9 Ways Pets Wreck Your Sex & Sleep Life

As many pet owners will tell you, their furry friend is like family! You may give them a snack from the table, let them sit on the couch with you, and take them on car rides—but what about sleeping in the bed with you? Is your bed a sacred space or community property?

9 Ways Pets Wreck Your Sleep
9 Ways Pets Wreck Your Sleep

According to a recent survey by the American Pet Products Manufacturers Association, over 42% of pet owners say that their pet sleeps with them in their bed and studies are showing that the effects on sleep are not looking good. Keep reading below to find out the nine shocking effects on people who sleep with their pets in bed.

Ways Pets Wreck Sleep
People sleep with pets need more sleep each night (8.03 vs. 7.7 hours)

People who sleep with pets need more sleep

People who sleep with pets every night get more sleep than those who don’t (8.03 hours compared to 7.7 hours). While this could sound like a positive, it more likely is an indication that sleep is less restful with pets, requiring more time in bed to get proper REM sleep.
Source: Eight Sleep

Dogs make sleep worse
53% of people report their pets disturbed their sleep during the night

People who sleep with pets have nightly sleep disruptions

The Mayo Clinic Sleep Disorders Center completed a study in which about half the patients had a pet—and 53% of those pet owners said their pets disturbed their sleep in some way nightly.
Source: Mayo Clinic Sleep Disorders Center

Furthermore, of people who shared a bed with their pet, 63% of them reported having poor quality sleep. Of that 63%, 5% said they always or almost always had problems going back to sleep after they woke up.
Source: Medical Daily

Cats make sleep worse
People who sleep with pets toss and turn more each night (19.21 vs 17.13 times per night)

People who sleep with pets toss and turn more

If you sleep with pets, chances are you toss and turn more during the night compared to people who don’t sleep with pets (19.21 times vs. 17.13, respectively). All this tossing and turning can even contribute to back pain or neck pain.
Source: Eight Sleep

Pets ruin sleep
People who sleep with pets take an average of 4 minutes longer to fall asleep

People who sleep with pets take longer to fall asleep

On average, people with pets in the bed took an additional 4 minutes to fall asleep. To some, this is insignificant, but a study in Australia of the sleep habits of over 13,000 sleepers noted the regular occurrence. Over the course of a year, that’s over 24 hours of sleep (or one whole day) lost to tossing and turning due to your furry friend.
Source: Antrozoos

Pets ruin sex life
People who sleep with pets have 31% less sex

People who sleep with pets have less sex

According to a recent European study, 31% of people who report having less sex, blame the pet that sleeps in the bed with them. It is not uncommon for pets to get territorial, clingy, or sometimes downright aggressive when it comes to couples cuddling up together in bed.
Source: YummyPets

GUIDE:  Best mattress for sex

Pet owners get worse deep sleep
People who sleep with pets get less deep sleep (19.7% vs. 20.75%)

People who sleep with pets get less deep sleep

Let’s face it, pets are not always silent sleepers. Between the panting, night whining, sighs, and random hind leg kicks, it should come as no surprise that people who sleep with pets don’t sleep quite as deeply as those who do not sleep with pets. Specifically, they experience only 19.7% deep sleep, compared to those who don’t sleep with pets, which experience 20.75% deep sleep per night (a healthy deep sleep range is 18% to 25%).
Source: Eight Sleep

Dogs and cats snoring
People who sleep with pets hear more snoring. 21% of dogs and 7% of cats snore.

People who sleep with pets hear more snoring

Accepting snoring from your partner is one thing, but what if it comes from your pets? With 21% of dogs snoring and 7% of cats snoring, there’s a chance you could have to listen to more snoring than you signed up for. All this extra nightly noise can reduce the quality of sleep you’re getting or even wake you from a deep sleep, making it difficult to fall back asleep.
Source: Mayo Clinic Sleep Disorders Center

Pet owners get lower quality sleep
People who sleep with pets get a lower quality of overall sleep.

People who sleep with pets get less quality sleep

According to sleep tracking data from Eight Sleep, which scores the quality of your rest each night, those who sleep with pets get lower quality sleep. This test accounted for time slept, toss and turns, and percentage of deep sleep to provide a value that quantifies the quality of sleep you get each night. A score of 50-66 equals poor sleep, 67-83 is an average sleep score, and 84-100 is a great sleep score.

The results? People who sleep with pets get a sleep score of 71 on average, compared to those who don’t sleep with pets, who get a sleep score of 73. Again, we’re not talking about huge changes here, but it is consistent and noticeable.
Source: Eight Sleep

Dog and cat allergies worst while sleeping
People who sleep with pets have worse allergies.

People who sleep with pets have worse allergies

According to Everyday Heath, dust mites loves to eat pet dander, calling it “one of their favorite foods.” Dust mites can cause allergic reactions or even asthma attacks, so if you do have a pet in the bed, be sure to clean your bedding frequently or buy a zippered dust mite cover for your mattress and/or comforter.
Source: Everyday Health

Are Pet’s Really the Enemy of Sleep?

So overall, what’s the verdict? Is tonight the first night you demote Fido from the bed to the floor? To some sleepers, this simply sounds like an impossible task. They would rather sacrifice the quality and amount of sleep they get themselves then deny those puppy dog eyes.

The truth is, if you’re happy with the situation, don’t feel like you HAVE to kick your pet out of bed. As long as you are getting a good night’s rest, aren’t suffering from additional pain or allergies, and are still having a good relationship with your partner, you are doing just fine.

If after reading about the effects your pet could be having on your sleep, maybe you think it’s time to make the shift. A great way to ease the transition is to put their bed in your room on the floor. If you’re on the search for a quality pet bed take a look at my review of eLuxury’s pet bed.

Sources:  specific sites listed above; Eight Sleep data sourced from their smart sleep tracker cover.

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Logan Block

Logan is the content director of Sleepopolis, which means he not only reviews new mattresses every week, but also curates all the comparisons, best of pages, and video guides on the site. He takes a straightforward, honest approach to his reviews and endeavors to give viewers an objective look at each new product he tries out. Logan has perfected his method by personally testing over 200 different mattresses, so he’s not only able to discern the overall vibe of a specific bed, but to contextualize its feel within the bed-in-a-box market as a whole.

Logan Block

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