Do you let your dog sleep in bed with you? According to the American Kennel Club, 45% of the world’s population sleep side-by-paw with their beloved canine. A recent study by the National Institutes of Health found that most people who share their beds with pets experience more benefits than drawbacks. Even if you have more than one dog and your nightly routine is like a dog jigsaw puzzle, most people want to sleep next to their pooch. Dog Is Good has compiled the top reasons why co-sleeping with your pup is beneficial.
First, let’s knock out some un-truths about sleeping with Fido. Sleeping with your dog will promote poor behavior in the animal. Despite the rumor, allowing a dog on the bed doesn’t cause behavioral problems. If your dog is aggressive or has issues rooted in fear, sleeping on the bed didn’t cause them. These dominance theories were debunked long ago.
In addition, some people fear that sleeping with their dog is unhealthy and could lead to catching a disease from your pet. Experts agree that it would be extremely rare for something like that to occur, especially if the dog and the human are both in good health. What is considered good health for your pup? No fleas, ticks, parasites, up-to-date on vaccinations and regular check-ups. As for people, good health is defined as those who are not immunocompromised or those who suffer from pet allergies.
When you pet your dog, you can boost your brain’s release of oxytocin, the hormone known to make you feel good and happy. Petting your dog as you both drift into la-la land is a natural anti-depressant.
The rhythmic sound of your dog’s breathing, snoring and feeling their heartbeat, can lower your own heart rate. When you have a lowered heart rate going to bed, the outcome is generally less stress and more relaxation. In more good news, a study from the American Heart Association found a link between pet ownership and a healthy heart.
Ultimate Leg Warmer
Dogs are the perfect bed warmer, keeping you toasty on a cold night. They are warm and cozy and whether you are the big spoon or the little spoon, dogs beat a heated blanket every time.
Dogs are the ultimate watch-dogs. Their natural instinct is to protect. They are capable of hearing sounds four times further away than the human ear can discern. The 15 different muscles that move their ears in all directions, will alert you to danger much faster than your own hearing.
The argument about dog’s bringing allergen into the bedroom can be debated. A study found that infants who slept with their pets were less likely to develop allergies later on in life. Early exposure to dog allergens seems to have a positive impact. While not the case for every child, it’s worth considering for your family to let Fido stay on the bed.
Never Sleep Alone
Our favorite Dog Is Good sleep shirt sums it up perfectly:
Hair on the bed. And on the pillow. Someone to blame “it” on. Soft arm rest. No leg room. Buried toys. Drool. Being pushed to the very, VERY edge of your own bed. Four-legged spoon. Paws in your back. Circle, circle, dig, dig, change direction, circle, circle, sniff, collapse. Expensive dog bed sitting empty on the floor. Sleep-running. Burrow and tunneling. Dog breath. Upside-down super-dog poses. Doggy nose peeking out from under the covers. Smacky lip noises. Extra body hear. Ultimutt trust. No bed too small.