Should I let my dog sleep with me? This is a question we hear time and time again. Like humans, dogs are incredibly diverse in character and, as such, the experience of having a dog in bed with you can vary a great deal. Still, there are a few well-known pros and cons associated with this way of life that every dog owner should be acquainted with.
- Having a dog sleeping in bed with you is made easier by their natural ability to minimize their bowel and bladder activity at night, just like humans, which means they are highly unlikely to want to go to the bathroom during the night.
- A dog or puppy sleeping in bed with you can provide a lot of comfort and warmth, which is always welcome during the winter and for overall company. Children who have trouble sleeping alone can also benefit a lot from having a puppy or older dog in bed.
- Sleeping with your dog in bed also bolsters the bond and connection between man and dog, especially if you have a guardian breed.
- With that in mind, you can always rest easy knowing that you are protected and that your dog will alert you to anything abnormal during the night.
- In many cases, a dog sleeping in bed with you can benefit your health. Dogs are therapeutic but can also positively affect actual, physical health. If allergies and the like are not an issue, some studies have shown that dogs in bed can bolster children’s immunity.
- The first pro we mentioned may not hold true for puppies up to a couple months old. A sleeping puppy may still be prone to bathroom requirements even during the night until they’ve grown up a bit.
- People who allow their dogs in bed are all too familiar with the problem of hair getting onto everything, so easily washable sheets and mattress covers are a necessity. This problem can be minimized with particular breeds, but it is generally all but unavoidable.
- As such, dogs sleeping in bed with you can make conditions such as asthma or various allergies much worse. Also keep in mind that some breeds, especially on particular diets, can get gassy.
- Dogs are an early alarm clock, and if that’s a potential problem for you, then you should understand that most dogs will wake you up early to go pee or do something similar in the morning.
- A dog sleeping in bed is prone to becoming spoiled. Especially is this true if you neglect overall training and discipline. Dogs can thus easily get to thinking that they are on top of the world, which is never good.
Crate Training a Puppy as an Alternative
If you feel that the cons outweigh the pros and would like to guarantee yourself a good night’s rest, then crate training your puppy is definitely something to consider. Crate training a puppy at night but also for other times during the day can be an indispensable addition to overall training and discipline.
For one, if you are having trouble with potty training and getting your dog to go outside to do his business, crate training can help you a great deal. Once your puppy is taught that the crate is his den, his natural instincts will motivate him to hold it in when in the crate, which allows you to control when your pet goes to potty. This will also allow you to pinpoint the times of day when the bathroom needs occur, and after that it’s only a matter of taking your pup outside until he learns.
Crate training a puppy will also bolster overall discipline and control, which will help you enforce all kinds of other house rules. Most importantly, once your dog is used to the crate, this will be the place where he goes for some downtime and to relax in a safe environment, but it will also be where he sleeps at night.
A sleeping puppy wants to feel protected and secure in a place where she sleeps, so it is essential that you introduce her to the crate early and properly. It’s all about making this a positive experience for your pet and not forcing anything. You should start by simply showing the crate to your puppy and just leaving it in a familiar place with an open door. If your dog doesn’t show interest on his/her own, all you have to do is pique interest with a few of his/her favorite toys or food.
In that regard, give your puppy a few meals inside the crate to make sure that the puppy develops a positive association. You shouldn’t close the door in the beginning and should give your pup freedom to enter and leave off her own volition. Introduce the closed door gradually and for short periods at first, and slowly increase the time your dog spends closed in the crate over time. Ultimately, you should start leaving the room for some time, thus letting your puppy get accustomed to the idea. In the end, a well-trained dog that sleeps in his crate will be just as content as a dog sleeping in bed. And, most importantly, your good night’s rest will be intact.
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