After a long day at work, you hurriedly flop into bed. Your pup noses open the bedroom door and jumps up beside you. You sleepily pet him while you doze off, and he settles into the corner of the bed. Does this sound familiar? It’s more common than you think.
Allowing pets to share the bed is commonplace for many pet owners. In fact, statistics show that roughly half of dog owners co-sleep with their dogs. However, just because it’s common doesn’t mean it’s a good thing. Let’s take a look at some of the benefits, and drawbacks, to sharing your bed with your dog.
Here are some pros to consider for allowing your dog to jump into bed with you at night:
Co-sleeping with your dog can create a comforting atmosphere and lead to healthier emotional wellbeing. It relieves the primal anxiety that haunts us before falling asleep. Having that kind of security is especially important when sleeping alone. Plus, when waking up you have someone to greet you. These little comforts go a long way.
Of course, there is the added bonus of extra warmth. A pup at the edge of the bed radiates heat better than any electric blanket. When winter sets in and you run out of blankets, your dog can add that extra bit of warmth. Plus, your body heat will help keep them warm too!
If you are wary about co-sleeping with your dog, check out these drawbacks. You might find them tolerable, or you might find your dealbreaker.
Letting your dog hop up into bed at night may exacerbate certain health concerns. Respiratory difficulties, like asthma, can go from mild to severe when exposed to pet dander long-term. Plus, the medication that controls allergies during the day won’t sustain overnight.
Despite getting to sleep faster, your dog can be responsible for waking you up in the middle of the night. Dogs hear all kinds of noises that don’t register to humans and often growl or bark to announce the threat. Unfortunately, there’s usually nothing to bark about. Dogs also tend to spread out, kick, or otherwise make a ruckus while you’re trying to sleep.
Dogs that sleep in the bed with their owners can become overly dependent on them. Sometimes, this dependence can manifest as Separation Anxiety when the owner isn’t home. This isn’t the case for all dogs, however, so your pup could be perfectly adjusted.
No matter what you choose, as long as you show your pup plenty of love and affection he will respond well – he might paw your door, though, unless he’s accustomed to his own bed!