You’re certainly not alone if you’re someone who loves to snuggle up with your pet at night. According to a survey of pet owners by the American Pet Products Association, half of dogs in America and 62 percent of cats sleep in their owner’s beds. However, sleeping with your furry loyal companion isn’t exactly good for your health. And you should absolutely be mindful of how to sleep better at night. Read on to find out why you shouldn’t sleep with your pet.
According to Psychology Today, you simply shouldn’t sleep with your pet because they can interrupt how much sleep you actually get at night, which can cause negative effects to your overall health. Plus, it can also be unsanitary–I mean, you never know what’s lingering on your pet’s paws.
As Reader’s Digest notes, it’s no surprise that cat litter boxes can be seriously gross. And while you may be an expert litter box cleaner, you can’t guarantee that there won’t be any waste that gets carried into your bed. Similarly, you wouldn’t want to to get flea bites or rashes from your cat or dog either.
Other health concerns for pet owners who wish to sleep with their pets include allergies and asthma. Even if you’re not necessarily allergic to animal fur, you may be allergic to traces of allergens found in your pet’s fur. And as said before, you never really know what your pet is bringing into bed with them when they come to you for nighttime snuggles.
Derek Damin of Kentuckiana Allergy, Asthma & Immunology tells Pet MD that people who have pet allergies or asthma should keep their pets out of not just their bed, but out of their bedroom entirely. And if you don’t have allergies or asthma, Derek says it’s okay to sleep with your pet as long as they don’t disturb your sleep.
In fact, many people claim that sleeping with their pets improves their sleep since it calms and soothes them. Plus, your loyal companion can also provide tons of extra warmth at night too.
Dr. Charles Bae, a sleep medicine expert at Cleveland Clinic, explains to TODAY how sleeping with a pet can actually improve your health– as long as they’re not disrupting your sleep. “Pets can help people with anxiety and help people relax,” Charles says. “I can imagine some human bed partners that are more disruptive than smaller pets.”
Ultimately, you can decide on your own whether or not you wish to continue sleeping with your pet. While there are some health risks, other research has certainly found that sleeping with your pets can improve the overall quality of your sleep. However, you should skip doing so if you have allergies or asthma, or have multiple pets to sleep with at night. Of course it’s important that you put your own sleep quality first, because if you don’t, you could be faced with unexpected health concerns later on.
We’ve got you covered on all of the sleeping tips that you need for your best night’s sleep yet. For more, make sure to check out why you shouldn’t sleep without socks on, bedtime habits you should do to sleep better at night, and the one reason why you shouldn’t sleep with an iPhone.