and blue trim and brown options like plush, green trim and brown trim. In addition, headrest bed options are also available.
The bed mixes high-stability premium foam with orthopedic memory foam to offer support and comfort. Lastly, the zippered suede covers stand up to accidents with waterproof properties.
4. Sealy Lux Quad Layer Orthopedic Dog Bed with Cooling Gel
Best Cooling Gel Bed
While heating properties are often useful for pain relief, you also do not want to overheat your dog. Sometimes, memory foam beds lock in too much heat. In this case, it is necessary to find a way to counteract its effect and cool your dog back down.
That's where the Sealy Lux Quad Layer orthopedic bed steps in and becomes helpful. Its unique cooling energy gel redistributes heat away from the surface, where your dog will be sleeping or resting.
There are 4 different sizes (S-XL) to choose from and comes in brown, green, gray and navy colors. The small measures 20 x 25 x 5.5 inches and reaches up to an extra-large size at 48 x 38 x 8 inches.
Another feature that makes the Sealy style different from the rest is its addition of a pro charcoal HD foam base. In addition to fighting off bacteria, the extra layer helps to eliminate resting odors.
The added smell-proofing may come in handy because some customers had difficulty during the cleaning process. Despite the cover checking the box of being washable, one Amazon reviewer experienced issues with removing and putting the covers back on.
5. K&H Pet Products Ortho Bolster Sleeper Orthopedic Dog Bed
Best for Dogs that Curl Up
Whether your young dog is on the spoiled side when it comes to extra sleep or your senior dog needs the additional rest, a bolster bed gives them the ideal space to curl up and relax.
This bed features a backrest for your pup to rest his sleepy head on. It also provides anxious dogs with added support and protection so they feel more secure.
K&H offers the sleeper in (S-XL) sizes and comes in either brown or grey. The small measures 20 x 16 x 8 inches while the extra large is 50 x 40 x 10 inches, so whether you have a tiny Shi Tzu or a giant German Shepherd, this bed will fit comfortably.
Environmentally-conscious, the bolster is made from recycled bottles. In addition, the bed also passes cleanliness concerns with its washable properties.
The downside with a bolster bed is the backrest component decreases the sleeping area. When considering purchasing this style of bed, you may need to size up to fully accommodate your dog.
6. Dogbed4less Memory Foam Dog Bed
Best for Dogs that Like to Stretch and Spread Out
On the other hand, you may be searching for a dog bed better for sleeping rather than sitting or curling up. The Dogbed4less Premium Orthopedic bed is well suited for the dog that needs the extra space to stretch and spread out.
When it comes to size dimensions, naturally the option for stretching out has a big range. The largest size is available in jumbo with dimensions of 55 x 47 inches coming in micro-suede gray. The other available sizes are medium 35" x 20," large 37" x 27," large 41" x 27," XL 40" x 35," XL 47" x 29" and XXL 55" x 37."
In addition to giving your dog plenty of room to stretch out, this bed features a top-rated, gel-infused, temperature-regulating memory foam to combat arthritis pain. The pad doesn't flatten over time, which ensures long-lasting support and better sleep for your pup.
However, what makes it unique is its easy cleaning options. Suede and taffeta covers work together to protect and waterproof the bed. Both are easily removable, machine washable and dryer-approved.
Reviews are generally positive for the Dogbed4less orthopedic bed. However, one customer had issues when it came to accidents, explaining the inner waterproof liner leaked urine on the mattress. Another reviewer noted that the bed takes about a day to stretch out to its full size because of tight packaging.
7. PetFusion Ultimate Dog Bed
Best Sofa Bed
The PetFusion sofa brings another useful bolster bed to the list. It comes in 3 colors options and sizes range from small to jumbo. The small fits breeds up to 50lbs while the jumbo can hold giant dogs over 200 lbs. Made from high quality memory foam, this bed is perfect for dogs that need a comfy space to rest their old bones.
Its cover offers something some of the other beds lack. In addition to being water resistant and machine washable, it is also tear resistant. That means, even anxious dogs prone to scratching at the bed likely will not poke holes or cause tears.
However, bolster beds, and the PetFusion Ultimate specifically, are not just for anxious small dogs. Large dogs also often seek a sense of security and like to establish their territory, a trait they picked up from their wolf ancestors.
Also, bolster beds are ideal if your dog suffers from partial paralysis or balance problems.
The PetFusion bed also comes with an added bonus. Under the Amazon listing, an additional coupon is offered for the website Rover, which provides dog daycare and walking services.
8. K&H Pet Products Thermo-Snuggly Sleeper Heated Pet Bed
Best Heated Bed for Dogs
Like we mentioned above, heat is a useful way to lubricate stiff joints and soothe sore muscles. This leads to benefits like the increased range of motion for your pup.
The K&H Thermo Snuggly Sleeper uses a dual internal thermostat for temperature regulation. Both the heater and the cushion are removable for easier cleaning. In addition, the bed can stay plugged in all day, providing 24-hour heating options.
The bed is offered in two sizes: the medium at 26 x 20 inches and the large at 31 x 24 inches. Limited sizing makes it best suited for smaller or average sized dogs. Even curling up, larger dogs likely will not have the room they need.
When it comes to electrical products in dog beds, safety should be even more of a concern. Thankfully, your concerns should rest easy knowing this heated dog bed underwent rigorous testing by MET Laboratories.
Finally, when considering this bed, it is also important to remember the shape. One Amazon reviewer had difficulty inserting the bed into a crate because of its oval shape. If you are looking for a similar setup, this bed may not be the best choice.
