The Pack Mentality – Pets in the Bed
Many people enjoy sharing their beds with their pet, sleeping snuggled up to their fur-baby in blissful slumber. It’s comfortable for both of you and cements the pack mentality that is inherent in dogs and often learned in cats.
Is It Healthy?
There are some downsides to sleeping with your pet, though. Most shed, which not only gets on covers, sheets and mattresses, but also exacerbates allergies. A non-shedding, hypoallergenic dog or cat won’t have this issue, but most will. Additionally, pet dander can get into your sinuses and eyes, making for an uncomfortable and itchy night. If you do want to snuggle up to your favorite pal, be sure to brush and wash them regularly, and see if you can train them to stay at the foot of the bed. You may want to invest in some over-the-counter antihistamines.
Is it Safe for the Pet?
If you have a small dog or kitten, the drop from bed to the floor can seem immense. A fall can have disastrous effects, such as a broken bone, a disjointed hock, or even in severe cases death. Getting up on the bed is an issue as well. If you don’t have a large dog or limber cat, the leap can result in a failed attempt, which can cause your beloved pet injuries as well.
One thing that you can do is buy or build a set of stairs leading up to your bed. They should be relatively wide, and not very steep. If your pet has vision issues, this might not be a remedy for the situation. It’s also best to keep a nightlight on, so they can see going up and down the stairs in case they need to leave the comfort of bed for a water break during the night.
Protecting Your Mattress
If you are going to sleep with your pet, you should have a high-quality mattress cover to protect your investment. Mattresses aren’t inexpensive, and the last thing you need is an accident or fur-baby to stain yours irreparably. Once stained, it’s almost impossible to clean, so be sure to protect your purchase. You can also buy diapers for dogs, so if potty-training is an issue, this is a must. However, most dogs won’t mess where they sleep, so depending on your dog’s instinct, this may be a moot point.
To Cuddle or Not to Cuddle?
Ultimately, it is of course your decision whether or not you sleep with a pet. There are benefits to this, such as bonding and a lowering of your heart-rate, but there are cons too. Consider your health, mattress and pet’s safety when allowing them to curl up in bed with you.