Sleeping with pets can disturb rest
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A recent study has found that sleeping with a pet in the bed is causing a more disruptive sleeping pattern for people than ever before. Sleep is an important factor of health and some experts say if a pet is fussing (and keeping you awake) it’s time to cut the cord, and give him his own bed.
The study was conducted by the Mayo Clinic and showed that approximately 10 percent of pet owners who sleep in the bed with their pets experience some degree of insomnia.
That number is ten times higher than it was in 2002 when only one percent of pet owners said they had difficulty sleeping due to their pet. One explanantion for this change, is that it reflects the changing relationship between people and their pets.
This theory was further supported by another recent study, which found that more than 80 percent of people see their pets as a member of the family. In the same way that many parents sleep with their toddlers in the bed, it is thought that many pet parents exhibit the same behavior with their furry children.
Insomnia aside, is it in fact healthy to sleep with your dog or cat sharing the bed with you? Mayo Clinic professor Lois E. Krahn says that allowing an animal to sleep on the bed isn’t necessary unhealthy. But sleep is such an important component of your health, that if you are one of those 10% that stuggle to sleep with your pet sharing your bed space, then it may end up being a bad lifestyle choice for you personally.
Krahn said that since many pet parents view themselves as parents, it’s difficult to make a pet sleep in their own bed, especially if they give their owner those puppy dog eyes. Regardless, Krahn suggests giving a dog their own bed if they are disturbing the peace by hogging covers, snoring, jumping on the bed or the like.
Sleep is an important part of our health and wellbeing, and you shouldn't feel like you are neglecting your dog or cat, but making the bedroom a “no pet zone.” And if you feel guilty, instead try spending good quality time with them during the day, so everyone can get a great night’s sleep on their own in the evening.