Winning Dog Beds at Crufts

We would of course like to claim that our dog beds are the winning dog beds at Crufts if you consider all the other dog beds for sale. Tuffies dog beds stand out not only because of what is inside, but also what the covering is like. There are plenty of companies making lovely looking puffed up dog beds, that later, in a matter of a few months, are just flat and of very little use……  and smelling rather horrid. Tuffies have to be the winner because we are making a proper little futon mattress for each bed, which we cut to just the right size so that it will fill the cover completely. We make sure that the futon is firm and supporting so that all dogs will feel comfortable and always, always feeling totally insulated from the floor. The covers we use for our waterproof dog beds are of the absolute best quality and we have two types: The Wipe Clean fabric is a polyester weave with an acrylic coating on both sides. It is a very strong, mildew and UV resistant fabric, which you can wipe down. Our other waterproof dog beds are called Durasoft and they are more like an upholstery type, however super strong and waterproof. The other winning side of Tuffies has to be our Luxury Fleece covers. Fabulous for the dogs, easy to wash and looking stunning.

 

However, there is another level at which there are winning dog beds at Crufts. We have already given one winner a wipe clean nest dog beds from our facebook competition instigated by Crufts. We put out a 24 hour competition on the Kennel Clubs facebook and had 500 entries. The lucky winner will soon receive one of our best dog beds. She just needs to tell us which size and colour combination.

 

The other competition with a chance to win one of our dog beds is at the Dog Theft Awareness Stand at Crufts. As this problem is so horrific we are more than happy to donate a Tuffies nest to the raffle at this stand. They need all the help they can get and we are doing our bit. Go to the Dog Theft Stand and buy a ticket to get a chance of winning one of our dog beds.

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Packing dog beds for Crufts

It’s upon us again!!! We make our great dog beds in Aberdeenshire and every year two of us go down to Crufts to sell dog beds at the world’s biggest dog show. This has been a tradition for years, I think we must have attended Crufts for over 10 years and as soon as I think about the Crufts week, I think about the daffodils that I see for the first time near Kenilworth in March a good while before we have the pleasure of seeing them up here in the cold Aberdeenshire. Maybe we make such warm and great dog beds because we experience the cold weather here more than in any other part of the country. I spoke to a customer just down the road this morning, she was in Dundee, just 100 miles South of Aberdeen, and was wondering whether to take a nest cover on her Tuffie nest. As she was buying two giant nests for her two Great Danes, it was all mounting up and she decided that she really didn’t need the nest covers, especially as it is going towards spring and summer. She told me that the horses were already casting their coat and that it is all very nice and warm in Dundee. Well, we had frost here this morning. As an experiment I had one of the waterproof dog beds sitting outside last night with a puddle of water on it. This is one of our Durasoft mattress beds with a silicone coating and I had allowed my big German Wirehaired Pointer to use it because he digs a lot. I wanted to see how the silicone coating coped with his keen digging and this morning I had to break a frozen puddle off this bed. Anyway, the bed has been washed in scolding water and soap followed by a good rinse and it looks absolutely great. We are very proud of bringing such great dog beds to Crufts and we shall soon be launching our silicone coated bed as this provides, at a modest extra cost, a bed that feels soft and pleasant like an upholstery fabric, but which will not allow dog hairs to stick. Best of both worlds.

 

At Crufts we will be bringing all the dog beds we normally have available on our web site and we will also bring a couple of new items such as our new Sink-in Tuffie. For the extra sensitive Princess on a Pea, we have made a sink-in Tuffie, which is filled with layers and layers of carted hollow fiber that is unwilling to move or separate, but which creates a very soft and sinking feeling for the dog. For these soft dog beds we have created a special system with vented eyelets in the waterproof fabric allowing the air to go in and out. These dog beds will come with a cover of your choice, either a luxury fleece of any colour or our beautiful 100% wool tweed. We are confident that these beds will be extremely popular once we have them fully out for sale. At Crufts they will not be amongst the dog beds for sale, but you will be able to place order for later, free, delivery.

