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Dogs love their cushy, comfy beds, especially when the outside temperature climbs and the only tolerable activity is lounging and slurping water. You see, canines may be our favorite mammals, but they don’t regulate body heat as well as we do. (Greeting a loved one at the door? Yeah, they do that way better.) Panting is one of the only ways they have to stay cool. So even if it’s not 100 degrees outside, shopping the best cooling dog beds is going to make your little one more comfortable. These are our collapsible, elevated and downright ergonomic favorites.

Why do I need a cooling dog bed?

Heat stroke in dogs is a medical emergency. Canines pant to release heat and cool themselves down. They only have sweat glands on their paw pads. If the temperature of their environment gets too high or they are not in a properly ventilated space, they may lose the ability to regulate their internal temp - which is bad news! VCA Hospitals says when a pup’s body temperature reaches 103 degrees, it’s officially heat stroke territory. (Hint: Having a dog thermometer in your pet first aid kit is a smart move.) This can happen quickly, which is why cooling dog beds are ideal when your dog is outdoors in the summer (or indoors if you don’t have air conditioning).

Signs of heat stroke include excessive panting, dry or discolored gums, disorientation and even seizures. Not only should cooling dog beds be used to prevent your dog from overheating, they can be used to cool down dogs who may be on the brink of heat stroke. Always make sure your dog has water and shade on hot days - heck, even on cool days if it’s extra sunny out!

Folks with breeds like Pugs, Boxers and Bulldogs must be doubly cautious. These canines, known as brachycephalic breeds, have a harder time regulating temperature due to their shortened muzzles. Even a little extra heat and humidity could negatively affect them. And

Cooling dog beds can also provide pain relief. Arthritic animals or post-surgery pups often enjoy cooling beds because it soothes their aching joints. Some of the beds on our list are basically giant heat-absorbing pads, so it’s not a bad idea to try one if your aging dog seems uncomfortable in his current spot.

Best Cooling Dog (and Cat) Beds at a Glance

RELATED: How to Cool Down a Dog: 10 Tips and Tricks for a Safe Summer

1. COOLAROO ORIGINAL ELEVATED PET BED

Best Overall

Sometimes all it takes is a nice breeze to cool your dog down. This elevated cooling bed sits eight inches high and comes in three sizes: small (dogs up to 50 pounds), medium (dogs up to 75 pounds) and large (dogs up to 100 pounds). It’s made with a super-breathable, durable, high-density polyethylene that is 100 percent recyclable fabric, meaning it has no harmful chemicals, is easy to clean and strong enough to withstand outdoor elements. Think of it like a camping cot for your pup.

From $25 at Amazon

Chewy

2. PET GEAR COT

Best Portable

Whether you’re heading out on a road trip or into the next room, lugging a heavy cooling dog bed isn’t ideal. This 40-inch long cot weighs just seven pounds and folds up into a more manageable size for carrying back and forth. The legs fold out (no assembly required) and have rubber grips to prevent the bed from sliding around. Pet Gear does make a larger version for big breeds, too. Designed to be water-resistant and breathable, this is a stellar solution to a hot dog anywhere.

Buy it ($62)

Casper

3. Casper Dog Bed

Best Luxury Splurge

After getting rave reviews for their human-sized mattresses with humidity-fighting technology, Casper realized dogs could benefit from the same features. The company also took canine instincts into account with the design. Back in the day, dogs used to make soothing sleeping spots by digging into and kicking around dirt to get to the cooler layers of earth. Casper’s beds are not only made with memory foam, but they also have extra cover material that lets dogs imagine they’re roughing up the ground like their ancestors did before turning in. Oh, and the beds come in three colors and three sizes.

Buy it (from $139)

Amazon

4. KROSER Deluxe Dog Bed with Reversible Pillow

Best Reversible

One side of the reversible center pillow is cool, breathable canvas (so that your pup can get air circulating all around him). The other side of the cushion is plush and warm for winter. Plus, the base of the bed is waterproof and non-slip, so it won't go anywhere when he hops in. We've known dogs to get creative with this bed and push the pillow to the side to use as a headrest.

