Overview for How to Build a Murphy Bed for Your Dog
Photo: Brian Henn/Time Inc. Digital Studio


Here are the main parts of the project, in brief. You can download a parts diagram and cut list here.

1. The Cabinet. A simple box built from plywood and 1× material hides the mattress; we topped ours with a shelf trimmed with molding. Magnetic catches and a locking pin on one side secure the deck upright when not in use.
2. The Deck. Cabinet doors, held together with cleats and attached to the cabinet with a toy-box hinge, fold down to serve as the deck. The mattress is enclosed in a frame of 1× material that’s attached to the back sides of the doors.
3. The Drawer Front. A false drawer is fastened to the back of the bed frame with a toy-box hinge so that it can fold up to act as the "foot" of the Murphy bed.

Cut List to Build a Murphy Bed for Your Dog

For the cabinet:
1x8 sides: two @ 35¼ inches
1x8 top: one @ 24 inches
1x4 crosspieces: four @ 22½ inches
1x4 header: one @ 24 inches
¼-inch plywood back: one @ 24 x 36 inches
2 ½ inch baseboard: three @ cut to length
shoe molding: three @ cut to length

For the bed frame:
1x4 short sides: two at 19 inches
1x4 long sides: two @ 25 inches
1x4 crosspieces: two @ 19 inches
1x4 stop block: one @ 3 inches
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    Tools List

    • miter saw
      Miter saw
    • circular saw
      Circular saw
    • drill
    • pneumatic brad nailer
      Pneumatic nailer
    • multi-bit screwdriver
    • putty knife
      Putty knife
    • paintbrushes

    Shopping List

    1x8 Get an 8-foot length to make the cabinet box top and sides.

    1x4 Get three 8-foot boards make the header, the bedframe, and all the crosspieces.

    ¼-inch plywood Get half of a 4x8 sheet.

    1¼-inch trim-head screws

    Wood glue

    1¼-inch finishing nails

    2½-inch baseboard Get at least 4 feet.

    Shoe molding Get at least 5 feet.

    Cabinet doors Get two.

    Cabinet drawer front Get one.

    ¼ inch shims

    1-inch screws to attach the bed frame to the doors.

    Toy-box hinge Get three.

    Hardware for the doors and drawer

    Magnetic catches to hold the deck upright when the bed is not in use.

    ¾-inch finishing nails to attach the plywood back to the cabinet box.

    Wood filler

    220-grit sandpaper


    Semi-Gloss Paint

    Knob and 2-inch threaded pin to make the locking pin