Skip to Content

What Material Is Best For An Orthopedic Dog Bed?

We all want to provide the best possible care for our dogs. One important aspect of a dog’s well-being is getting enough restful sleep. Like humans, dogs need a comfortable and supportive sleeping surface to maintain good health. That’s where orthopedic dog beds come in. But what is the best material for an orthopedic dog bed?

The best material for an orthopedic dog bed is memory foam. It provides support and comfort for dogs with joint pain or arthritis and conforms to the shape of the dog’s body, distributing weight evenly and reducing pressure on sensitive areas. It also retains its shape over time, ensuring long-lasting support.

Orthopedic dog beds are specifically designed to provide extra support and comfort for dogs with joint pain, arthritis, or other musculoskeletal issues. However, with so many different materials available, choosing the best one for your dog can be overwhelming.

In this article, we will discuss the various materials used in orthopedic dog beds and their advantages and disadvantages.

What material is best for an orthopedic dog bed? A dog on an orthopedic dog bed.
Hey there! As an Amazon Associate, we earn from qualifying purchases. We may also earn commissions if you purchase products from other retailers after clicking on a link from our site.

What Materials Are Commonly Used In Orthopedic Dog Beds?

Orthopedic dog beds are made to offer additional support and comfort to dogs who suffer from arthritis, joint discomfort, or other musculoskeletal conditions.

My German Shepherd, Willow, was diagnosed with an orthopedic condition, and I did a lot of research before choosing the ideal dog bed and the perfect material for it.

One of the most important factors in determining the quality of an orthopedic dog bed is the materials used in its construction.

The most commonly used materials in orthopedic dog beds are memory foam and egg crate foam. Memory foam is popular because it contours the dog’s body, providing personalized support and pressure relief. Egg crate foam is also a good choice as it offers a similar level of support while being less expensive than memory foam. 

Other materials used in orthopedic dog beds include cooling gel foam, latex foam, and polyfill. 

Cooling gel foam is ideal for dogs in warmer climates, as it helps regulate temperature and prevent overheating. 

Latex foam is more eco-friendly, and a polyfill is a good choice for those on a budget.

As a word of caution, I’d like to tell you that you can never compromise on getting the best orthopedic dog bed as it is directly associated with your dog’s health.

A German Shepherd on a Big Barker Orthopedic Bed.
My dog Willow on her orthopedic dog bed

What Are The Differences Between Memory Foam And Egg Crate Foam In Orthopedic Dog Beds?

Memory foam and egg crate foam are two of the most common types of foam used in orthopedic dog beds, and they have some important differences.

Memory foam is a dense, viscoelastic foam that conforms to the shape of your dog’s body, providing customized support and pressure relief. 

This can be especially beneficial for dogs with joint pain or arthritis. Memory foam is also more durable than egg crate foam and can provide long-lasting support for your dog. 

On the other hand, egg crate foam is a thinner, less dense foam with a bumpy, egg carton-like texture. 

It still provides some support, but not as much as memory foam. Egg crate foam is generally less expensive than memory foam and can be a good option if you’re on a budget. However, it may not be as durable and must be replaced more frequently than memory foam.

If you’re buying a dog bed for the first time, you may get bombarded with options but don’t go by them. Here’s a video that helped me choose the best one…

What Are Orthopedic Dog Beds? | Big Barker

What Is The Best Material For An Orthopedic Dog Bed For A Dog With Arthritis?

Memory foam is generally considered the best material for orthopedic dog beds for dogs with arthritis.

Memory foam contours to your dog’s body, providing customized support and helping to distribute their weight evenly. This can help reduce pressure on your dog’s joints, which is especially important if they have arthritis. 

High-density memory foam is more resilient and better able to withstand the wear and tear of regular use than other types of foam. Look for orthopedic dog beds with high-density memory foam of at least 4 pounds per cubic foot for maximum durability

I purchased Big Barker’s orthopedic dog bed, made of the perfect material to offer maximum support, and my dog has ever since fallen in love with it. You can buy it from Amazon, too (see below). However, if you get the Big Barker direct from their website, you qualify for its 10-year guarantee.

Other materials that may be helpful for dogs with arthritis include cooling gel foam, which can help regulate temperature and reduce inflammation.

Can Orthopedic Dog Bed Materials Absorb Odors Or Prevent The Growth Of Bacteria?

Many orthopedic dog beds are made with materials that have antimicrobial or odor-resistant properties. 

For example, some memory foam dog beds are infused with bamboo charcoal, which can help absorb odors and prevent the growth of bacteria. 

Other orthopedic dog beds are made with fabrics treated with antimicrobial agents or moisture-wicking properties to help keep the bed clean and fresh.

It’s important to check the manufacturer’s specifications to see if the orthopedic dog bed you’re considering has any of these features.

However, it’s important to remember that you must clean even orthopedic dog beds with antimicrobial or odor-resistant properties regularly. 

Over time, dirt, hair, and other debris can accumulate in the bed, leading to unpleasant odors and the growth of bacteria. 

Be sure to follow the manufacturer’s instructions for cleaning and maintenance, and consider using a pet-safe disinfectant to help keep the bed clean and fresh.

Are There Any Health Risks Associated With Using Certain Orthopedic Dog Bed Materials?

While many orthopedic dog bed materials are safe for dogs, there are some potential health risks to consider.

One concern is the use of toxic chemicals in manufacturing orthopedic dog bed materials. 

Some foam materials may contain harmful chemicals such as formaldehyde or flame retardants, which can harm your dog’s health if exposed to them over time. 

It’s important to choose orthopedic dog beds made with non-toxic materials and certified by organizations such as CertiPUR-US or OEKO-TEX, which test for harmful chemicals.

“Honestly, it depends on how well you maintain the bed. If your dog is like mine and enjoys being on it, you need a better maintenance routine or you’ll be asked for it.”

World of Dogz

Another potential health risk is using materials that can cause allergic reactions in dogs. 

Some dogs may be sensitive to certain fabrics or foam materials, which can cause itching, irritation, or other allergic reactions. 

If your dog has a history of allergies, choose an orthopedic dog bed made with hypoallergenic materials and free of potential allergens such as dyes or perfumes.

Pug In Bed With Toy


Are Orthopedic Dog Beds Suitable For All Breeds And Sizes Of Dogs?

Orthopedic dog beds are suitable for dogs of all breeds and sizes. Orthopedic dog beds are available in various sizes, from small beds for toy breeds to extra-large beds for giant breeds. However, choosing a bed that is appropriately sized for your dog is important.

Choosing a bed that is big enough for your dog to lie down comfortably and provides adequate support for their weight is vital.

Can Orthopedic Dog Beds Made With Waterproof Materials Be Used Outdoors?

You can use orthopedic dog beds made with waterproof materials outdoors. These materials are designed to resist moisture and withstand exposure to the elements. However, it’s important to remember that even waterproof materials may not be completely impervious to water, so it’s still a good idea to bring the bed indoors during heavy rain or snow.

Additionally, be sure to choose an orthopedic dog bed designed for outdoor use, as some materials may be more durable and resistant to UV damage than others.

Can I Wash An Orthopedic Dog Bed?

You can wash many orthopedic dog beds. However, the specific washing instructions will depend on the materials used in the bed’s construction. Memory foam and egg crate foam are not machine washable, but the cover can be removed and washed separately.

Other orthopedic dog beds made with washable materials such as polyfill or cotton can often be machine washed.

It’s important to check the manufacturer’s instructions for cleaning and maintenance to ensure that you’re washing the bed correctly and not damaging any of the materials.


  • 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. Find her on Linkedin!