Getting a good night’s sleep is crucial to maintaining your health, but making the most of those eight or so hours is not always an easy task. A snoring partner, medication and diet, outside noise or distraction from technology can all have a negative impact on your repose and as pet owners know, cats and dogs are skilled at waking their slumbering owners. Here are five ways to keep Fluffy from ruining your rest.
- The most obvious solution is to ban your pet from your bedroom while you sleep. Crate train your dog, or create a cat haven, with toys, window perches and cat trees, so your animal will be comfortable and happy without you around.
- If that is not an option, or you can’t bear the thought of sleeping alone, designate an area of your bedroom for your pet to sleep. Rather than having your dog or cat sleep in your bed with you, place a cozy dog bed on the floor next to your bed, or invest in one of the many cat perches intended for feline snoozing.
- Exercise your pet during the day. Tired pets will sleep more soundly than those who have been bored and alone all day. Take your dog for multiple long walks, or hire a dog walker if you are away from home for long periods of time. Many dog walking companies offer the option of dog running for pets that are physically capable. Cats are primarily nocturnal by nature, but you can help shift their schedule to mimic yours by providing plenty of interactive toys and scratching posts to keep them occupied instead of sleeping. An inexpensive laser pointer is an easy and entertaining way to get your cat moving and is a wonderful option for pre-bedtime play.
- Hide the squeaky toys. If your pet has a tendency to be wakeful in the middle of the night, provide quiet toys and activities for them that hopefully won’t wake you up. Giant pom poms are a cheap and silent toy for cats and soft and sturdy chew toys without squeakers are great choices for dogs.
- Consider an automatic feeder. A big complaint among cat owners is being disturbed early in the morning because the cat is ready to be fed. Experts will tell you to not give in to this behavior, but that can be much harder to practice when you’re exhausted and you have a cat getting physical. Instead, make note of the times your pet wants to be fed, and invest in a feeder that can be set on a timer. Your pet will quickly learn when it’s time to eat and stop waking you up.
Hopefully, adjusting your pet’s routine will allow you to sleep more soundly and strengthen the animal-owner bond.