As a devoted German Shepherd owner, I understand the unique needs of these majestic dogs, especially when it comes to finding the best crate pad for your German Shepherd.
Crate pads help protect your dog’s bones and joints, making them essential for anyone with a German Shepherd – a breed predisposed to hip and elbow dysplasia and other mobility issues.
You’re likely here because you want a comfortable, durable solution for your furry friend’s crate, one that suits their size, activity level, and sleeping style. This is not just about comfort; it’s about ensuring your German Shepherd’s well-being and happiness.
I’ve experienced the challenges firsthand – the torn pads, the uncomfortable materials, and the pads that just don’t seem to fit right.
It’s frustrating to see your loyal companion uneasy. That’s why I’ve dedicated time to researching and testing various crate pads, focusing on factors like material quality, size compatibility, and ease of cleaning.
This article is crafted for German Shepherd owners like you, who prioritize their dog’s comfort and health. I’ve included insights on the latest crate pad technologies, user reviews, and my personal experiences to build a connection with fellow enthusiasts.
Together, we’ll explore the best options out there, ensuring your German Shepherd enjoys the comfort they deserve.
Best Crate Pads for German Shepherds
When I bought my first crate for my German Shepherd pup, I chose a crate pad to go with it, which was no thicker than a bath mat or towel. If only I’d known how vital it was to protect my dog’s joints instead of leaving her on a hard and jarring surface, such as the crate base.
To get straight to the point, in my opinion, the Big Barker Orthopedic Crate Pad is by far the best crate pad for your dog, but I would say that as I have a GSD with spinal arthritis who also sleeps on an orthopedic bed made by the same company!
But I’ll also tell you about other crate pad options like FurHaven and PetFusion. You’ll learn about the best each option offers, and at the end of the article, you will know which one to buy.
Here are the 5 best crate pads for German Shepherds:
|Big Barker Orthopedic 4" Dog Crate Pad Fits 48" x 30" Crate - Waterproof & Tear Resistant - Thick, Heavy Duty, Tough, Washable Cover - Luxury Orthopedic Support Foam Inside - Made in USA
|Milliard Quilted Padded Orthopedic Dog Bed, Egg Crate Foam with Plush Pillow Top Washable Cover (41 inches x 27 inches x 4 inches)
|MidWest Homes for Pets Deluxe Dog Beds | Super Plush Dog & Cat Beds Ideal for Dog Crates | Machine Wash & Dryer Friendly, 1-Year Warranty,Gray, 48-Inch
|Furhaven Water-Resistant Dog Bed for Large Dogs w/ Removable Washable Cover, Perfect for Crates & Kennels, For Dogs Up to 90 lbs - Two-Tone Reversible Crate Pad - Green/Gray, Extra Large
|PetFusion Puppychoice Dog Crate Pad [Microsuede Cover, Solid Foam]. Water Resistant Cover/Liner & Removable Washable Cover. Replacement Covers & Blankets Also Avail. 1 Yr Warranty, XL - 40 x 27, Grey
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|Big Barker Orthopedic 4″ Crate Pad
|Milliard Quilted Orthopedic Crate Bed
|MidWest Bolster Crate Pad
|Furhaven Quilted Crate Mat
|PetFusion Crate Pad
Big Barker Orthopedic 4″ Crate Pad
I trust the Big Barker brand because it hits several quality marks. For starters, it’s a business started by someone whose dog experienced joint problems because of the breed size.
This is largely unaddressed by most manufacturers, who seem to believe that one design fits all breeds as long as one scales the size. The Big Barker brand creates products with your dog’s comfort and long-term medical well-being in mind.
Their products not only protect your GSD’s joints from pain and discomfort but also help to prevent all those nasty mobility conditions.
This is, without doubt, the best crate pad simply because it doesn’t use the traditional hard-bottom pad design. Many crate pads, especially ones meant for wire crates, feature a flat plastic or metal bottom.
Such pads, albeit soft at the top, affect your big dog’s joints adversely. The Big Barker crate pad offsets the lack of a hard base underneath the crate by using 4 inches of orthopedic foam.
- Great fit for most crates. The pads are designed to match the wire crates of similar sizes in the market closely. You’ll not need to stuff the pad awkwardly or have too much empty room on the floor.
- Tear-resistant pad with a waterproof covering. These features make the pad low-maintenance and convenient to keep. It will withstand casual digging if your German Shepherd doesn’t chew the mattress.
- High-quality sourcing and construction. Finally, Big Barker crate pads are made in America with orthopedic foam, ensuring that your GSD gets the best that he deserves.
The Big Barker crate pad is specially engineered for German Shepherds. It takes your doggo to the next level as it’s clinically proven to reduce joint pain and stiffness of large breed dogs that are prone to arthritis or hip dysplasia.
The University of Pennsylvania conducted this recent scientific study to establish if Big Barker beds and pads could improve the quality of life in large dogs tormented by the pain and discomfort of arthritis. The dogs evaluated were at least three years old and weighed over 70 lbs (31.75kg).
The results were quite conclusive in that Big Barker products reduced pain severity by 21.6% and joint stiffness by 12.5%. Joint function was also improved by 17.6%.
Is the Big Barker Crate Pad Worth It?
Okay, onto the nasty part! The Big Barker orthopedic crate pad is not cheap and will set you back at around $169. So, is it worth the cost?