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Dog Hairs on Dog Beds

Here at Tuffies we spend a huge amount of time (and money) on exactly that problem and on how to prevent it. While fabrics and textiles tend to attract hair in general, we have made sure that we found the solution for all of our customers, who really don’t like dog hairs stuck to their lovely dog beds. We have the Wipe Clean fabric, which is incredibly popular because, not only is it very durable and mold and UV resistant, but it also feels like a fabric without being an open weave. It also feels a little bit like a leather without being a leather or a faux leather and most of all, it does not allow hairs to stick to it. It is a wonderful fabric to make dog beds out of and it is the most popular fabric out of our range. When it is new it might feel a bit stiff and shiny, but is literally only in the very beginning and it soon wears in to a smooth and pleasant feel. A bit like a waxed jacket. If your dog comes in from that long, muddy, happy walk in the woods in the autumn, he might be longing for one of his luxury dog beds and head straight for the one you have put out for him, the Wipe Clean bed. There he will cosy in to the futon mattress and feel all nice and warm while he dries out, dripping muddy water and hairs and little leaves and sticks from the woods on to the bed. But heho, no problem, because the beds are waterproof and won’t go soggy, hence they remain nice and insulating for the dog without any sneaking dampness coming through. Once your dog has dried up on one of our waterproof dog beds, you can simply hoover off the dry mud and dog hairs. This will leave the bed clean enough for further use and it will look presentable, but of course there will be an element of bits of stains there, which, if you really want it to look pristine, can wash off with hot soapy water. The beauty with these beds is that you can literally boil the kettle and add a little liquid soap and then sponge and scrub the dog beds down followed by a good rinse with the garden hose or the shower hose. Now the bed will be wonderfully clean and almost look as brand new.

We have other fabrics that are also very friendly to the hair problem. We make some of our great dog beds out of Durasoft fabric, which will appeal to you if you are looking for a fabric that feels much more like an upholstery fabric. The Durasoft will have hairs stuck to it, but it is very easy to vacuum off. The Durasoft dog beds have proven to be extremely popular and we are very proud of it. We have, again, this fabric made for us and we make extensive tests of its strength and water resistance. We go right down to the back ground and have Hydrostatic head measured, not only in the beginning, but several times after when we get new batches of fabrics.

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Leaflets for Dog Beds

Wow, it’s quite staggering how long it takes to produce a nice, new leaflet showing all our waterproof dog beds. I have decided that we definitely now are ready to make a larger brochure as we keep extending the product range. I have actually only made the new leaflet 50% bigger, but I have this time excluded indications of size and colour. These days a leaflet is more of an appetiser so that, if the reader wants to know more, he or she will go on line and get all the details. It’s a bit like a large business card. Obviously there are some customers that will not entertain buying on line or who have not got internet and it is great that we are able to send them a leaflet with a lose price list enclosed, which will enable them to make a decision on which of the great dog beds they want and then call us up to order over the phone.

 

So I have spent the last week playing with design and photos and wording. All photographs are taken in our studio, so it is handy that I can go and pick one of the dog beds and get the lights right and then the photo can be taken. I can then bring it in the office, where I work in Photoshop to isolate the product from the back ground and set it up with the colours perfect. Our leaflets tend to have dogs sitting or lying on the products and that introduces a whole new raft of problems. Not all dogs like to sit still on a bed. Some are positively scared in the studio environment (I am sure they think they are at the vet’s and that I am the vet with a dubious instrument that has a large eye and goes ‘’click’’). There is no shortage of owners that would like to have their dogs modelling Tuffies Dog Beds, but although their dogs might be impeccably well behaved at home, sometimes they won’t even sit on command, forget lie down. The dogs are sometimes so nervous that even with tons of patience, they still pant and yawn after an hour sitting waiting on them.

 

Maybe the dog models are super laid back at home and can hardly be persuaded to get off their luxury dog beds to get out for a walk, that mood has all gone when the four studio lamps go on and the “vet” brings out the scary camera. No more lazy lounging on their dog beds, instead pure adrenalin. However, you never know and some of the models have looked rather spiked up when they arrived, but have turned into sleepy creatures in a matter of half an hour. That’s when you get some cute photographs showing how comfortable our strong dog beds really are.

