Should You Sleep With Your Pet? Health Risks and Benefits

It’s common for people to let their pets sleep in the same room and the same bed. However, is this something that you should be doing or avoiding? 

Our post below covers the potential health risks and benefits of sleeping with your pets. By the end, you’ll be able to have a better idea about whether you should be sleeping with your pets or not.

Health Risks Of Sleeping With Pets 

Makes Asthma & Allergies Worse

If you’re allergic to pets, sleeping with them can make your symptoms a lot worse. Moreover, it’s recommended for you to not even let your pets sleep in the same room as you let alone be in the same bed if you suffer from allergies. 

This is because allergies caused by pets can become a lot worse if you sleep with them throughout the entire night regularly. Pet dander, hair, and dead skin cells can be left in your bed afterward which can make the bedroom a place where your allergies become worse. 

People suffering from asthma will also find that letting their pets sleep in the same bed as them makes their condition worse. The dead skin cells, pet dander, and hair can cause respiratory issues that make the asthma condition more difficult to live with.

You can reduce pet dander and dead skin cells from being airborne by using an air purifier. If you consider buying an air purifier for allergies and asthma, make sure to find one with a true HEPA (High-Efficiency Particulate Air) filter as they’re the most effective at removing more of the microscopic particles. 

Potential Diseases

Those of you who aren’t allergic to your pets or who don’t suffer from asthma may still be leaving yourselves more exposed to certain diseases. Pets tend to come into contact with different things outdoors that you usually wouldn’t be near. 

This can lead to a range of pathogens from your pets being passed on to you while you’re sleeping together. These pathogens can lead to you developing a variety of diseases and experiencing diminished health.

You can minimize the risk of catching diseases from your pets by ensuring that you keep up with their vaccinations and any medication for fleas that they may need. However, this doesn’t give you a 100% certainty that you won’t contract a disease from your pets.

Interferes With Sleep 

One of the biggest issues that people experience when sleeping with pets is that their sleep is disrupted. Pets, such as dogs and cats may tend to move around in their sleep more, especially if they’re large. 

Similarly to humans, pets also experience deep REM sleep which is where they may start to make noises, kick, and become fidgety while sleeping. This can be a nuisance as you may end up getting accidentally scratched by your pet’s nails.

If you sleep with cats, you’ll likely end up being disturbed more as they’re nocturnal animals. It may be a good idea for you to buy a bed for your pet for them to sleep in. You can still place the bed near your pet so that they feel close to you but you won’t have to worry about them disturbing you throughout the night. 

Increased Aggression 

If you’re a new dog owner who lets your pet sleep in the same bed as you, you may have noticed that your pet becomes more aggressive and tries to be domineering over you. This is because you’ve allowed them to sleep on the bed with you which, to them, can seem like you’ve put them up a higher level in terms of hierarchy. 

One of the ways that you can counteract the problem of your pet becoming more aggressive towards you is to give them a specific area on the bed that they’re allowed to sleep on. Only enable them to sleep on the bed if they stay within the designated area. That way you’re providing them with a place to sleep where you’re still in charge so that you can prevent them from being too dominant towards you. 

Benefits Of Sleeping With Pets

Comfort

One of the main reasons as to why people love sleeping with their pets is because it feels comfortable and relaxing. Pets have a warmer body temperature compared to humans which is why many of us feel so relaxed when we sleep with our pets.

Not to mention, the breathing patterns of pets as they sleep can be soothing as they’re repetitive which can help you to sleep easier. 

Minimized Stress 

Sleeping with pets and feeling more relaxed is also a great way to help you reduce any stress that you may be feeling. If you struggle to sleep at night due to stress and anxiety, sleeping with a pet can ease your mind and enable you to have a good night’s rest. 

It has even been found that petting animals can release feel-good chemicals in your brain which is a contributing factor towards easing your stress. 

Security

People who live on their own with pets often find that letting them sleep in their bed gives them a better sense of security at night. This is more so the case when it comes to dog owners as pet owners feel as though keeping their dogs near them at night can keep them protected. 

In addition to this, people living on their own may prefer to sleep with their pets to avoid feeling lonely.

Improved Bond

Sleeping with your pet can make you and them happier by being in each other’s company. As a result, the bond that’s shared between you and your pet can be strengthened by spending more time together while sleeping. 

If you work and have a dog, there will be long duration’s of time during the day where you’re separated from each other. Letting your pet sleep with you can show them how much you appreciate and care for them. 

Conclusion

Now that you know more about the benefits and possible health risks of sleeping with your pets, you can feel more confident about whether or not it’s a good idea for you. The benefits can be awesome for you and your pet, but the potential risks can also cause you health problems. 

Be sure to weigh up both sides and see if you can figure out a compromise between you and your pet.

 

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