With big dogs come big dog problems. Yes, your dog could be taking up the whole bed or couch, or his big slobbers are getting all over your armrest. But we’re talking about big dog health problems, specifically hip dysplasia. It’s a very uncomfortable condition for certain big dogs (and some small dogs, too).
Sometimes dogs have surgery for this condition, or a vet may prescribe some medication. You want to do more to ease his pain, and you’ve maybe heard that a high-quality orthopedic dog bed can help. It’s true, the right dog bed can help your dog’s hip dysplasia be less severe and help him gain more mobility.
It might be confusing to look at all the options out there and figure out what bed is best for your dog. Below, we will help you sort through all that information and give you the facts that matter when it comes to picking out the right dog bed to ease hip dysplasia for your dog.
A Quick Comparison of Our Favorites
The 8 Best Dog Bed for Hip Dysplasia – Reviews 2021
1. PetFusion Ultimate Memory Foam Bolster Dog Bed – Best Overall
Memory foam isn’t just for your achy joints; let your dog experience the supreme comfort of the PetFusion Ultimate Memory Foam Bolster dog bed. The outer layer (which is water-resistant) is completely removable, washable, and equipped with sturdy zippers that won’t quit on you. The bolster provides snuggly tight corners for your pup to snooze next to and get comfortable. When you order the correct size, it’s roomy and not too small for your big dogs.
We love this dog bed most for the memory foam and durability. Often pet owners with this bed would sit on the bed themselves! However, there are a few downsides. Some say that the material on the bed is not very soft, and some dogs do not take well to it. Others said that the material was not durable enough to stand up to chewing and it conducted too much static and was, therefore, a huge hair magnet.
2. Barkbox Dog Bed Memory Foam – Best Value
Coming in at about ¾ less than the leading dog bed, Barkbox’s Dog Bed Memory Foam is the best dog bed for hip dysplasia for the money. It’s essentially a glorified foam mat, so it’s super simple to set up. It’s not just a mat, though, it’s high-quality gel memory foam with pressure-relieving qualities. The cover is removable, waterproof, and machine washable, giving you peace of mind if and when an accident or excessive drooling happens. One last perk: the dog bed ships with a free dog toy.
This bed is great for big dogs, but if you have a really big dog, make sure to go up a size or two (take good measurements of the space it’s going in!). Be prepared to get a bed that is smaller than expected, which is another reason to go up in size. Some dog owners had problems with the cover, as sometimes accidents leaked through, and the zippers were hard to get open. These are the main reasons this dog bed stays out of the number 1 spot, but it could be right for you.
3. Big Barker Pillow Top Orthopedic Dog Bed – Premium Choice
Big Barker pulls out all the stops with this Top Orthopedic Dog Bed. The bed is specially made for big to huge dogs, comes with a soft micro-suede cover that’s machine washable. It earns our Premium Choice badge for not only its high quality but its clinically proven results. The University of Pennsylvania ran a study with these beds, and although dogs can’t talk (we wish), the results stated that dogs were more mobile and showed fewer signs of pain after 4 weeks of using the bed. To top it all off, it comes with a 10-year warranty. Now that’s something to bark big about!
Though the cover of this bed is tough, it may not stand the test of a dog with strong digging or chewing habits. Because of this, we do not recommend you buy this bed if you have a puppy. The bed is also a big investment, by far the most expensive bed on this list.
4. BarksBar Orthopedic Bolster Dog Bed
Don’t have an enormous dog, but still want the comfort of an orthopedic dog bed? Try the BarksBar Orthopedic Bolster Dog Bed. It’s a cozy bed that comes in a small, medium, or large size with human-grade memory foam and bolsters to snuggle your pups in. The comfy, quilted cover comes off (just the cover, no padding sewn on) for easy machine washing in a snap. This bed is perfect for a medium-sized dog or two small dogs to sleep in together.
Many happy dogs have been content sleeping in this bed. Though it’s nice-looking in the pictures, sometimes dog owners said that the shape of the bed does not hold up over use. The cover claims to be chew-proof, but several dogs have successfully nibbled through it.
