If you curl up every night next to your favorite pooch, count yourself in good company. Surveys suggest that 56 percent of dog owners sleep with their dog next to them, with about 50 percent of the dogs sleeping in their owner’s bed. Size matters when it comes to sleeping arrangements, as among dogs that sleep with their owners, 62 percent are small dogs, 41 percent are medium and 32 percent are large.1
Despite its popularity, it’s been suggested that sleeping with your dog may interfere with your sleep or even transmit diseases, but there are likely many more benefits than risks when it comes to sharing your sleeping space with your dog. Doing so may even result in significant benefits to your health!
Seven Reasons Why Sleeping With Your Dog Is Good for You
1. It Increases Feelings of Security and Contentment — The physical presence of your dog next to you provides a source of companionship and comfort. Your dog’s rhythmic breathing, soft fur and warm body all contribute to this soothing effect. In fact, in a study published in Mayo Clinic Proceedings,2 many of those surveyed said they felt secure, content and relaxed when their pet slept nearby.
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From a safety standpoint, your dog’s sensitive sense of smell and hearing can also alert you if anything unusual happens during the night, likely well before you’d otherwise notice. Having your dog nearby adds a source of protection.
2. It’s Conducive to Getting a Good Night’s Rest — If you’re wondering whether sharing your bed with your dog affects your sleep quality, you can rest easy. One study used fitness trackers to accurately gauge sleeping time for dogs and humans sharing a bedroom.