First-time owners have a lot of questions about the best way to take care of their dogs and dog bed choices. One problem a lot of owners have is where their dog should sleep at night. A veterinary technician explains the sleep options available. Technicians also explain the pros and cons of each option, and how a decision can affect their pet.
When buying a dog bed, owners should choose one that is comfortable. If they’re shopping for a pad for the interior of a crate, they should choose one that’s thick enough to provide support. When they decide where their dog will sleep, putting the dog bed in a set spot provides a consistent, night-time routine.
Choosing the Best Place for Your Dog to Sleep
One of the essentials that a veterinary technician should discuss with a dog owner is that the dog is part of their family and deserves the same consideration as humans. Their dog should sleep inside, so he’s not exposed to severe weather conditions, people that steal pets, and attacks from other animals.
When choosing a dog bed, where they’ll be sleeping should be a consideration. If a dog is sleeping on a floor, the dog owner should select a pad or dog bed that provides adequate warmth and cushioning. The pillow or bed chosen should be green-friendly, so the dog isn’t subjected to hazards in the environment. Environmental risks can cause health problems for pets as they do for humans.
Choosing a Dog Bed
Here are the benefits of having a dog sleep in their own bed. A dog bed insulates a dog from a cold floor and provides cushioning for restful sleep. A personal space for a dog to sleep helps to control the amount of shedding and may discourage the dog from sleeping on furniture that’s off-limits to pets.
What Size of Dog Bed Do You Need?
The pad, crate, or bed a dog sleeps on should be large enough to accommodate their size. The bed should support the dog comfortably in any position. A dog’s crate or bed should be at a minimum, five inches wider and longer than the dog.
How Easy Is It to Clean Your Dog’s Bed?
One of the considerations when choosing the best bed, pad, or crate for a dog, is how easy it is to keep clean. Sometimes puppies and older dogs have accidents, so you should choose a bed with a cover that’s resistant to water and stains for easy cleaning. During cold weather, a dog owner can provide extra warmth for their pet by putting a blanket in their dog bed. A pad or bed that’s machine washable is an excellent option.
Choosing the Best Bed for a Dog
Top-quality dog beds are made from better materials than cheaper beds. Although it may cost more for the dog’s bed, it’s an excellent investment since it won’t have to be replaced as often as a cheaper bed would. Pets deserve as much support and comfort as we all do.
The Dog’s Sleeping Space Should Be Warm
One of the disadvantages of having a dog sleep in a bed is that they can get cold during the night and can’t pile on extra blankets. If a dog’s bed is near a window, it could get drafty during the night.
A dog’s crate, bed, or pad should be in a warm place and away from drafts. When the dog is warm and comfortable, they won’t be as likely to get into trouble while the family is sleeping.
Placing a Dog’s Bed in the Owner’s Bedroom
Some owners want their dog to be close to them at night but don’t want their dog to sleep on their bed. Consider putting the dog’s bed in the bedroom, close to the bed. The benefit to this arrangement is that a dog will feel secure being close to its owner and both the dog and owner get a good night’s rest. However, unless a dog is trained to sleep in its bed, they may end up in the owner’s space by the morning.
A Quiet Spot for Dogs
If a dog isn’t going to sleep in the owner’s bedroom, choose another quiet spot where they won’t get agitated by outside noises. Puppies and older dogs tend to bark more frequently when they hear a sound at night. Placing the dog’s crate or bed in a quiet spot will allow the dog to have a peaceful night’s sleep and will enable the owner to wake up refreshed.
Dogs Sleeping in Their Owner’s Bed
A lot of dog owners allow their pets to sleep in their beds. Others argue that it’s unhealthy because of the risk of transmitting parasites or fleas. However, a veterinarian can treat fleas, ticks, and parasites and minimize the risk.
There’s some concern that puppies that have aggressive issues may be more aggressive as adults. However, obedience training can curb these tendencies. If a dog owner is allergic to pet dander, a doctor can prescribe allergy shots to minimize the effects of pet dander.
If pet owner doesn’t have allergies and feels comfortable allowing their dog to sleep in their bed, there’s no problem with sharing the sleep space. A lot of pet owners feel more comfortable and safer at night when they allow their dog to sleep with them.
