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All dog owners want to do their best for their loyal, loving canine friends. That includes looking after their physical comfort as part of their overall health and well-being. Whether your dog is under the weather or needs a helping hand with staying warm in cooler conditions, sometimes his usual sleeping places just aren’t sufficient. Many dog parents, therefore, consider buying heated dog pads for their pets.
But what are the advantages and features of a heated dog pad? Are they safe overall, and what should you be looking for before you buy one? In this article, we look at all these issues and more.
First, here’s our round-up of the best heated dog pads on the market.
Ideal for the dog that likes or has to spend a lot of time outside, the K&H Pet Products Lectro-Kennel Outdoor Heated Pad is tough, durable and easy to clean. The manufacturer states that it can either be used flat on the floor for pets to sleep on or can be affixed to a wall to emanate heat throughout a kennel, for instance; or for a dog to lie up against in cold conditions.
This dog house heating pad is thermostatically controlled and warms to your dog’s own natural body temperature. It will not exceed this, preventing overheating. The pad also runs at a low wattage and therefore is safe and economical to use. There are three sizes to choose from, so you can buy the appropriate dimensions for your pet.
The unit comes with a free fleece cover, which is machine washable. Replacement covers can also be ordered from the manufacturer. The pad itself, once removed from the cover, can be wiped clean with a damp cloth; just wait for the entire pad to dry naturally before plugging it back in. The electrical cord is 5ft 5” long and is wrapped in steel to prevent even the most determined chewer from biting through the wiring, thus preventing the chances of electric shocks. In fact, the whole unit is MET Listed, which ensures it’s been tested and is safe for use indoors or outdoors.
Indoor/ Outdoor: Both, particularly Outdoor
Heater Type: Electrical
Dimensions: 12.5” x 18.5” (Small); 16.5” x 22.5” (Medium); 22.5” x 28.5” (Large)
This electric heating pad comes in two sizes, so you can choose the one best suited to your pet. The unit is covered with a durable waterproof material, making it suitable for use for any pet, whether they are ageing or ailing through arthritis or other injuries and illnesses, pregnant, nursing puppies or newborns.
The electrical cord is covered with a stainless steel coating, making it resistant to chewing and other accidental damage and preventing the chance of electric shocks. Likewise, the thermostat mechanism is designed to avoid overheating and the unit uses a low voltage for safety and economy. The temperature is adjustable with two settings, high and low, and heats up to 104oF. There’s also a power-off control for added protection.
The heavy duty cover is not removable, but can be cleaned easily with a slightly dampened cloth. Of course, the heating pad should be unplugged from the mains while you do so and left to completely dry before being used again. It’s advised that you don’t cover the heat pad with anything other than a light towel or blanket; and do not bend or fold the mat when in use.
The product is covered by a three month guarantee and will be replaced by the retailer if the customer is dissatisfied.
K&H Pet Products Crate Pads are manufactured in six different sizes, so there will be a pad with the ideal dimensions to suit any crate or dog. What’s more, each corner of the pad is slit so that the cushion can be neatly fitted into any size crate, if the floor is smaller than the overall pad. What’s more, the underside of each pad is non-slip, which prevents it sliding round the bottom of the crate and offers your dog stability as he moves around on it.
Moreover, there are three options: odor-control, self-warming or memory foam. The odor-control version comes with a foam center that incorporates charcoal, which helps neutralize any doggy smells. The self-warming pads are not dependent on an electrical source, which makes them great for everyday use, use outdoors or in wet conditions without worrying about safety. They’re also good for keeping down the energy bills! And while all the pads are supportive yet comfortable, the memory foam option provides that extra touch of support and luxury for pets with aching limbs and joints.
Additionally, K&H’s crate pads come in three neutral shades, tan, mocha or gray, so no matter what color your home (or dog!), there will be one to suit. All pads in the range feature a soft microfleece sleeping surface covered by breathable mesh to allow air to circulate while your pet sleeps. The pads are all machine washable too, so they’re a breeze to keep clean and fresh.
