Is there really a difference between orthopedic vs. memory foam dog beds?
They seem almost interchangeable, but they’re actually very different things!
Memory foam can be orthopedic (or not), but an orthopedic bed doesn’t’ always need to include memory foam.
If you’re confused, don’t worry; we’ll clear it up for you below.
You may also like: Top 5 Best Dog Beds For Three-Legged Dogs
Orthopedic Vs. Memory Foam Dog Beds
Finding the perfect bed for your pup can be tricky. After all, there are a lot of good options out there.
One of the biggest challenges is choosing what type fits your dog’s needs.
You’ll probably ask yourself whether an orthopedic or memory foam bed is the right choice.
Let’s dive more into this issue to ensure you know the answer.
Looking more into this topic will consist of explaining what these terms actually mean.
I’ll also provide the pros, cons, and five examples of each type.
It should become clear what the next move is during your search for a perfect dog bed.
Orthopedic Dog Beds
The first thing a buyer has to know is what constitutes an orthopedic dog bed.
These products are designed to support your dog’s joints, body, and bones properly.
As a result, they’re all about providing enough comfort and support to alleviate any pain.
These aspects seem to make them an ideal choice for older or recovering dogs.
It’s why the term orthopedic tends to be used for beds or mattresses designed to stimulate joint and bone alignment.
But what people don’t realize is there isn’t a single material designated as orthopedic.
In fact, all this term means is the bed or mattress was made to support joints and bones.
It doesn’t define what materials lie inside the mattress.
My main point here is that any material capable of meeting these needs can be called orthopedic, even memory foam.
This issue makes researching into each orthopedic bed’s material a must. Otherwise, you might buy something that isn’t high-quality.
It’s something that has happened to me more than once.
So please, figure out what’s inside every orthopedic dog bed before making a final choice.
- Stimulate joint and bone alignment
- Ideal for older dogs
- Alleviate pain
- Provides a dog with better posture
- Offer peak comfort levels
- Can be difficult to decipher what the term means.
- More expensive
FYI, the rest of this post contains affiliate links. If you make a purchase through these links, we earn a small commission at no extra charge to you.
Five Examples of Orthopedic Dog Beds
Where applicable, we’ve included both the Chewy and the Amazon purchasing link.
Use the table below for a quick peek, then read on for more details.
1. Sealy Lux Quad Layer Orthopedic Dog Bed
This dog bed is a great option for any sized breed with its four different sizes.
I imagine any pupper will enjoy its peak comfort and support levels.
My Pit Bull would certainly love the relief that it’d provide her arthritis.
- Quad element: premium orthopedic dog bed with quad element foam for ultimate comfort and support
- Orthopedic Support: high quality therapeutic bed provides support for dogs of all ages and is comfortable for dogs with arthritis, joint or bone problems
- Machine washable: removable cover is machine washable
- Odor absorbing: this lux bed is built with a pro-charcoal base to help absorb orders, keeping your dog bed fresh
- Pets for vets: part of every purchase will benefit pets for vets
2. BarksBar Gray Orthopedic Dog Bed
BarksBar’s Gray Orthopedic Dog Bed is a perfect choice for a dog with joint or body pain.
Its orthopedic foam will offer a great deal of support and keep them comfy.
Their sleep sessions will never be the same.
- Large Orthopedic Sleeper: 40” x 30” x 10" - Ideal for Medium to Large size dogs and also great for multiple smaller dogs. Can easily hold up to 100+ lbs and fitted for pets up to 36" in length.
- Inner Dimensions of Sleeping Space: 36" x 24" - Crafted with top-of-the-line workmanship and premium materials, it is built to both provide the ultimate sleep experience with superior overall comfort and to last. Perfect for dogs of any ages, especially older dogs with joint, bone or arthritic problems.
- Premium Materials include: (1) Ultra Soft Polyester Cover with a luxurious quilted design, (2) 4" of Solid Orthopedic Foam base for the optimal balance of comfort, reduced joint pain and improved health & mobility. (3) Extra Comfy Cotton-Padded Rim cushion to instantly contour to your pet's neck and provide constant support and decompression for ailing necks and heads.
