Can Dog Beds Truly Be Indestructible? A Guide for Managing Pups That Love to Shred
If you’re the proud parent of a canine that delights in destroying their beds, you’re likely familiar with the heart-sinking sensation of returning home to find the remnants of yet another ‘indestructible’ bed scattered across the floor. You may be asking yourself, are there truly any dog beds out there that can withstand such relentless onslaught? Or is the promise of indestructibility nothing more than a marketing gimmick?
According to the consensus among pet experts, the sobering truth is that there is no single bed that will be universally indestructible for all dogs. However, the good news is that it’s almost always feasible to discover a bed that can stand up to the unique destructive habits of your particular pooch. The secret to uncovering a genuinely durable bed lies in accurately identifying your dog’s preferred mode of devastation, whether that’s relentless chewing, persistent scratching, or determined digging. Then, you should focus on selecting a bed that’s specifically designed to withstand that exact type of wear and tear.
Additionally, it’s beneficial to understand what’s triggering your dog’s destructive behavior in the first place. Recognizing the underlying causes can help you address them effectively, reducing the likelihood of future destruction.
In order to delve deeper into this issue, we’ve reached out to two respected veterinarians. We asked them to share their insights on what drives dogs to wreck their beds, how to curb such destructive habits, and how pet parents can align a nearly indestructible bed with their dog’s specific patterns of demolition.
What Drives Dogs to Wreck Their Beds? Gaining a clear understanding of why your dog takes pleasure in ripping apart their bed can guide you towards identifying and rectifying the behavior. The initial step involves ruling out any health complications, such as dental issues or gastrointestinal discomfort, which could potentially trigger destructive chewing habits.
Dr. Tehreem Puri, a seasoned veterinarian, advises pet owners to closely observe their furry companions once the vet has confirmed the absence of medical conditions. “Monitor when the destructive behavior transpires because detecting patterns can expose the root cause,” she emphasizes.
Let’s explore six primary triggers for destructive behavior and consider strategies to safeguard your dog’s bed.
As per Dr. Puri’s insights, anxious dogs might resort to bed destruction (among other objects) as a coping mechanism. “Various stressors like separation anxiety or fear can lead dogs to seek solace through destructive chewing,” she explains. Canines suffering from separation anxiety may also exhibit behaviors like urination within the house, whimpering, barking, attempting to escape, or causing damage around doors or windows.
The ordeal of separation anxiety is undoubtedly disheartening, but targeted training can prove helpful. While they may not completely eradicate anxiety, calming toys can serve as an engaging diversion. Dr. Ellen Russell, DVM, MPH, also suggests the usage of situational aids such as a Thundershirt or calming treats to help alleviate stress levels.
Chewing and digging activities are mentally stimulating and physically engaging for dogs. This might explain why your pet shows an inclination towards decimating each dog bed you bring home: it keeps them occupied! Signs of boredom in a dog can range from restlessness, constant jumping or pawing for attention, incessant barking, to digging holes in the yard.
To combat boredom, it’s crucial that pet parents ensure an adequate supply of mental stimulation, engaging activities, and physical exercise for their dogs. Consider extending your dog’s walk, introducing puzzle toys, or providing them with a treat-stuffed KONG. It might also be worthwhile to hire a dog walker or request a friend to stop by for a playful visit to disrupt the monotony of the day.
Exploring the Unknown
If you’ve recently introduced a new dog bed to your dog’s space, their instinct will likely propel them to investigate this unfamiliar object. “Dogs are inherently curious and may resort to chewing on their bed as part of their exploration process,” elaborates Dr. Russell. This investigation can involve the use of their paws or mouths, which could have catastrophic outcomes for plush fabrics and bedding materials.
Teething puppies are often driven to chew on objects as a means to alleviate their discomfort, and unfortunately, beds make for convenient targets. During this phase, you might notice bloodstains on chewed items or observe your young pup drooling excessively.
Addressing the issue of destructive teething involves a dual approach. Firstly, it requires educating your pup about what objects are suitable for chewing and what are not. Secondly, ensure that your teething puppies have access to an ample supply of chew toys specifically designed to suit their needs.
Driven by Hunger
Occasionally, a dog that’s feeling hungry might resort to chewing on items as a desperate attempt to find additional food, according to Dr. Russell. It’s crucial to ensure your dog is receiving an adequate amount of food; keep in mind that active and growing dogs will require more calories compared to their more inactive counterparts. Moreover, maintaining a consistent feeding schedule can help circumvent a potential chewing onslaught.