This product comes with a one year limited warranty in addition to your normal consumer rights.
Indoor/ Outdoor: Indoor
Heater Type: Self Warming
Dimensions: 14” x 22”; 20” x 25”; 21” x 31”; 25” x 37”; 32” x 48”; 37” x 54”
A great choice for dogs who have a habit of messing up their bed. This heating pad and pet bed from Homello is an ideal option for those looking for a fast-acting heat pad for their pets. It’s designed to go from off to warm within 10 minutes, making it one of the fastest available and perfect for coming back from those cold walks.
Then there’s the chew-resistant cord, which keeps your pets safe during use. This, combined with the auto-switch off adds peace of mind to those who worry about overheating or electrical problems. Both you and your pet will remain cozy and safe, with an additional moneyback option, should your happiness over this purchase waver.
Just like humans, or animals also need warmth for survival and thanks to theRiogoo Heating Electric Indoor Warming Pad, the well-needed warmth can be supplied for your beloved pet. A product from Riogoo, this heating pad is a mat with the gold standard to protect against the cold and icy weather conditions.
Made with tested electric standards, it has great voltage regulations such as the auto-off switch for when you forget to turn it off for pet security. Thanks to their therapeutic properties, the heating pad can also be used by both recuperating and elderly pets. As for usability, the instructions are pretty straightforward to follow. You simply have to lay it on top of your pet’s bed and safely plug it in and turn on. Now your pooch no longer has to worry about the colder nights.
Very easy to use
It has an auto power-off function
The heating pad has a polyester cover which can be removed by hand
Has a 7 layer structure for safety with a temperature sensor
Another available heating pad is the Marunda heating dog pad. This is a waterproof electric heating system for dogs. With features like an auto power-off function, this dog pad is certainly worth the investment. It also offers constant temperature regulators for added safety and comes with a worry-free warranty. Made with resilient steel cord, it is a chew-resistant pad that ensures longevity and uses advanced waterproof PVC material that is easy to wash or clean. Inbuilt is a dual thermostat that offers optimum warmth – no need to adjust the temperature as it automatically reaches the optimum in no time. And for those after a stylish product, the coffee-colored will certainly blend in well into any interior. It can be placed anywhere in the home – just plug it in and you are good to go.
Auto power off switch
It is waterproof and easy to clean
Strong steel cord resistant to dog chewing and biting
Designed for ease of use, this option is one of the easiest choices to keep clean and maintain its durability. The removable fleece cover can be put in the washing machine or hand-washed, and air dried, in order to keep it looking fluffy and like new.
The 5ft steel-wrapped power cord works to keep you, your pet and your home safe and sound. At the same time, the built-in dual thermostat works to maintain an even temperature, so you don’t have to worry about burns or your pet falling asleep on a mat that’s too hot. This is one of the best dog heating pads for medium sized dogs and puppies, due to it’s good sizing, too.
This heating pad is the newest from Marunda and comes built with an auto power-off function as well as a strong steel cord that is resistant to dog bites. It also offers automatic temperature control that emits warmth suitable for indoor, recuperating and elderly pets and there is also an inbuilt dual thermostat for optimal heating. The pad can be placed anywhere in the home and also comes with a long cord for easy plugging. For maximum efficiency, the mat should not be folded when in use.
As for the material, the high-quality PVC is durable and soft and can be quickly air-dried when wet. Unfortunately, the product is not fireproof and would require additional care when in use. Nonetheless, the product is certainly worth the purchase and if you are not entirely satisfied, the manufacturers are offering a free return policy on defective products.
Whether you’re not sure if your pet would benefit from a heating pad or are wondering which is the best dog heating pad for your own requirements, the information below should help guide you to make your decision.
Factors to Consider When Buying Heated Dog Pads
So that you are not wasting your money, there are a number of factors you should take into account when purchasing a heated dog mat. Initially, make sure the options you are choosing from have good, informative product descriptions so you can check all these out. If you’re buying from a retailer like Amazon, it’s also well worth reading through the reviews and customer questions and answers. Information from genuine past customers can really help inform your decision.
