Dog beds made in UK

There are many dog beds for sale out there, but a lot of them are made abroad. It goes without saying that if you are importing dog beds in a container from China, you can’t import good quality ones that have weight and substance because you need to pack and stack them high and wide in the container for the long journey in order to make money out of them.

NOT so with our top quality dog beds made in UK. Here at Tuffies we manufacture the best possible dog beds in the best fabric that is available on the market. We source as far as possible at all, fabrics that are made in UK as our raw materials. In our quest for the best dog beds, we take our materials extremely serious and over half of the fabrics we use are actually made to our specifications. We look for thickness and density and durability, which is tested in independent laboratories. We also request the dyers to make our colours and we are hot on the coaters to make sure the fabrics are coated to our heavy-duty specifications.

Wipe Clean fabric for waterproof dog beds.

Wipe Clean fabric for waterproof dog beds.

Our Luxury Fleece products are very unique as the weavers (knitters) who make this quality don’t make this for any other dog bed manufacturers. We decide the exact thickness and quality and we decide all the designs so that we can have them made exactly the way we can be proud of. In terms of the fleece designs we try to be as up to date with interior design trends as possible.

As we make the futon mattress in house, we have with experience developed the best methods to make stuffings (we make a futon mattress for each and every dog bed we create) and we never cut corners in terms of quality and attention to comfort and hygiene for the dogs.

Dog beds made in the UK do not have to worry about being as light as possible, we can concentrate on making a dog bed product that is fantastically comfortable from the very start AND in years to come.

 

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Versatile dog beds in the car.

It is handy to have a dog bed in the back of the car, which covers the entire base because dogs are not very good at arranging their dog beds to their best advantage. Dogs are funny in that respect: if there is for example a bone or a toy lying in the middle of the bed, they cannot think to push it aside in order to have more space and be comfortable. They simply try to worm their bodies around the “obstruction” and lie down around it.

If they feel that their dog beds are not quite comfortable enough, they will dig around aimlessly in the hope that the bed will get softer. Almost as if they are digging imaginary grass round their imaginary den.

With a large dog bed in the back of the car it is important that if the dog moves or digs, the bed will not be pushed around. Look for a good, well made dog bed that is firm and thick enough to stay in place while you travel with one or several dogs. In most cases you can have it made as a bespoke dog bed service so that it fits the base of the car even with the wheel arches protruding in to the space.

Firm dog bed fitted exactly to the back of a truck pickup.

Firm dog bed fitted exactly to the back of a truck pickup.

However, there are times when a floppier dog bed would have been handy. I drove home yesterday through the highlands and there, in the side of the road, was a newly killed young red stag. I stopped to have a look and decided it was perfect for dog food.

road-killed-young-stag

I wouldn’t have used it for human consumption as it had burst the stomach slightly. It was still warm, but I was just not in the mood to go in to all the cleaning and clearing, so I gralloched it and hoisted it in to the back of my truck. However, my large waterproof dog bed with its Fluffie Tuffie cover was in there with my dog on it and I had a job folding this top quality dog bed over in order to protect it from too much blood and mess. I managed to get the dog out and in on the front seat, fold the bed over and then, with danger of doing my back in, manhandled the animal in to the car. My guess is that I had around 50 Kgs of dead weight to lift on to the tail gate and then further in the back.

The road killed stag in the car had to lie beside the dog bed.

The road killed stag in the car had to lie beside the dog bed.

When I got home, I got the stag out and butchered it completely and put it all in an out door bucket for the dogs. Then I took the cover off the car dog bed and put it in the washing machine. All is clean again.

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Extra warm dog beds

It’s winter and after a far too long spell of warm weather where any form of dog bed is fine, we now need to make sure that we have really warm dog beds for our dogs. Tuffies supply a range of products that allow you to build up levels of warmth in the dog bed and also allows you to dismantle the layers later when the temperature rises towards spring time.

Anything from a mattress bed with a soft, thick fleece cover all the way up to a nest with full nest cover and a sock, these are your choices for keeping your dog warm. If you have a Labrador with a thick coat and a house or kennel that is not draughty at all, the mattress bed is sufficient. But if you keep your dog in a place where there is draught, you really need to put him in a nest dog bed or a raised bed as these both have sides to protect against any chilling draught.

Raised dog bed with warm lining.

Raised dog bed with warm lining.

Nest dog bed with draught excluding, high walls.

Nest dog bed with draught excluding, high walls.

Raised dog bed. Perfect for draught exclusion.

Raised dog bed. Perfect for draught exclusion.