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Puppy Dog Beds for later travelling

Spring time is when a lot of people would like to invest in a new puppy. Also, breeders tend to aim for planning puppies so that they can have most of the mess in the late winter and early spring giving them the chance of letting the puppies out in the sunshine when they are more lively and messy and inquisitive.

One of the first things you should think about if you are planning a puppy will be some good quality dog beds for him or her to lie in. It is very common for puppy buyers to bring one of their dog beds to the breeder in advance of the puppy coming to its new home so that the comforting smells from its first home can be transferred on the bed back to the new home. To be honest nobody knows if this helps the settling in, but we all believe this would be best for the puppy as it must be a shocking experience to leave mum so early and go to a strange home. A good idea would be to bring one of our Puppy/Travel Tuffies so that it smells of Mum back in your home. The Puppy Tuffie has to be one of our best dog beds as it grows with your new dog till he is an adult. The puppy version is simply a scrumptiously thick bed that your puppy will feel very secure in. Given puppy doesn’t chew the bed, it will then continue to be useful when puppy has out-grown the size because you can simply un-do the poppers and make the bed twice the size.

We make many great dog beds, but not any others that can double in size by a simple pull of the buttons. The idea behind this is that the unfolded Puppy Tuffie is now a light weight Travel Tuffie, which will be really handy to have in the back of the car where you are not needing lots of warmth and support, but where you need something that is not taking up a huge amount of your car space. When you go and visit your friend with the dog, they will hopefully say that pooch is more than welcome inside and you can then easily lift the light Travel Tuffie from the car to the house.

Your friends may have lots of great dog beds already, but I am sure your dog would want to stick with his beloved Tuffie even if it’s a bit thinner than his own dog beds at home.

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Dog Beds for Smaller Breeds

Apparently there is an upsurge in ownership of smaller dog breeds. According to the Kennel Club, the small breeds rule the top ten of risers in dog breeds. For example the French Bulldog has risen by 529% in registered puppies in the UK. The smooth coated Chihuahua has gone up by 221%. As we know there is NO shortage of dog beds for larger dogs because we make tonnes of them, but there is maybe a convenience factor involved as owners think that a smaller dog will be less work. OK, they will of course take up less space in the house and will have less hair to shed and spread round, but apart from that, they do apparently need almost as much exercise and attention. Just because they are small dogs, it doesn’t mean that they will just all sleep on their top quality dog beds all day without needing any looking after. Seeing a few interviews with owners of both big and small dogs it is clear that the small dogs are not, in general, needing less exercise, on the contrary some owners say that the bigger dogs are less mad for a walk. The need for tearing around, hunting through everything has more to do with how they are bred, not the size. You see people living in the middle of London having a perfect time with a Great Dane in their house. The Danes are happy with a stroll in the park and a little play with fellow dogs, but they do not demand hours and hours of exercise. Owners claim that they “Don’t take up much space” which I must say I find difficult to believe, maybe it’s something you get used to. Certainly the dog beds for large breeds are bound to take up irritatingly much space in a house. We have a neighbour with a Great Dane, who lives in a small, two bed room house with two children. Lovely dog, it is often outside and will just plod over to the garden fence and look at us when I walk past with my five dogs. It doesn’t bark, just looks. To be honest I thought they might have castrated him, but no he is still entire, just a gentle giant. We supply the large dog beds for him of course.

The thing about small dogs is that they are often small terriers!!! Yes, and they are bred to be active and brave, mostly to disappear down fox holes or to kill rats. They are bursting with energy and go and curiosity and with that comes a bit of “deafness”. They can be a bit difficult to train as they just get busy with what they do.  There is also a chance that the new owner is not quite so strict with the puppy training simply because they are so small and cute as puppies. But you should not be deceived by the small dogs sleeping like angels on their small dog beds…. they are big dogs in their heads!

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Dog Beds with Head Rests

It is funny how important it seems for the dogs to be able to rest their heads on something. As we know, our warm dog beds are super popular and in particular our nest beds. When our happy customers send us pictures of their dogs in the Tuffie Nests, the dogs are very often either lying up-side-down in the beds or they lie with their heads resting on the sides.

