We love to travel with our dogs, whether it’s a camping trip with lots of hiking, a car trip to a dog-friendly hotel or friend’s house, or a stroll to a local restaurant. Our dogs like going with us pretty much anywhere, but traveling and staying in new places can also be stressful and even uncomfortable for dogs.
Best Travel Bed
Mt. Bachelor Pad By RUFFWEAR
Best Raised Travel Bed
Elevated Folding Cot By Carlson
Best Inflatable Travel Bed
Aero Inflatable By HELIOS
Best For Backpacking
Highlands Backpacking Bed By Ruffwear
Chuck It Travel Bed
A travel bed gives your dog a familiar and comfortable place to rest overnight or for a couple of hours. Travel beds are also great to have around the house, for when your dog wants to stay close to you rather than where her bed is. A durable bed can make your dog more comfortable during outdoor time too.
There are a number of travel beds on the market to meet the needs of dogs of all different sizes and shapes. There are beds that are great to take with you to restaurants, for place training, or for service dogs. Camping beds are designed specifically for the unpredictable weather outdoors: warm and waterproof enough for all conditions but light enough to easily carry. We’ve compiled a list of the beds that we consider the best for all types of travel.
How To Choose The Correct Dog Travel Bed
When choosing a travel bed, there are lots of trade-offs. Beds that are very thick, plush, and comfortable tend not to be light or small enough for hiking or carrying in a bag or purse. The most comfortable beds may not be the most durable or waterproof. We’ve considered all of the features of each bed so you can weigh the pros and cons.
When you are shopping for your dog’s new travel bed, take these things into consideration:
- Size and support
- Ease of cleaning
We’ve broken the types of dog travel beds into three categories:
- Backpacking beds: Provide maximum support for their weight and size. They generally feature straps or buckles to attach to your or your dog’s backpack.
- Travel beds: More comfortable and less portable than camping beds. Both stuffed beds and elevated beds fit into this category. Some may also be suitable as a permanent bed or a second bed at home.
- Inflatable beds: Offering a highly portable packed size yet a thick comfortable inflated pad, these beds are perfect for taking everywhere with you, as long as you have a moment to inflate it, the additional thickness of the mat will provide additional distance from a cold surface. Deflated they fit easily into a casual bag or purse and usually have an included drawstring bag.
We wouldn’t use the same bed for some of our dogs that we use for others, and it is likely that the perfect bed for your dog will not be the perfect bed for another dog. Think about your particular dog’s needs when choosing the right bed for her.
Size and Support
If you have a very large dog she may need more support than smaller dogs. The weight of a large dog can squish down the cushion of even a well-padded bed. Large dogs are more likely to suffer from hip and joint problems, so providing good support and padding for their joints is extra important.
Since larger dogs need larger beds, whatever bed you buy for your large-breed dog will be more expensive. Elevated beds can provide a great solution for very large dogs since they offer a lot of support while still being light enough to transport easily and affordable enough to not break the bank.
If your dog is like some of ours, most travel beds may not last long. Even dogs that do not deliberately destroy or chew on their beds can do a lot of damage with natural nesting behaviors like digging and pulling on the fabric. If you know your dog to be hard on beds, choose a highly durable option or a product affordable enough for you to replace.
Waterproofing and Skidproofing
If you intend to primarily use your travel bed indoors you may not be concerned about waterproofing. It is, however, important to have a good grip on the bed if you have hard floors or expect to use the bed on places with hard floors. You don’t want your dog to slip when she is getting into or out of the bed.
If you will set the bed on the ground outside, a waterproof bottom is extremely important. Even ground that feels dry initially may seep moisture into your dog’s bed. By having a good waterproof bottom, your dog can stay warm and dry even if the ground is cold and wet.
Do you want to take your dog everywhere with you, or only on vacations or camping trips? Are you looking for a versatile bed that will work for your dog both at home and on the road? Pay attention to how much your perspective bed weighs and how tightly it can wrap up to decide whether it will meet your needs.
