If you often find yourself curled up next to your adorable furball, you are in good company for more than the oh-so-obvious cuddly reasons. Studies show that sleeping next to your pooch could be beneficial to both your mental and physical health. But, according to the American Pet Products Manufacturers Association, only 42% of all pet parents share their comfy beds with canines.
Why don’t ALL humans share their beds with dogs?
Some humans are worried that their (often restless or hyperactive) pooches will interrupt their beauty sleep. Others might have allergies and try to keep a safe distance from their beloved pets and their fur during naptime. In addition to the puffy eyes and sneezing, some dog-lovers try to keep things hygienic in the ‘crib’ because they know, as much as they love them, their furry ones could be germ taxis at times… especially if they’ve skipped a bath or two, or had a (bloody) run-in with the Hadidas in the backyard (eek!). These may be valid reasons, but there are also benefits to sleeping alongside your doggies. According to Caleb Backe, a health and wellness expert for Maple Holistics as long as you and your dog are both healthy, “sleeping with your pup can actually be good for you”.
Cuddling with your dog helps lower cholesterol. Lower levels of cholesterol reduce your risk of becoming a stroke or heart attack victim.
2. Lowers your blood pressure.
In an American study, 60 people had their blood pressure tested before and after petting a dog. The results showed that their blood pressure dropped after they interacted with the pooch.
3. Makes you feel safe.
Even if you’re a deep sleeper, your barking bodyguard will alert you to any suspicious activity during the night. Not only will your dog watch over you, but also comfort you if you wake up from a terrible nightmare.
4. Reduces pain and feelings of anxiety.
Sleeping next to a dog can lower symptoms of anxiety and stress. A UK study has shown that one of the best ways to destress is to spend time with your dog. Even the mere act of looking at your pet has been shown to increase oxytocin. Oxytocin is the chemical in the brain which helps with relaxation.
5. Fights depression.
Sharing your bed with a furry friend can be comforting too, by making you feel less lonely at night, especially if you live by yourself. Having a hound in the bedroom can motivate you to get out of bed in the morning when you would otherwise just have pulled the covers back over your head. Let’s face it, it’s almost impossible to ignore a fluffy wake-up call from Spotty (who’s already dragged his leash, or rolled his tennis ball, into the bedroom so you can take a not-so-subtle hint 😉).
Hopefully, after reading this, you’ll be more inclined to call Snoopy over for a night of snuggling and snoozing. It won’t only be beneficial to your health, but it will also improve the wellbeing of your beloved fur friend as they too love spending quality time with their favourite human. Dogs receive comfort from you in the same way that you do from them, so this sleeping arrangement is a win-win for everyone!
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