For those who haven’t heard of dog cooling mats, these are versatile gel-cool mats that can keep pups cool and comfy during the hot summer months.
Most of them conveniently “recharge” or cool down after a few minutes of non-use. This makes them great for traveling or just for consistent heat relief for your canine companion.
Do Cooling Mats for Dogs Really Work?
A cooling mat that doesn’t require refrigeration or electricity may seem like a gimmick. However, there are plenty of pet owners out there who can attest to the wonders of these gel-cool pads.
Some of these mats rely on electrical power, but many others have special foam and gel crystals that absorb water. All you have to do is fill up the pad and wait a few minutes for the material to soak up the moisture and cool down the surface.
There is more thermodynamics involved, but for the sake of simplicity, that’s the gist of how it works.
How to Choose a Dog Cooling Mat
When shopping around for a dog cooling mat, there are a few factors to take into consideration.
1. Your Dog’s Breed and Size
Some dog breeds are extremely furry and come summertime, they seriously feel the heat. These pups will need more relief during the warmer months, so a highly-rated cooling mat may be a good idea.
Moreover, the size of your dog will determine which mat you choose. Some manufacturers offer their products in a variety of sizes, which is great. A toy chihuahua isn’t going to need as much space as a mastiff!
2. The Package Instructions
This might sound silly, but you don’t want to purchase a cooling mat only to find that it requires more set-up and maintenance than you thought. Again, some of these mats simply ask for some water while others require a more intensive process.
Piggybacking off of that, it’s a good idea to read customer reviews. This way, you can learn what other pet owners think of the product and how it worked for their dog. A bit of research goes a long way in making an informed buying decision!
Pricing always comes into play when buying a new product. Be aware that the larger your dog, the more you’re going to pay because you need a bigger cooling mat.
Also, consider a higher-rated cooling mat or one that is well-built and durable. If your pup is constantly chewing on things, you’ll want something that can hold up to the abuse.
Top 8 Best Dog Cooling Mats of 2020
Save yourself time and check out these top 8 cooling mats for dogs. Compare the pros and cons of each product to see which best suits the needs of your canine companion.
Arf Pets Self-Cooling Mat
Great for Travel
Coleman Comfort Pet Mat
Best for User-Friendliness
Coolaroo Elevated Pet Bed
Best Off-the-Floor Mat
Chillz Cooling Mat for Dogs
Great for Joint Relief, Too
CoolerDog Hydro Cooling Mat
K&H Cool Bed II
Good for Medical Conditions, Too
SoothSoft Canine Cooler Pet Bed
GreenPetShop Dog Cooling Mat
1. Arf Pets Self-Cooling Mat – Great for Travel
This product from Arf Pets is an Amazon’s Choice in the dog cooling mat category. It’s ideal for travel and those who are constantly on the move. Simply fold it up and take it with you. When you lay it down flat, it retains its shape and is ready for your pup.
There are hundreds of great reviews for this product. It’s large enough for bigger breeds and can accommodate two smaller dogs at the same time. However, if your dog is constantly scratching at things, this mat might not hold up.
- Doesn’t lose its shape
- Easy-to-clean surface
- Folds up flat
- Latex-free & non-toxic
- Might not hold up against vigorous scratchers
- Quality issues have been reported
2. Coleman Comfort Pet Mat – Best for User-Friendliness
Ths Coleman mat may be on the smaller side, but this makes it better suited to pet carriers and crates. Therefore, it may be a good option for those who travel a lot during the summer months.
The mat is thin enough to roll up and store in a closet or the trunk of a car. You can easily wipe down the outside, and the inside contains non-toxic gel beads that make the surface five to ten degrees cooler.
- Affordable option
- Good for pet carriers/crates
- Versatile (dogs, cats, humans)
- Very easy to use
- Thin enough to feel the floor beneath
- Too small for larger breeds
3. Coolaroo Elevated Pet Bed – Best Off-the-Floor Mat
While not exactly a dog cooling mat, the elevated design allows more air to circulate through the fabric, offering a nice respite from the heat. It comes in small, medium, and large sizes as well as a variety of colors. This elevated mat can support pets up to 100 pounds.
Just be careful with the fabric, as it’s not the most durable against rough play. On the other hand, the raised bed means that dogs with joint issues have less pressure on their legs and hips while enjoying the breeze beneath and around them.
