Ultimate dog beds

Discussion in 'Working and Companion Animals' started by longshadowfarms, Dec 26, 2005.

  1. longshadowfarms

    longshadowfarms Well-Known Member

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    I've been mulling "the ultimate dog bed" for quite a while and had decided on a plan of action. Wasn't quite sure how to get some of what I wanted but I ran across something at Walmart the other day that gave me an idea. What I wanted:

    - inexpensive - 3 large dogs x $100 each for a bed is a LOT of $!
    - waterproof - 3 large dogs and one growing pup love the water and love being wet
    - easy to clean - 3 large dogs have muddy paws, the pup seems to roll in it
    - cedar shavings - smelly dogs
    - fluffy, soft - 3 of those dogs are very old and arthritic

    So the plan was for 2 layers plus an outer cover. First layer is two layers of egg carton foam with a waterproof cover. I was at Walmart getting fabric and noticed they had rolls of tablecloth material - plastic one side, soft on the other side. I didn't need the fancy kind but it reminded me to go check the tablecloths and sure enough, they had inexpensive ones there. They were $2.63 each for a 52"x70" tablecloth, folded in half it was plenty big for a 30"x 40" bed. Price Brat (usually known as Eider, or Eider Man) thinks they smell interesting though and would like to chew on them if he can get at them so I sort of wish I could have used something more durable but haven't found anything yet. I'll keep mulling over the issue and keep my eye out for something for next time I make a dog bed. The next layer was an inexpensive, breathable fabric ($1/yard) filled with cedar shavings. The covering was a heavy denim material ($4/yd 54" wide so I only needed 2 yds)with velcro on one end to make them easy to take off and put on - I HATE wrestling with dog beds to put the cover on. I almost wish now that I'd used something fleacy for more comfort - again, I'll keep that in mind for next time. The beds took me a little more than an hour each. I didn't sew fancy, just neat enough to be presentable. Inner layers I used a little less care than the outer layer since you really wouldn't see them. I'd found the egg carton material at our annual spring cleanup a while back so that was free. Total cost per bed was less than $20 since I didn't need to buy the foam. Beds are 30" x 40"


    Here are some pics:

    Piper tries one out - here you can see the inner layers:
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    Piper on the egg carton foam that I needed to use - didn't finish that bed until the next day:
    [​IMG]

    Eider on one bed that still has a good cover - I LOVE this cover but haven't been able to find blankets like this again. It has been used for a bed cover for about 3 yrs.
    [​IMG]

    Josh trying out one of the denim material beds moments after I set it down:
    [​IMG]

    Only problem is that it is really thick and comfortable so you eventually slide off:
    [​IMG]
     
  2. Tango

    Tango Well-Known Member

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    I just bought an orthopedic bed for Jack, my AB, from Foster and Smith. It is supposedly excellent in a variety of ways and is huge (4' x 3') but he doesn't like it. Next time, I'll just go to Goodwill and buy a used crib mattress. He still sleeps on my bed or any other bed he can jump into :shrug: Not worth the $150 price tag which could have gone to better things around here.
     

  3. Rouen

    Rouen Well-Known Member

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    we dont use cedar in our dog beds anymore, my moms dog developed an alergy to it, we use poly-fil it does get matted down after about a year but it holds heat well and is very soft.
     
  4. Paranoid

    Paranoid Homebrewed Happiness

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    the ultimate dog bed is otherwise known as my bed.
     
  5. steff bugielski

    steff bugielski Well-Known Member

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    I used to make them for a fellow who sold them at flea markets. We used poly-fil, the hunters did not like the cedar it threw off the dogs noses. Mine were lined for easy cleaning. They did run about $35- $40. Flannel cover.
    Steff
     
  6. Willowynd

    Willowynd Well-Known Member

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    I used to have a bunch of dog beds I made. I used free fleece blankets and quilted bed covers for one side and imitaion lambswool fabric for the other side. I also used velcro to close and egg foam (actually matress pads from the dollar store) cut to fit. I liked that I could take the covers off to wash them and they were decent enough size and flexible to even fit them into the washer whole. I did learn NOT to take them apart to wash as it was hell trying to get the egg foam back into the covers straight. What I didn't like is the young dogs and pups chewed them and drug them out of the kennel building and played tug of war with them, then the older dogs saw that and thought it would be fun too. I didn't get more than a years use out of them but I made them for $5 each. I am trying to find a way to make the pipe dream beds inexpensively. My DH works at a lumber yard and can get discounts on the pipe, just trying to think of how to contruct the canvas covers so they 1. will stay on and 2. can be removed to wash. I am not convinced velcro would be strong enough to support a 75 lb adult male :)
    Anyone?
     