- Sleek and Luxurious quilted design to improve any family's home decor. Comes with a built-in nonslip rubber backing on the bottom side of the cover to prevent any sliding on wooden and tiled floors.
- Easy to clean & maintain: Removable and Machine-Washable cover. Simply put it on gentle / delicate cycle. Even easier to spot clean and remove hair.
3. PetFusion Ultimate Dog Bed
This option combines both memory foam and orthopedic qualities.
It offers the best of both types to ensure your dog will always have a fantastic place to sleep.
It’s easily one of the top dog beds available today.
- PREMIUM COMPONENTS & BETTER HEALTH: (i) SOLID 4 inch MEMORY FOAM base for superior overall comfort, reduced joint pain (arthritis) and improved health, mobility, & energy. (ii) Calming bed for dogs who suffer from anxiety. (iii) Recycled 'green' support bolsters are generously filled. (iv) Durable & comfortable polyester (65%) & cotton (35%) twill
- SMART DESIGN: (i) Base & bolsters provide optimal support & security. (ii) Water resistant & tear resistant cover. (iii) Non-skid bottom. (iv) Blends in seamlessly with your home. (v) Replacement covers available separately
- PEACE OF MIND: (i) Certi-PUR-US Memory foam. NO mercury, lead, formaldehyde, phthalates, & ozone depleters. (ii) Low VOC emissions for indoor air quality. (iii) Passes stricter European REACH safety standards. (iv) Cover fabric certified as 'SKIN CONTACT SAFE'.
- IDEAL FOR MEDIUM / LARGE OR MULTIPLE SMALLER DOGS: (i) 36 x 28 x 9 inches. Can easily hold 100+ pounds. (ii) [Search Pet Fusion large pet blanket for new matching Blanket]
- WHAT YOU SHOULD KNOW: (i) 'Bolsters' pre-loaded into cover, simply insert memory foam base & zip closed. (ii) EASY TO CLEAN, removable cover is machine washable. (iii) Simple to spot clean & remove hair. Tumble dry on gentle setting. Do not use bleach when washing. (iv) 36 Month on any part that is broken due to manufacturer defect.
4. MIXJOY Orthopedic Dog Bed
Medium and small breed owners would adore this option from MIXJOY.
Your dogs will be able to curl up and enjoy being surrounded by total comfort.
It comes in four different colors to provide a little style choice, as well.
- ★ Super Comfort & High quality: The bed is about 23”x 23”x 6'', perfect for your cat, or small dog up to 25lbs. With faux shag fur, the round bed is ultra soft, warm and comfortable for your lovely friends. Urable nylon and luxurious faux fur come together help your pets restful sleep for improved behavior and better health.
- ★ User-friendly Design: raised rim design to make your dog and cat can curl up, have fun, provide head and neck support and promote feelings of security without no worries!
- ★ Lightweight & Portable: this cozy bed is lightweight and portable for travel. It is very easy for transportation and convenient to carry it in the car; this petfusion dog bed could let your pets to stay comfortable during camping and travelling when outside.
- ★ Easy Care: washing machine and dryer---Machine wash, gentle cycle. Tumble dry, low heat. We usually recommend hand washing. Easy care for the bed makes your pets are easier to keep a comfortable and clean sleeping space.
- ★ Multiple Colors: available in beautifully natural colors, different colors can easily meet with any room’s décor! Animals are our friends, if you have any issue of our products, please contact us directly and we are eager to rectify it!
5. Big Barker Pillow Top Orthopedic Dog Bed
Large breed owners will find this option more than suitable.
It’s made from therapeutic foam that’ll help soothe a larger dog after their walks.
The pillow-top feature will also provide a nice resting place for their big heads.
Check out our complete Big Barker Dog Bed review for more details.
- CALIBRATED FOR BIG DOGS: Available in Large, XL, Giant XXL dog bed sizes. Too powerful for small dogs.
- CLINICALLY PROVEN: University of Pennsylvania study data showed less pain, more mobility after using a Big Barker for just 28 days.
- 10 YEAR WARRANTY: American made therapeutic foam is the best quality you'll find in orthopedic dog beds. Won't flatten or pancake over time.