Natural Chew Enthusiasts
It’s a simple fact that some dogs just enjoy chewing…for no particular reason. Chewing, digging, and shredding are all standard canine behaviors, and your dog may view them as enjoyable pastimes. For those dogs who find pure delight in chewing and tearing, it’s beneficial to offer suitable outlets for such play and to oversee their activities whenever feasible. Certain beds, like those offered by K9 Ballistics and other brands offering elevated beds, might prove to be far less entertaining to chew on for your canine friend.
The Myth or Reality of Indestructible Dog Beds?
While you’re strategizing on ways to dissuade your dog’s penchant for destruction, it undoubtedly serves you well to invest in a resilient bed. Some pet product brands make rather audacious claims about their goods’ ability to endure canine-induced havoc. Unfortunately, many such assertions have led to disappointment among pet owners.
So, the question stands – do indestructible dog beds truly exist?
For Dr. Russell, the perspective is hopeful yet grounded in reality. “Indeed, the market is filled with robust and durable dog beds engineered to withstand significant wear and tear,” she acknowledges. “A number of brands boast chew-resistant features such as fortified zippers, strengthened seams, and dense stitching.” She further notes that the most resilient beds are typically made of hardy materials like memory foam, ballistic nylon, and microfiber fabric.
Nevertheless, despite these added reinforcements, no bed can claim to be utterly indestructible in every situation. “A few dogs might still manage to inflict damage on the bed if they display a certain level of determination or persistence,” Dr. Russell admits.
Ultimately, an entirely indestructible bed that can resist every dog’s attempts at destruction is more of a myth. However, you can often find a bed that is suitably tough to endure the specific destructive tendencies of your dog.
Choosing the Perfect Indestructible Bed for Your Dog’s Unique Needs When it comes to pinpointing the ideal type of indestructible bed for your dog, initially consider the size and weight of your furry friend. Dr. Russell advises,
“If you have a larger dog or one that is extraordinarily strong, it’s crucial to select a bed engineered with additional strength and durability.”
For more substantial dogs, she suggests robust orthopedic or memory foam beds which can accommodate the weight of heavier dogs without compromising their structure. Products like the Big Barker bed are known for their thick foam design and a tough microsuede fabric tailored explicitly for larger breeds.
“For pet owners with puppies or dogs of a lighter weight, a bed made from ballistic nylon or microfiber fabric would generally be optimal. These materials are inherently strong, yet typically lighter in comparison to other options,” Dr. Russell adds.
Besides your dog’s size, their characteristic style of destruction is another essential factor to consider.
Which Beds Are the Best for Chewers?
Persistent chewers might find it challenging to destroy beds made with heavy-duty ballistic nylon or microfiber fabrics. Compared to cotton or polyester, these materials tend to be more chew-resistant, which Dr. Russell claims are susceptible to ripping. “If your dog is a particularly tenacious chewer, consider beds that incorporate reinforced seams and dense stitching to withstand their gnawing,” she recommends.
Elevated beds offer one of the most durable solutions for powerful chewers. These cot-like beds feature sturdy frames that keep the fabric tight, leaving no surplus material for dogs to bite into. The K9 Ballistics Elevated Bed, for instance, is manufactured with an aluminum frame and a chew-resistant ripstop ballistic fabric. This bed has gained a reputation for withstanding heavy chewing.
Which Materials Are Most Resilient to Diggers and Scratchers?
Beds crafted with robust, tightly woven fabric or materials such as ballistic nylon can be ideal for diggers,” shares Dr. Tehreem Puri. Orthopedic memory foam beds — true memory foam — also do a commendable job of withstanding intense scratching and digging.
For dogs naturally inclined to burrow, Carhartt offers a near-indestructible dog bed made with sturdy duck canvas and triple-stitched seams. While it’s not suitable for heavy chewers, it should fare well with dig-loving Dachshunds and Terriers. Elevated beds also offer a level of resistance to scratching.
Discouraging Bed-Destruction Behavior For healthy dogs who are inclined towards destructive behaviors such as chewing or digging, the incorporation of training and positive reinforcement techniques can be beneficial. Dr. Russell recommends that pet parents promote good habits by rewarding their dogs with a treat whenever they choose an appropriate behavior over destructive ones. Teaching dogs a “leave it” or “drop it” cue can also help them avoid or let go of items they shouldn’t chew on, Dr. Puri adds.
Furthermore, if you catch your dog in the act, try to divert their attention away from the bed. You can offer a favorite toy or take them outside to distract them. As a last resort, consider applying bitter sprays or deterrent sprays to the bed. These sprays are harmless but have a bitter taste that dogs typically find unappealing, hence discouraging the chewing.