If your dog has a fine coat and is in general a skinny dog with little insulation, he might like to have the nest dog bed extra lined with fleece for superior warmth, comfort and hygiene. If you already have a Tuffies nest dog bed, you only have to get a cover in the right size that you can put on your nest. It is a wonderful addition to your nest and your dog will hugely enjoy it. It also means that you can clean it easily by putting the cover in the washing machine where it washes well and it dries in very little time.

Large nest with black fleece cover.

Large nest with black fleece cover.

Should you be exposing your dog to very low temperatures for his nature, you may want to add the ultimate in cosy dog beds by adding a sock. This gives your dog perfect warmth on his body, tucked under the cover, yet an opening for him to have his head out and watch the world.

Nest with nest cover and sock for ultimate warmth and comfort.

Nest with nest cover and sock for ultimate warmth and comfort.

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Where to put the dog beds at Christmas?

As Christmas approaches, it is easy to forget the real needs of your dog. Everyone gets more and more busy and your dog will notice every change in the household without knowing what is going on and why. Basically, it is important to see Christmas from a Canine point of view. Dogs love routine and slot in to any habit they can get used to. I have one dog in particular, who will get off his kennel dog bed at 4.30pm in order to start commanding food, which is served at 5pm. He never fails (except when the clocks change spring and autumn, where he will then be exactly 60 minutes out) and it can drive you mad if you are not quite ready to go and feed. Habits are strong, but there is no doubt that most dogs LOVE Christmas as there is lots of company, the family is all home and the food left-overs stretch to the dog bowl with delicious “Christmassy” bits. Humans want to walk off some of the bloat and everything is very dog! If you have a bold, happy, confident dog, his dog bed can almost be placed in the middle of all the goings on so that he can be part of the party even when he is so tired he falls asleep in the Luxury dog bed, that you have no doubt given him. Lots of our customers also take Christmas as an opportunity to either give the dog a whole new dog bed or at least freshen it up with new dog bed covers in our great, contemporary colours.

If, however, you have a slightly nervous dog, he might look like he is wagging his tail and enjoying Christmas with so many people around, but you would do him a favour by giving him a choice of dog beds and where to find them. For a slightly nervous dog it will be of great benefit to be able to retrieve in to his own dog bed space, somewhere away from the party. This is of particular importance if the house has children. Young people are always greatly excited about Christmas and with that will inevitably come a bit of noise. If you have fairly small children they will all be quite excited and for a nervous dog it can all get too much. If you make sure he has a dog bed in a cool and quiet place, where he can get to it when he wants, you will make his Christmas. He can enjoy the fun and food and play, but when he has had enough of it all, he can discreetly disappear for a quiet snooze.

The temperature is also a consideration as all the extra people, the busy children and the candles on the tree all add to the raising the temperature. Your dog might like a quiet and cool place without getting cold. So the ideal place is in a cool room in a nest dog bed perhaps with a sock over the nest. A real warm and quiet den for your best friend, who can’t speak.

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Dog Beds for Sale

If you are not an expert, it could be confusing to choose a dog bed amongst all the dog beds for sale on line and in shops. If you don’t really know what to look for and what your dog would like, the dog bed market would seem a right jungle to navigate through. There are lots of colours and designs, most of them made to look very fancy.

Here is a simple guide to buying dog beds:  If you want the best quality dog beds, you will need the good, thick ones. Far too many dog beds for sale are thin and I have yet to see one in a shop that was worth it’s money. Dog beds have to be thick at the bottom to make sure your dog is insulated from that cold floor. Clearly, if you buy on line it can be difficult to determine whether the beds are solid and of good quality, but then you can look around in various forums to see what people are saying about their dog beds. In forums people ask each other for advice on both what to feed their dog and all manner of dog things like how long to walk your dog and what to feed it. Many questions are also: “What’s the best dog bed I can buy?” And hey, the answers are full of Tuffies recommendations. It’s amazing how many people use the phrase “You get what you pay for”. Tuffies are not the cheapest, but they certainly last many, many time more than something that cost maybe half that.

Then it’s a question of buying good quality waterproof dog beds. If your dog bed is not waterproof and your dog is NORMAL, ie loves muddy puddles on rainy walks, you will soon get a smelly bed that you want to wash and clean. Here is the dilemma: If you go for a thick, heavy dog bed and it is not waterproof, how on earth will you manage to get it washed? Even if you can squeeze it in to the washing machine, the process is guaranteed to make it grim and lumpy once it has taken hours to dry.

