The idea of cuddling up with a snuggly pupper and taking a snooze probably sounds good to a lot of people reading this right now, and as it turns out, there’s a scientific reason behind why we might love this so much, especially women.
For the best sleep of your life, tell your partner to hightail it to the couch and cuddle up to Fido instead.
A recent study by researchers at the Department of Animal Behavior, Ecology, and Conservation at Canisius College in Buffalo, New York, suggests that women tend to sleep better next to dogs than they do next to members of their own species. (Or pet cats. Sorry, cat people.)
The researchers surveyed 962 women living across the United States. Of this sample, 55 percent reported sharing their bed with at least one dog and 31 percent with at least one cat. Of those women, 57 percent also slept with a partner.
The participants filled out a questionnaire about their quality of sleep and how safe they felt as a result of their dog or cat’s presence. Those with partners were asked how the other person affected their sleep and their feelings of security at night.
After analyzing the data, the team found that human partners and cats were equally disruptive to a woman’s sleep, whereas dogs were less disruptive, proving once and for all that dogs are perfect.
Why’s that? It might be because dog owners tend to have better sleep habits and stricter daily routines than than people who don’t have dogs: On the whole, dog owners had earlier bedtimes and wake-up times than women with cats.
Dogs as bed partners may adapt a bit more to their owners’ schedules than human partners do. (Such good boys.) Pups also may provide women with a greater sense of safety than a cat would when sleeping.
Why focus on women alone for this study?
There was a logistical reason: Though the study was open to everyone, less men were willing to participate than women. (The guys were probably too busy disrupting their partners’ sleep. Ahem.)