3 signs that your dog's bed needs replacing
Did you know that the average dog sleeps for 12-14 hours each day? That's a lot of spent time in bed! With this in mind, it's clear to see that a comfy, high-quality dog bed (alongside exercise, socialisation, and a nutritious diet) can hugely impact the quality of your pup's daily life.
However, much like your own duvet and mattress, even the most durable dog bed doesn't last forever. Luxury dog bedding experts, Charley Chau, advises that pet owners check their dog’s bed regularly for any signs that it may be approaching its ‘use by’ date.
They add: "Dogs are canny little creatures of comfort. Why would they sleep in an uncomfortable dog bed when the sofa is the most comfortable place in the room? Put a great dog bed down though and it is likely to be a different story."
Keep reading to learn the telltale signs that your dog's bed needs replacing...
Even if your dog's bed looks like it's still in good shape, it's worth taking a closer look. Check the underneath for mould and mildew, look for tears in the cover and press a hand into the top and sides to test plumpness. Make sure to strip off any protective covers and inspect it in good light - you'll be surprised what you've missed when passing it each day.
The experts at Charley Chau advise: "With the covers on and off, examine the bed carefully so that you can inspect the internal mattress and any other pads or fillings. If you see any signs of mildew or mould, take the bed out of action immediately, as breathing fungal spores is not good for either hound or human."
If you take a good look, most people can recognise whether or not their dog’s bed is ready for retirement. If no amount of plumping, airing or washing will rejuvenate it, then it’s time for a change - if it looks bad, imagine how uncomfortable it is.
When it comes to the mattress of your dog's bed, it's pretty easy to check for issues. In short, a dog bed mattress should be a consistent thickness across, without any irregularities. It should support your dog's body weight and be thick enough to keep them insulated from the cold floor below.
"Use the flat of your hand to go over the mattress and press down firmly to check for lumps, bumps, dips and hollows," says the Charley Chau team.
"Ideally, a mattress should feel evenly supportive across the active sleeping area without any significant lumps or thin areas.
"Does the mattress resist the pressure that you are applying consistently across the bed? If not, try to reshape it to improve its form. If you can’t get it into reasonable shape, it’s unlikely to offer your dog appropriate support."
How to do a thud test with your elbow:
Put the mattress on a stable, flat surface, then bend your arm so that you have a sharp elbow.
Bring your elbow down onto the mattress with a sudden (but gentle), downward force. Don't do this too hard or you risk injuring yourself.
This process is to mimic a dog dropping down onto a bed after they've circled around to get ready for its snooze.
You never want to hear a hard thud of your dog or your elbow hitting the surface under the bed. If you do, it's time to get a new dog bed.
Air the bed out, give it a thorough machine wash on high heat with pet-friendly laundry detergent, and then get up close and personal with your nose.
"If you’ve washed your dog’s bed and you can smell even a hint of dog, then it’s time for a change," say the experts at Charley Chau. "The smell is caused by bacteria and other microbes that are part and parcel of a well-used dog bed, so if you can't wash the smell out, then the likelihood is that those microbes have taken hold. If that's the case, it's time to say farewell to those unwelcome bedfellows."
You can prolong the life of your dog's bed by lining it with a waterproof cover or by regularly rotating blankets that serve as an extra layer of protection. It's much easier to wash a cover than the whole bed.
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