- Elevated design, airy feel
- Flea, mite, & mold-resistant fabric
- Good for dogs with joint issues
- Variety of sizes and colors
- Assembly required
- Doesn’t have cooling technology
4. Chillz Cooling Mat for Dogs – Great for Joint Relief, Too
This Chillz cooling pad has a pressure-activated gel that doesn’t require water, refrigeration, or electricity. This helps to provide relief from the heat as well as joint pain. Feel free to use this product outside and inside on couches, beds, and carpet.
The mat folds up for easy storage and is available in medium, large, and extra-large sizes. According to the manufacturer, the fabric is puncture-resistant, but there have been customer reports of leaks.
- Absolutely no set-up required
- Good for hard & soft surfaces
- Puncture-resistant material
- Relief from the heat & joint pain
- The cooling effect isn’t as strong as others
- There have been reports of leaking
5. CoolerDog Hydro Cooling Mat – Good for Multi-Pet Households
CoolerDog is a more expensive option, but these pads are rich in features and convenience. There are three layers: closed-cell form, FlexiFreeze Ice Sheet, and a soft waterbed cushion. This provides comfort as well as a long-lasting cooling sensation.
A cool feature about these pads is that they are available in multi-packs. There are snaps on each side of the pad so that you can combine the mats for a larger cooling area. This is great for households that have more than one pet.
- Layered design
- Multi-packs available
- The pads are connectable
- A more expensive option
- The mat “sweats”
6. K&H Cool Bed II – Good for Medical Conditions, Too
This K&H cooling pad is a crowd favorite and comes in sizes small, medium, and large. According to the product description, this mat wicks the heat out of your pet and releases it into the air. It features a “Cool Core” that absorbs that heat and converts it to room temperature.
This mat doesn’t require any set-up; just fill it once with water and you’ll be set for life. There’s always the risk of a particularly sharp claw poking a hole in it, but most pet owners have had lots of success with it.
- Great customer reviews
- May help alleviate arthritis & dysplasia
- No weight limit
- Variety of sizes
- Works best on hard surfaces
- You should take precautions against leaks
7. SoothSoft Canine Cooler Pet Bed – Great Durability
This cooling mat uses SoothSoft Comfort Technology and memory foam to provide comfort and respite from the heat. Despite using water to keep dogs cool, the surface stays dry for greater ease of use. Try it indoors and outdoors, but make sure you use it on a hard surface.
You can also use this mat to help your dog relieve pain in the joints. The material is quite resistant to punctures and the whole pad keeps its shape very well.
- Holds up against scratching
- Keeps its shape well
- Works well in crates
- Designed to sit on hard surfaces
- More expensive
8. GreenPetShop Dog Cooling Mat – Long-Lasting Coolness
This pet cooling pad is a tried and true favorite. It uses pressure-activated gel so you don’t have to refrigerate it or plug it in. Rather, fill it with water and let it work its magic. It automatically cools down after about 15 minutes of non-use.
The pad comes in sizes small to extra-large and works on furniture and floors, among other surfaces. It maintains that coolness for a couple of hours, making it a great choice for beach days or travel.
- Automatically cools down
- Folds up for easy storage/transport
- Good for hard & soft surfaces
- Stays cool for up to 3 hours
- A few customers claim the materials are toxic to dogs
- Thinner than competitors
Q: Do I need a dog cooling mat?
No, it’s not a necessity, but lots of dog owners find it to be a great help in keeping their pups cool during the summer. When Rover tags only for a concert or festival, he can get overheated while standing on the sidewalk. A cooling pad ensures that he regulates his body temperature, especially when out and about.
Q: How do I know which cooling mat is best for me?
Some things to consider include what breed of dog you have, how much fur he has, any medical conditions, and what you want the cooling mat for. You might want to keep it at home or perhaps you want to use it for travel or outdoor events.
Q: What are the different types of cooling mats available?
Most cooling mats contain a gel substance that lowers the temperature when it meets water. That’s why you have to pour water into some of the mats. Others don’t require water, but the pad needs to go in the fridge for a half hour to get cool.
Q: Are there at-home alternatives to keep my dog cool?
Sure. You can keep your pet hydrated and blow a fan on them, or keep them inside where the air conditioning is on. You can also make your own cooling pad by placing an ice pack or two inside some fabric and stitching it closed.
It’s up to you whether you get a cooling mat or not. Remember, there are lots of affordable and durable products out there, so take a look through these top 8 and see which one best suits your needs.
Your pup deserves to feel healthy and happy this summer, so start shopping around now so you’re prepared for some fun in the sun.