From the Pack: Dog beds that work well inside crates

I asked on Instagram if people had dog beds they loved, specifically to go inside their dog's crate. Here's what they said.

The bed Mochi is sleeping on above is the Best Pet Supplies Double Sided Crate Mat (I bought it for $20 when it happened to be on sale, but you can shop around). I bought everything I needed to welcome Mochi into our home all at the same time and using a list from our rescue, and this just happened to be the bed NYC Pet was selling. I did zero research on it but Mochi doesn’t seem to have any complaints. A year later, I’m wondering if I can give her a meaningful upgrade.

A few days ago, I asked on Instagram if people had dog beds they loved, specifically to go inside their dog's crate. Here are the recommendations I got. The price estimates below are for Mochi's size (19lb dog, 30x19 crate).

Yes Bolsters:

No Bolsters:

And then of course, I had to check if Wirecutter had a review, and it does:

Sadly, out of all the options above, only the FurHaven and K&H beds (first two listed) have sizes that actually fit well inside Mochi's crate, and the Wirecutter recommendation (the MidWest) might fit if I squeezed it in.

Questions I'm still trying to understand:

I'll update this post as I learn more.

  • How can I tell if my dog likes bolsters?
    Mochi loves her Best Friends by Sheri bed (has bolsters) that she uses in the living room, but also loves literally sleeping on the floor, or on bathmats, or in her crate with her existing bed, which all have no bolsters.  

  • How can I tell if my dog would benefit from memory foam?
    Mochi's still young, and I haven't had great experiences with memory foam as a human — in fact, it's literally hurt my body, so I don't yet buy into the idea that memory foam is always good. But some preliminary reading told me that it's generally good for dog's joints, and older dogs may benefit from it if they have orthopedic issues. Just wishing there was some kind of scientific study or something, but I haven't researched this much yet.

  • How can I tell if my dog would benefit from cooling gel?
    My best guess at answering this question is probably whether Mochi seems hot when she's in the apartment. But since I live in a very well temperature-controlled environment, I doubt she needs this.

What I'm leaning toward:

I think I'd love to have a bolster bed for her crate, just to see if Mochi uses the bolsters. If she does, I'll know she likes it, and then I'll also have two beds I can use in rotation when the other is in the wash and getting dried.

I'm very tempted to get Mochi the Casper bed, because so many friends have it for their logs, and it's beloved. It's also the only more "premium" dog bed that the Wirecutter recommends (I highly recommend reading through that whole review). That said, it doesn't work for her crate, so I'm tabling this idea for later, in case I ever want to replace her Best Friends by Sheri bed in the future.

What I'm not writing about:

Posting this will might invite very reasonable questions about why I want the bed to be in her crate specifically, or why Mochi has a crate. That's a whole entire topic you can study, so I recommend googling "crate training" to learn more.

From the Pack: I’m trying out something new! Because I frequently crowdsource answers to common questions I have about dog ownership, I wanted to collect and share those answers back out in an accessible way, as well as give a very concise, honest account of where my thinking is. I won’t be emailing these out, but I will mention them in my upcoming newsletters.