One of the things dog owners look forward to every day is to curl up in bed with their dogs after an exhausting day. While it is instantly relaxing and satisfying, curling up with dogs at night have more benefits to humans, especially to women.
Recently, a new study found that women sleep better with a dog next to them than cuddling with their human partners. According to a study done by researchers at Canisius College, women’s sleep is less likely to disrupt when they sleep with dogs than when they sleep next to humans.
Out of the 950 women surveyed by the group, 55 percent of them sleep next to their dogs while the rest cuddle up with their partners. “Compared with human bed partners, dogs who slept in the owner’s bed were perceived to disturb sleep less and were associated with stronger feelings of comfort and security,” the study states.
As the study went deeper, the researchers found that the finding is not the same with cats. The study says, “Conversely, cats who slept in their owner’s bed were reported to be equally as disruptive as human partners, and were associated with weaker feelings of comfort and security than both human and dog bed partners.”
Because the study is based on a survey and self-reported data, Dr. Christy L. Hoffman, the lead researcher of the study, confirms that the results are self-perception-based and they need more research on the effects of pets on the sleep quality of humans.
Before this study was conducted, Mayo Clinic has also done research on the relaxing effects of sleeping next to dogs. In 2017, they found that people with better sleep have canines next to them throughout the night.
An author and a sleep medicine specialist, Lois Krahn says, “Most people assume having pets in the bedroom is a disruption. We found that many people actually find comfort and a sense of security from sleeping with their pets.”
However, Dr. Krahn suggests pet owners to not snuggle with their dogs under the covers. While sleeping with dogs has benefits, they may compromise their shut-eye quality if they snuggle with their dogs on the bed.
Apart from this, there are other downsides of sleeping with dogs such as getting allergies and having dominance issues. When a human lets his dog sleep in his bed, the dog will think they are equal, making them feel dominant.
Seattle veterinarian Cori Gross explains, “People worry that allowing your dog to sleep in your bed will create dominance issues and will teach your dog that you are not the leader of the pack. If your dog already has dominance issues with you as the owner, then having them sleep in bed with you can be a problem. But if they do not have those issues, then it will not create them.” To combat this, Gross suggests getting a dog bed so the dog will think that sleeping in a human’s bed is not a right, but a privilege.
Nonetheless, there’s no reason not to let your dog sleep in your bedroom. According to Susan Nelson, a clinical associate professor at the Kansas State University College of Veterinary Medicine, “Dogs add companionship; they provide extra warmth on a cold night. They evoke a sense of security, especially for children who are scared of the dark. They give an added sense of safety from potential intruders. It may also create a greater bond between you and your dog. Let’s face it: It’s hard to beat a warm, furry bundle of unconditional love.”
Do you also sleep with your canine pet? Don’t forget to share this article and share this good news with every dog lover you know.