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5 Best Orthopedic Dog Beds For German Shepherds in 2024

Last Updated: January 10, 2024

As a German Shepherd owner, I’m deeply aware of your dog’s specific comfort and health needs, particularly in orthopedic care. Finding the best orthopedic dog bed for your German Shepherd is crucial for their joint and muscle support, enhancing their quality of life, especially as they age or recover from injuries.

Having seen my own German Shepherd suffer from joint pain, I’ve extensively researched orthopedic dog beds, focusing on features like memory foam and durable, easy-to-clean materials. This expertise stems from my commitment to these dogs’ well-being.

In this article, we’ll review the top five orthopedic dog beds tailored for German Shepherds, ensuring they receive the necessary comfort and support.

A German Shepherd sleeping on an orthopedic bed

Best Orthopedic Beds for German Shepherds

The best orthopedic bed for German Shepherds is the Big Barker Orthopedic Dog Bed, which is what my German Shepherd sleeps on.

A close second is the LaiFug Orthopedic Memory Foam Dog Bed.

Note: Clicking the above link(s) will take you to Amazon or an online store where we have an affiliate relationship. If you make a purchase, we may earn a commission at no additional cost to you.

Let me tell you why…

Prices pulled from the Amazon Product Advertising API on:

1. Big Barker Orthopedic Dog Bed


Big Barker is committed to big dogs. The company’s sole focus on orthopedic dog beds that improve large dogs’ quality of life is admirable and good for business.

One can trust that the products made by this company are effective not just because of its genuine and sincere origin story but also because vets have praised the bed for its lasting positive effects on big dogs’ quality of life.

The brand is so relevant to the product’s features that it is hard to separate the two.

Owner Eric’s dog Hank experienced a health crisis that led to a wonderful journey that resulted in the Big Barker almost a decade later. The specific problems faced by the big dog Hank inform the Big Barker product’s features.


The product design uses simplicity and quality to make the best orthopedic bed for German Shepherds. With only four materials, each must meet the highest quality standard and complement big dogs’ joints and spine health.

Here are the four materials and how the company ensures each is the best your German Shepherd deserves.

  • Foam – The Big Barker uses American-made, CertiPUR-US certified foam, offering a 10-year “won’t flatten warranty.” Unlike average polyfill or imported foam used by many manufacturers, which may contain toxic chemicals and allergens, Big Barker’s foam is safe and high-quality, ensuring no such risks in their products.
  • Fabric – The Big Barker selects bed fabrics based on aesthetics, machine washability, and durability against digging and clawing. Their orthopedic beds are visually appealing, easy to clean, and feature microfiber covers that are six times more scratch-resistant than high-quality furniture, scoring over 100,000 on the Wyzenbeek Abrasion test.
  • Zipper – The Big Barker uses high-quality American-made zippers from a historic factory to encase its foam securely. With zippers covering 75% of the bed border, it’s easy to remove and clean the cover as needed.
  • Glue – The Big Barker orthopedic dog beds use safe, American-made, water-based glue, unlike off-brand beds that may use harmful adhesives. This OSHA-compliant glue is safe to apply without a mask, ensuring it’s dog-friendly.


Solution-oriented construction

I trust the Big Barker brand not just because the founder has a big dog and uses the bed for him but because of the brand’s emphasis on the actual problem that most big dogs like German Shepherds face. 

German Shepherd on a Big Barker orthopedic bed
My German Shepherd giving a high five on her Big Barker!

Many dog bed makers simply scale their pre-existing designs to accommodate large breeds and call it a day.

The Big Barker team realizes the real problem even before most dog owners and actively makes and promotes its solution before its demand has become a trend.

Many German Shepherd owners don’t know how important joint health is for their big buddies. And even without this knowledge in his primary market, Eric has dared to build a business with a solution.

I like this a lot because I can see the heart in it. He is solving the joint crisis not because there’s a demand for the solution but because he truly understands that this problem is worth solving.

So, what is the joint crisis? The term refers to the fact that big dogs can easily hurt their joints and, due to a mix of negligence and natural factors, have poor joint health within the first few years of adulthood.

German Shepherds are particularly prone to hip and elbow dysplasia – the latest statistics from the OFA show that around 20% will suffer dysplasia.

This is further perpetuated by dog beds that don’t allow them to rest properly and the normalization of “slowing down.”

While some degree of slowing down is natural with age, most of it is because the dog hurts as he moves. The Big Barker company understands this and has built a product that Vets can stand behind.

Clinically proven to be effective

Not only does the Big Barker work with Vets to bring the most critical information to those who have big dogs, but it also puts its products to the test, as shown in this study of dogs with osteoarthritis conducted by the University of Pennsylvania.

The company also goes out of its way to get vets’ opinions on the beds’ effectiveness in improving big dogs’ quality of life. Here are some instances of Vets using or swooning over the Big Barker orthopedic dog beds.

