We've had our own heated beds and blankets for quite some time, but our feline friends haven't always been so lucky. And some of them really love a good warm spot to have a rest.
Now, even our fur babies can get the same level of comfort; that's right, we're going to look at the best-heated cat beds, and help you decide if using one is right for your cat.
The Heated Cat Beds Buyer's Guide
What are heated cat beds and how do they work?
Heated cat beds are exactly what they sound like. Just like your cat may have a regular, plush 'cat bed' heated cat beds are built much the same. Of course, the difference is that they're heated, and they do that in one of two ways.
The first way is by having materials that reflect your cat's body heat back to them, and insulate the heat for a warmer feel. These are often called self heated cat beds.
The other type of heated cat bed is electric. Essentially they have an internal heating element that warms the bed once the power cord is plugged into an outlet.
Who should use a heated cat bed?
Cats, or other small animals of course! However, if you're wondering whether a heated cat bed is right for your cat, there are a few ways to decide.
Often, older cats or those with joint issues are much more comfortable with the addition of a heated bed for cats. However, cats that are sick or in recovery also get relief from using them.
Of course, if you notice your cat is always looking for a sunny spot to nap, or sleeping on warm electronics (like your laptop), there's nothing wrong with getting a heated cat bed to keep your pet comfy.
How to choose a heated cat bed:
If in doubt, it’s better to get a slightly larger cat bed. However, some cats like to feel a bit cradled, so the size you choose should fit your cat’s preferences.
If you have multiple cats, consider whether they’re the type that will share. If so, then opt for a bigger heated cat bed for multiple cats.
If not, you may want to spring for beds for each of them.
The best heated cat beds are well padded. It helps keep more heat in the bed, and your cats will be able to ‘knead’ the bed better to get comfortable.
Of course, if you cat prefers more padding than comes with the bed, you can always place blankets underneath the bed to fluff it up.
Electric or Self Heated?
There are benefits to having either type of heated cat bed, and some drawbacks to consider too. With an electric cat bed, you get extra heat, which some cats prefer.
Of course, then you may also want to look for a cat bed that has a thermostat you can control. While you can control the heat better, we wouldn’t advise leaving it turned on unless you have a human home to supervise.
Self heated cat beds are nice for cats that are always napping in sunny spots. These types of cat beds are easy to maintain, and don’t require any electricity.
While you can’t control the heat yourself, you can still ensure your cat always has a nice, cozy spot to nap even when you’re not home.
Naturally, if you buy a self heated cat bed, this won’t be a concern for you. However, if you’re looking into electric cat beds, the power cord is going to be a feature to pay attention to.
There’s a balance you have to find between having a long enough cord, and having a cord that looks like a toy to your cat.
You do want a power cord that allows you to place the cat bed where you want it, even if there isn’t an outlet right there.
We recommend getting a bed with a ‘chew proof’ cord. It’ll last longer, and prevent a harmful accident if your cat chews through cords.
Safety and Testing
While you should always pay attention if your cat uses an electric style heated bed, it’s good to make sure it’s been tested for safety too.
One of the most common agencies is the MET, which certifies products for electrical safety after thoroughly testing the product.If products have reached their safety standards, they’re often referred to as MET listed or MET certified.
While there are other agencies that test for electrical safety, it’s best to make sure it’s a reputable organization before you assume they have the same standards as MET.
Heated cat beds are washable, but how you wash them depends on the cat bed you get. If you get an electric type, always make sure to remove the heating element.
Follow manufacturer's directions, and even if something seems obvious, always read the owner’s manual before you let kitty curl up on the bed.
Best Heated Cat Beds
Best Mat Style:
Some cats just love to sprawl out, and they’re happier laying stretched out in a ray of sun than curled in a ball. Of course, that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t be able to get our kitties a heated cat bed that suits their style.
While heated cat bed mats aren’t for every cat, and they’re not the most common style available, they do provide a solution for cats that don’t like the typical bed design with higher sides.
It looks just like it sounds: it’s a flat mat that gives your cat a well heated place to nap. Since it’s nice and slim, it’s also easier to tuck away when your cats isn’t using it (if that ever happens!).
It has an internal thermostat, but don’t worry, you don’t need to adjust anything. It’s designed to keep an even temperature of about 15 degrees warmer than the ambient temperature.
Basically, if there’s a big change in temperature (either warmer or cooler) the thermostat adjusts the heat output to fit. Another thing we felt good about (and you will too), is the amount of safety testing it’s been through.
MET labs have tested these beds, and passed them for certification per US and Canada’s standards. As a bonus, it comes with a full year’s warranty. It’s a big reassurance to know you’re buying your cat products from a company that stands behind their work.
- Perfect for cats that don’t like to sleep curled up
- Has internal thermostat to prevent overheating
- Has a nice, large size for cats that like plenty of room
- If your cat likes to curl up, there aren't walls like they prefer
- Needs to be line dried after washing
Best Self Heating:
This is a self heated cat bed, so there’s no heating element, but it does a great job of getting your cat warm and cozy. It looks pretty big, but that’s a good thing when cats want to stretch and get back to napping without leaving their bed.
Of course, if you have a couple of cats that like to curl up together, the size is a huge bonus. This cat bed is aptly called the ‘Deep Dish Cuddler,’ and cats love curling up against the tall sides.
While we may not think much about the height of the sides, it’s actually a great way to help take some stress off your cat’s sore joints.
