¿What Are the Results of Sleeping With Your Canine?
“I think it really came from this idea that dogs should be separated from the best parts of the house – they shouldn’t be in the kitchen, dining room, couch, or bed,” said Dr. Horowitz. “For some reason there is a feeling that we need to maintain our dominance over them by having full ownership of these things. It sounds ridiculous because it’s ridiculous. “
Dr. Horowitz said when their dogs, Finnegan, a lab mix, and Upton, a Great Dane and bloodhound mix, crowded the bed, the solution in their house was not to kick them out but to “make our bed bigger.”
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“They are getting older and can no longer jump on the bed,” she said. “We actually have to lift her onto the bed. But it’s the best place. It’s a convenient place. Here we are.”
Dr. Horowitz recently had a new puppy, a Schnauzer and Beef dog mix named Quiddity, who sleeps with her son. She said if someone has trouble sleeping because of a dog, they should try to find another comfortable place for the pet. “You don’t have to sleep in bed,” she said. “Find another place that is spectacularly good – or maybe they want to sleep with your son.”
One question the Mayo Clinic study failed to answer was how sleep changes for dog owners when the dog gets out of bed. On a few occasions my dog Maddie has chosen to sleep elsewhere and I wake up wondering even more where she is. When that happens, I’ll find her and put her back in bed.
When Jamie Contreras and her husband, who live near Portland, Oregon, got their Bulldog mix puppy, Cooper, they planned for him to sleep in a crate by the bed. But the dog soon made it clear that he wanted to go to the bed. As the dog got bigger it turned out there wasn’t enough room for everyone – so the couple bought a king size bed.
Now, nearly 12 years later, the 83-pound dog’s nightly routine involves sleeping under the covers between Ms. Contreras and her husband. Often times the dog moves on the blanket at night, nailing the couple under the sheets. Sometimes Cooper runs and kicks in his dreams.