Should you let your pet in your bedroom?

There was a bit of a debate going on in our house the other day.  Rhys said that he really wants to move house soon, so that we can get a pet dog.  The thing is, Nerys is really quite scared of dogs at the moment, so she wasn’t too happy with him saying that!

At the moment we don’t have any pets, but Rhys really would absolutely love to have a dog one day.

My family have always been more cat people than dog people, but Steve is allergic to cat hair, so if we are going to get a pet one day it most likely will be a dog.  Hopefully Nerys will be less scared of them by the time that day comes!

If we did have a dog though, it would have to be kept out of our bedroom because I’m pretty sure that, while it’s not as bad as cat hair, dog hair wouldn’t be great for Steve and his asthma.

As a general rule though, do you think pets should be let in our bedrooms or not?  

Fitted bedroom specialists DM Design has analysed the arguments both for and against this decision:

cat sleeping on a bed

For some people it’s a definite yes.

A lot of the time people get pets for comfort, and for company, so it makes complete sense for them to be allowed into the bedroom.

I can completely see how nice it would be to have the weight and warmth of your beloved dog on the foot of your bed as you sleep.

The Mayo Sleep Clinic in Arizona carried out a study that found that the people who let their pets sleep in their bedroom with them felt safer, more secure and more relaxed.  They also had a better night’s rest.

The author of the study, Lois Krahn, explained:

‘Many pet owners view companion animals as family members that they wish to incorporate into as many aspects of their life as possible. Because humans spend considerable time sleeping, a pet owner’s desire to have animals close at night is understandable.”

She also mentioned that people who, for whatever reason, slept alone mentioned that having their pet in the bedroom or on the bed at night gave them a reassuring feeling of companionship.

A further study involved 40 healthy adults having their sleep evaluated with a dog in the bedroom, over a five-month period.

The results of this study showed that they slept better when their pet was on their bed, although not really surprisingly their sleep quality did deteriorate when their pet actually slept under the covers with them.

Dr Krahn thinks that part of the reason people choose to sleep with their pets in the room is down to how our relationships with them have changed over the years.

She commented:

“Today, many pet owners are away from their pets for much of the day, so they want to maximize their time with them when they are home. Having them in the bedroom at night is an easy way to do that. And, now, pet owners can find comfort knowing it won’t negatively impact their sleep.”

So far, so much in favour of letting pets sleep in our bedrooms!

There is though, another side to the argument.

The researchers at the Mayo Clinic have suggested that people who already have difficulty sleeping should think about keeping their pets out of the bedroom.

Another of their research surveys found that 53% of pet owners suggested that their sleep was disrupted by their pets to some extent every night.  Snoring seemed to be an issue for quite a few of the pet owners!

The medical director of the sleep disorders centre has this bit of advice for pet owners:

“Every patient has to weigh the advantages and disadvantages of sleeping with pets and make a personal decision about the sleeping arrangements in the household. Some people are very attached to their pets and will tolerate poorer sleep in order to be near them at night.”

The other thing to consider before letting your pet sleep in  your room is whether either you or your partner have asthma or allergies.

If that’s not an issue at all though, then according to the research it really is just a matter of personal choice if you want to sleep with your pets or not.

What are your thoughts on this?

Do you sleep with your pets in the room or is your bedroom a pet-free sanctuary?

 

Disclaimer: this is a collaborative post.

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