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Sleeping With Your Pet: Benefits And Risks!

Owning a pet involves more than merely playing, walking, and snuggling. At night, when the home is quiet down and it's time for everyone to retire, it's not uncommon for a pet to want to be close to you or their favorite family member.

It is common for the people in the equation to want their dogs to sleep by their side. The crucial question is if allowing your pet to sleep with you has any health benefits.

You may believe that keeping your pet at your side is merely a matter of comfort, but this is not the case. There are health benefits connected with spending the night with your pet.

But, there are a few hazards involved. Let's examine the advantages and disadvantages so that you can choose whether sharing a bed with your closest friend is the best option in "Sleeping with Your Pet: Benefits and Risks!" by BestForPets (bestforpets.org).

The Health Benefits of Allowing Your Pet to Sleep with You

If you can get over losing a portion of your bed and hearing your pet snore, you may already be reaping the health advantages of sharing your bed with your animals.

If you’re on the fence about having your dog or cat sleep in your bed at night, these health advantages may sway your decision.

Improved Mental Health

Pets are an excellent tool to combat depression, PTSD, and a variety of other mental disorders that many of us face everyday. Most individuals release oxytocin and serotonin while interacting with a pet.

These feel-good hormones can help you combat depression, reduce anxiety, and feel more at peace. Due to the companionship it provides, sleeping with your pet may also boost your self-esteem and lessen your fear.


Increases Theta Brainwaves

As stated previously, sleeping with a pet increases the production of oxytocin in the brain. In turn, this hormone stimulates theta brainwaves. These brain waves are created during REM sleep, which we all require in order to awaken feeling refreshed.


Eliminating Insomnia

Insomnia may be highly damaging to a person’s health. Having a pet in the bed with you and encouraging the production of feel-good hormones can aid a person who cannot sleep.

Those who have been suffering from sleep deprivation are frequently able to finally fall asleep when their pet is present.


More Restful Sleep

We all need sleep-good sleep. Instead of tossing and turning, the reassuring sense we get from having our dogs in bed with us might help us sleep better.

Frequently, pet owners enjoy a more restful night’s sleep when their trusty friend is napping next to them.


Reducing Blood Pressure

All of the calming effects of having a pet close are also beneficial for blood pressure. Research have demonstrated that keeping a pet helps lower hypertension and cardiovascular health concerns.

Not only can pets encourage increased physical activity, but the stress relief they provide can also be helpful for the heart.


Improved Immunity

The presence of dogs in the home immediately increases the amount of germs, bacteria, and especially dander. While many individuals attempt to avoid being exposed to such items, having them in the environment might help build immunity.

This is particularly advantageous for youngsters. A child’s probability of getting allergies as an adult is decreased if they share a bedroom with a pet.

The Risks of Allowing Pets to Sleep with You

There are certain health benefits to keeping a pet in your bed at night, but there are also some hazards associated. Before opting to allow your pet to sleep on your bed, you should be aware of the potential drawbacks.


Allergies

Some people with pet allergies are simply unable to live without a cherished companion. But, if you are allergic, allowing that creature inside your bedroom might be a grave error.

If you have allergies, it is recommended to keep dogs and cats away of your bedroom. While you’re attempting to sleep, their presence in that environment might be quite disruptive.


Reduced Sleep

Maybe your dog snores excessively or your cat enjoys waking you up at 3 a.m. If this is the case, then sharing a bed with them may reduce the amount of sleep you receive.

As stated previously, everyone requires a restful night’s sleep. If your pet prevents you from sleeping, it may be better to keep them out of bed when you’re attempting to relax.


Germ Exposure

The introduction of germs and pathogens into the home by pets is a double-edged sword. This is especially true for persons with compromised immune systems.

Although it may not occur frequently, dogs can occasionally carry harmful pathogens into the home. If you or someone in your household has poor immunity, it might be prudent to keep the family pet out of the bedroom.


Aggression

Having your dog or cat share your bed is not always a pleasant experience. When a pet is asleep, they are not totally aware of their surroundings. It is identical to humans.

Unexpectedly startling, bumping against, or jostling the animal may provoke some anger. When dogs and cats share a bed with their owners, it is not uncommon for them to bite or scratch their owners. For this reason, parents must exercise extreme caution around their children.

Children are incapable of detecting signals of aggressiveness or abnormal behavior in animals. This can result in mishaps that parents would want to avoid.

Is It Good for Your Pet?

Obviously, not all pets should sleep with their owners at night. Tiny creatures such as gerbils, guinea pigs, birds, and the like must be in a secure location at night. Yet, for the other animals, the intimacy they experience when sleeping with their humans is highly beneficial.

It strengthens the link between people and animals. Having the animal at our side also helps the animal feel reassured and protected, as it does for us.

Final Thoughts

Clearly, there are both advantages and disadvantages to allowing your pet to sleep on your bed at night. Before deciding what is best for your case, as said in “Sleeping with Your Pet: Benefits and Risks!” by BestForPets (bestforpets.org), you should consider all available possibilities.

Sure, you may alter your mind at any time; but, if your pet has been accustomed to being by your side, they may feel rejected if you decide to send them away. The last thing you want to do as a responsible pet owner is accidentally harm your pet.

Author Image

Dr. Deborah Fletcher

Deborah R. Fletcher, DVM, is a skilled veterinarian with more than 15 years of experience dealing with companion and exotic animals. She has experience caring for a variety of animals, including household cats and dogs, reptiles, birds of prey, and even primates. Dr. Fletcher is a valuable part of the BestForPets team, where she contributes to their aim of providing pets and their owners with the finest possible treatment and services.

Veterinarian (DVM) Dr. Deborah Fletcher

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