There’s no question that us Brits are a nation of animal lovers. But where do we draw the line when it comes to bedtime – should we let our pets sleep with us, or should we set certain boundaries when it comes to sleeping? The answer is very divided: in fact, in 2021, a National Dog Survey was completed by over 231,000 UK dog owners, and it was found that just under half of respondents were found to share a bed with their dogs. Whether you’re about to get a pet and are considering your options, or perhaps you already have a pet and are thinking about letting them sleep in your bed with you, read on for the lowdown on what you should take into consideration when asking yourself if you want to share your sleep space with your furry best friend.
Whether or not to let your pet sleep in your bed is ultimately a personal choice that depends on your individual preferences and circumstances. Here are some factors to consider:
No matter how much you love your pet, some people really enjoy having their pets sleep in their bed with them, while others prefer to keep their sleeping space pet-free. There’s no right or wrong, and you should not feel guilty if you’d prefer to keep your bedroom out of bounds and just for you.
If your pet is prone to moving around, snoring, or waking up frequently, it could disrupt your sleep quality and leave you feeling tired in the morning.
Allergies and health concerns:
If you or anyone in your household has allergies or respiratory issues, it might be best to keep your pet out of the bedroom altogether. Even pets that technically aren’t shedders still do shed some hair and dander which can exacerbate breathing issues and make it more difficult to get to and stay asleep.
If your pet is well-trained and obedient, letting them sleep in your bed might not be an issue. However, if your pet has a tendency to chew, scratch, or soil the bed, it could be a problem. Certainly, wait until you are sure they are completely house trained to avoid any unwanted accidents, or you could invest in waterproof mattress protector if you’d feel more comfortable.
Size of the pet:
If your pet is large, they could take up a lot of space and make it difficult for you – and them – to get comfortable. In this case, it might be better to provide them with their own separate sleeping space.
With all this taken into account, the decision to let your pet sleep in your bed should be based on consideration as to what will work best for you and them. If you’re not sure, you could try it out for a few nights and see how it goes. Below are some pros and cons of having your pet sleep in bed with you:
- Sleeping with your pet can provide comfort and companionship for both you and your pet.
- It can increase feelings of security.
- Sleeping with a beloved pet can reduce anxiety for some people and help them feel more relaxed and calmer, leading to better sleep.
- It may help with bonding and attachment between you and your pet.
- It can provide warmth and comfort, especially in colder months.
- Some people may be allergic to their pets – this might not be such an issue during the day but may result in difficulty breathing and getting to sleep on a night.
- If your pet has poor hygiene or behaviour issues, such as excessive shedding, scratching, or snoring, it can affect your quality of sleep.
- Having a pet in bed with you may disturb your sleep as they move positions, groom themselves and snore. Your pet moving more is likely to result in you moving more, which can result in low-quality sleep.
- It may be harder to establish boundaries and dominance over your pet if it is used to sleeping in your bed.
- It can make it more difficult to train your pet to sleep independently.
Ultimately, the decision to let your pet sleep in your bed should be based on your own preferences and lifestyle, as well as your pet’s needs and behaviour. If you do decide to let your pet sleep in your bed, be sure to establish boundaries and rules to ensure a healthy and happy co-sleeping arrangement.
A good compromise could be to let your pet sleep in the same room as you, but not necessarily in bed with you. If you are healthy and tend to sleep well, having your pet in your bedroom should not contribute to significant sleep disturbances, and could still promote a feeling of closeness and security between you and them.
Treat them to a comfy and luxurious pet bed that will not only look good in your bedroom but will ensure that your pet is happy to sleep there so that you both benefit from a great night’s sleep.