Rover creeps beneath the blanket to the foot of the bed where it’s warm and cozy. While he may keep your toes warm at night, you could be sending the wrong message. It’s your job as the pack leader to establish order and prevent power struggles, starting in the bedroom.
Pros of Sharing the Bed
Nearly half of all dogs sleep in their owner’s bed, according to the American Pet Products Association. While many pet owners find great comfort by sharing a bed with their beloved pooch, there are also a host of medical benefits that come from having a pet. The rhythmic breathing of calm canines has even been known to put their owners to sleep. Many pet parents also feel safer with their furry bud at their side.
Cons of Sharing the Bed
The bed may not be the best place for Rover to rest his head in certain circumstances. If you or a child has asthma or allergies, you’ll want to keep your bedroom a dander-free zone. Dogs can also be major bed-hogs, disrupting your normal sleep cycles. When it comes to intimacy, Rover may attempt to steal the attention. Don't allow your pretentious pooch to come between you and your mate.
Pesky Parasites and More
Rover may be bringing more to your bedroom than just his rubber squeak toy. Your cuddly canine could be harboring fleas, bacteria and a slew of parasites. When you invite your pooch to spend the night, you increase your chances of contracting bubonic plague, chagas disease, cat scratch disease, MRSA and other bacterial infections. If you or a family member has a weakened immune system, you are potentially more at risk.
Finding a Place for Rover
Just because you don’t want to share the covers with Rover, doesn’t mean he can’t have a comfy bed to call his own. Many dogs are happy sleeping in their own area next to their pet parent’s bed. If your pooch is used to sleeping in luxury, it may take a little coercing before Rover makes the transition to his new bed. Only give your dog attention on the floor, never on the bed. Provide plenty of praise, treats and petting when he complies.
Based in northern New York, Brandy Burgess has been writing on pets, technical documentation and health resources since 2007. She also writes on personal development for YourFreelanceWritingCareer.com. Burgess' work also has appeared on various online publications, including eHow.com. Burgess holds a Bachelor of Arts in computer information systems from DeVry University and her certified nurses aid certification.