Living in the company of a small dog or cat is a huge privilege. Pets give us unconditional love, they don’t shout at us, they are sensitive and we know that simply petting them releases endorphins. That’s not all: anyone who has children knows how important a dog or cat can be for the balanced development of children.
So is it all that perfect? Well, yes, or perhaps no, or rather yes, but attention is required when night falls…
We already have had the chance to explore the pros and cons of sleeping with cats or dogs on the bed. We have also spoken about the positions in which dogs sleep , now let’s try and understand to what extent the quality of sleep can be improved or worsened by the presence of a pet on top of the bedcovers.
Sleeping with cats and dogs: loss of sleep or improvement of sleep quality?
Besides any individual differences, sleep quality is often better when a dog or a cat accompanies us into the dimension of deep sleep. Cats, in particular, seem to have an incredible sleep-inducing power: it’s enough to have a kitten next to us and… ZZZZZZ… we nod off in a flash.
For this to happen, we must add the sensation of warmth and love that the presence of a pet transmits to the person sleeping, the sense of safety and the psychological closeness with that “tamed” form of our own wild instincts that are embodied by our cat or dog.
Our deep sleep pattern does not always last as long as we would like when our bed is shared by our “4-legged friend”. Cats are above all nocturnal animals while dogs naturally tend to wake up several times during the night. Then there are animals that are stressed, old or ill who, due to specific needs, do not have the same sleep pattern as humans. For this reason, the sleep of our little masters of the house is interrupted, broken down and shortened, and in the long run, this can lead to consequences.
10% of pet owners experience difficulties in sleeping
One research¨ shows that in 1 out of 10 cases, allowing a pet to stay in the bedroom can create sleeping difficulties. Does this mean that having a pet in the home can pose a health hazard? On the contrary! Living with animals, apart from giving them the chance to be looked after, makes life more pleasant. So what should we do?
Sleeping with cats and dogs: a simple trick for not losing hours of sleep
Falling asleep with your dog or cat on your bed is really pleasant, and it takes distinctly less time to actually fall asleep. When a dog snores, however, or when a cat wakes up to start playing in the middle of the night, or a bird sings like a cockerel, well, you will sleep less and worse. So what’s the trick? Let’s see what to do in 3 very simple steps:
- leave the door wide open
when your dog or cat wakes up, they will feel free to abandon the bed and go for a drink, see to their bodily needs, or simply go for a walk around the rooms in the home without disturbing people who are sleeping
- By creating a corner for your pet
a good quality bed, and providing water, a small amount of food and a few personal “objects”, will make your cat or dog understand that this corner is just for them; they will automatically return to this spot, even during the night
- Try and make your cat or dog go to sleep on their own bed
if your pet finds it difficult to sleep, besides taking them for a check-up at the vet’s, you can try to have them fall asleep as you pet them on their bed; caressing a pet not only makes them feel good, but it induces a deep feeling of calmness and relaxation also in you, which is essential for getting a proper night’s sleep.