If you’re the proud owner of a pet you’ll no doubt enjoy the odd cosy, snuggle in bed, but there’s a really gross reason you should totally stop sleeping in the same bed as your furry friend.
Research has found that more than half (52%) of British dog owners let their pooches sleep on their bed with them, with almost a third (30%) doing so every night.
It seems many of us even prefer our pets to our partners with one in five (18%) of those polled revealing they’d rather share a bed with our four-legged friends than their significant other.
But while it’s tempting to snuggle up with your pup, you could be opening your bed up to a whole host of nasties including a flea infestation.
According to the research, despite the fact that more than half (54%) of our pets have had fleas, one in ten (9%) pet owners still don’t feel they need to apply treatment.
Worryingly, some pet owners wouldn’t even know if their pet had fleas with more than 15% admitting they wouldn’t be able to recognise a flea if they saw one on their pet and more than half (57%) don’t know what a flea egg looks like.
Shockingly, a single flea can lay up to 50 eggs a day, which fall off their pet into the home, before hatching out and causing infestations, particularly in places like your warm, cosy bed.
Speaking about the findings, carried out by Frontline Plus, vet Marc Abraham, said: “While the research shows we all dearly love our pets, it also reveals some misconceptions when it comes to flea treatment – like the 12% who believe they won’t have flea eggs in the home if it is clean, which is not necessarily the case.”
“Your pet can pick up fleas from a range of places and bring them into the home, where they multiply,” he continues.
“95% of pet owners don’t know how many eggs a flea can lay in a day which can fall off, hatch and infest the home – when in fact a single flea can lay up to 50 a day! It’s important to break the flea life cycle in multiple ways to avoid an infestation – and that means protecting your pet and their home environment by using a flea treatment that tackles fleas and their eggs – as this is a year round problem.”
The risk flea infestations are just one of the reasons to give your pup the heave ho and reclaim your bed for yourself, here’s three more…
You’ll sleep better
Shocking night’s sleep? Blame your dog. According to a recent study from MayoClinic, sleeping with your dog can drastically reduce sleep efficiency.
Researchers analysed 40 adult dog owners, none of whom were suffering sleep disorders, and monitored their sleep quality over the course of seven nights.
And turns out humans actually sleep much better when they’re not spooning their pups.
“Humans with a single dog in their bedroom maintained good sleep efficiency; however, the dog’s position on/off the bed made a difference,” the report explained.
Germs and bacteria
Sure you love watching your pet potter about outside, but chances are they are going to come in contact with some rather grim stuff, including poop. And unless you’re giving them a thorough scrub every time they come in from the cold those nasties are going to end up in your bed.
Not only is the thought of poop in your bed utterly gross, but it’s an easy way to transmit bacteria like E.coli and Salmonella, which have implications on your health.
Suddenly that bedtime snuggle’s not looking quite so attractive.
Whether or not your actually allergic to your pet, while he or she is outside playing, pooping or prancing about they are likely to get exposed to a number of things you are allergic to.
And those allergens, like pollen, could get stuck in his fur, and then transfer to your bed. Cue: sneezing, wheezing and other allergic reactions.
Paws for thought?
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