A growing number of Australians spend their nights snuggled up with their furry best friend. And while it is completely understandable why many dog owners choose to do this (out of love and affection), there comes a time when the majority of them question the healthiness of this decision. Opinions from health experts and veterinarians are mixed.
As much as it feels good and cozy to snuggle up with your dog, he also needs a place to relax on his own, just like you do. After all, he is a member of your family and deserves the right treatment. If you thought that having him sleeping right next to you all the time would make him feel more loved, you are definitely wrong.
Just as you’d do with your kids, teaching your dog to cut the core and sleep in his own bed is of vital importance, and the following tips will surely help you put an end to yours and your dog’s sleepless nights.
First, Get Him Out of Your Bed
If you’re a new dog owner, setting some ground rules for your dog regarding not sleeping in your bed, will be a piece of cake. In a situation where you have owned the dog for years and all of a sudden you need him to change his behavior, you will need to re-establish your connection and re-establish yourself as a leader. Once you decide to end the warm and cuddling nights with your best friend, don’t let him play on your bed and immediately offer him a comfortable dogs bed for him to sleep on. Choose from the numerous comfortable dogs bed designs, styles, shapes and sizes and pick the most suitable for your dog breed.
Note: If the dog continues to jump on your bed, train him to “Go to your bed,” by picking him up and gently pushing him away while saying, “No.”
Secondly, Get Him to Sleep in His Own Bed
Training your dog to sleep in his own comfortable dogs bed requires a session during daytime in a room that is not your bedroom, preferably the living room as it is the coziest and most warm room in the home. Place the bed in the room, and drop your dog’s favourite toy in it to make it more appealing. Have some tasty treats near you to reward your dog’s good behavior. With your dog on leash, walk him over to the new bed, put him down and say, “Go to your bed.” Once down, treat him for behaving good. Every time he gets up just say “No”, walk him back to the bed and repeat the command. Repeat that every day and after a while your dog will become comfortable with his bed and he’ll go to sleep in it on his own.
Regarding the pros and cons of sleeping with pets, physicians and veterinary groups have taken turns speaking out loud against human-pet bed sharing for many reasons. Let’s take a look at some of them.
You may not be allergic to dogs, but they all carry allergens. Every time your dog goes outside for a walk or to relieve himself, he is exposed to a number of allergens that remain stuck in his paws and fur. These allergens follow him to your bed, and will eventually affect your health. Stuffy noses and sneezing are just some of the signs that you dog’s outdoors trips are affecting the quality of the air in the bedroom.
Have you noticed some changes in your dog’s behavior? Does your dog bark at your partner when he/she comes to bed? This may be because your dog thinks he’s protecting you. When sleeping with your dog, your bed literally becomes his territory, and anyone who’s unwanted (in his eyes) won’t be welcome in his area.
It’s hard for a dog to start sleeping in his own comfortable dogs bed once he’s had a taste of your big comfy bed. And who wants to say goodbye to a comfy mattress and a fluffy pillow? No one, right. If you decide to train your dog to sleep in his own bed, be prepared for sleepless nights, as your dog will probably keep you up, crying and whining at the top of his lungs.