How to Repair a Dog Bed

I’m stuck at home…I don’t have my childcare income coming in.  My dog, Rosie, is a little destructo.  She is at about 6 months old right now and destroying her dog beds is her hobby.  Seriously, she’d destroyed three at this point.

I, at the time, just bought another and set the destroyed ones aside.  I always planned to “get to patching it” sometime.  It was only $13 for another dog bed…I didn’t have time….I was working.  Yes, I could just buy another dog bed.  That is what I did.

Well…COVID-19 came around.  I’m at home.  I don’t have my childcare income.  I’m cleaning and tackling tasks.  So as I was cleaning the laundry room, I came to the dog beds.  I need to either repair them or throw them out.  Well with time on my hands from not working and a make do attitude, I decided that I could repair them.

Rosie destroys them all the same way.  She flips them over, rips a hole in the bottom and pulls out the stuffing.  I really think this could be avoided if manufacturers would put a stronger fabric on the underside…but they don’t so…here I am with three destroyed dog beds.

This is all a little trial and error.  The first one I did I cut the entire bottom off.  Then I added the denim fabric layer.  Then I sewed it back on.  It worked but I broke two needles and said a cuss word.  That left me ready to throw the other two remaining beds away but I didn’t.  If I’m going to take my life seriously with staying and spending little money, I needed to use the resources I have.  I have the denim.  I can fix this.  I just needed to be smarter.

So I came up with this and it worked like a charm.

First take the dog bed and roughly stitch up the bottom hole.  See how crude my stitches are?  It isn’t for beauty.  All of this will be covered when the new fabric is put on.  The purpose is mostly just to make it easier to work with and to keep the stuffing on place.

Next lay the dog bed on your fabric.  Use a heavier weight fabric.  I used a denim.  Make a rough cut around the bed just slightly bigger than the bed.

My dog beds had a straight line across the front and the the back part is more rounded.  I pinned the front straight side in place as shown working to keep the pins close and keeping the fabric on the seam line area where there in not excess stuffing.
Next wrangle the dog bed into the machine.  The dog beds I was working with had a side seam that was sewn down.  I could get the dog bed worked through and into the machine if I used that area.

It’s quite a task but sew over the pins.  Sew slow.  I did sew over the pins…typically I don’t but I was going really slow and it was really hard to get the pins out.

I went a little way, stopped and repositioned.  I could only sew an inch or two at a time.

Be patient and remember this is the BOTTOM of the bed.  No one will see your errors.  You are sewing blindly.  For me, I followed the center of the pins hoping I was staying on the seam.

Wrangle the bed out of the machine.

Then I flipped the fabric over to cover the bottom of the bed.  Then I turned the edge under and pinned it in place.  This was very unscientific.  It was hard to work with as the bed is so floppy and doesn’t lay flat.  But my main goal was to cover it and let it be used another day…not make it look as neat as the manufacturer.

Note the pins are placed about every inch.

I wrangled it into the sewing machine again and started stitching.  Again I sewed over the pins.  Again I went really slow and repositioned as I went.

I tried my best but ended up getting the underside of the bed caught in the seam.  DARN.

I ripped it out and flipped it over again.  I pinned again and got it sewn down.  In the end I was very happy with it.

The first one took me well over an hour to fix- I broke needles, swore and was determined not to fix another one.

The second one took me 35 minutes to fix.  I had to come up with a plan and I had to rip out my mistake.

The last one took my 15 minutes to fix.    Here is how it looks finished:
Rosie loves it and she has a comfy spot to sleep.  

I’m so glad I have a plan and can easily fix them.  I worked two hours-ish and saved $39 with not buying more beds.  I’m calling it a win.

One might ask why so many beds.  I’ve learned if I have a bed by where I am she’s likely to use it and not jump all over me.  I was doing bookwork at the table and there was a bed there, she just laid on it.  At the computer writing blog posts, I keep a bed and she’ll lay in it rather than jump up on me.  I have several beds strategically all over the house.  I’m so glad these are fixed again.

20 thoughts on “How to Repair a Dog Bed”

  1. $20/hour is a good living wage! Good on you for the tenacity to WIN! I just got caught up over at Pink Shoelaces. You are a contagious woman. Kalissa and Craig have done some amazing financial work too.

    Cheers to being self-reliant!

  2. Mending is very trendy and I always get satisfaction when I mend something rather than throw it away. I also have dog beds in several places in my house for my two companions!