Dogs That Sleep on The Couch
Some people think that allowing their dog to sleep on the couch will cause dominant or aggressive behavior, but this isn’t true. However, it’s essential not to encourage negative behavior inadvertently. If the dog growls or gets snappy when attempting to remove it from the couch, the dog must get down or the behavior will continue.
Some dog owners don’t want their dog on any of their furniture while others choose furniture for them and their dogs. Dogs love to curl up and nap somewhere that’s soft and comfortable, and love to be close to their owners. There’s not anything wrong with allowing a dog on the bed or couch if the dog is well-behaved.
Some owners only allow their dogs on the furniture if they invite them to jump up. Consistent training is an integral part of the process.
Pillows for Dogs to Sleep On
Dog pillows are available in a variety of styles, sizes, and materials. The pillows are for indoor use and designed for dogs to have a warm, cushioned sleep space. Dogs that are older and may have stiff joints and mobility issues can benefit from sleeping on beds that use memory foam technology to relieve pressure points and provide more restful sleep.
Some pet parents may be concerned about keeping a pillow for their dog clean. However, most new styles are reversible or feature removable covers that can go into the washing machine for quick clean-ups.
Dog Kennels, Crates, And Carriers
Kennels and crates have a different purpose than a carrier. A carrier is made of plastic and is for transporting a dog short distances and not meant for a dog to sleep in. A veterinary technician can advise pet parents on the proper use of dog kennels, carriers, and crates.
The problem with confinement in a carrier for long periods is that a dog may become agitated and try to claw or chew their way out. Another problem is that the dog may develop aggressive tendencies toward other pets or even family members. Some dogs develop separation anxiety as a result of prolonged confinement in a carrier.
Crate Training Your Dog
Crate training takes patience and time, but it’s worth it. Here are some things you need to know about dog crates.
- Training should be done in small steps. It takes time for a dog to get accustomed to its crate.
- A dog crate should never be used to modify behavior or as punishment.
- Crates should only be used for short periods.
- Crates aren’t a substitution for training a dog.
- Spending time in a crate should be a pleasant experience for a dog.
While dogs are learning what’s acceptable behavior, the dog’s crate limits access to certain areas of the home. One of the most important reasons for providing a dog with a crate is that the dog sees it as its den. The crate chosen for a dog will be its home inside the owner’s house.
Fashion crates are constructed of rattan or wood and look more like an end table than a dog crate. The only disadvantage is that these crates have wood floors which could be damaged if the dog has accidents.
Heavy-duty crates are excellent for high-energy or large dogs. The crates are created of steel with heavy-duty latches to keep an escape artist inside. Most heavy-duty crates are on wheels, making them convenient when traveling.
Plastic crates are perfect for dogs that like to nap in their den. The crates are excellent for transporting a dog in the car and are easy to store since the top half can be taken off and stacked.
For the pet parent with a small breed like a Chihuahua or a Yorkie, a soft-sided crate is a good option. However, these crates may only be used for small breeds.
Wire crates are perfect for dogs that like to feel secure while watching all the activity around them. The crates offer a lot of ventilation, are available with panels that are removable so a puppy can start in a small space which can be made larger as it grows.
Wire crates are simple to keep clean. During cold weather, the owner can place a bed or pillow inside to keep the dog more comfortable. Some dog owners put a blanket over the crate at night, so it becomes a snug den.
The only disadvantage to using a crate is that some dog owners buy crates that aren’t constructed well or are the wrong size for their dog. The dog will be using the crate for its lifetime, so it’s advisable to buy a crate that’s going to last.
Want to learn more?
Did learning about dog’s sleeping areas and how a veterinary technician educates dog owners interest you? Ready to start a program to become a veterinary technician? With an associate degree in veterinary technology, you’ll gain the knowledge and skills you need to start an entry-level career as a veterinary technician. Broadview University has been part of the community for more than 40 years, so we’ve developed connections that can help move your career forward. After completing our accredited degree program, you’ll be eligible to sit for the Veterinary Technician National Exam (VTNE). Passing the VTNE allows you to become a Certified Veterinary Technician (CVT), a designation that will give you a competitive advantage when you enter the job market.
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