Ease of Cleaning
Our dogs are perfect angels who never get their beds dirty. Just kidding! Unless you have a very unusual dog, your dog’s travel bed will be licked, drooled upon, and have all kinds of dirt and mud tracked over it. If your bed will mostly be used indoors or in the car, you may not be quite as worried about ease of cleaning, but if your dog will be using this bed outside, especially in muddy conditions, a bed that is easy to clean is essential.
Reasons to Use a Dog Travel Bed
Does your dog really need a designated travel bed? Why not just use a blanket or your dog’s existing bed? There are some good reasons to purchase a designated travel bed for you dog if you spend more than a couple of hours out of the house together.
Traveling can be stressful, but familiar things can help to mitigate anxiety. Using the same bed every time that your dog travels can offer security and comfort and reduce her anxiety while traveling.
By using the same travel bed with your dog whenever you go out together, you can associate the appropriate behavior with that bed. Place training is much easier when using a designated bed.
Cleanliness and Comfort
If your dog goes everywhere with you, whether she is a service dog or just a constant companion, you are likely to want to provide her with somewhere comfortable to lie down. After all, it isn’t fair for you to sit in a comfortable chair while your dog lies on the hard cold floor. Furthermore, the floor where you go may not be clean. By laying down a bed for your dog you can provide a comfortable barrier against the floor and keep your dog clean.
Convenience and Function
Your dog’s usual bed may not seem very bulky at your house, but when you are packing it for the car or to go backpacking it may suddenly seem like an annoying load to carry. A designated travel bed is designed to wrap up tightly and make traveling with it convenient. Furthermore, features like waterproofing, designated buckles or straps for attachment, and easy cleaning make travel beds more functional for your needs.
Best Dog Travel Beds
1. RUFFWEAR – Mt. Bachelor Pad:
If you are looking for a high-quality, straightforward travel bed for your dog, this might be a good pick for you. This bed has just enough polyfill interior to keep your pup warm and comfortable but still rolls up tightly with the integrated hook and loop straps. The bottom of the bed has a waterproof polyester fabric to create a moisture barrier and keep the bed dry, even on moist ground. The microsuede on the top is soft and easy-to-clean.
- Cozy polyfill interior
- Waterproof polyester base
- Soft microsuede top
- Integrated hook and loop straps for tight storage
- Medium: 27” x 34”
- Large: 36” x 48”
- 1” thick
This bed has the right amount of cozy stuffing to make it comfortable for your dog but still easy to roll up and secure with the integrated straps. The waterproof bottom makes it a good bed for any ground, while the soft microsuede top is cozy for your dog. This high-quality bed is made to last through many adventures.
This bed is very high quality and cozy, but it isn’t as affordable or durable as some other choices, so if your dog tends to get her bed very dirty or destroy beds, you may want to consider a tougher or cheaper bed.
2. Chuck It Travel Bed:
Here is an affordable, durable bed that works great for camping and as a travel bed. One side is plush and warm for cold-weather use. The other is water-resistant and slick to provide a barrier in cold weather or a cool sleep surface in warm weather. The stuffing is divided into compartments so that the bed keeps its shape even after multiple washings, and a special loop makes air drying easy.
- Very affordable
- Nylon stuff stack to keep bed compact
- Compartments keep bed in shape through multiple washings
- Double offset quilts are durable
- Soft poly-suede surface
- Rip-stop liner
- Sewn-in loop for air drying
- 30” x 39”
- 4” thick
This bed is very durable, especially against machine washing, thanks to the compartmentalized stuffing. Different materials on the two sides provide warmth in the cold and a cool, comfortable surface in the heat. Air drying is convenient with the included loop.
You shouldn’t machine dry this bed, so cleaning will take a little longer with air drying. It doesn’t roll up tightly enough for some dogs to carry themselves.
