Editor’s Note: In an effort to sniff out the best new dog products, we’ve launched Mingus & Dottie Try It, a monthly review column where our contributor Katherine and her pooches put some of these pawesome finds to the test!
This month Mingus and Dottie, in their undying efforts to find you the very best dog products (as well as live lives enviable to most humans), have reviewed the Kingston natural memory foam dog bed from Essentia. So, what did they think?
Essentia sent us a large Kingston dog bed to try out. It came in a big box, and we unwrapped it to investigate.
Dottie gave it a thorough once-over…
…and determined it satisfactory.
The Kingston is sturdy and well constructed, and its 100% organic cotton sherpa outer cover is extremely soft. On first glance, it might look like any old normal dog bed, maybe even a little boring. What makes the Kingston super special, though, is what’s inside — shredded natural latex memory foam that provides both excellent support and superior loft and cushion. (Yes, I might have curled up on it myself, just for a moment.) The outer cover is removable, washable, and boasts a non-slip bottom.
Essentia’s claim to fame is that they use only natural materials in their products, so their dog beds are free of adhesives, petroleum, and other scary materials that you don’t necessarily want your dogs putting their faces on. So everything’s 100% natural here, including the latex memory foam filler. (Quick science lesson: latex can be both synthetic and natural. Essentia’s latex foam is made from hevea milk, which is like sap, from rubber trees, making it the only natural memory foam in the world.) Having read enough articles about how the everyday materials found in our homes are slowly killing us, I’m happy to know that the Essentia bed isn’t full of scary chemicals and particles that are going to help bring about my or my dogs’ premature demise.
The excellent support and cushion provided by the Kingston’s memory foam can provide great orthopaedic benefit to older dogs, like Mingus with his rickety hip. The Kingston’s natural latex memory foam filler is also dust mite-repellent, which is awesome, because ew.
Mingus and Dottie have been using the Kingston bed for about two months now (yes, they share a bed — cute, huh?) and it’s kept its shape very well, still just as puffy and soft as it was when we pulled it from the box. Aside from its sturdy construction, I think the reason the Essentia dog bed keeps its shape so well has to do with the shredded memory-foam filling. Instead of being one solid hunk of memory foam, the Kingston’s filler is lots of small pieces of memory foam, kind of like popcorn. This allows it to shift, bounce back into place, and contour to your dog’s body without getting permanently molded or flattened out over time. (I’ve had memory-foam mattresses that have done that, and it’s not cool). As as result, you can “floof” the bed back into like-new shape at any time. (Of course, this also prevented us from trying that experiment from the old mattress commercials with the wine glass on the bed, where the shock-absorbent memory foam prevents the wine from spilling. But that’s okay. That could have been messy, and dogs don’t drink wine.)
After a month or so of use by two dogs, though, the bed was looking, well, filthy. The outer cover is removable and washable, so I stuck it in the washing machine to see how it withstood laundering. The cover was easy to remove and put back on, and it came sparkling clean in the washing machine. Awesome!
Overall, we love the Essentia Kingston bed. Complaints? The bed is rather heavy, due to the density of the memory foam, so it’s not ideal for travel. But if your dog bed tends to stay put, that’s not a problem. Also, I wish the cover were a darker color so that it wouldn’t show dirt so badly. (I guess really I wish my dogs weren’t so dirty.) A light-colored dog bed looks great for about 30 seconds, or however long it takes the dog to make contact with it. Going forward, we’ll probably buy a removable cover for the bed (like the ones from Molly Mutt) to help hide dirt between washings.
Those things aside, though, the Essentia Kingston is a fantastic bed, and Essentia’s 60-day guarantee makes it definitely worth a try. It’s by far one of the highest quality beds we’ve ever seen.
And, yes, it makes an excellent wrestling mat.