  7. trappmountain

    trappmountain Well-Known Member

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    What I use is a crib mattress. The matress is your biggest expense. The best thing about them is crib sheets aren't expensive and are easy to take off put on and wash well in hot water. They are cheaper than dog beds and I find the ease of cleaning and changing the best reason for going that way. The dogs love them too.
     
  8. longshadowfarms

    longshadowfarms Well-Known Member

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    Since this came back to the surface, I'll post a flaw in my design. The tablecloths aren't durable enough for digging doggies (they feel the need to "fluff" the bed before sleeping). I have some reallly heavy duty plastic that I'm not using any longer that I may try. Will have to see if my sewing machine will take it. It is a lot heavier than those tablecloths and even the fabric. I would love to use fleece but haven't found any at my local Walmart. I know a trip to the mall is in order (kids got gift cards from Aunt for Christmas) so I'll have to plan on stopping at a real fabric store to see what I can dig up.

    Trappmountain, where would you get a crib mattress??? That sounds like an excellent possibility to check into. Probably "waterproof" already too!
     
  9. trappmountain

    trappmountain Well-Known Member

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    I get them at walmart or kmart. Just go to the baby section. They are already waterproof and as long as you are covering them with something (cribsheets, blankets, etc.) it makes them a little more comfy and diggable. You do have to watch for over digging they have metal springs in them. I think last one I got I paid $35 dollars for new but I would also check with the thrift stores and garage sales. You could probably get them alot cheaper. I know at the garage sales I can get crib sheets by the dozens. and even new they will only run you about $8 each. The one I have now I have had for about 3 years and it is still holding up well. The dogs sometimes all got on it at the same time. 1 shih tzu, 1 golden retreiver, 1 husky mix. So they are plenty big enough for a couple of medium sized dogs comfortably (about 2- 50 to 70 lb dogs). If you try it let me know what you think. My dogs love them.
     
  10. GoldenMom

    GoldenMom Well-Known Member

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    I'm using a crib mattress now too! Not surprisingly, Sage finds OUR bed more comfortable so Ruby uses it in her x-pen at night. There are a couple of down sides that I have noticed. One is the size-they are like 27"X50". Why couldn't it be 2'X4'???? It would be so much easier to use in dog equipment! The other is since it is waterproof (and I have the cheapest model) it crackles when Ruby moves around. I do have blankets on it, but it still crackles. Maybe that will get better as it ages? It's only 4 months old now. Otherwise I'm very happy with it!
     
  11. mawalla

    mawalla Well-Known Member

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    This thread reminded me of the time a couple of our hounds got a hold of the feather pillow that the cat was using as a bed. The back yard looked like it had snowed!
     
  12. Shazza

    Shazza Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Our ultimate dog bed for the Pugs, cos they destroy everything....is the steel/aluminium frame with the heshion sack pulled over it. A cheap version of the trampoline beds. Pug proof. :)
     
  13. Peepsqueak

    Peepsqueak Well-Known Member

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    Can you believe this.... I go to a dog boutique every now and then (not for me of course...lol) and these nutso people charge over 150.00 or more for a dog bed! All it is, is a bed stuffed with some chopped up foam. She claims you can wash everything..,.whoopee! People are dumb enough to pay for anything...huh?

    I paid 20.00 for a large dog bed at Walmart (bought two of 'em) and they are fine. One is a nice green plaid, and another one is a retriever print. The covers are removable and I wash them once or month or if they are smelly or soiled. The cushion is a light mesh material with foamy material sort of like paper in it. The beds are attractive and the dogs LOVE em. I have to fight with my kids to stay off of them though....