So the perfect solution is to have a heavy, waterproof dog bed. When you need to clean it, you can take it outside and give it hot, soapy water and rinse it off. If you have opted for one with soft, removable covers, you can take those off more often and quickly wash them in the washing machine. They will dry extremely quickly and keep their shape. It is always a question of looking for dog beds for sale that will fit in with your life style, your dog’s life style and your interior. The colours ARE important, but they are the last thing to think about when you buy dog beds. Go for a company that makes good dog beds and hope that they also will show some nice colour designs.

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Where to put the Dog Beds

When you choose dog beds for your dogs you will be considering every thing from waterproof dog beds to chew proof dog beds and you will be first and foremost concerned with the comfort of the dog bed for your dog. Last week we spoke about having the right kind of kennel dog beds, perhaps even two, so the dog can be inside in a snug sleeping area on a thick, warm dog bed AND outside, watching the world go by sitting on a draught excluding dog bed.

When it comes to indoor dog beds, our customers tend to choose something more “homely” and soft. The designs are also important and we have recently learnt that grey is the thing at the moment for indoor dog beds as the fashion is for grey colours.

Once you have decided whether you want a nest type dog bed or a mattress type dog bed you would need to think about where you are going to put it in the house. Some dogs are less keen on being in the middle of the home’s activities while some dogs like to be part of everything that’s going on. Try and figure out what kind of temperament your dog has before you decide where to put the dog beds.

You should also consider the draught and temperature in the house, especially at night where the climate changes inside. It is surprising how cold the floor can get at night when the central heating goes off. If you get up in the middle of the night or early morning you should check the draught and temperature near the place where the dog beds are and see if they are thick and insulating enough for the purpose.

Clearly, if your little dog likes to look out the window, you could put the small dog bed in the window sill so that he can sit comfortably looking at the traffic.

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When Dogs Choose their Dog Beds

Dogs can’t talk. So they have certain learnt ways to communicate their needs to us, mostly for things like “I need out to toilet” or “I want food” or “Come this way please” or “I want in, open the door!!!”. But since they can’t tell you how well they slept in their dog beds last night, we don’t know. Firstly, how would a dog be able to communicate that it was cold or uncomfortable last night? Secondly, once the uncomfortable night is in the past, the dog puts it behind him and only looks forward. In extreme cases of uncomfortable dog beds, he might go in to his dog room or kennel at night and avoid or refuse to go ON his bed, but mostly a dog will just put up with bad treatment and accept his lot in bedding. Some people think that chewing the dog bed is a sign of dislike for it, but this is clearly not the case. You might argue that if your dog has a little, cheap dog bed that he doesn’t like and kicks it OUT of the kennel, it would probably be a sign of disapproval or at least a message saying that the bare floors are better than these types of inferior dog beds.

So, in other words, we have to guess. We have to try and think like a dog, so if your dog lives in a kennel, you can imagine how he would like to have some warm, sheltered, dark space where he can sleep on a scrumptious warm dog bed away from any wind and rain and light. In the enclosed part of a good quality kennel, warm waterproof dog beds perhaps with a fleece on, are really good as he will be running in and out, even on rainy days, and he will probably drag a bit of wet and mud in to the dog bed. If it is a waterproof dog bed, he will not end up making it soggy all the way through, the dampness will simply evaporate from the surface and leave the inside warm and insulating, which is essential if there is a concrete floor in the kennel.gaia-on-a-waterproof-dog-bedFor the outside of the kennel, draught excluding dog beds are highly recommended. Dogs LOVE to be outside in the day time, but they don’t always want to be standing, they like nice dog beds to lie on. The absolute ideal one is a Raised Dog Bed with high sides. This way the dog will be high up to see the world, raised from the cold floor and be protected from the draughty wind. Tuffies supply a raised bed with a liner, which is very quick and easy to remove for washing.

izzie-in-raised-dog-bed-copy

 

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Photographing New Dog Bed Models

We are now right up there with the interior design fashion as we have various shades of grey in our dog beds. Apparently grey is just the thing for the house at the moment. For us it is not a simple process of picking colours or designs off the shelves because we have all our fleeces and most of our waterproof dog bed materials produced specially for us. When we realised that there was a demand for grey colours for our luxury dog beds, we sat about getting that in to production. We had to look at the thread and yarn colours available and then try and mix a design that would be attractive. It is amazingly difficult when you are not a gifted colour designer, but we made various suggestions and made use of social media as we put our suggestions out on facebook and asked what our followers thought. It is sometimes a surprising result, but we take our customers’ advice.