- MADE IN THE USA: Handmade by experienced craftsmen and craftswomen in our small Pennsylvania workshop.
- EASY TO CLEAN: machine washable. 100% Micro-suede cover. Soft to the touch, looks great in your home.
Memory Foam Dog Beds
Unlike the term orthopedic, memory foam refers to an actual material.
It’s a blend of polyurethane and additional chemicals, which offer its low resilience qualities.
This material has a unique backstory as NASA made it in the 70s.
Its development was intended to be used as airplane cushioning.
But since then, memory foam has become a wildly popular material in the mattress and pillow industries.
Its popularity stems from its ability to bounce back into original shape and contour pressure.
These qualities allow the beds to adjust based on the weight provided.
Basically, memory foam beds will adjust to whatever is laying on them for a more aligned and comfortable sleeping session.
But these products aren’t without their faults. Low-tier memory foam may sag after extended usage.
Dog owners with larger breeds should look into soft memory foam bedding due to this issue.
For instance, my large Pit Bull has made several memory foam beds sink in the past.
But a soft memory foam bedding was able to fix this issue.
Buyers should also know there have been reports of toxic odors and off-gassing from this material.
This issue will only exist in treated or low-tier memory foam and causes respiratory inflammation.
It’s why making sure your bed has high-quality memory foam is essential.
- Affordable price tags
- Many options available
- Promote better posture
- Retractable qualities
- Reports of toxic odors and off-gassing being released from low-tier memory foam
- Prone to sagging
You may also like: Top 10 Best Dog Beds for Rottweilers
Five Examples of Memory Foam Dog Beds
Again, we’ll give you both Amazon and Chewy links when possible.
1. BarkBox Memory Foam Platform Dog Bed
This product’s a machine washable, convenient option for dogs who have some joint pain.
In fact, it’s proven to do wonders for pups with hip dysplasia and body aches.
Cats often find themselves enjoy this dog bed, too, which could cause some territorial issues.
- Multiple Sizes: Pick the perfect size for your pup! *Please note, we’ve recently made size improvements.* Available in Small (24” x 16” x 3"), Medium (29" x 18" x 3”), Large (35” x 22” x 3”), X-Large (41" x 29" x4”), and XX-Large (50” x 34” x 5”). Arrives as a vacuum-packed bed in a box, easily unzip and let it inflate for up to 72 hours!
- High-quality Comfort: The therapeutic gel memory foam comforts your dog by relieving body aches, joint pain, hip dysplasia, and arthritis, and giving optimal therapeutic support. It also works great as a cat bed or a portable dog cuddler!
- Waterproof & Machine Washable: Easily combat accidents and keep your dog’s bed looking and smelling fresh and clean. No more messes! The zippered cover slides off seamlessly for convenient cleaning! Just throw it in the wash and it’ll be good as new.
- Neutral Grey Color: Our BarkBox dog bed comes in a light grey! The perfect neutral, cozy color to match your home decor and conceal your dog’s fur. This high quality dog bed comes with a bonus surprise toy that your dog will love!
- Perfect Dog Sofa for Medium Dogs: Can’t find a comfortable, high quality bed for your dog? This BarkBox dog bed comfortably fits dog breeds like Pugs and Boston Terriers. Get the bed your dog deserves!
2. Furhaven Memory Foam Pet Dog Bed
This model would be an excellent option for any dog breed.
It’s available in a multitude of sizes that could fit anything from a Chihuahua to a Golden Retriever.
Every pup could benefit from being comforted by its top-tier memory foam.