From $33 at Amazon

Chewy

5. Green Pet Shop Dog Cooling Mat

Best Mat

Even if your pup snoozes the whole damn afternoon, he’ll stay cool on the Green Pet Shop Dog Cooling Mat. This bed kicks into action as soon as it feels your dog’s body weight and recharges itself after roughly 15 minutes of inactivity. While the design is more focused on cooling than comfort, it easily lays on top of thicker cushions or beds to keep your pup happy on a hot day (which is especially helpful if you travel together in the car a lot).

Buy it ($50)

Amazon

6. Sealy Lux Quad Layer Orthopedic Dog Bed with Cooling Gel

Best Orthopedic

Sealy, a company known for its human mattresses, makes an orthopedic dog bed with high-quality foam (for comfort) and a Pro-Charcoal base (for odor absorption). The heat regulating Cooling Energy Gel gathers high temperatures on the bed’s surface and sends them back into the air or onto the floor beneath it. Rest easy knowing your dog is keeping cool and staying stable, as there's a no-slip bottom that prevents them from scooting around as they chase cars in their sleep).

$72 at Amazon

Amazon

7. Furhaven Pet Dog Bed

Best Indoor

The secret of this sofa bed style dog furniture is the layer of cooling gel foam that's tucked under the quilted cover (which is machine washable and comes in 14 different colors). The design is wide enough to accommodate your pet inside the bolsters, or they can opt to use the bolsters as a headrest to realign the pressure on their frame while they sleep. And the nooks and crannies of the bed are perfect for a little snuffling around before settling down to nap.

From $30 at Amazon

Chewy

8. Arf Pets Self-Cooling Mat Pad

Best for Crates

If your dog loves her crate (and/or you are crate training), this mat may become your pup’s BFF. It requires no technology or refrigeration. Made with non-toxic cooling gel means there’s no work on your end beyond placing it in the crate (they work well in the back seats of cars, too!). The mat stays cool for up to three hours. Don’t worry, Art Pets says this thing is puncture-resistant, so doggy nails won’t damage it. (Bonus: The nylon material ensures easy cleaning).

Buy it ($40)

Amazon

9. Niubya Outdoor Dog Bed with Canopy

Best Outdoor

Nylon mesh in the center of the elevated bed allows for maximum air flow, as do the wide arches between the sun-shading, UV-protective tent overhead. Remove the canopy if you need to (aka on windy days). Assembly is easy and requires no tools. We're thinking one of these in the yard is going to prevent our best friends from jumping into the hammock with us.

$70 $58 at Amazon

10. ETNA POP UP SHELTER PEN

Best for Small Dogs (or Cats)

This foldable shelter comes with a cooling gel pad and expandable tent. Designed for pups up to 25 pounds, it’s ideal for tiny companion animals who need a cool spot to sit while you’re socializing or lounging. This also works well if you’re at an outdoor event and it starts to drizzle! Plop your pup in here to keep them dry.

Buy it ($50)

11. K&H Cool Bed III

Best for Recovering Pups

As a waterbed for dogs, this bed is literally one of the coolest on our list. It makes recovery from surgeries, skin issues and stiff joints easier on your dog’s body. The bed requires no cords, batteries or weird chemicals. To activate the cooling core, just pour water through the filler cap and the bed will absorb your dog’s body heat and bring things back down to room temperature. Bottom line: Stick to the manufacturer’s instructions and you should be just fine.

From $33 at Amazon

Chewy

12. PETFUSION PREMIUM COOLING BLANKET

Best Cooling Blanket

Perhaps your dog prefers blankets to beds? Go with this cooling blanket from PetFusion. The lightweight, breathable fabric absorbs heat from your dog to lower their body temperature. An ideal option for car rides or couches on sweaty days.

Buy it (from $30)

Chewy

13. K&H INDOOR/OUTDOOR COVERED ELEVATED BED

Best for Camping

Camping trips with your pooch are fun, unless they get uncomfortable in high temperatures. This dog bed is not only elevated and covered, it’s designed to keep your pet safe from the elements. The fabric is nylon and water-resistant. It won’t get moldy or grow bacteria, either. Two windows provide circulation when it’s nice and can be zipped up to keep out rain if necessary.

Buy it (from $45)

RELATED: 17 Pet Travel Accessories You Didn’t Know You Needed

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