VIRGINIA BLACKBURN speaks about her views on sleeping with pets…
ANOTHER day, another ridiculous piece of advice from the medical community. This one involves sharing your bed with pets: don’t do it, warn the doom mongers.
They’re dirty and will give you horrible diseases. Which suggests to me that the authors of Emerging Infectious Diseases, as the report is so snappily called, can never have had a domestic animal. For while the actual chance of getting something nasty from your furry flatmate is extremely small the benefits of having sleepovers with something that purrs just cannot be outweighed.And how much better if that teddy is alive and breathing and capable of giving you the odd affectionate head butt in the depths of the night?
Years ago I lived in a miserable flat, made bearable only by the presence of two kittens. We would all sleep in my bed: one kitten on the pillow facing me and the other perching on my hip. In the middle of the night I would turn over, the kitten on my hip would fall off and climb back on to the other one. The kitten on the pillow would switch sides. Then we’d all go back to sleep. But it never once failed to make me smile.
Unlike their human counterparts cats and dogs do not steal the blankets, do not wake you in the middle of the night for an argument and do not get up in a foul temper which they proceed to take out on you. Occasionally they even appear pleased to see you.
Every bedstead in the country should have one. Frankly it would work wonders for the nation’s mental health.
Tell us your views on sleeping with pets?