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Play time in Tuffie nest with upside down dog

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Labrador in Tuffie nest with warm nest cover

Looking at our own dogs here, it’s definitely a very popular way of using their warm dog beds. They can lie in the cosy middle while watching everything going on around them. In our house there is obviously some eating going on from time to time and the dogs can comfortably lie with their heads resting on the side checking for crumbs dropping on the floor. Should a decent sized morsel land on the floor, they have their heads ready on the side to mark the exact spot and they can quickly get up and clean it off the floor. The odd peanut of cheese crumb is never, ever missed.

However, the need for resting the head up high as if they had a pillow is about more than watching for food spoils. It seems to be the most comfortable way of sleeping and resting. I observed Tippex when she came with us to the holiday cottage. We didn’t really want her inside, but allowed her after all. She is a clean little dog and she came in for the afternoon because she was all on her own. We had no warm dog beds with us, so she was EVEN allowed to sit in the chair. I couldn’t resist taking this photograph as she used the arm rests to rest her head. Not a particularly soft place for a dog’s chin, but it was obviously important for her to have her head up.

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Tippex enjoying her time inside on the sofa

We do hear from time to time from our customers that the dog needs a pillow. Sounds ridiculous, but there is certainly a truth in it when you see how much they enjoy dog beds with sides. Although we, as humans, don’t sleep in warm dog beds, we would not like to be in a normal human bed without a pillow for our heads. Or at least I would think over 90% of humans use a pillow in UK. Maybe you can tell us otherwise?

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Flea free dog beds for the New Year 2015

We notice a high frequency of customers, who say that they got our dog beds recommended by their veterinary surgeons as the best dog bed they could buy. There are two main reasons for vets to recommend our firm, durable dog beds: Comfortable support and hygiene.

Firstly, many dogs are prone to arthritis in their older days and the earlier you give these dogs good support and warmth, the later the clinical onset of arthritis will set in and the symptoms will be a milder as well. Not only is firm support important, it is also extremely important that the dogs are permanently protected against a sneaking cold from the floor. Our waterproof dog beds are absolutely ideal for the above because we insert a futon mattress in each of our dog beds so that they stay firm and do not go flat. The waterproof cover ensures that the inside is not damp or wet, which would lose the insulating properties.

If you have an older dog that already has arthritis, our supportive dog beds are ideal because the old dogs with stiff legs don’t have to try and lift the limbs over deep, floppy beds. With these firm dog beds they can simply step on and step off without any trouble. Once on, they feel nice and secure in their bed from where they know they can easily get up without feeling stuck in the depth.

Secondly, hygiene is important for all dog beds, but if you have a dog with any sort of allergy you are really needing to get a bed that is easy to keep spotless. A surprisingly large number of dogs suffer from house dust mite allergies and these live on dead skin shed onto the bedding. To avoid this problem you want to have bedding that has nowhere for the particles and the mites to get stuck and hide. Our Wipe Clean Tuffies dog beds are absolutely ideal as they are totally smooth. They are super easy to wash in hot, soapy water and rinse off, leaving them amazingly hygienic. All hairs will simply fall off and the house dust mites have nowhere to hide.

When it comes to other delicious stuff like flees, our hygienic dog beds from Tuffies are also utter perfection. With nowhere for the flees to hide or breed, the creatures have no future in our dog’s kennel. You can keep the kennel perfectly clean and hygienic by washing and rinsing with detergents etc and that includes the dog beds. Simply wash the bed down in hot, soapy water and rinse off. As you can use almost boiling water, any larvae or eggs are history after a scrub.

Our anti allergy dog beds are now so famous that vets use them to secure that their clients go and buy the best dog beds for their dogs.

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New Year resolution: Spend less time on your dog beds

You might have a New Year resolution for yourself, getting in the gym, start eating your five a day etc, even maybe losing weight? We all know how difficult these resolutions can be to keep, mainly because it all comes down to ones’ own will power. But you might be surprised by the somewhat sad statistics about dogs’ fitness in UK. Have a look at those bodies lying on the dog beds in your house: are they fit and slim dogs? Apparently recent findings show that 30 – 60% of dogs in UK are overweight or obese. I have no doubt this is all down to love, but it’s love channeled the wrong way. Titbits and lots of yummy food is so nice to give to your dogs, but the truth is that they end up suffering from it, not only because of obesity, but also because of bad teeth. Sugar also rots dog teeth, but the worst is the build up of scale from all the “soft” treats.