- PET FRIENDLY DESIGN: The bed features a contoured form factor that cradles and cushions pets in ergonomic comfort; the open design also gives them plenty of room to sleep in a variety of position, making it an ideal for both cuddlers and sprawlers
- SLEEP SURFACE: The sleep surface is lined with smooth micro velvet so luxuriously soft to the touch that no pet could ever resist snuggling into its downy comfort
- EASY ON JOINTS: The memory foam top cradles your pets figure to help cushion pressure points and promote body alignment, while the contoured ergonomic form factor works to provide enhanced orthopedic support for the neck, back, hips, and joints
- PRODUCT DETAILS: Gray; Jumbo, 30" x 45" x 6" (2.5" Center; 6" Edges)
- AVAILABLE VARIANTS: The bed comes in Espresso, Clay, Stellar Blue, and Gray; it's also available in Medium, Large, Jumbo, Jumbo Plus, and Giant
- EASY CARE: Pets can present some unique cleaning challenges, which is why Furhaven made sure that the removable dog bed cover is completely machine washable for your convenience
- CUSTOMER ASSURANCE: The product comes with a 90-day limited coverage against material defects and may also qualify for our 60-Day Worry-Free Program; but restrictions apply: purchases from unauthorized third-party resellers may not be covered by Furhaven
- NOT SUITABLE for pets with excessive teething or destructive chewing behavior
3. BarkBox 2-in-1 Memory Foam Dog Cuddler Bed
One of my favorite dog beds available due to its fantastic design.
It’s completely enclosed by a raised wall that offers multiple resting spots for a dog’s head.
My Beagle looks to elevate his head on armrests, which this bed a godsend for him.
- High Quality Comfort: The therapeutic gel memory foam comforts your dog by relieving body aches, joint pain, hip dysplasia, and arthritis, and giving optimal therapeutic support. It also works great as a cat bed, or a bed for all pets!
- Water Repellent and Machine Washable: Easily combat accidents and keep your dog’s bed looking and smelling fresh and clean. No more messes! The zippered cover slides off seamlessly for convenient cleaning! Just throw it in the wash and it’ll be good as new.
- Multiple Sizes: Pick the perfect size for your pup! Available in Small (16" x 24" x 9"), Medium (18" x 29” x 9”), and Large (22" x 35” x 10”). Arrives as a vacuum packed bed in a box, easily unzip and let it inflate for up to 72 hours!
- Neutral Grey Color: Our BarkBox bolster dog bed comes in a light grey! The perfect neutral, cozy color to match your home decor and conceal your dog’s fur. This high quality dog bed comes with a bonus surprise toy that your dog will love!
- Perfect Dog Bed for Medium Dogs: Can’t find a comfortable, high quality bed for your dog? This BarkBox dog bed comfortably fits dog breeds like Australian Cattle Dogs, Aussies, Bulldogs & Cocker Spaniels. Get the bed your dog deserves!
4. Brindle Waterproof Designer Memory Foam Bed
This bed is a bit more straightforward its design than these other memory foam options.
But it’s an excellent choice for something looking to put a bed inside their dog’s crate.
It could provide them comfort when isolated in there during specific situations.
- 100% Waterproof encasement beneath the fabric cover protects bed against accidents and fluids
- 4 inch thick bed features 2 inches of comfort memory foam and 2 inches of high-density support foam
- Soft, supportive consistency conforms to weight and pressure to relieve achy joints, arthritis and hip dysplasia
- Super soft, zippered velour cover resists dirt and hair and is easily removeable and machine washable
- Naturally hypoallergenic and resistant to dust mites, plus 3-year warranty - Medium size: 34" x 22" x 4"; Ideal for dogs up to 50 lbs
5. PETMAKER Memory Foam Dog Bed
PETMAKER’s Memory Foam Dog Bed could be an amazing choice for a pup who likes to lounge around during the day.
Its design features two inches of memory foam and orthopedic foam to ensure breathtaking sleeping sessions.
- Duplex Foam Construction
- 2 Inches of Memory Foam plus 2 Inches of Orthopedic Memory Foam
- Durable Brushed Suede Removable Cover, Non Skid Backing on the Bottom of the Bed
- L shaped Wrap Around zipper for easy Cover removal. Pet Size: Extra Large (76+ pounds)
- Materials: Suede, Memory Foam, Orthopedic Foam, Dimensions: 46 Inches x 27 Inches x 4 Inches
Both these types offer some great benefits, which is why I offer a simple solution.
Why not combine them and get an orthopedic memory foam mattress?
The PetFusion Ultimate Dog Bed is a great example of one.
Hopefully, you’ll follow my suggestion and get one for your favorite friend.
Do you have any other questions about orthopedic vs. memory foam dog beds? Share below.
Last update on 2021-03-24 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API