5. Furhaven Pet Plush Ergonomic Orthopedic Dog Bed
Furhaven designed three different dog beds according to dog size needs. This Pet Plush Ergonomic Orthopedic dog bed in the Jumbo size is perfect for large dogs. The foam is 5 inches thick in the thinnest part, but it comes with thicker edges for comfortable head-resting. Like the other dog beds on this list, the plushy cover is cozy for sleeping on and completely removable and washable for your convenience. Plus, the cover keeps the loose hairs on the bed.
One thing this bed could use is a waterproof cover. Some didn’t like the tubing on the sides; they are plastic and don’t look very high-quality. Sometimes, this bed showed up in a warped shape. But, if you’re worried it won’t show up in perfect shape or hold up to normal use, Furhaven’s 90-day limited coverage on the dog bed can probably help you out.
6. The Dog’s Balls Orthopedic Dog Bed
The Dog’s Balls makes an orthopedic dog bed called “The Dog’s Bed”. This bed is super thick, with the large size being 6 inches thick that holds up to heavy dogs. They come in a wide variety of colors, mostly shades of grey with accent colors. The Dog’s Bed is unique because it is surrounded by two layers of protection: one outside soft layer, and an inner, waterproof layer that’s more protective of the mattress. Whenever your cover does fail you, you can buy a replacement cover through their website.
Though there are two covers for protection, sometimes dogs wear the dog bed top down too quickly. Some customers were dissatisfied with the actual foam height, as it was much shorter than anticipated.
7. KOPEKS Jumbo XL Orthopedic Dog Bed
Does your dog ever do a running jump onto his dog bed, only to end in a humorous spill across the floor? Maybe it’s never that extreme, but a sliding dog bed can be annoying. The KOPEKS Orthopedic Dog Bed prevents this from happening with its non-slip bottom. The therapeutic foam is 7 inches thick and compares to human mattress foam. Plus, this bed includes two layers of protection, both water-resistant. The one-sided bolster gives your dog an optional resting pillow for his head.
We love this bed because it is true to size. What’s not great about this bed is its liners: they just did not hold up for some people. Also, sometimes the product arrives to customer’s homes as defective and not as what was advertised.
8. Nononfish Orthopedic Dog Bed
Nononfish created “self-warming” dog beds for small, medium, and large dogs. It looks like a fluffy, round puff for your pup to rest on. They claim their beds ease dog anxiety episodes with the bed’s comforting ring shape and soft outer layer. The outer layer of the dog bed is water-resistant, and the bottom is waterproof and includes nonskid beads to keep it from sliding around.
The outside of the nononfish bed is non-removable, so you would have to spot-clean or throw the whole bed into the washing machine. It is not the greatest quality, and should not be used for puppies or put on a laundry cycle other than “delicate.” This dog bed might be best for smaller dogs and cats, but it’s probably not a great choice for larger dogs who make larger messes.
As the owner of a dog with hip dysplasia, it can be difficult to receive the diagnosis and watch your dog go through the pain it causes them. The good news is, you can help your dog a little bit here and there, and one way is by selecting a perfect dog bed for his achy joints. We will briefly go over hip dysplasia, how a dog bed can help, and how to pick out a perfect bed for your dog.
What is Hip Dysplasia?
Hip Dysplasia is common in some large dog breeds, especially in Labradors, German Shepherds, and Bulldogs (which also all happen to be the most popular dog breeds), but it also can occur in small dogs. It’s typically a genetic predisposition that some dogs have when the ball and socket of the hip have no cushion, so the bones are rubbing against each other.
It’s a very uncomfortable condition for dogs, but you can do things to help. Nutrition plays a big role, especially when your hip dysplasia-prone dog is a puppy. Too much weight, too much or too little exercise also can contribute to hip dysplasia. If your dog suffers from this condition, be sure to talk to your vet about possible treatments.
Do Orthopedic Dog Beds Really Help Hip Dysplasia In Dogs?
Yes, a good orthopedic dog bed can help with the pain caused by hip dysplasia. This is because the right kind of dog bed will ease the stress put on your dog’s joints, including their hips. When the right kind of cushioning is provided, the joints will get a break for the time your dog is sleeping, so by the time they get up again, they could have increased mobility.
