Your dog is basically your baby, but everyone knows that having your four-legged friend share a bed with you at night can impact your sleep just as much as when you have to keep elbowing your spouse because they’re snoring so loud you can hear it in the next town. So how exactly does letting your dog sleep with you impact your shut-eye? A new study offers an explanation.
The findings, published in Mayo Clinic Proceedings, aimed to figure out whether having a pup in your bed interrupted sleep. It turns out that people who slept with dogs in their rooms but not in their beds maintained 83 percent sleep efficiency, which researchers have deemed satisfactory. However, when your pooch is actually in your bed with you, that sleep efficiency number drops down to 80 percent. Though this is technically still a satisfactory percentage, the reason for the drop makes sense. Think about what it’s like to try to sleep when your pup is chasing critters in their sleep, taking up the whole bed, or lying right on top of your chest so you can’t breathe.
If you want to argue that your snoring partner probably causes the same level of disturbance, this isn’t exactly the case. The study explains, “Presumably, humans accommodate the needs of their bed partner in an effort to promote sleep in a manner that even the most well-trained dog does not.”
But while your dog may make it slightly harder to get a deep sleep, they’re so CUTE and cuddly, making the need for an extra cup of coffee in the morning worth it.
Lauren Levine is a freelance writer who has contributed to publications and websites including The Charlotte Observer, U.S. News & World Report, American Way magazine, The Huffington Post, Hello Giggles, Bustle, Thrillist, Thought Catalog, and others.