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Who Do You Sleep With?

Why some people are dog-tired (and don’t care)



Photo by Soloviova Liudmyla

Recently we hosted a dinner party, and when our guests arrived, Allie and Lucy, our Bichons greeted everyone enthusiastically. The dinner for eight began beautifully. The avocado and grapefruit salad and butterflied leg of lamb with rosemary were flawless. Wine flowed and the conversation was brisk, cordial, and animated. There wasn’t a problem we couldn’t solve. All was right with the world. 

As I went into the kitchen to bring out the chocolate mousse for dessert I overheard one of the guests ask the assembled group, “Do you let your dogs sleep on your bed?” 

Conversation stopped momentarily. Then, suddenly answers started flying, creating a seismic shift from politics, global warming, and Time’s “Person of the Year,” to dogs on people beds, pro and con. Voices were raised and faces reddened as opinions were passionately shared. 

One of the guests, a vet, shared her professional knowledge. We learned that most dogs sleep 12 to 14 hours a day, varying by breed and daily activity. Horses and cows may sleep only three or four hours. Bats and possums take the snooze prize, logging 20 hours of shut-eye a day. 

It turns out that dogs have sleep patterns similar to humans, and also experience dreams. “Adult dogs will spend ten to 12 percent of their sleeping time in REM stage, which is when they dream,” the vet said. “Have you ever noticed your dogs’ legs pawing at the air, or seen the animals quivering or growling when they’re asleep?” We all nodded. “They’re having doggy dreams and I recommend not waking them because the expression, ‘let sleeping dogs lie’ is apt.” 

We were all better informed but the question about appropriate sleeping arrangements remained unanswered. 

“Why should our dog have full-time bed privileges when our kids are only allowed in bed with us when they’re sick or scared?” offered one dinner guest, the mother of three young children.

“We used to let Shelby, our Burmese Mountain Dog, sleep on the bed but the rules changed when he started obsessively pawing the duvet to establish his territory. There was no room for us,” said a Wall Street investment broker. 

“When Buster was little everything was fine,” chimed in my neighbor, a nursery school teacher “But when he got his big-dog voice and started barking wildly in the middle of the night, Buster got busted. Now he sleeps on his dog bed. I still feel guilty. “I don’t” said her husband, to much laughter.

The German shepherd owner, a sports psychologist, perked up. “Razzle and Dazzle used to sleep on our bed. When nature called they went out the dog door, did their business, jumped back on the bed, and went right back to sleep. But I could never get back to sleep. Sleeping privileges on our bed were revoked!” 

“Too many romantic moments were ruined by Lily Bud, so my husband banished her,” lamented the Chihuahua owner, a serial volunteer.

I listened patiently as I served the mousse. Finally I felt compelled to enter the conversational fray,. 

“I must admit,” I said, that our dogs have no regard for our need of uninterrupted sleep. And though they’re small, they’re utter space hogs. We often talk about banning them from our bed but never have the heart to turn them away. They’re family and we need each other.”

 “Aren’t you concerned about Lyme disease?” asked one guest. 

“Of course we are,” I replied. “I had one of the first recorded cases of Lyme in Connecticut, so we’re vigilant. We check our dogs throughout the day and always before bedtime.”

Remembering my miserable battle with the disease, my thoughts drifted back to memories of Winnie, our first Bichon, who was my comforting companion throughout my Lyme ordeal. He never left my side. Every time I napped Winnie would climb up on the bed and snuggle next to me. 

Several years later, as Winnie’s life was slipping away he was no longer able to climb onto the bed. It was our time to comfort Winnie and reciprocate his devotion. We placed his favorite pillow beside our bed where he lay peacefully. He wanted to be with his family––his pack––to the very end. I honestly don’t know who needed to be comforted more. 

I took a sip of wine and exchanged a meaningful glance with my husband. “While we respect all of your opinions, in this household we let our dogs sleep with us. We live for their unconditional love, and they live for ours. Now, raise your hand if you want more chocolate mousse!” 

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July 2017

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Cost: $22.00 - $150.00

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Where:
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Singin' in the Rain is considered the "Greatest Movie Musical of All Time" by many musical theatre critics. This stage version is faithfully and lovingly adapted...

