Furry Bedfellows: Do You Sleep with Your Pet?

Furry Bedfellows: Do You Sleep with Your Pet?

Bethany Seawright
Feb 18, 2011

Any pet owner can attest to the benefits of sharing your life with a four-legged friend. Animals can provide comfort, companionship and joy on a level that is completely different from their human counterparts. There have also been numerous studies that have been done illustrating the positive effects our furry friends can have on the sick, the lonely and the elderly. But does that mean you should allow your pet to sleep with you?

The New York Times looked at this very issue, citing a study released earlier this month by the C.D.C., which warns that allowing your pet to sleep with you can be hazardous to your health and can aid in spreading pathogens from animals to people. (My favorite line from the story refers to abstaining from licking if you have a weakened immune system, "Meaning, don't let the dog lick you — the hazards involved in the other way around have not been researched.")

What do you think? Do you allow your pet to sleep in bed with you? Has negotiating this issue in your life been difficult? Do studies like this one change how you feel about it at all? (For the record, I have a cat named Jack, and he sleeps at the bottom of the bed with us. And I doubt that this recent study is likely to make him to change his ways…)

For the complete article, visit Warm Nights, Cold Noses | The New York Times.

Image: Tony Cenicola/The New York Times

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