  • Dr. Kim Mayers used a Big Barker bed to help a 120 lb Shilo Shepherd recover from a ruptured disk spine surgery.
  • Dr. Kim Bowers says that in over 20 years of being a Vet, she hasn’t found a better bed and uses it for her own dog.
  • Dr. Alison Birken appreciated Big Barker beds’ ability to eliminate pressure points and reduce pain among dogs.
  • Dr. Christopher Powell reports that his patients with a history of joint or back pain have experienced an improvement in movement and have happier dispositions due to using Big Barker Beds.

Although the Big Barker brand is relatively new, Eric’s work in this short period, alongside the product’s testimonials and results, led me to get the dog bed anyway.

I have seen only positives since and am reluctantly taking 0.9 out of 5 for brand longevity. This doesn’t reflect on the product’s features or materials. You can find my full review of the Sofa Edition here.

PetFusion Ultimate Dog Bed

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The PetFusion brand seems too diluted for a company that was founded in 2010. From making pet feeders to dog beds, the brand seems to be trying to be too many things for too many people.

Getting cat scratchers and litter boxes from the same place that makes orthopedic dog beds gives a Walmart vibe that doesn’t inspire confidence.

This means your decision to buy a dog bed from this company must rely on features and testimonials alone.


This dog bed is made with memory foam, with orthopedic benefits for your big buddy. The 4-inch memory foam layer provides a durable yet comfortable base that eases pain, reduces pressure, and improves mobility.

It features a somewhat scratch-resistant twill fabric, featuring 65% polyester and 35% cotton. Compared to average dog beds, this product is excellent when it comes to sourcing and using materials.


  • Support bolsters on the sides help your dog feel comfortable. This can make adjusting to a new bed easier for your German Shepherd.
  • Emphasis on size supports large breeds well. Regarding dog beds for larger canines, bigger ones are usually better. These dog beds feature an extra-large base and extra-large support bolsters, providing ample support for your canine besty.
  • Contact-safe materials give you peace of mind. From toxin-free Certi-PUR-US memory foam to stricter European REACH compliance, the material sourcing is conducted with your peace of mind in mind.
  • Can carry large dogs. This should be a given for a large-breed dog bed, but it is a feature nonetheless. If your German Shepherd can fit in this bed, the bed is sturdy enough to hold him.

The product is fine for its price point, especially since affordability is within PetFusion’s mission statement, but it tends to miss out on brand specialization and material excellence.

With the fabric and foam source undisclosed, one could hesitate to purchase this dog bed. Still, with regulation compliance and over 19,000 reviews and ratings on Amazon averaging 4.7 out of 5 stars, one can have peace of mind while purchasing this product.

FurHaven Orthopedic Dog Bed


FurHaven started off as a company dedicated to bringing comfort to pets and has come a long way since its humble beginnings in 2004.

Though I would be skeptical of brands that spread themselves too thin, the company seems to have taken a good 17 years to be where it currently is. 

I can trust the business not to present shoddy products because its reputation is far too valuable.

That said, I would still hesitate a little to buy my German Shepherd’s orthopedic bed from a brand that makes not only cat beds but also general cat and dog products that have nothing to do with sleep.


While the base seems just fine for a large-breed dog like a German Shepherd, the polyester cover doesn’t seem very scratch-resistant.

That brings up the question of why this product even needs to be included when there already are memory foam options with better covers. 

This is where the product’s faux fur top layer becomes relevant. This orthopedic dog bed has a layer of comfy faux fur to help soothe your German Shepherd as he sleeps alone. This is perfect for GSDs who suffer from separation anxiety.


  • Pressure-point relieving design. The faux fur layer covers an orthopedic support foam designed with ridges to lift your German Shepherd effortlessly while effectively massaging him.
  • Great for hot sleepers. We know about sleeping hot as humans, but all mammals, including your German Shepherd, can be hot sleepers. The ridges mentioned above also allow air to flow through, allowing the mattress to breathe.
  • Fluffy bolsters. These bolsters are like most products featured in this post: fluffy and filled with recycled fluffy material. While this feature isn’t unique to this FurHaven orthopedic bed, it is still worth mentioning.

The FurHaven brand misses crucial points with me by putting products belonging to different categories under one insignia.

The lack of transparency regarding material origins and a “good enough” feature set don’t help it cross the four-point threshold in my rating scale. 

If other options are unavailable, getting this dog bed would be rational. But with other orthopedic dog beds for German Shepherds, you’re better off purchasing something from a more specialized brand with more material source transparency.

BarksBar Orthopedic Dog Bed


The BarksBar brand is tied to comfort for dogs, though there seems to be room to venture out as the brand story commits to prioritizing “pets.” Most of the products have to do with comfortable seating or the functioning of pets.

These include dog seat covers, orthopedic dog beds, and dog-friendly mats. There are a few products that don’t align, like dog doors, but there’s not much dilution to worry about.

The brand story doesn’t include a personal touch, though, and is quite generic. Committing to making “affordable products” that meet one’s customers’ “needs” is barely a differentiator.