But the main factors you should consider include the following:
The size of your dog
You don’t want his limbs hanging over the edge or resting on the cool floor below; otherwise the heated element may well be futile.
The way he or she sleeps
Does your dog typically stretch out on their side or sleep curled up into a ball?
Whether the bed pad will be used indoors or outdoors
This can be a safety issue, as a dog heating pad outdoor will need to be guaranteed safe if it gets wet. It’s also a relevant factor in terms of how the dog bed can be cleaned, as outdoor beds will undoubtedly suffer more if exposed to the elements.
Using electric or relies on thermo-reflective materials
To warm your dog. An electrical pet warming pad can be an ongoing expense, although many use minimal amounts of power. But it’s also an issue in terms of safety, so where you’ll place the bed; whether there’s easy access to a power supply; and whether your dog is one that likes to chew cables and soft furnishings will also be important in your decision-making.
How easy it is to wash
All dog beds will look tired and dirty from time to time. To get the most for your money – and to ensure the bed stays cozy and clean for your pet’s comfort – you need to know you can wash it from time to time.
What is your budget for the purchase?
Inevitably, we’re all on a budget of some sort. The key factor to remember here, though, is that as with most things in life, you get what you pay for. Cheaper beds may not stand the rigors of daily use, so it could be worth investing in a more expensive model from the outset as this may be more durable and offer better value for money over the longer term.
The look of the bed
While your dog probably won’t care what color the bed is, it can be important to the house proud owner! If the heated dog bed you’re buying is going to sit in the living room or bedroom of your home for the duration, you’ll probably want to make sure it doesn’t clash terribly with your décor. It’s a small point when compared with your dog’s comfort, but worth bearing in mind.
Best Heated Dog Pad FAQ:
Q: Why does my dog need a heated dog pad?
A: We all love our canine friends, and many of us spoil them without apology. But buying a heated dog pad for your pet may seem to be pampering above and beyond the call of duty! However, there are various reasons why dogs may need a little extra help with keeping warm.
Firstly, dogs have a higher body temperature than people. Their average stands at 101 – 102.5oF (38.3 to 39.2oC) compared to a typical body temperature of a human: 98.6oF (37oC). So although they may have a fur coat to keep them warm, they can be just as susceptible to cooler temperatures as their human owners.
Perhaps you live in an area where winters are especially cold, or your dog spends a lot of time sleeping outdoors, whether through necessity or choice. In these cases, a heated dog bed can give you reassurance that your pet will stay warm, even when the temperatures drop.
If you don’t like your pet sleeping on your bed at night when the central heating or other heating is off, then a heated dog pad can help you ensure that your dog will stay warm after dark. They can also be a great incentive to owners who are trying to keep their dogs off the furniture at any time of the day or night!
If you own a smaller breed of dog, or have a young puppy, whether healthy or ailing, then a small heated dog mat could help keep them snug and warm, safe from chills. Dogs with short haired coats can also be particularly vulnerable to cold temperatures.
Additionally, older dogs might need a helping hand. As with humans, heat therapy can ease sore and aching joints and prove to be a positive boon for dogs suffering from arthritis or rheumatism, day or night. You should notice an improvement in your dog’s mobility when he wakes up from a nap on a heated dog bed.
Q: What are the signs of hypothermia in dogs?
A: It can be hard to tell if your dog is too cold. Their temperature might drop for any number of reasons, from shock to infection, as a result of the external temperatures or through consuming something toxic. But if your dog’s temperature falls below 99oF (37.2oC), then he or she is at risk of hypothermia. Symptoms you might see include shivering, stiffness, lethargy and generally being less active than usual.
Q: Could my dog overheat on his heated dog pad?
A: Pets, like humans, know when they’re feeling too hot or too cold. Provided your dog has the freedom to choose where he wants to be, he’ll use the dog pad when he’s cold and move away from it if he gets too warm. Just be aware if you’re using the heat pad in a confined space, like a dog crate, for instance, it’s best not to position this next to a radiator, fire or other heat source.
