How To Get A Dog To Use A Dog Bed

how to get a dog to use a dog bed

Hey, fellow dog parents! So, you’ve got this super comfy dog bed all set up for your furry friend, but there’s just one tiny problem – they seem to be giving it the cold shoulder. Don’t worry, you’re not alone in this quest for dog bed acceptance!

Gradually introduce the bed, place familiar scents, use positive reinforcement, position it in a cozy spot, and be patient during adjustment to encourage your dog to use a dog bed.

IHere, we’ll explore how yo get a dog to use a dog bed, the benefits of using a dog bed, different types available, and most importantly, how you can successfully train your canine companion to embrace their cozy new haven. 

How To Get A Dog To Use A Dog Bed – 5 Simple Steps

Introducing your furry friend to a new dog bed can be a rewarding experience for both of you. Here’s a detailed guide on how to get your dog to use a dog bed:

Step 1: Introduce the Bed

Start by introducing your dog to their new bed in a positive and exciting way. Place the bed in an area where they spend a lot of time, such as the living room or near their favorite spot. Use treats or toys to entice them to investigate and explore the bed. Encourage them with praise when they show any interest.

Step 2: Make it Cozy

To make the dog bed more appealing, add familiar scents like their favorite blanket or a piece of clothing that smells like you. This will help create a sense of comfort and familiarity for your pup.

Step 3: Consistency is Key

Consistency is crucial when training your dog to use their new bed. Whenever you see them lying down somewhere else, gently redirect them back to their designated spot. Reward and praise them every time they choose the correct location.

Step 4: Positive Reinforcement

Positive reinforcement goes a long way in encouraging desired behaviors. Reward your furry friend with treats, pets, and verbal cues whenever they voluntarily go onto their bed without coaxing.

Step 5: Patience and Persistence

Remember that training takes time and patience! It’s normal for dogs to resist change initially, so don’t get discouraged if progress seems slow at first. Stick with it consistently, using positive reinforcement techniques until your fur baby recognizes their new haven as a comfortable resting place made just for them.
By following these simple steps with consistency and patience, you’ll have your four-legged friend curling up on their cozy dog bed in no time

Why use a dog bed?

Well, there are several reasons why providing your furry friend with their own cozy spot to sleep is beneficial. 

  • It promotes better sleep quality for your pup. Just like humans, dogs need a comfortable space to rest and recharge.
  • A dog bed also helps protect your furniture from fur, drool, and accidents. By giving them their own designated area to lounge in, you can keep your couch or bed free from pet hair and stains.
  • Dog beds provide support for joints and can alleviate discomfort caused by arthritis or other conditions. The cushioning of the bed provides relief for any pressure points while they snooze away.
  • Having a specific spot for your dog to relax in can help them feel secure and safe. It creates a sense of belonging within their environment.
  • Using a dog bed encourages good behavior by establishing boundaries. 

When they have their own space to retreat to when needed, they are less likely to jump on furniture or invade personal spaces.

Different Types Of Dog Beds

When it comes to selecting a dog bed, a diverse range of options awaits you. Different types of beds cater to various preferences and requirements, ensuring your furry companion’s comfort and happiness.

1. Cushion or Pillow-Style Beds: Soft Comfort

  • Description: These classic beds feature plush padding for your dog to relax on. They come in various sizes and materials, including memory foam for added support.
  • Benefit: Ideal for dogs that enjoy a soft, cozy surface to curl up on.
  • Consider: Your dog’s size and any potential joint issues to choose the right level of support.

2. Orthopedic or Heated Beds: Extra Comfort and Warmth

  • Description: Orthopedic beds offer enhanced support, benefiting dogs with joint problems or older pets needing extra comfort. Heated beds are excellent for colder climates or chilly nights.
  • Benefit: Provides specialized care for specific needs, such as joint pain or staying warm.
  • Consider: Your dog’s age, health, and any temperature sensitivities.

