Cats in the Bed – Pet tip 220
Cats are cute and cuddly and they often want to spend as much time as they can nuzzling and cuddling with us. Many cats are so affectionate that they want to cuddle with us when we go to sleep for the night. A common question for a new cat owner is if the new pet cat should be allowed to sleep in the family bed. The answer is a firm ‘maybe’ and it depends on a few key factors.
There is no doubt that the favourite sleeping spot for many cats is the family bed. If we consider the pros and cons of allowing our cat (or cats) to sleep with us we can usually make the right choice for all members of the household including the cat. It goes without saying that if anyone sleeping in the bedroom is even mildly allergic to cats then the answer is a firm ‘no’. If anyone in the household has a cat allergy, then getting a cat (let alone letting the cat sleep in the bed of an allergy sufferer) is a bad idea to begin with.
If there is no family member that has an allergy and the cat is an exclusively indoor cat, then there are not any major risks that your cat will catch something from the ‘outside’ and bring it into your bed. In this case, the only thing your cat will bring into your bed (and leave in your bed) is its fur. If you are okay with pet fur in your bed and you change the sheets regularly then there should be no major issue.
The riskier business happens when cats go outdoors and then come home to sleep in your warm clean bed. In this case, you want to make sure that your cat is up to date on all of its shots and for your own sanity, you want to make sure that your cat is up to date with regard to its flea control. Although cat fleas which are parasitic insects live on cats (Ctenocephalides felis) and not on humans, fleas have no problem jumping on humans for a quick bite. These bites are extremely itchy and annoying. Fleas also multiply quickly so do yourself a favour and triple check to make sure your cat is on a good cat flea (NEVER give your cat dog flea medication) treatment program.
Ticks and other parasites would also be something to look out for and you should ask your vet which parasites are common in your area and choose a course of action to help prevent them from entering your house or your bed. Aside from that, dirt will also be your enemy. Wandering cats do get quite dirty and depending on how fussy you are with regard to a clean bed, this is something else you’ll have to contend with if you allow your cat to sleep in your bed.