Should your dog sleep in your bed with you? Your pooch might have already decided that they want to sleep in your bed, and training them not to can be the challenge.
If you’ve just brought a dog home to a family setting, this might be a debate for you to have with your partner. Some people love the idea of snuggling up with their dog, and others can’t stand the idea. While we don’t want to be the judge in any household debates, we can help you to understand the pros and cons.
Some studies on dogs sleeping in your bed show that over half of owners admit to letting their pup in bed with them. In smaller breeds, it is even more prevalent.
There are some benefits, and a lot of people report better sleep with their four-legged friend comforting them. However, some people find it disruptive.
We’ll tell you from the start, there isn’t a specific “right” or “wrong” answer. It’s about what is best for you.
Pros of Letting Your Dog Sleep in Your Bed
Let’s face it, the main pro is the fact that you want to! Cuddling your dog feels good, and you want to spend time with them. There are a few pros that can help you to win the argument with your partner!
Your Brain Releases Oxytocin and Makes You Happy
That’s a good enough reason for a lot of people! Oxytocin is called the “love hormone”. It helps to make you feel warm and happy, and it might even have the same impact on your dog.
This is one of the reasons why dogs provide such good emotional support. Oxytocin can lower your feelings of stress and anxiety, and even keep your blood pressure in check.
You May Feel Safer
Keeping your dog in the bed with you can help you to feel safer during the night. You might feel better, and that you are protected from intruders. Dogs are great at hearing or smelling danger and will let you know if anything is untoward.
You might also feel that your dog is safer. Sadly, dogs are valuable commodities and some criminals will steal dogs to sell on and make a profit. If your dog is kept outside, or even downstairs while you are upstairs, you might worry about them being stolen.
These Benefits Might Mean a Better, Deeper Sleep
We have to include the word “might” here, as some people won’t benefit from dogs in the bed.
If you are the sort of person who gets that warm glow when spending time with your dog. You might feel more sleepy if you share a bed, and the extra security can also help you to get a deep, relaxed sleep.
Cons of Letting Your Dog Sleep in Your Bed
It’s not all positive. There are some negative aspects to letting your dog sleep in your bed, and some can even be damaging for your dog, so you need to consider these.
You May Teach Your Dog to Be Reliant on You
When your dog is a puppy, they won’t want to leave you alone. They need to learn how to be independent whenever you leave the house or even go for a shower.
The first evenings you spend with your dog can be really difficult. Almost all dogs have to overcome some form of separation anxiety. When your puppy has been howling, scratching at the door, and barking for hours, the temptation is to let them come into your room.
By doing this, you could be doing your dog a disservice. They may never overcome separation anxiety and then if there are any situations where they have to be away from you (overnight visits to the vets, or staying with a friend) they might not be armed to cope with this.
There is more that you can do to support your dog with separation anxiety. The One supplement for dogs includes numerous clinically-proven ingredients that can support your dog’s brain and body. Ashwagandha is one of the included ingredients, which helps to alleviate stress.
The Battle for Space
You might already be the sort of person who encroaches on your partner’s bed space. Adding a dog into the mix is not going to help this.
A dog will also need a certain amount of space, and they might decide they want to steal some of your valuable sleeping area.
This can lead to disrupted sleep if you are woken up during the night. REM sleep cycles can sometimes be broken by a dog waking you up.
On top of this, dogs may need a certain amount of space to rest their joints. This is especially true as they age and their body needs more recovery. Again, this is something you can aid with supplementary help, but there is no substitute for space.
Your dog is not some feral creature that you need to stay away from at all times. However, it is a good idea to consider the hygiene issues that can come with sharing a bed.
If your dog has been rolling around in the fields and you haven’t had time to bath them, it might not be a good idea to share a bed. It’s an owner’s responsibility to keep their dog clean, but it’s still okay to want your bed to be protected from dog smells!
There’s plenty to consider before you bring your dog into the bed. Once they’ve slept in there with you, it can be hard to draw a line in the future. Bigger breeds also take up a lot of space that can impede your sleep.
Ultimately, it is a decision to make based on what is right for you and for your beloved pet (and maybe considering your partner, too).