We ended up with these three designs and there are one more to come:

grey-check-sample

Grey Check Sample

zebra print

Zebra print

Flint grey

Flint grey

We then had to made dog beds, both waterproof mattress dog beds and waterproof nests in order to show off our new colours. As we normally show the products with dogs on them, we then wanted to take photos with models. Our own dogs are very used to modelling the fantastic dog beds and it’s amazing to see them go in to the studio and lie down on the beds. They already know that it’s a question of relaxing and posing. In fact they soon fall asleep under the warm lighting lamps.

Raised dog bed with Grey liner

Raised dog bed with Grey liner

Obviously, it gets a bit monotonous if we always use our own in-house dogs, so we try and ask for new models. This weekend Lucy, the Dalmatian dog was willing to give it a try and turned up Sunday afternoon. Lucy is a very dainty fine looking dog with an absolutely lovely nature. She came in and didn’t seem too nervous, but she must have wondered what this was all about. In a dog’s experience, the only thing that comes near to this is being at the vet’s and frankly lying on a strange, but cosy dog bed under the bright light must be suspiciously like the vet’s operating theatre. However, Lucy took it in her stride and sat on the fantastic dog beds. She never quite looked relaxed, but good enough.

Raised dog bed with Autumn Check and Lucy looking lovely.

Raised dog bed with Autumn Check and Lucy looking lovely.

Sometimes models are so nervous that they pant all the time and it will never make a good photo of such comfortable dog beds.

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Dog Beds on TV

Last week I had the pleasure of showing my dogs on TV. It was five minutes on BBC Scotland, the Landward programme.

This all started because Euan Macillwraith bought a dog bed from us and I got in touch that way. I said to him that the BBC ought to look at game hunting in a different way and perhaps make a programme about it. He agreed, but then nothing happened for the whole summer of course as it is the closed season. Suddenly the BBC producer called me up and suggested that we go and do this. It all happened very quickly and I found a suitable place for doing a very small shooting day, purely over the pointers. Along we went with my shooting friend and the film crew. Everyone told me I ought to have Tuffies written all over the car and my clothes, but I didn’t really want to make it an advert for quality dog beds or waterproof dog beds even though of course my dogs were sitting in the back of my car on their beds.

Having seen how BBC operates, I am quite sure they would not have liked me to put dog bed advertising all over the programme anyway. When we had a cup of instant coffee at the end, the producer made sure the label on the jar was facing away from the camera, which did show attention to detail….

I worked the dogs on very little wind, which was difficult, but we managed to show how shooting can be done over pointers and how a modest shooting day for the pot is a very enjoyable one.

The game was taken home and we enjoyed it cooked later in the week.

The dogs loved the day although it was maybe a bit slow for them in the beginning as there was a lot of stopping and filming, but we all enjoyed being on the hill in fabulous weather. The sun was streaming down and we ended up walking in shirt sleeves.

The drive home was long as we had been in Perthshire, but it didn’t matter because we have luxury bespoke dog beds in the back of the vehicles, making it a restful journey.

 

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The Winning Dog Beds

Of course our dog beds are the winners when it comes to quality, durability, comfort and hygiene, but they are also winners in other ways: we often have competitions going on, either on Facebook or in magazines, where readers can win a Tuffie dog bed.

Last month we had a big competition through Your Dog Magazine, which was entered by 1,200 people. This was a straight forward lottery for winning two of our most popular dog beds, the Tuffies Nest. How great and heart warming that so many would like to try and win one of our many luxury dog beds.

pontus-in-red-tuffie-nestWe also have a regular feature in Dogs Monthly, where we are the star letter winner prize. Every month a letter is chosen for its content and the winner gets one of our dog beds.

It is however, the Facebook competitions that are the most attractive as there has to be a judgement involved most of the time. We sometimes have “Funniest dog” or “Dogs on holiday” or maybe “Do your dog sleep in you bed?”. The bed sleeping dogs were very cute and funny as it was very obvious that SOME dogs do not need dog beds. They always sleep in their owner’s bed and we received some fabulous photographs of people asleep with their dog somewhere in the bed, sometimes with only a paw sticking out from under the duvet.

A lot of the photos were taken by wives taking a picture of the husband with dog. I had the same experience: Obviously we have all sorts of great dog beds here in our house, but I came home one late evening and my husband had been home alone with one of our dogs (the one he likes the least). I got worried that the dog was not in the living room where it would normally sleep. I was hunting around the house to find the dog, but in the end I found my husband asleep in our bed and I could just see one grey paw sticking out from under the duvet. Ahaaaaa, so you don’t hate Tippex that much then!! Husbands have soft spots when it comes to a little old dog snuggling up.

 

 

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