If your pet is a fish or a bird or a rabbit or a snake or a bearded dragon, you probably don’t have too much of an issue as to where she sleeps, right? In her terrarium, her hutch or her cage are the most likely of places. But, if you’ve got four little furry feet clickety-clacking about your home in the shape of a doggeroni or a puddy-tat, the topic of where exactly should your pet sleep could be a question.
When you first brought home Fido or Fifi, you may have been steadfastly determined to keep them out of YOUR bed and confined to snooze away the days and nights in THEIR bed; a bed that you painstakingly created to be the MOST comfortable, fluffy, cozy spot on earth. So why would she EVEN want to cuddle up with you? Yet, when she’s loudly meowing a melody or barking up a storm in the middle of your sweet, sweet slumber, and your resolve s-l-o-w-l-y wears down to the point where you scoop her up, give her a cuddle, throw back the covers and all fall into a deep, deep dead-to-the-world snooze… well, you may have just sealed your sleeping-arrangement fate for some time to come. So do be prepared.
But, before you decide where she will sleep, you may be wondering about the health implications of allowing your furry friend to snuggle up on top of or under the covers (you WERE wondering just that, weren't you?! ). It really is a personal decision, of course, and some people might be horrified that you allow such a practice, but if you, or your human partner (oh right… you have to consider THEIR wishes as well!), suffers from allergies, burying your nose at night into Fifi’s coat is probably NOT the best thing; though yes, there are of course allergy shots you or your partner can get to reduce your allergy symptoms so that you can continue the full-family sleep plan. As for the basic cleanliness of your dog or cat and what she may pass on to you, well… in some parts, ticks can be an issue as well as fleas and mites, not to mention the hair and dander that now becomes part of your bed decor. Despite these considerations, a vast number of pet owners DO allow their pets to tuck in for the night en familia.
One other factor to consider is the likelihood of disturbed sleep. Your sleeping beauty might be: restless; release a bit of stinky, lethal flatulence (it REALLY was the dog!); a snorer; a bed hog; or worse, decide that a 3AM pounce on your head is really good fun!
If the thought of a shared bed is decidedly not your cup of tea, or you’ve now decided to remove your previously ensconced furry friend from the family bed, it may take some time to retrain him where to lay his head for the night. But with some resolve and consistency (and an irresistible spot to call his very own), you CAN shape new behaviors in his sleep pattern that don’t involve YOUR bed.
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