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December 16, 2020

Our youngest canine hero, Mr. Stix, has NOT been sleeping well for many weeks now. We needed some fresh ideas, then along came some new research from Big Barker dog beds done at the University of Pennsylvania Veterinary Clinical Investigations Center. Here's why our little dude needed a new bed and how it's working so far. Don't miss the end of the Big Barker review video -- so doggone funny.


This is a sponsored review done in exchange for a FREE Big Barker dog bed for Mr. Stix. The new, smaller bed is a medium-sized "junior" bed made for dogs under 50 pounds. Stix weighs about 41-42 pounds. A bed like this currently sells for about $150, which is a lot relatively speaking for a dog bed, but we think it's worth it.

For reference, we normally would NOT do a product review in exchange for a dog product because I cannot pay my bills with dog stuff, but when there is a product we like, sometimes we agree to write / make videos like we did for the Big Barker review video below.

Watch our Big Barker Review video below!

What we love about Big Barker Dog Beds!

  1. Exceptional quality memory foam, much more like a people bed than a dog bed -- see our earlier review here
  2. Made in the USA
  3. Fits perfectly inside the crate
  4. Easy-to-remove / washable cover (though our dryer did scorch the fabric in a couple spots, so be careful)
  5. Helps Mr. Stix sleep better at night ... even with all his injuries and orthopedic needs

That new data ...

Essentially, 40 dogs slept on Big Barker beds and wore activity monitors. In addition, researchers used several assessment tools (mentioned in the video) to measure results. 

Families reported:

  • Significant reductions in pain and joint stiffness
  • Significant improvements in joint function, gait, energy, and quality of life

Activity tracker data showed that:

  • 50% of dogs had at least a 13% decrease in night-time activity.
  • 25% of dogs had at least a 33% decrease in night-time activity.

All that seems to suggest better comfort and restfulness. Here's an infographic recap of the research, if that's helpful.

Our test subject of 1

Now ... as I say in the video, we did recently take Mr. Stix off a medication that we believe was making him restless, and we did also add -- with the okay of our specialist veterinarian -- 2.5 mg of melatonin at bedtime. And, our little man is definitely sleeping better, so perhaps it's the combination of the Big Barker dog bed, getting rid of that medicine, and the melatonin, but we'll take it. We were getting really exhausted from him waking us up 2-4 times every night. 

Maybe get one for your dog too?

If you're looking to help your dog -- of any age and with any orthopedic issues -- sleep more comfortably and better, it might be worth getting one of these beds. We hope our Big Barker review video helps you make a decision either way. Let us know if you decide to get one. 

And, if nothing else, you got to see our smiling faces and other hilarity right before the holidays in what has been a VERY tough year for us all. 

Here is a bonus photo of Mr. Stix in a Santa suit, just because. 

Mr Stix in santa suit
About the Author Roxanne Hawn

Trained as a traditional journalist and based in the Rocky Mountains of Colorado, USA, I'm a full-time freelance writer for magazines, websites, and private clients. My areas of specialty include everything in the lifestyles arena, including health and home, personal finance and other consumer interests, relationships and trends, people and business profiles ... and, of course, all things pet related.

I don't just love dogs. I need them in my life. Seriously.

  1. Looks like a good product for dogs. The stats that you shared shows significant changes. The interesting thing is the role it can play in the dog’s day to day life.

  2. Thank you! We got a Big Barker bed this fall for our dog (79 pound lab/golden retriever and a little other mix) that is at least 9 1/2 and getting stiff. He’s a floor sleeper over night, but he loves it off and on before bedtime. That memory foam is nice! Glad to know to watch out when washing the cover. You and your pups are looking great! I’ve recommended your book to several people that have lost BC’s this year. Have a Merry Christmas and great 2021 from NE Iowa.

    1. Nora! So great to hear from you Merry Xmas to you and yours as well! I’m glad to hear you have a Big Barker bed too. I often take naps on the bigger one with the girls. It’s so comfy.

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