LET SLEEPING DOGS LIE
THEY MAY LOVE JUMPING ON THE BED, BUT SHOULD YOU BE SHARING A PILLOW WITH YOUR PET?
Do you enjoy napping with your pet pal? Allowing your pet to sleep in your bed is a hot issue – is it a good idea?
It’s been reported that up to 79 per cent of pet parents allow pets to share beds with their human family members. That’s a lot of cosy pets.
The human medical world has voiced concerns about this practice – let’s take a look why. It makes perfect sense that people who suffer from pet allergies or asthma should not sleep with their dog or cat or even allow them in the bedroom.
Though for those pet parents desperate to share life with a pet, there is the option of allergy shots to build up a tolerance to the pet dander that causes allergic reactions. Keeping an air filter in your bedroom may also help.
I would strongly recommend that people who have difficulty sleeping consider keeping pets out of the bedroom.
A study released by researchers in the USA found that about half the participants had a dog or cat, and 53 per cent of those pet owners said their pets disturbed their sleep in some way nightly.
Perhaps your dog scratches throughout the night or moves into different positions regularly – this may well disturb your precious sleep cycle. Many dogs even snore loudly.
Pets can be a source of roundworm infections, mite infections and flea infestations. Zoonotic diseases are those that are capable of passing from animal to human – for example, ringworm, giardia, E. coli, salmonella, psittacosis (from pet birds), and the list goes on.
However, if your pet has regular vet checks, is up to date with worm, flea and tick prevention and is otherwise healthy and happy, there is scant evidence to suggest that sharing your bed is detrimental to your health.
Indeed, human family members are much more likely to transmit diseases to each other during bed-sharing than our pets are.
Only well-behaved pets should be allowed the privilege – allowing aggressive or dominant pets on the bed may reinforce their behaviour.