This can make some people hesitant to purchase from the brand, but fortunately, Amazon peer-reviewing is here to help unearth the objective pros and cons of the product itself.


An orthopedic foam base and a polyester cover would have you believe this product offers the same material as the previous two in this post. However, its rim cushion is padded by a different material. 

This orthopedic dog bed features a cotton-padded rim cushion, which can pad your German Shepherd’s neck better than other types of fillings used in dog beds.

The polyester cover is also different since not all polyester is built alike. Here, more than the thread count, the actual quilting matters. The cover of this dog bed seems quilted for comfort, though it is no match for FurHaven’s faux fur.


  • Offers standard orthopedic dog bed features. The product has specific mention-worthy features like washability, removable covers, and the ability to support weight, but none of these are dimensions where BarksBar establishes itself as the leader.
  • All-encompassing rim. This orthopedic dog bed features a unique raised rim around its entirety, akin to a human having a neck pillow plus body pillows for extra support. This design not only enhances your German Shepherd’s comfort but also aids in stress management.

Had the BarksBar brand been slightly more personalized, it might have crossed the top threshold, but ultimately, it presents a passable product with standard features and a generic brand.

All I can say is that buying this dog bed is good for your German Shepherd’s joints and spine, but that’s about it.

LaiFug Orthopedic Memory Foam Dog Bed


LaiFug doesn’t put all its eggs in the dog bed basket yet manages not to be a confusing mix of assorted pet products. Instead, the business focuses on marrying interior design to pet-friendly products, a theme that most of its products fall under.

This is reminiscent of the Big Barker’s criteria of dog beds looking good in a home. LaiFug is a relatively new brand with the makings of a business success story.


The brand doesn’t matter if the product material isn’t comfortable for your bigger buddy’s back. Fortunately, the LaiFug dog bed features memory foam, which helps your bigger dog sleep better. 

But since foam is the common thread across all products in this article, what sets this one apart? The non-slip bottom and the waterproof liner stand out as materials that double as features.

Since the brand is committed to positive home interior harmony, it is on-brand for the product to strike the perfect balance between form and function.


  • Heavy bottom foam and top memory foam. This orthopedic dog bed features memory foam that can help relieve your dog’s joint and bone problems but has a sturdier bottom layer that helps support a heavier dog.
  • Standard features. The product also offers a pillow design, machine washability, and an aesthetic look that compliments your house; all features not absent from other orthopedic beds in this post.
  • Great for apartments. Ideal for those without a dedicated room for their German Shepherd’s crate and bed, this product offers a waterproof liner, anti-slip bottom, and an attractive design. It’s a perfect fit for smaller spaces in bedrooms or living rooms.

With an interesting balance between form and function and a passable brand story, LaiFug Dog Bed hits our 4-point threshold, making it one of the “no brainer” buys for orthopedic dog beds.

This can also be why over 9,000 reviewers on Amazon have brought it to a global average rating of 4.6 stars.

Why German Shepherds Need Orthopedic Beds

The structure of a German Shepherd is prone to hip dysplasia and arthritis, so this breed of dog needs an orthopedic bed to rest its muscles and joints. A supportive surface helps in enhancing the overall quality of life.

Hip dysplasia and arthritis can take a toll on German Shepherds as these can affect movements and cause severe discomfort and pain. Resting on a random surface can stress the joints.

Further, the type of surface can also affect the alignment and growth of a German Shepherd over the years.

Here are the major reasons a German Shepherd needs an orthopedic bed:

  • Comfortable and soft surface that’s good for joints and muscles
  • Even distribution of the weight of the dog across the complete bed
  • The high-density foam of the orthopedic bed promotes circulation and addresses pressure points.
  • It’s great for German Shepherds of any age. A disease-prone GSD can heal faster, while a young GSD with prior exposure to an orthopedic bed experiences a better quality of life and support for the body.

Which Orthopedic Dog Bed Should I Pick?

Getting an orthopedic dog bed for your German Shepherd is unlike getting products like treats or toys.

This decision is relatively expensive, and you want to be sure that the product you’re buying is built with heart and has all the features your German Shepherd can benefit from.

The products above all offer the basic comfort assistance your GSD needs, and you can choose the one that suits your budget and needs.

I personally find the Big Barker to be the best, and the 10-year guarantee is, to me, a risk-free purchase.

If, for some reason, the Big Barker doesn’t appeal to you, then choose the LaiFug Orthopedic Memory Foam bed, as this comes a close second.

Sharon Waddington
Sharon Waddington is the founder of World of Dogz. With over 30 years of experience working with dogs, this former Police Officer has seen it all. But it’s her trusty German Shepherd, Willow, who steals the show as the inspiration behind this website. As Sharon’s constant companion Willow has played a pivotal role in shaping her passion for dogs. Recently, Sharon has become deeply passionate about the plight of rescue dogs and is an active advocate for dog rescue, striving to make a difference in the lives of dogs in need.

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