Look, I’m not here to tell you what to do. And chances are, if you’re reading this, you’re already decided. I am too.
Here’s the thing: for healthy adults, there aren’t really safety concerns when it comes to sharing the bed. And those “behavioral” concerns touted by pet experts for eons, trainers say, are also antiquated. Russell Hartstein, quoted on petMd, has this to say: “These dominance theories were debunked (long ago). One reason people believe some of this is that some animal TV show hosts don’t follow evidence-based science.”
But as the mostly proud and sometimes disgruntled parent of two dogs, my question lies not with my personal safety or my dogs’ behavior—it’s about my own personal sleep quality and the sleep quality of my partner.
The main issue: space
For me, the biggest thing is space. Before my boyfriend and I moved into a bigger place, we were sharing a full-sized bed with two dogs. That… didn’t work. We made it a habit of letting the pups snuggle with us for an hour while we wound down before hitting the hay, then they were off to their own beds in the same room.
Now that we’re in a bigger space, we upgraded to a king. And… what a difference eighteen inches makes! We can snug with the pups and each other comfortably. But I do find that the dogs like to stretch out in wildly inconvenient positions. So, I just make them move. As cute as my snoozing pup is, I’m not sleeping curled up in the fetal position for their unbridled comfort.
Pets have their preferences too!
I actually find that my older dog has gotten used to the snuggle-for-a-while-then-go-her-own-way model we established in the old house. She really loves her bed, which is just big enough for her to curl up in and has bolsters on all sides so she feels secure.
The younger pup, however, will sleep in the bed whichever way he pleases all night long. Which, yeah, will wake me up sometimes. But I don’t really mind it.
It comes down to personal choice
From my research, health and safety for adult humans and older children isn’t a factor. It’s really about comfort and whether or not you’re okay with letting your pets interrupt your sleep. It’s a personal choice. I personally think it’s worth the interruptions and occasional need to readjust to snuggle with my pups. Fact of the matter is, we are our pets’ whole world, so letting them get comfy with us isn’t the worst thing we could do!
What are your thoughts on sharing the bed with pets? Let us know in the comments.
Featured image: @ourbohohome