Dog Owners More Likely to Have Sleep Disorders, Says Study
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Earlier this month, StudyFinds reported on a study from Lincoln Memorial University that suggests dog owners are particularly prone to sleep disorders. The study was published in the journal Human-Animal Interactions.
Notably, the study consisted of complex multivariable linear regression models built by researchers to analyze previously collected data. Specifically, researchers used survey information gathered in 2005 and 2006 by the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES).
It’s Not Just Sleep Disorders That Dog Owners Should Worry About
Although the study wasn’t able to determine a causal relationship between owning a dog and sleep disorders, the data suggested this. However, lead researcher and Assistant Professor of Public Health and Research and Affiliation Dr. Laura Wisnieski said prior studies have produced “varied results”.
In a press release statement, Dr. Wisnieski said, “On the one hand, dogs and cats may be beneficial for an owner’s quality of sleep due to the social support that pets provide – pets offer a sense of security and companionship”. In turn, Dr. Wisnieski said this could improve sleep by reducing stress and anxiety levels. “Yet on the other hand,” she continued, “pets may disrupt their owners’ sleep”.
In fact, vets say there are plenty of reasons to keep your dog out of your bed at night. Besides being fitful sleepers, the risk of transmitting disease is significant. Also, letting your dog sleep in your bed could negatively affect their behavior. Although uncommon, it’s not unheard of for a dog to resource guard their owner’s bed.
To Be Safe, Let Your Dog Have Their Own Bed
Ultimately, Dr. Wisnieski said they need more studies before making any clinical recommendations. However, she did mention that techniques like crating or restricting bedroom access at night could help pet owners who suffer from disrupted sleep.
On a less serious but related note, did you know your dogs’ sleeping position can tell you about their personality?
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