3. KURGO Travel Bed:
This bed rolls up tightly for easy travel and storage. It can handle whatever conditions you want to camp in thanks to a water-resistant top made of microtomic ripstop material and a Rufftex waterproof non-slip bottom. The company backs their travel bed with a lifetime warranty against manufacturer defects.
- Water-resistant top made of microtomic ripstop material
- Rufftex waterproof non-slip bottom
- Lifetime warranty against manufacturer defects
- Rolls up like a mini version of a human sleeping bag
- Comes in medium (27” x 36”)or large (36” x 48”)
- 4” thick
This bed can handle all kinds of weather and damp ground without a problem, thanks to the weather-resistant top and waterproof bottom. It rolls up tightly enough that your dog can carry it or you can strap it easily onto your backpack.
If your dog wants something to snuggle in, this flat bed may not satisfy her needs. Some people have found that it tends to shed fuzz a bit, so it may not be the best bed for inside the house or car.
4. SportPet Luxury Waterproof Pet Bed:
Your dog needs more when you travel together than her bed. This clever bed zips into a suitcase in which you can carry everything else that your dog might need, including toys, a bag of food, etc. A front pocket offers a place for you to put accessories that you need convenient access to, like a leash or treats. When the bed gets wet or dirty you can remove the waterproof inner padding and wash the cover in the machine.
- Zips into a suitcase to carry your dog’s things
- Outer pocket for convenient access to necessary items
- Thick waterproof inner padding
- Machine washable cover
- Small: 17” x 24”
- Large: 30” x 39”
This dual-purpose bed is a cozy place for your dog to sleep and a handy suitcase for carrying her things as well. It is a great bed for “place” training wherever you might go, and is perfect for hotels and cars as well. The waterproof, removable padding makes cleanup easy even after a thorough drenching.
If you are looking for a compact hiking and camping bed, this may not be the best choice for you since it only folds into a suitcase and doesn’t roll up like a sleeping bag.
5. Coleman Plush Travel Plaid:
Here is a thin, highly portable matt for a great price. If you need something small and discrete to go everywhere with you and your dog, this might be the choice for you. This thin matt rolls down tightly so you can slip it into your bag. It provides surprising cushioning for how thin it is. The water-resistant material is easy to clean and doesn’t tend to absorb odor.
- Machine washable
- Rolls up tightly
- Water resistant so keeps odor down
- Soft cushioning in a thin matt
- Size: 27″ x 36″
- Thin width
If you can’t spend too much on a comfortable travel matt for your dog but want something durable that won’t absorb odor, this thin matt might be right for you. It can go with you anywhere to provide your dog with a comfortable place to lie.
This thin matt won’t provide enough padding for dogs with sore joints or arthritis and isn’t ideal for very large breeds. Keep in mind that it doesn’t come with a carrying case, so you will need to provide one.
6. Gowild Oversize Travel Dog Mat:
This bed is a great all-around travel mat for a very reasonable price. Both sides are waterproof and comfortable, so if your dog tends to pull her bed around or flip it over you won’t have to worry about the bed getting waterlogged. The sturdy cloth is resistant to hair. Just shake it off and shed hair will fall away. The fabric and stuffing is resistant to light scratching and chewing, so don’t worry if your dog is a big “nester”, scratching and pulling at her bed. This bed is easy to roll up and take with you, thanks to the convenient carrying bag.
- Waterproof on both sides
- Resistant to hair
- Stands up to light scratching and biting associated with “nesting” behavior
- Rolls up tightly into the included carrying case
- Machine washable for easy cleaning
- Size: 43.3” x 26.7”
This affordable mat is waterproof on both sides, resistant to hair, and machine washable, so keeping it clean is easy. It is made to resist light scratching and biting, and the filling will not be made lumpy by your dog or by machine washing. The included handle and carrying case make transport easy.
