A recent study reveals that apart from being man’s best friend dogs are also perfect sleeping companions.
Scientists at Canisius College reveal that women definitely sleep much better when they have a dog (not another person) by their side.
The research in question was led by associate professor Christy L. Hoffman. She and her team of scientists tested the quality of the sleep of 962 women who live in the USA.
At the end of the study, 55 % of the women announced they had shared their bed with a dog, 31 % said they had a cat for sleeping companion and another 57 % reported they had slept with a human partner by their side.
The participants also answered a questionnaire about the quality of their sleep and explained if they were feeling safer while sleeping with a cat or a dog by their side. The ones who shared their beds with a human partner also described how he had affected their quality of sleep and explained if they felt more secure because their partner was sleeping next to them.
After analyzing the information, Hoffman and her team came to the following interesting conclusions. Human partners and cats were equally disruptive to the sleep of the female participants. Dogs, on the other hand, would make their owners’ wake up much more seldom.
It also turned out that dog owners tended to go to bed earlier.
They also had a stricter wake-up schedule because they needed to adjust to the toilet habits of their dogs.
“Dog ownership and its associated responsibilities may cause individuals to adhere to a stricter routine,” the study confirmed. “Keeping to a consistent sleep schedule may be beneficial to dog owners.”
Hoffman also revealed that when dogs sleep next to their owners they could adapt to the latter’s sleeping habits more easily than the human partners who took part in the experiment. Surprisingly, pooches made women feel safer while sleeping too.
“Some dog owners may take comfort in the thought that their dog will alert them in the case of an intruder or another type of emergency,” Hoffman stated for HuffPost. “A cat is less likely to take on this role.”
The discovery that women felt safer in the company of a dog during their sleep was unexpected for Hoffman.
Here is how he commented on these findings:
“I had thought participants would have rated their dogs and human partners similarly in terms of the comfort and security they provide. But surprisingly, the women rated their dog bed partners as better sources of comfort and security than human partners.”
This study is not the only one that proves the positive effect of sleeping next to a dog.
Previous research led at the Mayo Clinic in Arizona had discovered as well that people who had a dog for a sleeping companion would sleep much better.
But there is one important difference between Hoffman’s study and this one that has to be mentioned. Hoffman’s research involved only female participants because it is known that women have poorer sleeping quality than men. The research from the past, on the other hand, examined the sleep habits of both men and women. However, the men who took part in the study were significantly fewer than the women who participated.