So you just have to re-direct your love for your dogs and give them walks and runs instead of treats and food. The good news is that slimming a dog takes much less will power than slimming yourself and the results will come quick and consistent. Waterproof dog beds assures that you don’t have a problem coming home with soggy dogs making the beds soggy, you can run them  once, twice or three times a day in wet weather and their great dog beds will remain dry and insulating.

The PDSA’s annual well-being report has shown that pet obesity levels are continuing to increase and 80% of vets and vet nurses now predict that the majority of pets will be overweight in the next five years. In some ways a big fat cat looks cute, but it’s not good for the cat. A fat dog, sorry, but in my opinion, it looks awful. There is no cute, fat dog. You should be able to clearly see the waist behind the rib-cage and the tummy should go up when looking from the side. I have three lazy looking working dogs lying here in the office on their extremely comfortable dog beds, but they are by no means fat. They go out every day in a large garden, where they love running and playing and they go for long walks with me or they go out on hunting days where they really need their fitness. Nothing is nicer than to see your fit dogs run, enjoying how much and fast they can move. I put them back on their comfortable dog beds in the back of the truck and I know they love lying there, warm and happy after a good day’s running.

In terms of teeth, I always feed a lot of raw food, especially raw bones, which helps scraping off the scales that might build up on their teeth. I feed chunks of tripe, but also  whole deer heads when I can get hold of them from a game keeper. In the outdoor kennels, where they have waterproof dog beds with extra Luxury Fleece covers, they drag these heads in and chew them. Somehow it does not create a terrible stink, but I can wash the covers and hose down the beds if I want anyway.

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Cosy Dog Beds at New Year

Outside it has suddenly gone all frosty. Having “suffered” a very mild winter without a nice snow cover or gaspingly cold days, I am longing for some frost. Obviously with cosy dog beds all over the place, both in the house, the kennels, the car, the office and the dining room, there is no problem with a snap of colder weather because I can rest assured that my furry friends will be absolutely warm and snug both night and day in their great dog beds.

Our drive in front of the office has turned in to an ice rink. I am always the first one in the office and I feel a bit lucky that I parked where I did because there was a bit of grip from the gravel where I stepped out of the car in the morning darkness, otherwise I might have gone flying down the car park, it was absolutely sheet ice. I brought the dogs with me, snug in their dog beds in the back of the truck and upon seeing the ice behind the car, I was very cautious letting them out as it can cause injuries when they jump from the truck-height down on a slippery surface. I just grabbed their neck skin and softened the landing, one by one. This is one of the advantages of having trained the dogs to stay on their dog beds in the car till they are asked out one by one because in this example they might have all just piled out in one go and hurt themselves on the ice.

Anyway, they have a run next to the office and they were very happy to get out there wearing their little jackets to keep warm while they patrol the fence and keep an eye out for who is coming and going. It is nice to know that whether they are running about or lying snug in their waterproof dog beds, they are always warm and comfortable. Dogs are remarkably resilient to cold in SOME ways. When you think how they will jump into an ice cold lake without hesitation or run around the snow in “bare feet”, they don’t seem to be very bothered by low temperatures. But this is not the case when they sleep. It is really important to have a draft free place with well insulated dog beds for them to sleep for the many, many hours dogs do this. The Tuffies dog mattresses are very thick and insulating so that there is no sneaking cold coming up from the ground or floor. Further, if you have any doubt that there might be some draft in the house, make sure you stop this or get a Tuffies Nest bed with the high sides. This eliminates draft and your dogs can enjoy a warm, comfortable sleep on the best dog beds.

One thing I learned recently was that the draft in the back of the car (cab in a truck) can get pretty cold. In my truck I just have flat dog beds without sides and during the summer there are two windows open. I had not really thought about how cold it gets now till my friend sat in the back of the truck a short distance on a private farm road. He told me afterwards that it actually gets pretty cold in there. Obviously I just had to close the windows to stop the draft and the dogs are more than cosy now with the thick, waterproof dog beds to lie on over long journeys.

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