This mat has more stuffing than a flat mat, but it still doesn’t provide a lot of support for your dog’s joints, so if you are looking f or a very supportive travel or outside bed for your large dog, this might not be the best choice for you.
7. Axell Travel Dog Mat:
Here is a feature-packed travel bed for your dog at a very good price. If you are worried about the safety and cleanliness of your dog, you will love that this bed is lined with a titanium dioxide and silver chloride solution. This material is harmless to you and your dog but inhibits bacteria from multiplying. Both sides of this mat are waterproof, and the back of the bed has anti-slip fabric to keep the mat from sliding or slipping. The breathable fabric is resistant to scratching and is cool enough for summer use. An included travel bag makes transport convenient.
- Titanium dioxide and silver chloride solution inhibits bacteria from multiplying
- Waterproof on both sides
- Anti-slip fabric on backside
- Breathable fabric resistant to scratching
- Included travel bag
- Machine washable
- 43″ x 26″
Antibacterial lining keeps your pet cleaner and smelling fresher than an ordinary bed, and the waterproof fabric on both sides keep this bed cleaner as well. You can toss the whole bed in the washing machine when it does get dirty. Anti-slip keeps this bed from sliding around on hard floors. An included travel bag makes it easy to pack up this bed and go.
This pad may not be thick or large enough for very heavy or large dogs to be comfortable on it.
Best Backpacking Dog Beds
1. Ruffwear BackPacking Bed:
This convenient backpacking bed has a water-resistant polyester fabric shell to keep your dog from feeling the moisture from the ground and synthetic insulation to keep her warm. A stuff sack is included to store the bad and compress it as small as possible. You can keep your dog from messing up her bed with stakeout loops. This bed is optimized for portability, and so isn’t as thick or comfy as some other beds. The Highlands Pad that is sold separately fits perfectly in the integrated pad sleeve for greater comfort if needed.
- Water-resistant polyester fabric shell
- Synthetic insulation
- Included stuff sack
- Stake-out loops
- Integrated pad sleeve for separately sold landing pad
- 35” x 26”
- 1.5” thick
This is a durable backpacking bed that rolls up tightly and is light enough for your dog to carry herself. It has a water-resistant shell and warm insulation to keep your pup comfy. Stake-out loops keep the bed from blowing away and your dog from disturbing it. If you need more insulation for very cold conditions you can utilize the landing pad that is sold separately.
This backpacking bed is a great compromise between comfort and portability but some dogs may want thicker padding than even the separately sold landing pad can provide.
2. Helios BackPacking Bed:
Do you and your dog take backpacking seriously? This is a dog backpack for the all-weather hiker with its impermeable “Black Shark” Helios technology. This cozy bed is windproof and waterproof. It retains heat to keep your pup cozy in cold weather but is also cool in hot conditions. This multifunctional dog bed can unzip into a longer bed or serve as a cozy sleeping bag. Multiple beds can be connected together for as wide of a surface as you need for large dogs or multiple dogs. A sturdy nylon carrying strap makes it easy to take on every hike.
- “Black Shark” technology is waterproof, windproof, and wear-resistant
- Retains heat in the cold and keeps cool in the heat
- Doubles in size or use as a cozy sleeping bag
- Connect multiple beds together for a larger sleeping surface
- Nylon carrying strap
- 39.4” x 25.7”
- 4” thick
This is an all-weather sleeping bag for your dog that will keep her warm in the cold and cool in the heat. It is waterproof, windproof, wear-proof, and perfect for use in a tent, cabin, or outside. Tuck your pup up in the sleeping bag or unzip it so that she can sprawl out. Zip multiple sleeping bags together for as large of a sleeping surface as you need. A nylon carrying strap makes it easy for you to take with you.
If your dog is more than fifty pounds or is very tall or long, she may not fit into this sleeping bag. This bag can still be great when opened and/or connected to other bags for larger dogs.
