All dogs have their quirks, but how far do you go to indulge them? I admit, I probably go too far.
I'll give you some examples.
Danny loves to sleep on quite low beds with little fuss or padding, but he loves a cushion to lay his chin on so at home we have a bed which is to all intense purposes a slim travel bed with a cosy lining and to the corner of it he has a plump, fluffy bed which acts as a cushion. He has two beds essentially, which seems a little extra doesn't it, but it gives him the set up he likes.
Chris is fairly low maintenance. Super smart, he loves a squeaky toy so we've renamed Sunday at home #squeakysunday. He knows when he's likely to get his confiscated squeaky toys and waits patiently after breakfast time until he gets them, alternating between looking at you, and them, until you decide to hand them over.
Mia has probably been indulged to be the highest maintenance of all. She cottons onto things she wants to become a habit and then miraculously they do. She was once given a treat from a pocket, so now she demands pocket treats be available day and night. And when Chris gets #squeakysunday underway, she marches to her pet treat cam so she too can be treated.
But us humans aren't the only ones who've created Queen Mia, Chris and Danny have too. She generally gets what she wants, which made it even funnier when it came time for us to get this month's George Barclay Country Box Bed (RRP £59.99-109.99) review underway because Chris too wanted to lay claim.
First impressions: The George Barclay Country Box Bed
When we were first offered the chance to review one of the country inspired box beds, Mia came to mind for the review.
Over the last few weeks, I have been more conscious than ever that some of her favourite beds really weren't giving her the right support and wanted to replace one or two with a bed that would give her the right cushioning to support her ageing joints and had a better shape to keep her inside the bed (as a dog who lies upside down 99% of the time, she has topped out of her fair share of some beds quite easily over the years).
As well as good support, I knew she would want a bed with high sides to rest her chin on, so she can keep an eye on what's going on.
The George Barclay Country Box Bed is an impressive bed, it is well designed and very good quality, the stitch work is fantastic and as someone who grew up in and around the countryside, the Tweed corduroy design really appeals. It feels like home.
The box bed frame is sturdy with high sides to provide support and create a barrier to any drafts, and it's also relatively heavy (compared to very light beds that say, a dog named Danny might thrash about through over-excitement at the prospect of it being tea time).
The weight combined with the non-slip base means it stays in position well.
The bed is finished with fantastic attention to detail, from the stitching to the faux suede piping to the brass studs (which, like the contrasting Tweed corduroy design, you'll see in their mattress and sofa beds too).
The centre pillow's cushioning is also equally impressive and supportive.
Depending on what your dog needs and likes, you can choose two between two types of cushioning - Hollow Fibre Cushioning or Orthopaedic Blended Memory Foam Particles, which George Barclay tell us is produced using a blend of memory foam and high-density foam. We chose the latter.
"This combination achieves a supportive cushion with the correct orthopaedic properties and rebound characteristics. The blended memory foam particles easily mould around the shape of your dogs’ body, achieving supreme comfort and support for your companion. A simple shake of the fill will invigorate the particles as needed."
And it works. Mia is comfortable and supported when lying in the bed and can get up and out of the box bed easily.
The pillow cover is machine washable and has some fantastic technology applied called SofToughTM, which makes the bed soft to lie on but durable over time, and WoofWaxTM, which is a water repellant coating applied to the fabric's fibres.
For added water resistance, there is also an inner water-resistant liner which keeps the pillow's padding safe.
This bed beat our expectations. It's clearly a bed that's been designed and built to last.
Our dogs aren't all that easy to please, they have their quirks after all - who doesn't - but it fast became Mia's favourite bed, the one she'd chose over all others and that's saying something.
At first, I wasn't too sure if the sides, and even the front, were too high for her to feel comfortable getting in and out of without stumbling, but my worries were for nothing. She's absolutely fine and she's letting me know she's comfortable by using it over and over again.
And I don't need to worry about whether it's giving her enough support around her back, neck and joints when she's lying in it because I can see it is.
Chris too loves it. It gives him everything he wants and needs - space, comfort and probably Mia's scent to lie in when he gets a chance - he really does hero worship her.
It's quite rare to find a bed that fits dogs at different ends of the age spectrum so well, Chris being a young dog, and Mia being 12, their needs are very different but both are being well met.
Price wise, this bed ranges from a little under £60 to a little over £100, depending on the size you need.
For the quality, features and customisation of the pillow cushioning, it's very good value and well priced for the market compared to similar beds. In some cases, you'd be expected to pay close to £200 from some brands for a similar size.
This bed has been a real hit and I love how it looks and feels, so it's a win-win!
Thanks to George Barclay for sending us their Country Box Bed for review.
George Barclay Country Box Bed Review
Value for Money