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Should you Sleep with your cat?

Cute little girl sleeping on sofa with fluffy cat

Should you sleep with your cat? At a recent doctors appointment, my mom’s physician told her I was bad for her health. How rude! This doc says I spark her allergies and asthma. Mom has had reactions to animal dander, mold and pollen since she was a teen, but got allergy shots for many years to help her deal with it. Not having a kitty in her life is not an option.

Why you shouldn’t sleep with your cat

Despite her disagreement, Mom does respect what her physician says. This was the third allergist to tell her that she shouldn’t sleep with me. Being an educated feline, I’m not going to dispute the facts behind their advice. I believe in transparency, so here’s the scientific evidence the medical community thinks you need to know:

  • Cats can spread the bubonic plague: According to the National Institute of Health (NIH) from 1977 to 1998 there were 23 cases of the disease caused by the family cat. Some people even died.
  • You can get ringworm: If you get a fungus like ringworm on you, its because those spores are on my coat.
  • Your cat can scratch you while you’re sleeping. That’s very true. I sometimes pounce on my mom when she’s napping on the couch. I can’t help it! It’s fun.
Whisker Fabulous' Farley Waddlesworth in bed with his dog sister Josie
My dog sister Josie and I sleeping on heated beds before I got kicked out of the bedroom.

Tips for sleeping better with your cat at night

If you still want to sleep with your cat, there are things you can do to make things better. You should wash all your bedding in hot water weekly, especially the comforter your cat lays on.

Mom brushes me every two weeks because she wants to get rid of my excess pet hair. She sleeps year round with an air purifier that has a HEPA filter. HEPA technology is the best to capture pet hair, dander and odors. There are many brands out there that are great, just make sure you’re diligent about replacing the filter or it will do no good.

There’s also a new allergy vaccine for cats that was just announced. The cat gets the shot to stop the Fel d 1 allergen, which is the main culprit of why ten percent of humans are allergic to cats. It got a lot of news coverage, but it’s yet to be seen if it’s safe and effective.

Holmes Air Purifier
Available on

Do cats get lonely at night?

If you decide you should not have your cat in bed with you it can be a difficult process. Mom had to kick me out because I was biting her in the middle of the night, and she found her asthma acting up when I was next to her.

It took about two weeks of me relentlessly meowing at the door, but eventually I gave up. It was a tough time, I didn’t let my human sleep much all while she felt incredible guilt. I meowed because I was lonely, but it’s all fine now. I got over it and enjoy having the run of the house.

Your health is more important than sleeping with your cat

If you have a severe case of cat allergies, please know that while your feline wants to be with you and may feel sad not being with you, many eventually adjust and are just fine. It just takes discipline on your part, knowing eventually your cat will succumb to his new sleeping situation.

Sleeping with your pets is a personal decision. Your health should always come first. If you aren’t healthy, how will you take care of your precious kitty? Do what’s best for the two of you, so you can be fabulous together for a very long time.

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  1. Jim

    What cat do you know that sleeps all night or even at all during the night? Ours is playing all night long most of the time.

    • Mary Tan

      Hi Jim! Good point! Cats are nocturnal so many do play all night. I tend to sleep for a little bit then roam around and then go back to bed… so I am a pretty good kitty for not waking my human up. I would suggest you put out “quiet” enrichment in a room far away from your bedroom such as little mice or balls that make no noise? Perhaps that will keep them quieter? Of course, when it comes to hunger… all bets are off for keeping a cat from waking you up. Thanks for reading! Farley Waddlesworth

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