3. HELIOS Combat:
Here is a bed that is Army strong, thanks to the Cordura Nyco U.S. Army grade fabric. This fabric is waterproof and windproof to protect the polar fleece surface so your pup will stay snug and warm. It is lightweight enough to easily carry on all of your travels. An innovative weaved sewing line keeps the inner filling from moving around, so this bed will be durable through a lot of washing and digging and “nesting” by your dog. A nylon handle and buckles make it easy to strap this bed to your or your dog’s backpack.
- Cordura Nyco U.S. Army grade fabric is waterproof, windproof, and lightweight
- Polar fleece top is cozy and warm
- Weaved sewing line to keep the inner filling from moving around
- Nylon handle and buckles to attach to a backpack
- Four color choices
- Medium: 31.5” x 23.6”
- Large: 35.6” x 25.6”
- Extra large: 39.4” x 29.6 *
- 4” thick
This is a tough bed that can keep your dog warm and dry even in chilly, wet conditions. It is very lightweight, so you or your dog won’t even notice it. It is easy to strap onto a backpack, thanks to the buckle and handle. This bed will last through many adventures, thanks to the woven sewing that keeps filling in place.
This bed will absorb water from above into the fleece top, so it isn’t good for use outside in light rain or with morning dew.
Best Inflatable Travel Dog Beds
1. HELIOS Aero Inflatable:
Perhaps the greatest challenge faced by travel beds is the compromise between comfort and weight. Thick padding feels better and protects your dog more thoroughly from the wet and cold, but it is heavier and bulkier, making it less desirable for camping. This innovative product solves this problem beautifully, using air to provide a thick comfortable cushion. When deflated, this bed rolls up tightly. Both the top and bottom of this bed are waterproof.
- Completely inflatable
- Waterproof, durable exterior: top and bottom
- Reinforced tubing for stability when inflated
- Reflective lining
- Three color choices
- Medium: 25.19” x 18.89”
- Large: 38.97” x 29.92”
- 3” thick
This clever bed uses air to provide comfortable padding for your dog, keeping this pack lighter than the competition. It is waterproof top and bottom, so if it gets wet you can wipe it off and you’re good to go. Reinforced tubing keeps the bed steady while your dog moves around on it, and reflective lining ensures that you won’t lose track of the bed in the dark.
If your dog digs a lot at this bed or chews on it, it may be punctured and leak. The bed may also begin to leak air over the years.
2. Lightspeed Self Inflating Fleece Top:
This clever bed is the perfect balance of portability and serious comfort. The inner foam mattress inflates by itself, just twist the nozzle. If you want the bed a little bit firmer or softer you can make adjustments by blowing more air in or pushing air out. This is a very durable inflatable bed. The thick, soft fleece cover is machine washable. The polyester mattress base and sides are puncture resistant and water-resistant. It is easy to roll up and secure this bed using the included straps.
- Inner foam mattress inflates with the twist of the nozzle
- Make adjustments by blowing air in or pushing air out
- Thick, soft fleece cover is machine washable
- Polyester mattress base and sides are puncture resistant and water-resistant
- Roll up tightly and secure with included straps
- Size: 42″ x 32″
- 2” thick when inflated
Here is a great balance between portability and comfort. This bed is very easy to inflate, thanks to the twist nozzle automatic inflation. Adjusting the hardness to your dog’s desires is easy too. When deflated the bed rolls up very tightly, so if space is an issue this might be the bed for you. The polyester mattress base and sides are very durable and puncture resistant so your dog won’t pop her bed. A water-resistant bottom and sides keep your pup dry, even on damp ground.
This bed provides a lot of support and padding considering its size when rolled up, but it is still not as small or as light as competing camping beds, so if you are going to use the bed for significant hiking, this might not be the right pick for you.
Best Elevated Dog Travel Beds
1. Carlson – Elevated Folding Dog Bed:
This affordable bed offers a lot of comfort and support for larger dogs without taking up too much room when collapsed. This bed stands seven inches tall, which is high enough for a lot of sag under your dog’s weight, reducing pressure points. The fold and go design makes it easy to take this bed almost anywhere in the conveniently included carrying case.