Cost: $45-$60, Group Pricing Available

Where:
Waveny Park
11 Farm Road
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Website »

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This is a new children musical in the making. You will be the very first to see it performed.    Dancing Princesses begins with an enchanting mystery for the kingdom to solve - why...

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Robin Hood, with his band of brothers are seeking to rid the land of evil and return hope to the mistreated. It’s a tale that’s been told a thousand...

Cost: $22.00 - $150.00

Where:
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11 Farm Road
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Where:
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More information

There’s a new theatre in the neighborhood, committed to producing ambitious, thought provoking plays and readings. Thrown Stone, the brain child of  co-artistic directors Jason Peck...

Cost: $29-$49

Where:
Ridgefield Conservatory of Dance
440 Main Street
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View map »


Website »

More information

Each year Stamford Downtown hosts a distinguished outdoor sculpture exhibit designed to attract both local and regional audiences. Art in Public Places Outdoor Sculpture exhibit features sculptures...

Cost: Free

Where:
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Maritime Garage Gallery
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Cost: $25

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Caramoor Center for Music and the Arts
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St. Matthew's Episcopal Church
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Sponsor: Music on the Hill
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Singin' in the Rain is considered the "Greatest Movie Musical of All Time" by many musical theatre critics. This stage version is faithfully and lovingly adapted...

Cost: $45-$60, Group Pricing Available

Where:
Waveny Park
11 Farm Road
New Canaan, CT
View map »


Website »

More information

This is a new children musical in the making. You will be the very first to see it performed.    Dancing Princesses begins with an enchanting mystery for the kingdom to solve - why...

Cost: $22.00 - $150.00

Where:
Waveny Park
11 Farm Road
New Canaan, CT
View map »


Website »

More information

Robin Hood, with his band of brothers are seeking to rid the land of evil and return hope to the mistreated. It’s a tale that’s been told a thousand...

Cost: $22.00 - $150.00

Where:
Waveny Park
11 Farm Road
New Canaan, CT
View map »


Website »

More information

Who knew? Silvermine Arts Center, in our own backyard, is one of the oldest artist communities in the United States. This summer, Whitney Museum’s David Kiehl curates the 2017...

Where:
Silvermine Arts Center
1037 Silvermine Road
New Canaan, CT  06840
View map »


Website »

More information

There’s a new theatre in the neighborhood, committed to producing ambitious, thought provoking plays and readings. Thrown Stone, the brain child of  co-artistic directors Jason Peck...

Cost: $29-$49

Where:
Ridgefield Conservatory of Dance
440 Main Street
Ridgefield, CT  06877
View map »


Website »

More information

Each year Stamford Downtown hosts a distinguished outdoor sculpture exhibit designed to attract both local and regional audiences. Art in Public Places Outdoor Sculpture exhibit features sculptures...

Cost: Free

Where:
Stamford Downtown
, CT


Website »

More information

“From A Student Perspective” presents selected art from about 20 students from NCC’s Studio Arts, Graphic Design and Architecture Department. The work is in a variety of media...

Cost: free

Where:
Maritime Garage Gallery
11 North Water Street
Norwalk, CT  06854
View map »


Sponsor: Norwalk Parking Authority
Telephone: 203-831-9063
Contact Name: Maritime Garage Gallery
Website »

More information

Experience the joy of setting sail and shutting off the engine as we sail through Long Island Sound. Sit back and relax or take a turn at the helm, the choice is yours. Sails depart from...

Cost: $40/adults, $20 for children ages 5-12

Where:
Cove Island Park
1281 Cove Rd
Stamford, CT  06902
View map »


Website »

More information

Show More...
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Cost: $40, $45, $55, $65, $75

Where:
Caramoor Center for Music and the Arts
149 Girdle Ridge Road
Katonah, NY  10536
View map »


Website »

More information

Singin' in the Rain is considered the "Greatest Movie Musical of All Time" by many musical theatre critics. This stage version is faithfully and lovingly adapted...