    Go ahead and spend the 150.00-300.00 but I will stick with mine. My dogs do not know any different and they are better off than some people I hate to admit.
     
  14. hisenthlay

    hisenthlay a.k.a. hyzenthlay

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    I have bought the $20 beds at Sam's Club. One is big and fluffy (chopped foam stuffing?), fleece on one side, corduroy on the other. My dobe looooves it. I also got a "memory foam" bed there for the same price, fleece on one side, cloth on the other. Seems nice, but the dogs don't like it as much because they can't snuggle into it--it's too flat. Both beds have removeable covers for washing.

    The other thing I do is get comforters from Goodwill. For $5 per comforter, it's a good deal. You can fold it to the right dimension, and sew it in place. Or, if you want it to be easier to wash, fold it to twice the size you want, sew that in place, then put buttons/velcro along the edge that will hold it in place when you fold it in half again. If you want it to be even fluffier, you can stuff the sewn comforter with a second comforter.

    It's not waterproof or anything, but it's cheap, and the easiest thing to wash pretty frequently.
     
  15. sullen

    sullen Question Answerer

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    I got the $20.00 bed from Sam's club too. We had to burn it when the dog got sick and pooped all over it and we couldn't get the zipper off it to save our lives. We ripped the fabric to shreads getting the zipper off.
    So I use a blanket.
    I got one of those special dog foam pads from wally world, back when I still went, and the dog it's for hates it. He acts like it was sprayed with bleach or somehting.
     
  16. cricket

    cricket Well-Known Member

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    I make (and sell) dog bed covers that are washable...I usually fill them with old comfortors and blankets. Standard bed pillows don't work very well for danes and pyrs cause they also dig and then the pillows separate. Also, you can make a pillow and stuff with packing peanuts. They don't crush, don't harbour fleas and other parasites for the most part, are washable, and they don't hold stink. Works great. Just don't place in the sun cause the peanuts will melt... Don't ask how I know that... :) The other bed I made is elevated 12" (keep in mind this is for a dane), and measures 54"x36". The bed part I had to replace cause I made it like a trampoline bed and Fos dugg it out...so new one is hammock style and he LOVES it. Will not sleep on the floor anymore. It's big enough that both Bella and Fos can get in it at the same time...

    [​IMG]

    Bella in the bed
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    Baloo's bed....At one time I actually had a bed but I got kicked out...
    [​IMG]
     
  17. housewife

    housewife Well-Known Member

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    Cricket wow that is a great looking bed, your dane looks great too.

    longshawdowfarms The big trick to sewing a heavy plastic is that you use a teflon foot or put paper between the foot and the plastic. Other wise your foot will stick to the plastic and it gets bad from there! Have you thought of using a cheep tarp or a piece of a tarp that can't be used for it what it was got for any more?

    When I was making dog beds I made them with fiber fill and every part was washable. Seeing as they were made with stuff around the house they didn't cost that much. I really like the packing peanut idea!
     
  18. longshadowfarms

    longshadowfarms Well-Known Member

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    Funny what comes up when threads for the last few months disappear! Cricket, thanks for the tip on peanuts. I have TONS of those and am always looking to find ways to get rid of them. Now we need more pics of Baloo! He's so cute! I ended up using the heavy plastic material. It worked well but now the beds aren't as fluffy as they were. I wasn't feeling well enough when we went to the mall to try the sewing store up there for fleece but these are working well enough for now. I'm going to be losing two of my puppers here fairly soon so I'm not really in need of more dogs beds, just looking for more dogs to fit in them! Having lost Thor last fall and now Piper and Josh not doing well, I'm feeling dog-naked. We've had 3 or more dogs for almost 14 years now, 4 dogs for more than 6 years. Pretty soon we'll be down to two and one of those is quite old as well. This is wierd.
     
  19. Willowynd

    Willowynd Well-Known Member

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    The pipe bed is what I have been wanting for my collies--way to expensive to buy 10 or 12 of them. Can you tell me how you made that one and how it held up? I figure if it can hold up to a great dane, it can handle my 75 lb males :) You can email me privately if you wish willowyndcollies@hotmail.com

    Willow
     
  20. cricket

    cricket Well-Known Member

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    Email on the way...