5 Tips On Choosing The Perfect Cat Bed

Cats adore warmth and comfort and will always seek out the softest places to doze. Territorial by nature and reassured by their own scent, cats also like having a place all their own to sleep and rest. Read on to discover many types of cat beds available and five tips for choosing the perfect bed for your feline friend.

Beds for cats come in a wide variety of styles:

• Igloo, cave, basket and tipi style
• Round, square, marshmallow, donut and plush
• Reversible
• Heated
• Cubby, tent and cocoon

The cocoon style appeals to many cats’ instinctive need to hide. In the wild, the ancestral cat would seek out well-hidden places to sleep to avoid a surprise attack by enemy animals. Cocoon-style beds for cats gently collapse around the animal’s body, providing a soft, warm layer over the cat as it sleeps. The cocoon style is also great for hairless breeds like the Sphynx.

5 Tips for Choosing the Right Cat Bed

1. Measurements

When your pet is calm, use a cloth tape measure to get his or her measurements. Quickly place the tape at the nose and measure to the tail base. Use this figure to choose the right size for your pet.

Kitten beds are cute but won’t last long because that tiny cat today will be fully grown before you know it. It’s fine to get an adult-size bed even for a kitten. You can use the average adult cat length of 18 to 20 inches to purchase a bed for the youngster. A soft baby blanket can be folded and placed in the bed to make it seem smaller for the kitten.

Observe your cat’s preferred sleeping position. If he or she tends to curl up, choose a round bed. Square beds work well for larger cats or those who like to sleep stretched out. If your cat is heavier, pick out a bed with plenty of padding. The same is true for cats with joint problems like arthritis. Round beds measuring about 17 to 18 inches across will be suitable for the average size adult cat who likes to sleep curled up.

2. Location

Location is very important. The bed should be in a quiet area free from drafts and away from foot traffic or anything that could fall on it, such as a lamp. If placed on a higher surface, such as a table, make sure the bed is smaller than the table and doesn’t overlap its edges.

You may need to secure the bed to the table. You can do this easily by purchasing a roll of wide velcro and cutting some strips to the right size. Many cats prefer to sleep in their owners’ bedroom, either in a quiet corner or on the owner’s bed.

3. Features

Beds for cats come in many colors. While cats are not totally color-blind, their ability to recognize certain colors is limited. Therefore, the cat won’t care about color, but you can choose colors that fit in with your home’s current decor. Check labels and be sure the bed is washable. This may mean a washable removal cover.

Other beds can be tossed whole into the washer. Use small amounts of detergent and rinse the bed twice. You can tumble dry on low or just set it out to air dry. Only wash the article when it’s truly dirty. Cats enjoy sleeping in their own scent.

Avoid beds with attachable swat toys. A bed should be for relaxing, not playing, and some of these types of toys may not be safe.

4. Materials

Stick with natural fabrics, such as wool or cotton. Cats are prone to allergies, and these fabrics may be less allergenic and are also breathable. Make sure the bed is well-constructed and sturdy. Cats may pick at beds that are coming apart, causing further damage and possibly even swallowing chunks of bed material. Heated beds or bed pads must be UL approved for safety.

5. Cat trees

While not technically a cat bed, tall cat trees, sometimes also called cat condos, are covered in carpeting and have flat platforms attached. These can be placed in front of a window. Cats love to relax on a plush, carpeted, high surface while they watch the world outside and maybe catch a cat nap or two.