Natural Dog Beds – The benefits
For years, manufacturers of dog beds have been producing beds with one key objective in mind – to make the cheapest possible product. This is a key reason why China has become the market leader and main source of dog bed imports.
The technology involved in stuffing a cloth bag with spun polyester fibre or various types of foam is minimal and, as such, a majority of dog beds are simply unfit for purpose – providing little or no joint support, insulation, long-term comfort or durability. Consequently these types of dog beds are bought and then disposed of with monotonous regularity (adding to lanfill).
So why choose natural materials in a dog bed?
Here are a few reasons:-
Both cotton and wool are soft, absorbent and breathable natural fibres. Wool in particular is an incredible adaptable natural material – a superb insulator – it is extremely warm in winter yet it is breathable and able to regulate itself to provide a cooler surface in the summer months.
Wool (and cotton) also have great moisture wicking properties meaning that they can absorb damp and keep it away from the surface of the material.
Kinder to the Environment
Both materials are entirely renewable, sustainable and 100% biodegradable. We also try to source all our raw materials from the UK whenever possible to reduce our carbon ‘pawprint’.
Low risk of allergies
Wool and cotton are hypo-allergenic. Dust mites don’t like wool in particular.
Natural fire resistance
Wool is difficult to ignite, has low flame spread and heat release properties; it does not melt and has superior self-extinguishing qualities. That’s partly why our mattresses are wrapped in a thin layer of lambswool over the layers of felt and mat of pocket springs.
No dangerous chemicals
Many fabrics and foams are treated with chemical flame retardants that can be highly toxic to both humans and pets. Please read our blog article on this subject for much more information – http://www.berkeleydogbeds.co.uk/dog-care-pet-bed-safety/
High quality natural component dog beds may cost more but they invariably hold up longer than synthetic alternatives. Materials like wool and cotton drill are tough and last a long time. Wool is very strong and durable and it’s fibres are particularly suited to the felting process that makes wool material highly tear – resistant.
Easier to keep clean
Wool and cotton are naturally anti-static Static attracts lint, dirt, and dust, so anti-static properties keep fabric much cleaner for longer.
Are there any negatives to 100% Natural Dog Beds?
There are a few areas where we have found that natural materials need a helping hand.
Wool in a raw form, like polyester fibre, can clump together and become lumpy. That’s why we use felt sheets which are made of recycled wool with small amounts of cotton waste and a tiny amount of added polyester to give some extra ‘bounce’ to the material. These felt sheets retain their shape and density without breaking down over time.
To give our beds even more structure, uniform support and additional breathability we add a central core of pocket springs made of recycled steel. Every time your dog moves around on the bed the air pocket that surrounds the springs acts as a bellows to help keep the whole bed dry and fresh.
Finally, dogs being dogs, they love to get muddy and wet! To help protect the whole structure of the mattress and avoid repeated cleaning we cover our mattress in an impermeable PVC-backed polyester material that can be removed and washed as required. We haven’t found a truly natural material yet that is as tough, practical and waterproof.