Want A Good Night's Sleep? Share A Bed With Your Pet
The Debrief: Yep, it's TOTALLY fine to have snuggles with your cat and or dog
I have a cat and he stalks, king-like, into my room every night around 2am, and settles, quite sassily, in between me and my husband. He creates a cat-like space between us, and if I wake up in the middle of the night and notice, he gives me a look that says, ‘You got a problem, bitch?’ and puts a suggestive paw over my husband’s shoulder.
While this display used to piss me off quite a bit (because WTF is my cat doing and why is he in love with my husband and not me), it actually turns out sharing a bed with your cat and dog is integral to a good night’s sleep.
New research from Mayo Sleep Clinic has found that a number of people found they slept better with an animal snuggled in beside them. Out of a study of 150 participants, 49% owned pets and while 20% of owners said sometimes animals could interrupt their sleep with ‘wandering’, ‘snoring’ or ‘whimpering’, more said it was an advantage.
Study author Lois Krahn said: ‘Patients volunteered that they deliberately acquired a dog or cat to help them relax. People sleeping alone, not always single but sometimes with a partner who travels or works some nights, more often spoke of the beneficial companionship stemming from a pet in the bedroom or on the bed.’
She added: ‘Many pet owners view companion animals as family members that they wish to incorporate into as many aspects of their life as possible. Because humans spend considerable time sleeping, a pet owner’s desire to have animals close at night is understandable. The value of these experiences, although poorly understood, cannot be dismissed because sleep is dependent on a state of physical and mental relaxation.’
While I’ll admit that having little Theo in my bed is nice and comforting (despite the daily marking of his territory), I doubt having a larger animal would be so cosy in our rickety Ikea bed. But if you’re the kind of person who finds it difficult to sleep at night (I pass out immediately, so not really an issue for me), then maybe inviting Felix or Fido into your bed could be the answer to getting some shut eye.
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