  3. This post made me laugh, my dog Lucy, was my little “Destructo” . I too would buy new bed after new bed until I was just tired of it; I told her if you chew this last one, you will lay on the hard metal floor in your crate, she looked at me, pulled the bed out of the crate and just laid down on the metal — did she understand me? I left the bed out of the crate for about a week, put it back in and it was never chewed again. Dogs!!!! I also purchased a “cool” mat for her since we live in Florida, it was great for weeks she loved it until one day I came home to find this gel like substance all over the floor, Destructo had struck again, poison control was called and treatment ordered to bring on vomiting; — what a mess. No more cool mats for Lucy.

  4. Ahhh puppies! My 2 1/2 yr old black lab is still the puppy. I bought him several beds and he would sometimes grab it and try to toss it so the edges have threads. I had to throw one away and was going to buy him a new one but decided to just cover the remaining two with old sheets. The sheets now have chewed up areas but I’m bound and determined not to buy a new bed until he doesn’t do the chewing tossing game any more….lol. Actually, he hasn’t done that for awhile so maybe I’ll buy a new bed if I ever go to Costco again.

  5. Mary Ann Mettler

    I would have to say that they don’t make those bed bottoms out of the best material – it kind of snags with their toenails. I know because when our daughter was here her dog was tearing there dog bed apart so I stitched it again. Don’t think I did as good a job however. I did manage to do it without saying a bad word though – lol. Love you Jo.

  6. You’re putting a lot of work into fixing dog beds that will probably just be destroyed again. My theory is that when a dog destroys it’s bed that dog gets to sleep on an old throw rug tossed in a corner.

  7. Our first dog never chewed a dog bed. The second and third chew up the remaining beds from the first dog and every bed there after. They especially loved the denim ones I made. Our vet was really concerned about them eating the fiberfill and having a bowel blockage so I gave up. We had already went thru a bowel resection for one of them after she ate a skein of embroidery floss. However, they wouldn’t chew ratty, old towels. Go figure…

  8. Great job Jo- Reminds me of the time we moved to Ozawkie Ks from Moran Ks and found a 5 month old pup on the highway that had been dumped. We took her home and called the area pounds / vets. Looked in the newspapers – nobody lost or claimed the poor girl. We named her Brandi and added her to our clan of a shepherd and a black lab. One night we were woken up to this weird grinding noise. Brandi was chewing up the brick around the fireplace…We worked at Walmart and bought her several nylabones. Best chew toy ever. Wish I hadn’t been terminated from my job – I would buy you some for Rosie. I know it’s hard making ends meet especially without a paycheck. We are raising our grand daughters too and now with this Covid19 life is rather uncertain. My husband has RSDS and I have Multiple Scelorsis. I was paralyzed on my right side from MS but God brought me thru and restored my arm and leg. I keep you in my prayers everyday.
    Take care, June

  9. Judith Fairchild

    Jo, you did a great job fixing the beds. I never have bought a bed for a dog . A thick rug works well and keeps them warm. With an old blanket for really cold nights.

  10. I think the manufacturers intentionally put that sleazy material on the bottom of dog beds so our dogs can easily destroy & we purchase a replacement! I’ve mended by hand sewing & tried using duct tape but never thought to recover with denim & sew by machine! Thanks Jo I’m going to try your method for mending! If I need to purchase a new bed I think I will cover the bottom with denim before I give to my special little buddy!

  11. I think the manufacturers intentionally put that sleazy material on the bottom of dog beds so our dogs can easily destroy & we purchase a replacement! I’ve mended by hand sewing & tried using duct tape but never thought to recover with denim & sew by machine! Thanks Jo I’m going to try your method for mending! If I need to purchase a new bed I think I will cover the bottom with denim before I give to my special little buddy!

  12. Good going Jo! You are brave. I had two jack Russells and they were tough on beds when younger. I gave up trying to maneuver these beds on my machine and I made a pillowcase type cover and added velcro to the edges. Then if I needed to wash the covers it was easy. Your Rosy is sweet and will settle. I miss having the dogs. We have my sons 17 year old dog here and I try not to think “today could be it” I don’t know if I can say goodbye to these friends again. But I don’t know if we can live without a dog either.

  13. Great job, Jo! Way to go. This whole virus thing has turned us all into a bunch of d-i-yers!
    And a great idea to keep a bed where ever go in the house! It’s obviously working!

  14. I gave up on the wrestling match trying to get a dog bed under the foot of my machine. My solution was to cut a new bottom, turn the raw edge under and stitch to hold in place. Attach to the bottom of the bed with hot glue. Start by glue-tacking at the center of each side to hold into position, give it a couple of minutes to set, then work around the sides and corners. So far, no complaints from the dogs that I didn’t use the machine.

  15. Cannot get my 1 yr old pup to stop jumping on people … and nipping on people either! Is there something I can do? HELP!! ❤️

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