Should Your Pet Sleep with You?
Many of us have thought about it. Others are probably doing it already. What are we talking about? We are talking about the age-old question of whether it is a good or bad idea to have your pet sleep with you in the same room and even on the same bed. The answer to this question is probably more important for owners of disabled or handicapped pets since we take care of pets with special needs.
So the question remains to be answered, should we allow our pets to sleep with us in the same room and bed. For some of us, the question may be moot because we are already doing it, having our pets sleep with us. Either way, it would be great to know if this is a good or a bad thing to do. So let us go through the pros and cons before we decide.
There is actually a study done to try to answer this question. It was conducted last December 2015 by the Center for Sleep Medicine of the Mayo Clinic in Arizona. The study was conducted with 150 patients. Half of the patients slept in individual rooms with their pets while the other half without their pets. The results were not entirely conclusive. Although 41 percent of the patients who slept with their pets felt they had a better quality of sleep and that they were able to fall asleep faster, 20 percent felt that having their pets with them during sleep did not help at all. In fact, they felt that having their pet with them actually disturbed their sleep.
The study does show that there are benefits for the owner when sleeping with their pets. But does it work both ways? Does the pet also get any benefits? Are they also sleeping well? The answer to these questions is that it depends on certain factors that need to be taken in to consideration. Let us talk about some of these factors.
A major factor is knowing if your sleeping habits are compatible with your pet’s sleeping habits. What time do you usually sleep? Does your pet sleep around the same time? What do you do before sleeping? Is it something that might disturb your pet’s sleeping habits? Are you or your pet easily disturbed by soft sounds? Do you move a lot while sleeping? These are just some of the information you need to know to find out if you and your pet’s sleeping habits are compatible. Knowing your sleeping habits is important so that you and your pet can sleep well together if you do decide to sleep with your pet.
It is also important to take into consideration the number of pets you have. For instance, one or two pets are ok, but three or more may be too much. It may be disturbing for both you and your pets. Size will also matter. A big pet may not have enough room to sleep comfortably on your bed or in your room. Both factors are important in making sure your pets are comfortable and relaxed when they sleep. You may find that your pets are better off sleeping in a different area of your home using their own sleeping facility.
There is also the need to make sure your pet is well groomed and clean. If your pet goes outdoors every day, it might not be a good idea to have them sleep in your room unless you can take the time to clean them up daily before going to bed.
Taking all these and other factors into consideration, remember that what is important is to make sure you and your pet are both comfortable and happy with the situation. Most pets do not really need to sleep with their owners. It is usually us, the owners, who feel that we need to sleep with our pets or that our pets need to sleep with us. This is especially true of owners of handicapped pets. For most pets, handicapped or not, having a comfortable and warm place to sleep is all they need.