3. Cave-Style or Nesting Beds: Cozy Hideaways

  • Description: These beds feature an enclosed space perfect for dogs that love to burrow or seek a sense of security.
  • Benefit: Appeals to dogs that enjoy feeling tucked in and secure while sleeping.
  • Consider: Your dog’s preference for snuggling and coziness.

4. Elevated Beds: Cool and Comfortable

  • Description: Elevated beds are raised platforms that offer ventilation during hot weather and keep dogs off cold floors during winter.
  • Benefit: Provides temperature regulation and minimizes contact with the ground.
  • Consider: Your dog’s comfort level with elevated surfaces.

Important Factors to Keep in Mind:

  • Size: Choose a bed that accommodates your dog’s size, allowing them to stretch and curl up comfortably.
  • Material Durability: Opt for durable materials that can withstand your dog’s habits and potential scratching.
  • Washability: Consider how easy it is to clean the bed, especially if your dog is prone to accidents or shedding.
  • Maintenance: Select a bed that suits your lifestyle and cleaning routine for long-term convenience.

Tailoring the Choice to Your Dog:

Every dog is unique, and their bed preferences can vary. Experiment with different types until you find the perfect match that suits their individual needs and provides a comfortable haven for their restful moments.

How To Get Your Dog To Use A Dog Bed

Ensuring your furry friend enjoys quality sleep starts with providing a dedicated dog bed. Here’s how to encourage your pup to love their new sleeping spot:

1. Choose the Right Bed: Tailored Comfort

  • Selection: Opt for a bed that suits your dog’s needs – orthopedic for joint health, heated for colder months, or raised for elevation preferences.
  • Benefit: Proper beds enhance comfort, promote joint health, and relieve pressure points.

2. Create an Inviting Space: Familiarity Matters

  • Scent Association: Add a touch of familiarity by placing your dog’s favorite blanket or toy on the bed.
  • Positive Reinforcement: Offer treats or praise when they explore or lie down on the bed.

3. Find the Perfect Spot: Comfortable Location

  • Cozy Nook: Position the bed in a quiet, secure corner to replicate the den-like spaces dogs naturally seek for relaxation.
  • Benefit: A safe location increases their comfort and likelihood of using the bed.

4. Be Patient: Transition Takes Time

  • Adaptation Period: Understand that your dog might need time to adjust and trust the new space.
  • Avoid Force: Don’t push them onto the bed or scold if they’re hesitant – patience is essential.

5. Consistency Counts: Establish Routine

  • Regular Use: Encourage them to use the bed every day to establish a consistent behavior.
  • Routine Formation: Repeated use helps the bed become a familiar and welcomed spot.

By following these steps and providing patience during the transition, your dog will soon cherish their cozy, comfortable bed for restful nights. Happy sleeping for both you and your four-legged friend!


Getting your dog to use a bed is doable by following these steps: Choose the right bed type based on size and preferences, introduce it gradually with positive reinforcement, and practice patience during their adjustment. Consistently encourage and reward bed use, and with time and love, your dog will embrace their cozy spot. Remember each dog is unique, so stay positive as you bond and teach good habits. Provide comfort, watch them snuggle up, and let those tails wag happily on their very own comfy beds!


Why won’t my dog use a dog bed? 

Dogs might avoid a new bed due to unfamiliarity or discomfort; gradual introduction and positive reinforcement can help.

How do you train a dog to sleep in a dog bed? 

Introduce the bed gradually, use treats and praise, place familiar scents, and position it in a cozy spot to encourage use.

How do you get a dog to bed? 

Guide them with commands like “bed” or “go to your bed,” use treats and praise for positive association, and be patient during adjustment.

How do dogs know to sleep in a dog bed? 

Dogs learn through training and positive reinforcement that a dog bed is their designated sleeping area.

Do dogs prefer hard or soft beds? 

It varies; some prefer soft for comfort, while others like firm for support. Observe your dog’s behavior for cues.

Do dogs like having their own bed? 

Yes, many dogs enjoy having a designated spot for comfort and security, like having their own cozy space.

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