Dear Sealy Sleep Expert
I love falling asleep with my feline friend, but by 1am my cat is ready to play. He pounces at my head and licks my face... Is sleeping with your cat a good idea? Is there any way I can enjoy his purr without the sleep disruptions?
Image courtesy of Kitty Blogger
Dear Cat Lover
You are not alone in your pet/sleep struggles.Sleeping with a pet is not a purr-fect sleep situation.
Half of the world are pet owners and 65% of these folk have poorer sleep quality thanks to their furry friend. About 30% of Americans co-sleep with their pets. These animals are reported to disrupt their owner's sleep in a number of ways:
1. Their hair and saliva may cause allergies which lead to symptoms such as itchy eyes, runny nose and nasal congestion.
2. Their toileting needs may mean that they wake their owners to go outside... or go on their owners beds!
3. Their need to communicate/play albeit in the middle of the night disrupts their owners sleep.
4. Their need to protect their turf may mean you are startled by your animals barking or shrieking.
For this 30%, the benefits of co-sleeping appears to outweigh their compromised sleep as they continue to sleep with their pets despite Sleep Doctors advising otherwise.
So if your cats purr gets you to sleep quicker than that's great, but trying to teach this creature of the night to sleep through is unlikely.
If the problem intensifies, perhaps you may have to relinquish co-sleeping at night and enjoy some cat-naps during the day? Still need the familiar purr to fall asleep? Why not try any of the free white-noise apps that provide a 'purr' setting?
Here's to a great night's sleep.