Sleeping With Your Pet – A Do or a Don’t?

 

The site of you sleeping in your bed or dozing on your couch often proves to be an irresistible temptation for many pets to try to sneak in some snuggles. Are you the kind of pet parent with strict rules about pets in the bed? Or are you more about “the more the merrier”? Letting your pets in the bed with you or your children has been a long tug of war with pros and cons on each side. We look at them both to help you decide what’s right for your family!

Should Your Pet Be Sleeping In Your Bed?

Con’s

  • Whether you have a diagnosed sleeping disorder or simply struggle with bouts of insomnia, pets in the bed can be a distraction. Most animals aren’t programmed to sleep the long eight hour night that humans need and restlessness or playfulness on their part can be unwelcome in the wee morning hours. Not to mention if you have a pet that snores!
  • Diseases that pets can pass on to their owners while sharing a bed occasionally make headlines resulting in some pets getting put on the couch. While there are risks involved here they are often minimal with a healthy well cared for animal. The risk is much smaller with full-time house pets than those who are prone to roam outdoors too. If you’re worried about your pet sleeping with your or your child, talk to your vet about the risks of MRSA, bubonic plague, staph, Chagas disease, and meningitis.
  • If you decide that sleeping with your pet is a must make sure that your sheets and blankets cleaned and shook out frequently to keep pet dander down. Even the cleanest kept pets will shed and leave behind dander that can cause respiratory issues or aggravate allergies.

 

Pro’s

  • With a few exceptions mentioned above, there really is little threat from letting your pet join you on the bed. Scientifically the cases of the diseases one can contract are very, very small. Furthermore, while some people may struggle with sleeping disorders, still more find that having a pet on the bed with them is soothing.
  • Pets have been shown to help soothe children and make them feel safer. This benefit isn’t limited to just kids, though! Lots of people say they feel calmer or safer with a pet on the bed with them. Especially if they live alone.
  • In the winter, no one is going to complain about the extra heat! Pets keep your bed cozy, give you something to snuggle, and can help keep that heating bill down!

photo credit: What? This Isn’t How You Get Out of Bed? via photopin (license)
photo credit: 164/365: Three is a crowd via photopin (license)

 

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