Q: Are heated dog pads machine washable?
A: Not all heated dog pads will be machine washable. It’s important to read the product descriptions very carefully before you part with any money, particularly if you are looking for washable dog beds. Commonly, the cover itself will be removable and this can be thrown in the washing machine. The heating pad itself should be able to be wiped down with a damp washcloth.
Q: Are heated dog pads safe?
A: Do you have a dog with a penchant for chewing? If so, and you know they make a beeline for electrical cables, then it’s worth thinking twice about buying a unit that incorporates an electrical heating pad. For these canines, a self-warming bed that reflects the dog’s own body temperature back will probably be the better choice.
If generally speaking you can trust your dog around the electrics in your home and they have a need for a heated dog pad, then the electrical options are ideal.
So what safety features should you look for? First, choose a reputable supplier of animal accessories. Ensure the pad is specially designed for pets and not humans, because there are different safety standards involved. Pets don’t understand how to use electricity safely, so you’re looking for something that will allow them to act naturally without putting them at risk. Also, as noted above, animals’ body temperatures differ from humans, so a heat pad that may be suitable for the latter could be too warm for the former.
Make sure the pad you choose includes a thermostat.
Look for one that describes its cable as being chew-proof. Some manufacturers cover the cable where it enters the mat with a strong, durable plastic or metal coating or cover that is resistant to even the sharpest teeth or the most persistent of gnawers.
Opt for a low voltage unit. Additionally, look for reassurances that the mat has been rigorously tested and found to be safe. MAT, for instance
Fire retardant material is also an invaluable safety feature. This ensures that any material lying close to the heating element will prove resistant to sparks or ignition if something should go wrong.
If you have any worries at all about the safety aspect, then it may be a better option to think about self-heating pet beds. These use the dog’s own heat and reflects it back to warm its body. There isn’t any electricity involved, so they’re potentially as safe as houses.
Q: How can I clean heated dog pads?
A: Pets, especially dogs, can get rather smelly. Of course, they also shed hair and some breeds produce excessive saliva and so on. And if you’re purchasing a dog bed warmer for outdoor use, it’s especially important to be able to clean your heated dog pad from time to time, as it may get covered in additional mud, dirt and grime.
Each unit will come with its own instructions, which you should pay close attention to. Generally, most feature a removable cover for machine or hand washing. Others are waterproof and so can be wiped clean with a damp cloth. Never mix water and electricity, though: the heat pad should be turned off and unplugged from the mains while cleaning, and left to dry before being used again.
Q: What size heated dog pad do I need?
A: Proud dog owners often find their dogs adorable, especially when they’re asleep! If you’re trying to find the right sized bed for your dog, it’s worth considering what positions they get into when they’re fast asleep. Some love to curl up in a ball, others stretch right out to their full length when they’re truly relaxed.
If your dog is a full length stretch addict, then measure him from the base of his tail to the tip of his nose. Any bed you choose for him should be at least this length, and perhaps even a little longer for luxurious stretching.
That doesn’t necessarily mean that a curled up dog will need a significantly smaller bed. Bear in mind that your dog probably won’t just use his bed for sleeping. He may also want to lounge on it, watching the household members move around him, or chewing his favorite dog toys.
Of course, if your heated bed pad is intended to fit into a specially designed canine crate, then you’ll be limited by the floor size of the crate. Dog beds with electrical heating elements shouldn’t be folded, so you will need to be more precise in this case.
Don’t forget to choose a bed that’s bigger than your dog if he’s still growing, or if you have multiple canines and they like to snuggle up together!
A freelance writer and word nerd, Wendy is a content writer with a knack for getting into the nitty-gritty of pet ownership. For the past three years, she’s been researching and writing a huge range of different topics – but always comes back to her beloved pet articles. Lover of all things four-legged and owner of Harley, Pepper and Rush, Wendy is currently completing her MNSW at Edge Hill University.