9. Brindle Waterproof Designer Memory Foam Pet Bed
Best Cheap Memory Foam Bed
The last choice on our list is the most affordable option: the Brindle Memory Foam dog bed. Perfect if you're looking for a dog bed on a budget, this orthopedic dog bed offers the most bang for its buck.
Coming in three sizes, it ranges from the small at 22 x 16 inches, to the medium at 34 by 22 inches and the large at 46 x 28 inches. Each size comes with a 4-inch cushion.
Despite its lower price, the Brindle Solid Memory Foam dog bed offers useful cleaning features like being hypoallergenic, waterproof and resistant to dust mites.
Unlike the oval shape from the last example, the rectangular shape allows it to fit in most spaces and crates. This is the best option if you are looking for a short-term dog bed for the most affordable price.
Also great for doggies without a home, every day Brindle donates a dog bed to the Humane Society that the furry recipient can take with them when adopted.
What are the benefits of orthopedic dog beds?
When it comes to dog arthritis, orthopedic dog beds provide pain relief and preventive tactics for your pup. Keep reading to learn about the benefits.
Preventive joint health
Before dogs develop arthritis, they often suffer from hip dysplasia or other joint and tissue-related conditions. That means, these beds are not just useful for your senior arthritic dog but can benefit your new puppy too.
After all, veterinarians diagnose canine dysplasia cases as early as a few months of age. Taking preventive steps with your new dog can help avoid arthritis in the future.
Orthopedic dog beds keep your dog properly aligned when they are sleeping or lounging. This is useful for young joints that need pressure relief.
In the case that your vet already delivered an arthritis diagnosis, therapeutic dog beds offer pain relief options to make your dog more comfortable in their daily activities.
Proper padding relieves your dog's pain while they relax on the bed. On the other hand, added heat soothes sore muscles and stiff joints, making later movement around the house or outside easier.
How to choose an orthopedic dog bed
When it comes to choosing an orthopedic dog bed, there are specific features you should look out for and factors to consider. After all, man's best friend deserves man's best dog bed to help alleviate joint pain.
Here's everything you need to consider:
Size is the most important factor when it comes to choosing the right bed. After all, a mistake in this category can mean further problems for your pup.
For example, a bed that is too small will cause your dog to awkwardly contort while they rest. Unfortunately, this just leads to further jumbled joints and arthritis issues.
In general, dog beds have a long range reaching from 18 X 13 inches for Yorkies all the way to 72 X 55 inches for Great Danes, with the largest beds accommodating up to 250 pounds.
To better understand which size your dog needs, measure their body when they are fully outstretched.
For small dogs, add around five inches to the length and width and for large dogs, add 10 inches. This should give you a good approximate for bed size. If you are still unsure, it is always better to offer a little extra room rather than not enough.
However, length and width are not the only size consideration with dog beds. It is also important not to forget about the cushion. After all, large dogs are both longer and heavier. Giant dogs typically need double the cushion padding compared to small dogs.
Memory foam is useful for conditions like dysplasia and arthritis because it curves to your dog's individual posture needs, and locks in heat for added pain relief.
Moreover, memory foam is typically stiffer than traditional dog beds. This makes a transfer from dog bed to floor easier for older dogs.
Proper support is also essential to relieve joint issues. Your dog's bed should be able to house their body completely when stretched out to offer ideal comfort.
When it comes to cushion size, small dogs need around four inches of padding, while larger dogs may need closer to seven inches.
Next comes cleanliness. The intent of purchasing an orthopedic dog bed is to reduce your dog's health problems, not add to them. With this in mind, it is important to look for a bed with washable components.
After all, both young dogs and senior arthritic dogs often struggle with making it outside in time to relieve themselves. That means, their dog bed is typically a zone prone to accidents.
Also, constant use builds up environmental irritants and bacteria. These germs need to be regularly removed to ensure your dog's health.
Look for features like removable covers and mattresses and materials that have anti-bacterial and waterproof properties.
If you've ever used a heating pad or electric blanket, you know how comforting heat can be on your aches and pains. The same concept applies to your older dog.
Similar to an electric blanket you may have at home, therapeutic dog beds can plug in to provide pain relief. Others require a little disassembly and the quick use of a microwave to warm up individual parts.
Lastly, already-damaged joints are even more susceptible to injury. It is important to consider safety features when thinking about your dog's bed.
For example, dog beds with non-slip bottoms are best for homes with slick floors.
In addition, part of safety is also making sure your dog feels secure in their sleeping zone. Bolster beds provide your dog with their own small couch, offering a bed that has raised edges.
Being more enclosed in a bolster bed helps anxious pups feel cuddled and safe. It also gives your tired senior arthritic dog a soft place to rest their head while laying down or sleeping.
Now that you are an expert on everything dog bed-related choosing an orthopedic solution for your pup should be much more straightforward.
When doing further research, there are just a few final things to consider.
Always make sure you are purchasing dog beds from a reliable source. The examples above all come from Amazon, a trusted online marketplace. If you find offers that sound too good to be true from sites you have not heard of, they probably are.
In addition, diet and exercise tactics are also useful to combat arthritis symptoms. Introducing Omega-3 fatty acids from foods like fish and increasing your dog's low-impact workouts helps strengthen joints. However, it is always best to consult with your vet before changing routines.
Finally, your furry friend is lucky to have a supportive owner. Taking the proper arthritis treatment steps will strongly improve their quality of life.