The Downside of Sharing Your Bed With Rover

The Downside of Sharing Your Bed With Rover

Why you should care

Fido may be man’s best friend, but that doesn’t mean you want him sleeping next to you in bed. 

Look at that sweet pooch, all by himself in a doggie bed at the other end of the room. Wouldn’t he be more comfortable snuggled up next to you?

Not so fast.

A new study from the esteemed Mayo Clinic, presented at the 29th Annual Meeting of the Associated Professional Sleep Societies, found a significant number of pet owners who sleep with their furry (feathered or other) friends, and suffer from less than peaceful slumbers as a result. According to the study, 10 percent of pet owners say their beloved animals disturb their sleep.

While that may not seem like much, compare that to the measly 1 percent of pet owners who think their pets negatively impact their slumber, which makes for a sizable difference in perception.

Many pet owners claim their pets are their babies, and therein lies the problem — because Fido and Fifi act like real infants in the middle of the night, crying out, whining, thrashing, rolling over, begging for food and otherwise disturbing their owners’ sleep.

And when you stop to consider that 36 percent of U.S. households — roughly 43 million people — own a dog, and 30 percent or 36 million households have cats, according to a 2012 survey from the American Veterinary Medical Association, that’s a hefty portion of the American populace that might be losing precious sleep. Even 10 percent translates to millions of pet lovers waking up groggy.

And we haven’t even touched on the bird, horse, or other animal owners.

“One patient owned a parrot who consistently squawked at 6 a.m.,” says Dr. Lois Krahn, a Mayo Clinic psychiatrist who led the study. “He must have thought he was a rooster.”

So if you’ve been cuddling up with your pet at night and feeling not so refreshed in the morning, it may be time to rethink where Spot hits the hay.

Memory foam comes in pooch sizes, too.

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