Hay and straws are not the best dog bedding in the market. If you want to reuse your straws as dog bedding, you may consider using other materials instead. Linens, rugs, wood chips, and dog beds are some of the best dog bedding in the market.
Hay Vs. Straw for Dog Bedding
If you have a dog staying outdoors, it is still essential for them to have proper bedding. Staying outdoors means that the weather can be harsh for your canine pet. Thus, setting up a dog house must include dog bedding that is not only warm but can be cozy and comfortable for your pets.
Is Straw or Hay Better for Dog Bedding?
Providing dog bedding for your pet is not necessarily meaningful. If they stay indoors, as long as the home offers a sound heating system for the cold season, it is not an issue. However, if you keep your dog outside the roof, you must provide bedding for them.
Like humans, dogs also have temperature resistance. Too much cold may cause mild to severe conditions to your pet which can be life-threatening in some cases. If you want your dogs to survive the cold winter, sheltering your pet with a warm, cozy, and comfy bed made with heat-providing materials is essential.
If you want to use the materials that provide the best bedding choice for your dog house, you may consider using linens, rugs, dog beds, and wood chips.
Linens are plant-based fibers used to make household goods such as blankets, bedding, tablecloths, aprons, and some clothing. If used as dog bedding, it is ensured to provide the necessary cushion for your pet.
- How to use: You may use old bedding, tablecloth, or blanket. You can purchase cheap linens in case you don’t have old bedding available. Fold several blankets together until it is soft enough for your dog to lay down.
- Pros: Linens can be readily available. They are also dog-friendly and will not cause any skin reaction. It can also stay clean for a longer time.
- Cons: If you don’t have old linens, it can be expensive to maintain since you might have to replace linens now and then. Linens can also be a perfect hiding spot for crawlers like spiders, cockroaches, and even snakes—which can potentially harm your pet.
Rugs are made by combining multiple pieces of cloth through weaving or sewing. Other rugs used a woven material made with fibers or even animal skin. If you are using rugs as dog bedding, make sure to select a size that can perfectly fit your pet.
- How to use: Select the rug that you want to use. Long or high pile rugs can provide greater comfort and warmth for your dog. Some carpets may also have a rubberized back which can protect your dog from moisture.
- Pros: Rugs can cost lower than linens. Rugs can also provide comfort for your pet, most especially if it is piled together.
- Cons: If you own a quite misbehaved pet, they may quickly turn the rag into pieces of scraps. It also has a possibility of getting eaten by your canine pet.
Dog beds are readily available materials that can be used for a long time. Made with durable, high-quality products, dog beds can ensure a good night’s sleep for your pet.
- How to use: Just lay your dog bed on the floor and allow your pet to use it immediately. Some dog bed variants have removable and replaceable mattresses for easier replacement.
- Pros: It is made with hypoallergenic materials, making it safe for your sensitive dogs. There are also outdoor variants that can make it suitable for your dog’s environment. Durable enough to last for multiple uses.
- Cons: It can be expensive to purchase. If you’ve purchased a low-quality variant, it can quickly tear apart—making it prone to dirt, moisture, and crawlers.
Wood chips made of cedar and pine chips are recommended as dog bedding. If used enough chips, it can provide a good cushion for your pets. They can also be purchased in bulk—for improved insulation and comfort for your furry companion.
- How to use: Prepare a box that is larger than your pet. Fill the container with cedar and pine chips. Use your hand to identify its softness. Once satisfied, your pet can use it right away. Replace wood chips once it is not soft to touch.
- Pros: Cedar and pine have insect-repelling properties. If used, it can prevent bugs, fleas, and other insects from ruining your dog’s bedding. Wood chips also provide outstanding insulation and cushion for your canine pet. Additionally, costs are lower compared to other products.
- Cons: If your dog has a sensitive nose, this is not a suitable product. Wood shavings may irritate the dog’s nose area. Also, it is not recommended for lactating females, pregnant, and newborns since it can produce bacteria that are harmful to puppies.
Can You Use Hay for Dog Bedding?
Hay and straw are used for livestock bedding. However, this material is not recommended for dogs. They are considered a wrong choice for your pet’s bed since they can be a perfect place for insects, bugs, mites, and fleas that are harmful to your pet. Straws and hays are also a place to harmful bacteria coming from other livestock.
Pathogens and livestock diseases in which the dogs are not accustomed can be passed through their system and damage their system. Therefore, do not consider using hay for your dog bedding.
Can I Use Old Hay for Bedding?
Hay is not optimal for your dog’s bedding. Although hay is are readily available, this can promote risks for your dog once used as a filler for dog bedding. Even a straw bed is not recommended for dog bedding. Instead, consider other materials that are good for your dog.
Old hay cannot be used as dog bedding and even for livestock. It is already infested with insects that are harmful to both livestock and dogs. If you don’t want old hay to waste, you may place it inside a compost pit and transform it into a perfect fertilizer.