Protect Your Tender Flesh: Sleep Alone!

Some scientists recently warned pet owners to not allow pets to sleep with them in bed, and really, it should surprise no one that our furry friends are crawling with disease. Yet, in spite of the potential for gross or deadly infection, it seems unlikely that many people who sleep with their pets will stop doing so (although one hopes they’ll wash their hands and sheets more often).

In my house, it’s not the fear of contracting bubonic plague that has our two housecats banned from bunking with us. No, we sleep with our bedroom doors closed at night to protect our tender flesh from highly evolved, nocturnal predators. Yes, I’m still talking about our pets.

No, we’re not actually afraid of our favorite beasts, but nothing ruins a good REM-cycle quite like an energetic, ravenous creature made almost entirely of teeth and claws. If you’re a cat owner, you know what I’m talking about:

Domestic cats are only a few thousand years (and a few bowls of kibble) removed from their wild origins, after all. Next time your wee, precious feline mews piteously outside your bedroom door and then rewards your compliance with a vigorous cheek-rub and a breathy rumble, you may want to reconsider the invitation. Remember, the big cats also purr…

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