I think the Big Barker crate pad is easily worth the cost as it helps to prevent and treat the pain and misery of joint and mobility issues.
Many German Shepherds never outgrow their crates. As this is a luxury product, it is engineered to last your dog his lifetime, making it a one-time purchase.
Big Barker products are also guaranteed to protect your German Shepherd for ten years. That works out at just $17 per year! So, what’s the point in buying cheap crate mats that must be constantly replaced?
You will undoubtedly spend a lot more in the long run on thin crate mats that provide your German Shepherd with very little protection!
Important Note: The 10-year guarantee only applies if you purchase directly from the company, but you can buy it elsewhere – you just won’t get the extra-long warranty.
Milliard Quilted Orthopedic Crate Bed
The Milliard brand is a leader in bedding and mattresses, and while the authority of that quality translates well to dogs, the personal connection to dogs is missing in the brand message.
In other words, you can bet that a business big enough to encompass personal care, fitness, and bedding will not put out a bad product for dogs.
Still, you cannot be sure that those behind the business care as much about your dog as those behind a dog owner-run business like Big Barker.
The crate pad lives up to the Milliard name in bedding and bedroom comfort, bringing luxury and orthopedic relaxation to canines.
The product comes in three standard sizes that fit adjacent crates and has garnered over 6,000 reviews, putting it at an average of 4.7 out of 5 stars.
It has received its highest rating for softness and comfort and lowest for chew resistance and durability. Even Big Barker pads aren’t chew-proof, but they are durable against scratches.
MidWest Bolster Crate Pad
The MidWest brand is short for MidWest Homes For Pets, and the business specializes in living spaces, crates, and kennels for pets.
Though Midwest isn’t dedicated exclusively to dogs and makes room for (no pun intended) cats, its authority in making crates goes well with also making crate pads.
That said, there’s little to no other advantage of this brand than its compatibility with its own crates, and if you already have a crate from another brand, then the pad must be judged on its own merits.
This crate pad is soft and comfortable but has a much thinner base than those listed before. You can use this on your crate floor if the crate becomes too short upon subtracting four inches from its height. After all, your German Shepherd needs headroom while standing.
Other than being roomy, not much positively differentiates this crate. However, there are aspects to be cautious of; the durability and supportiveness of the product both depend entirely on your German Shepherd’s discipline and weight, respectively.
However, the one-year limited warranty that the product comes with means you’ll have some level of security regarding this pad’s longevity.
FurHaven Quilted Crate Mat
The FurHaven brand differentiates itself by focusing on luxury and comfort. The business behind this brand was established in 2004 and has accumulated accolades for over a decade, which makes me trust its sales page a little more than the average pet product brand.
Nonetheless, the product’s merits are worth considering.
This crate pad, like other excellent options in this post, is made with medical-grade foam.
If you relate American-made to high-quality, then you’ll also like that this product features CertiPUR-US certified foam, which is 100% made in America.
Overall, the product’s great for those who like its aesthetic and want a slimmer pad that isn’t too hard on the joints.
PetFusion Crate Pad
The PetFusion brand is truly unique in that it opts for home decor assimilation to stand apart from other pet product producers. If you’ve opted for the furniture-style dog crate, you’ll love anything PetFusion makes.
The term “fusion” indicates how the producer’s products seamlessly fuse into the home’s aesthetic.
That said, if you don’t care much about the look and can stomach a crate that doesn’t match anything else in your house, you may not care much about this brand.
The best thing about this product is that it comes with a chew-fix warranty. Most producers don’t cover chewing as no appropriate crate pad material can stand up to the canine jaw.
However, PetFusion offers to “make it right” if you write to them or call them, given that your dog is an aggressive chewer.
Aside from this feature and the obvious aesthetic beauty of the crate pad, everything else is standard and checks the same boxes as most other products, including:
- A 48-inch option that fits a standard German Shepherd crate, the recommended crate size for GSDs
- High-density foam and a degree of waterproofing
- Removable cover that’s easy to wash
Can I use a regular dog bed as a crate pad?
A regular dog bed can be used as a crate pad for your German Shepherd if it fits snugly within the crate, provides adequate comfort and support, and is made of durable materials.
Ensure the bed has a removable and washable cover for easy cleaning, and consider a non-slip bottom to prevent shifting. Remember that if your dog has chewing habits, a bed with chew-proof features may be necessary.
Are heated crate pads safe for German Shepherds?
Heated crate pads can offer additional warmth and comfort for your German Shepherd, especially in colder climates. Ensure that the heated pad is specifically designed for pet use, with chew-resistant cords and built-in thermostats to prevent overheating.
Always follow the manufacturer’s instructions carefully, and supervise your dog’s initial interactions with the pad to ensure they don’t chew on it.
Do German Shepherds with arthritis need a special kind of crate pad?
For German Shepherds with arthritis, an orthopedic crate pad is an excellent choice to provide extra support and alleviate joint pain. These pads are typically made with memory foam or other supportive materials that contour to your dog’s body, relieving pressure points.
Which Crate Pad Should I Pick?
The best crate pad for German Shepherds is the Big Barker. The 4″ deep multi-layered foam provides the extra support needed to protect your dog’s joints, especially as GSDs are prone to hip dysplasia and osteoarthritis.
This pad cushions your dog’s hips and elbows from the hard surface below.
However, if you cannot get the crate pad from Big Barker, I’d go for either the Petfusion or the Milliard products listed above, as they are great alternatives too.