Create a Cozy DIY Pet Bed

This snuggly pet bed is the perfect place for your furry friend to nap.

Do you have a pet that loves to snuggle under the covers? We do! One of our recent adoptees, Rocky, cannot sleep unless he is nestled beneath the covers. It turns out that this behavior is normal. Dogs are den animals and certain breeds tend to burrow more than others. Dachshunds, in particular, were bred to burrow. Since Rocky is half dachshund, it makes perfect sense. When we gave him a regular pet bed with a blanket on top, he would get under and squirm until he was comfortable. All that squirming would cause the blanket to fall off. We have the perfect solution: the pet snuggle bed.

Dog Laying on Black and Blue Chevron Pet Bed

Dog Laying in Pet Bed with Blanket

Some dogs love to snuggle under covers.

Photo by: Debbie Wolfe

Debbie Wolfe


  • fleece fabric in contrasting colors
  • tape measure
  • scissors
  • pins
  • sewing machine (not shown)
  • thread in coordinating colors (not shown)
  • pillow insert (not shown)
Black and Blue Chevron Fleece with Scissors, Tape Measure and Pins

Snuggle Pet Bed Supplies

Fleece is the best type of fabric to use for a pet bed.

Photo by: Debbie Wolfe

Debbie Wolfe

A Note on Fabric

Fleece is a wonderful fabric to use for this project. It’s inexpensive and comes in a variety of colors and patterns. It’s washable and will not shrink. The best part of fleece is that it will not fray after it’s cut. This saves a ton of time when sewing because it’s not necessary to hem the edges.

Cutting the Fabric

Some sewing and a little math are required to make this bed. As long as you can sew a straight line, this bed is not hard to make. This particular bed was made from a square pillow insert. The bed can be made with any size pillow you want. You will need to determine the size of the rectangle you will need to make an envelope style pillow cover. Here’s the basic formula:

pillow insert height + 1 inch = X

(pillow insert length x 2) + 6 inches = Y

For example, the pillow insert used for Rocky’s bed was 24 x 24 inches:

24 inches + 1 inch = 25 inches (X)~height

(24 inches x 2) + 6 inches = 54 inches (Y)~length

The rectangle for 24 x 24 pillow insert needs to be 25 inches (height) x 54 inches (length).

Got it?

Make the Pillow Cover

Black Fleece Fabric with Pins

Pin Down the Envelope Flat of the Cushion Cover

Use as many pins as needed to keep the fabric together while sewing.

Once the rectangle is cut to its proper size, it is time to pin the envelope part of the cushion cover. Lay the fabric with the right side (in the case of fleece, the fuzzier side) facing up. Fold the left and right edges in, overlapping them by 4 inches. Measure it to make sure it matches the pillow insert’s dimensions or lay your pillow insert on top. You should have at least an inch of space all around it. Pin it in place then sew the top and bottom with a 1 inch seam allowance.

Black Fleece Fabric Cushion Cover

Pet Snuggle Bed Envelope Cushion Cover

An envelope cushion cover requires minimal sewing.

Photo by: Debbie Wolfe

Debbie Wolfe

Turn the cover inside out and ta-da; you have a pillow cover! Go ahead and insert the pillow to ensure a good fit. Remove the insert before you start the next step.

For the Blanket Top:

The top of the snuggle bed will require a piece of fleece that is larger than the insert. This will allow your pet to fit under the cover. It needs to be as wide as the bottom envelope cover for the pillow and at least 6-10 inches longer. It really depends on how big your pet is and how much blanket space is needed. For Rocky’s bed the top fabric was cut to these dimensions:

 25 inches (height) x 35 inches (length)

Add the Top Fabric

Blue Chevron Fleece Pinned to Black Fleece Fabric

Pin the Top Piece of Fleece to the Envelope Cushion Cover

It's easier to pin the corners and middle of the fabric first.

Photo by: Debbie Wolfe

Debbie Wolfe

Lay the bottom envelope cover down with the insert opening facing the bottom. Now it’s time to pin the contrasting blanket on top. Since the blanket part of this pet bed is larger than the bottom, it will need to be pleated in order to make it fit. A pleat is a fold (or folds) in the fabric, where the fabric is doubled back on itself and sewn in place.To do this, start with pinning the corners of your top piece of fabric to the four corners of your pillow cover base. Then, find the midpoint of each side and pin it down. Pin the midpoints of each space to the left and right of the center of three of the sides. Remember to leave one side (in our case, the bottom) of the cushion open.

Make Pleats

Blue Chevron Fabric Pinned

Pet Snuggle Bed Make a Gather

The excess fabric will need to be gathered to lay flat.

Photo by: Debbie Wolfe

Debbie Wolfe

Now you need to create pleats. Remember, you will have excess fabric on top because it’s bigger than the base. Simply pinch the fabric into a fold until it lines up with the cushion cover on the bottom. Then, fold the fabric over to one side and pin down. Fold each pleat in the same direction. After you complete this for each side of the cushion, you should now have three sides pinned down. Sew the top to the cushion cover.

Create a Custom Look

Blue and Chevron Pattern Pillow Beds

Snuggle Pet Beds in Blue and Chevron

These snuggle pet beds are great for pets of all sizes.

Photo by: Debbie Wolfe

Debbie Wolfe

Play around with different contrasting colors and patterns for a custom look. When it needs to be washed, simply remove the cover and pop it in the washer and dryer.

Make Your Pet Happy

Two Dogs in Seperate Pet Beds

Two Dogs in Pet Beds with Blanket

Dogs of all shapes and sizes love to snuggle under covers.

Photo by: Debbie Wolfe

Debbie Wolfe

Pets of all shapes and sizes love to snuggle. The best part of this project is that it can be customized to fit any special furry friend. The snuggle pet bed also makes a great gift for animal lovers.

How to Turn Old Furniture Into Pet Beds

See All Photos

Nightstand Bed

We turned an old flea-market dresser into a combination bedside table and pet bed. To make it, we cut out the bottom two drawers and relined them with beadboard, then coated the entire piece in a fun color. A fluffy cushion in the bottom makes it a welcoming retreat.

Take a look at the step-by-step instructions

©Brian Patrick Flynn

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Octagon tables were all the rage 40 years ago; today you can find them secondhand for next to nothing. We updated this one by removing the door and giving the whole piece a fresh coat of paint. Then we made it pet friendly by lining the inside with fabric and adding an inviting cushion.

See how we made it.

©Brian Patrick Flynn

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Find out how to make a table like this

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Get the how-to instructions

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Find out how to make this project

Photo By: Susan Teare ©Susan Teare

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To make this comfy chair, the legs were cut off an old office chair. Furniture pads were added to the bottom to restabilize it. Then the entire chair was covered in a soft blanket and felt letters.

See how we did it

Photo By: Susan Teare ©Susan Teare

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