- Elevated bed is good for your dog’s joints
- Affordable for a very large bed
- Good for very large breeds, up to 95 pounds
- Size: 46.5″ x 24″
- 7” tall
This is a great affordable, portable bed for large-breed dogs. It is hard to beat the price for a bed of this size, and you can feel confident that you are doing right by your large dog’s joints. Your day may use this as her permanent bed, but it is also very portable, collapsing down into a compact shape that fits into the included carrying bag. The hammock material is easy to clean just by spraying down and keeps your dog cool with great airflow. You can just put a blanket over it to keep your pup warm in cooler weather.
This hammock may be a little narrow for large dogs that like to sprawl out and the material may not hold up to dogs that dig vigorously at their beds.
2. GigaTent Steel Frame Elevated Pet Cot:
This is a very durable bed that can support dogs up to 100 pounds easily. The durable polyester and tubular steel construction can hold up to some abuse. U shaped legs distribute weight evenly and provide sturdy support so that the bed will never break or flip over. It is very easy to collapse this bed. Just fold in the legs, fold the bed in half, and put the bed in the convenient carrying case.
- Durable polyester and tubular steel construction
- U shaped legs distribute weight evenly
- Included heavy-duty storage bag
- Small: 35″ x 24″
- Large: 42″ x 28″
- 8” tall
This bed is very sturdy and wide enough for most dogs of any size to be comfortable. The heavy-duty construction can hold up, even to dogs that tend to dig and “nest” heavily. It is very easy to collapse this bed and store it in the durable included carrying bag.
This bed doesn’t have a locking mechanism when open or closed, so it may fall open or closed when you move it.
3. Coleman Folding Cot:
If you are looking for an affordable bed for your medium-sized dog, this might be the perfect one for you. Durable fabric on the outer edges keeps the bed from being damaged, while the mesh in the middle keeps your dog cool. It is easy to collapse this bed and take it anywhere with you. It folds up almost completely flat for easy storage.
- Durable fabric and cool mesh construction
- Collapses easily
- Folds nearly flat
- Size: 30” x 20”
- 7” tall
This elevated bed is durable and cool for dogs up to fifty pounds. It folds nearly flat for easy storage and is very easy to collapse.
Some people and their dogs find that these beds collapse a little too easily and would prefer a locking mechanism to keep legs extended.
4. Paws & Pals Elevated Pet Bed:
Here is a durable, versatile bed at a modest price. Dogs up to 120 pounds can rest comfortably on the large size. Heavy duty waterproof Oxford cloth is lightweight and breathable so it is easy to transport and keeps your dog cool. The sturdy metal folding frame has high-quality plastic feet so it doesn’t damage floors indoors. A carrying bag is included for convenient transport. Since the fabric detaches completely from the frame, it is easy to thoroughly clean the hammock and frame even if they become very muddy and dirty.
- Large size is good for dogs up to 120 pounds
- Heavy-duty Oxford cloth is lightweight, breathable, waterproof, and durable
- Fabric detaches from frame and attaches with velcro
- Included carrying case for frame and hammock
- Frame and hammock can be stored fully attached
- Medium: 28” x 28” x 9.5”
- Large: 40.5” x 40.5” x 14”
This bed is tall and sturdy enough to comfortably hold even very large dogs. There is plenty of room to sag so that your very large dog’s joints will be supported. If your dog likes to play in the mud before lying in her bed you’ll be glad to know that this bed disassembles completely for thorough cleaning. The sturdy Oxford fabric can handle a lot of abuse. Details like plastic feet to keep the bed from scratching floors and an included carrying case make this affordable bed a great deal.
The bed may come with a chemical smell that will take a few rounds of washing to remove. Your dog probably won’t mind, but it might annoy you.