Plenty of dog owners share their sleeping space with their four-legged companions. Even though the bed is for the humans in the house, dogs tend to be, well, bed hogs when it comes to sleeping space. Thankfully, Patti and Pete Stoddard (former Minnetonka residents) have a solution.
The Stoddards own a Great Dane and two English springer spaniels, who love to be close to them in bed. It was enjoyable for the couple until the dogs started disturbing their sleep. “We’d end up in two separate bedrooms by the end of the night,” Patti says. “The dogs would take our bed.”
They say necessity is the mother of invention, so the Stoddards came up with a solution—the Doggy Bunk Bed, which is an elevated dog bed that sits on the foot of the human bed. It adjusts to different heights and can hold dogs up to 190 pounds. “The dogs struggle less and still feel close to you,” Patti says. “It helps people get better sleep.”
The dog bunk is designed to fit securely on any bed. It doesn’t wiggle, ensuring it won’t disturb anyone’s sleep when the dog repositions in the middle of the night. The bunk can be moved to the floor if a dog isn’t able to jump on the bed due to an injury or old age. “This will be the last dog bed people will ever have to buy,” Patti says.
The bunk comes in two sizes—large ($595) for one large or two medium-size dogs and extra large ($649) that’s ideal for giant dog breeds or two larger dogs.
A mattress cover of choice is included with a purchase of a bunk. (Extra covers are also sold separately.)
Happy and Healthier
Snuggling up to a pet at bedtime might make pet owners happy and healthier.
According to the Sleep Foundation, research and anecdotal evidence suggest that sleeping with a pet can offer extra benefits. Apart from getting good vibes from a nearby pet, a study of veterans with post-traumatic stress disorder with service dogs noted 57 percent of respondents said their dog helped ease their nightmare problems.
Another benefit can be improved mental health. “Positively interacting with a dog increases oxytocin levels in adults and reduces cortisol levels in children. [Those levels are associated with relaxation and stress reduction],” the foundation’s website says.
Immunity benefits, too. The foundation's website says, “... research shows that petting a dog increases an immune response, so the close contact of sharing a sleeping space may benefit the immune system ...”
Improved health is another stated benefit. “Owning a dog is correlated to a reduced risk of death ...” the foundation says. “Early research on this topic found that petting dogs, in particular, reduces blood pressure and heart rate. If touching your pet is part of the key to gaining health benefits, cuddling up together at night might help.”
As with most things in life, there is a caveat. The foundation cautions: While sleeping with pets has benefits, there are potential risks. Check with your health care provider and veterinarian for the best way to spend time with your pet.