It provides plenty of back support too, which is ideal for our feline friends that like to curl up when they sleep. If you have an older cat, or one with joint discomfort, this is a heated cat bed you might want to have a closer look at.
We weren’t sure how the faux fur material would go over with our cat, but as it turns out, it was very well received (it was a struggle to make her get up!).
Since all the materials are non toxic, pet safe, and machine washable, so we could feel good about our choice.
- Provides good support for older cats, and those with joint discomfort
- Cats love the deep dish design!
- Keeps cats warm and comfortable, even when you’re not home
- Plenty of room for cats to stretch without leaving the bed
- Somewhat wobbly when cats get in (ours got used to it quickly though)
Best for Cats That Like to Hide:
No matter how much your cat likes to have a warm spot to doze off, they’re not likely to use it if they’re a shy type. You know the cat that would rather sleep in a hidden spot?
We’re almost positive that’s who this heated cat bed was designed for. Of course, outgoing cats love it just as much, since it gives just the right amount of heat and cushion.
The thing our shy cat really took to was the hood, since she felt like she was hiding in plain sight!
Don’t worry if you have a cat that can’t make up their mind; simply unzip the hood if they want to use it like a warm little nest.
It helped with our peace of mind to know that it’s gone through stringent testing and earned a MET List certification. It’s safe enough to leave on constantly, and you don’t have to worry about your cat getting overheated (it heats only about 10 to 15 degrees warmer than ambient temperature).
With a 4 watt heater, you’ll save plenty of energy, and still get the perfect amount of warmth for your cat.
Bonus for pet parents: It’s easy to wash too; just unzip the outer cover and throw it in the washing machine. No hang drying either, you can use your clothes dryer too.
- Safe to leave on constantly without overheating
- Shy cats love the hood, and it’s easily removed when they don’t want it
- Easy to clean- cover is machine washable and can be put in the dryer
- Has passed stringent safety testing and certification
- Can be a little tough to vacuum cat hair out
- Can be used outdoors, but should be monitored to avoid any moisture
Best for All Seasons:
We liked this heated cat bed because it gives you the best features from electric and self heated pet beds. Since it includes a thermostat that you can use to switch between two temperatures, it gets extra brownie points from us.
It’s another heated cat bed that you can leave on 24/7, which means you don’t have to panic if you leave for work without unplugging it.
When the warmer months of summer come, and your cat doesn’t need the extra electric heat, it’s just as easy to remove the heating element. They still love using the bed!
We’re big fans of high walled cat beds (and of course, our feline friends seem to agree!), so we were excited about this one. They don’t fold out when your cat leans against them, but they’re soft enough to give your cat plenty of cushion too.
That’s a big deal to cats that need to feel some kind of walls around them to provide a sense of security. Anytime you can give your cat the feeling of being snuggled, even when you’re not there, it’s a huge comfort to them.
While some cat beds are plushy to a fault (and make it difficult for cats to get in the bed), this one has a balance that our cats loved, and climbed into right away!
- Walls are soft, but don’t move too much
- Heating element is easily removed for warmer seasons
- Safe to leave on, no electrical hazard
- Entire bed has to be washed if there’s a mess (without the heating element of course)
Best Orthopedic Cat Bed:
This was a bed that our older cat really loved, and we loved knowing she was getting all the joint support she needed! There’s an orthopedic foam cushion underneath the top layer of padding, and it’s designed to provide ultimate comfort.
The idea behind the design is to help relieve aching pressure points, and provide better alignment for your cat; the other benefit with that (and which we felt really good about) is that it improves your cat’s air circulation.
A lot of cat beds are either hooded (with a top covering so your cat can hide under it) or basket style (with walls, but nothing covering the top). The Furhaven cat bed is a mix of both, except you don’t need to worry about zippers snagging on anything.
It comes with plastic tubing that you just slip into the ‘piping’ area on the top to give your kitty a roof. And when you’re not using it to create a cozy cave bed, you can take the tubing out and give your cat a built in blanket (or extra room to knead).
The faux lamb’s wool cushioning is soft enough that you just might be jealous of your cat’s new digs! Really though, it does a great job of keeping cats warm and feeling secure, no electricity needed. It has the perfect density and feel that cats get enough of, and everything is soft so that none of the materials irritate them.
- Easy to convert from basket style to hooded or cave style
- Provides excellent orthopedic support for pressure points
- Materials stay very warm
- When not using the hood, it makes a perfect place for cats to snuggle in to
- Canopy top doesn’t open as much as some cats prefer
Verdict: The Best Heated Cat Bed
Whenever we look at things for our cats, we’re looking at quality first. Of course, on our search for the best heated cat bed, we were looking for some other things too.
We wanted beds that were a good size for most cats, were easy to wash and maintain, kept cats warm, and of course, were safe to use with our cats.
Naturally, how much our cats loved the beds played a big part in which beds we chose to include in our guide too. So which of the best heated cat beds impressed us enough to earn the top spot?
The K&H Thermo-Kitty Deluxe heated bed was one that our cats loved best, and we’d have to agree, it’s a great cat bed! Many others also agree this is one of the best heated cat beds you can find!
For us, it was incredibly easy to clean, and the fact that it can go right in the dryer was a big bonus.
Since the canopy can be zipped off, it works wonders for cats with any napping style. It was clearly a high quality cat bed, which we could tell right from the start, but it also held up really well after plenty of use and washing.
All in all, it just might be the best heated cat bed ever made!