FAMOUS LAST WORDS
(THE DOGS WILL NEVER SLEEP WITH US)
This blog is written by me, Maggie Mae and my brother, Davis. We are golden doodles and can never be separated. Why? We suffer anxiety separation...from each other, as well as some from our humans. Ever since I came home to live with Davis and my human family, the two of us had our own crates to sleep in. Why? Because the male human of the house had some rules. One was the dogs will not be allowed on the furniture. Well, that lasted about 1 day. Partly due to his own fault. He petted us and we just found a way to his heart and before you could say, "Lickity Split" there we were in his lap or curled up to him on the sofa.
We have our own crates and they are open for us to go in and out as we please. Except at bedtime. Then we are closed in with a little treat and told goodnight. Our humans go off to the bedroom just a few yards away. At around 5:30 - 7:00 A.M. I would yelp out all ready to go do my business. Sometimes Davis would come and sometimes not. (he is not a morning dog) Usually, we were then crated together and snuggled up for another hour or so until our humans woke up.
This went on for years. You see, I am 3 and Davis is 5. We did go in the bedroom to help put on fresh sheets and oh wow...that bed felt wonderful. I do know that our Lola tried her best to give us a chance to sleep with them. It took a major incident to make that happen.
Our humans bought themselves a new bed. It was apparently custom made and would take a couple of months to arrive. About 6 weeks before it was to arrive, their bed broke. When I say broke, I mean the metal frame broke and went to the floor. There really was no way to sleep on it anymore.
There was only one way to solve this problem. There is another Master Bedroom upstairs. It has a wonderful firm mattress. The problem was that they could not hear us when we needed out if we were in crates and they were upstairs. What to do?
Our male human, Smiley, came to his senses and even though he could not believe it, he was allowing us to come up with them. He now knows that he made the best decision of his life. There are research studies that show why it is a good thing to have your dogs sleep with you. Davis and I both overheard him say that he is getting the best sleep ever most nights. He also said that we, as the dogs, seem calmer.
One research study was done by the Mayo Clinic (whoever they are)discovered that sleep quality was not compromised. Dogs in the room or on the bed helped to make for better sleep. Pets did disturb their owners at least as much as sleeping with another person in the bed. Some pet owners found great comfort in having the dogs with them.
Many studies found that sleeping with your pet can actually be good for you. A dog's body warmth, steady heart beat and protective nature can make co-sleeping feel safe and cozy.
Several groups came up with 13 scientific reasons why it is a good thing:
- reduces depression - If just simple interaction with us can impact depression in you, just think what sleeping with us can do. Scientifically it increases the flow of oxytocin, the love chemical. This fact actually makes us a living antidepressant.
- promotes theta brainwaves - On top of increasing the flow of oxytocin, it has an impact on how deeply we sleep. This experience promotes theta brainwaves which are known to occur during the REM stage of sleep. When we are with you our heartbeats synch up. Our heartbeats are in unison. This can give both of us deep, rejuvenating sleep.
- increases sense of security - When you feel safe it obviously makes you sleep better. We always have your back, and have the instinct to protect you and will let you know if something is not right.
- eases insomnia - If a human has anxiety induced insomnia then having us in bed with you is the answer.
- maximizes comfort - We just love lying with you as much as you enjoy having us curling into you. We try to put you at ease just as when we curl into your back and rest our heads on your feet. There is great comfort. I heard Lola say out loud that she felt like she was in 'Doggie Heaven' when she felt one of us prop our heads up on her ankles or knees.
- decreases loneliness - This is especially true for those who live alone.
- improves sleep quality - One study showed that sleep efficiency was higher with us in bed with you because it kept you on a better routine. They used a sleep tracker to prove this.
- reduces stress - If you have ever heard of The Pet Effect it is the phenomenon which involves reducing the levels of stress and anxiety while we are around. 74% had improvement in their mental health issues.
- lowers blood pressure - Petting or touching a dog can lead to lowering blood pressure so what better way to relax and fall into a deep calming sleep than with us by your side?
- strengthens the bond with your dog - It helps in the socialization of dogs with humans. Dogs learn that they are a part of the pack. It seems to make us calmer. And, I even heard our male human say out loud that we seem calmer.
- promotes a healthy heart - A study from the American Heart Association did find a link between owning a pet and having a healthy heart. It is our calming effect and impact on blood pressure that most likely plays a part in this.
- reduces allergies later in life - There is an argument that states dogs may bring allergens into the bedroom. One study showed that infants who slept with their pets were less likely to develop allergies later in life. It may not be the case for everyone but definitely worth a try before ruling it out.
- better overall health - As you can see, having us in the household has a plethora of benefits like lower cholesterol and triglyceride levels.
I believe as the spokesdog for this blog that I have made the case for keeping your pets near you at all times.
There are some tips that I would like to share for safely sleeping with your dog. Davis feels that he should list those out for the blog. He is usually the quiet one. So for his sake, I will allow him to speak.
The special safety tips are as follows:
- set boundries - establish where we will sleep
- don't allow aggression - do not tolerate that as this is a socialization skill
- keep pets above covers - we all will sleep more soundly if we are on top of covers
- take us out before going to bed - it will avoid any accidents
- use a mattress protector - This is for a just in case, as it really does not apply toward the two of us. If pets are not house trained then it is not a good idea to start with them in your bed.
It is all a matter of using good judgment. We are all 4 happy members of this family now. Works well.
Maggie Mae and Davis