An orthopedic dog bed will not by any means cure hip dysplasia, but you might notice a spring in your dog’s step that they didn’t have before after a few weeks of using a quality bed.
Before You Buy an Orthopedic Dog Bed…
…you need to think about some practical matters:
Once you know the answers to these questions, you will be able to make a more informed buying decision.
What Makes a Good Dog Bed for Hip Dysplasia?
Now that you have a better idea of what kind of dog bed you will need, keep these important aspects in mind while you continue to shop around for a dog bed to comfort your dog’s hip dysplasia.
To properly work for hip dysplasia, the orthopedic bed you buy needs to support your entire dog’s body. Make sure to buy a bed that your dogs can lay on completely without hanging off at all. Also, you will want the dog bed to fit in a spot that you want it to go. A round bed might not fit in a certain corner, but a square or rectangular bed will.
Dogs get messy sometimes. Right when you least expect it, your pup could get some tummy issues and effectively ruin a dog bed, if it’s not washable. Several dog beds on this list come with waterproof or water-resistant covers. Keep in mind that these are not the same thing. Water-resistant fabric will still leak through if soaking wet. You will want a waterproof dog bed cover that will protect the memory foam underneath and one that can be easily removed for washing.
Sometimes dog beds can have the padding sewn straight onto some padding that’s a part of the bed. This is probably washable too, but it can be a pain to fit it all in your washing machine.
You could make an additional investment of a few run-of-the-mill bedsheets or fleece blankets to put over the top if you are especially worried about cleaning the bed.
To be genuinely orthopedic, a good dog bed for a dog with hip dysplasia will have at least a 2-inch thick foam as a base. In general, the thicker the foam the better, but a 4-inch thick foam should suffice, according to PetMD.
After this base level of necessity, the rest depends on your dog’s preferences for what they like to lay on. Do they love soft, cozy fabric, or do they care more about secure-feeling bolsters? You know your dog best, so pick a bed that is similar to what he already likes.
An orthopedic dog bed can be viewed as an important investment. Look into all the dog bed materials, especially the memory foam, and the durability of the outer layer, with its fabric quality, zippers, and seam strength. When all these qualities are guaranteed to be good, and the price is high, it may be worth it. It’s quite regrettable to buy a second-rate dog bed, only to have it destroyed by the washing machine.
If you’ve got hardwood floors, consider buying a bed with a bottom that doesn’t slide around. This is a safer option for an excitable dog who likes to jump on the bed, and it will also save your sanity from having to move it back into place all the time.
Especially when you are investing a good chunk of money into an orthopedic dog bed, you want to make sure that your purchase is guaranteed. Some of the more expensive dog beds come with a full or limited warranty that will protect your purchase. Pay attention to how long the warranty is for, and report problems to the seller as soon as you notice them to fix any errors.
We know you love your pups and hate to see them in pain. By now, you’ve been able to browse our dog bed reviews and our top picks to get a better idea of what you would like for your dog. To summarize, we picked PetFusion Ultimate Memory Foam Bolster Dog Bed as the overall winner of our tests, and Barkbox Dog Bed Memory Foam is the best orthopedic dog bed when you don’t want to spend an arm and a leg. We hope that your dog with hip dysplasia starts to feel better quickly after the purchase of your dog bed, and always remember to talk to your vet if you have any other health concerns for your pup.
Jordin Horn is a freelance writer who has covered many topics, including home improvement, gardening, pets, CBD, and parenting. Over the years, she has moved around so much that there’s been no time to settle down and own a pet. However, as an animal lover, she dotes on and cuddles any pet she happens upon! She grew up with and dearly loved an American Eskimo Spitz named Maggie and a Pomeranian/Beagle mix named Gabby. She calls Colorado home, but has also recently resided in China, Iowa, and Puerto Rico
Jordin does not like to settle for the “easy answer” when it comes to living life with your pet. She loves to research the best methods and products out there and cut through the jargon so you can see plainly what something is or how something is done.