Cost: $45-$60, Group Pricing Available

Where:
Waveny Park
11 Farm Road
New Canaan, CT
View map »


Website »

More information

This is a new children musical in the making. You will be the very first to see it performed.    Dancing Princesses begins with an enchanting mystery for the kingdom to solve - why...

Cost: $22.00 - $150.00

Where:
Waveny Park
11 Farm Road
New Canaan, CT
View map »


Website »

More information

Robin Hood, with his band of brothers are seeking to rid the land of evil and return hope to the mistreated. It’s a tale that’s been told a thousand...

Cost: $22.00 - $150.00

Where:
Waveny Park
11 Farm Road
New Canaan, CT
View map »


Website »

More information

Who knew? Silvermine Arts Center, in our own backyard, is one of the oldest artist communities in the United States. This summer, Whitney Museum’s David Kiehl curates the 2017...

Where:
Silvermine Arts Center
1037 Silvermine Road
New Canaan, CT  06840
View map »


Website »

More information

There’s a new theatre in the neighborhood, committed to producing ambitious, thought provoking plays and readings. Thrown Stone, the brain child of  co-artistic directors Jason Peck...

Cost: $29-$49

Where:
Ridgefield Conservatory of Dance
440 Main Street
Ridgefield, CT  06877
View map »


Website »

More information

Each year Stamford Downtown hosts a distinguished outdoor sculpture exhibit designed to attract both local and regional audiences. Art in Public Places Outdoor Sculpture exhibit features sculptures...

Cost: Free

Where:
Stamford Downtown
, CT


Website »

More information

“From A Student Perspective” presents selected art from about 20 students from NCC’s Studio Arts, Graphic Design and Architecture Department. The work is in a variety of media...

Cost: free

Where:
Maritime Garage Gallery
11 North Water Street
Norwalk, CT  06854
View map »


Sponsor: Norwalk Parking Authority
Telephone: 203-831-9063
Contact Name: Maritime Garage Gallery
Website »

More information

Experience the joy of setting sail and shutting off the engine as we sail through Long Island Sound. Sit back and relax or take a turn at the helm, the choice is yours. Sails depart from...

Cost: $40/adults, $20 for children ages 5-12

Where:
Cove Island Park
1281 Cove Rd
Stamford, CT  06902
View map »


Website »

More information

Show More...
Show Less...

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Cost: $50.00

Where:
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Norwalk , CT  06855
View map »


Sponsor: Norm Bloom & Son Oyster Company
Website »

More information

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Cost: $35.00 registration (June 1 – July 29) $40 Race Day

Where:
Southwest Cafe
109 Danbury Rd
Ridgefield, CT  06877
View map »


Website »

More information

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Cost: $30, $40, $50, $60, $75, $90, $100

Where:
Caramoor Center for Music and the Arts
149 Girdle Ridge Road
Katonah, NY  10536
View map »


Website »

More information

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Cost: $25-$35 for single tickets. Reservations suggested.

Where:
Music Theatre of Connecticut
509 Westport Ave.
Norwalk, CT  06851
View map »


Telephone: 203-454-3883
Website »

More information

Singin' in the Rain is considered the "Greatest Movie Musical of All Time" by many musical theatre critics. This stage version is faithfully and lovingly adapted...

Cost: $45-$60, Group Pricing Available

Where:
Waveny Park
11 Farm Road
New Canaan, CT
View map »


Website »

More information

This is a new children musical in the making. You will be the very first to see it performed.    Dancing Princesses begins with an enchanting mystery for the kingdom to solve - why...

Cost: $22.00 - $150.00

Where:
Waveny Park
11 Farm Road
New Canaan, CT
View map »


Website »

More information

Robin Hood, with his band of brothers are seeking to rid the land of evil and return hope to the mistreated. It’s a tale that’s been told a thousand...

Cost: $22.00 - $150.00

Where:
Waveny Park
11 Farm Road
New Canaan, CT
View map »


Website »

More information

Who knew? Silvermine Arts Center, in our own backyard, is one of the oldest artist communities in the United States. This summer, Whitney Museum’s David Kiehl curates the 2017...

Where:
Silvermine Arts Center
1037 Silvermine Road
New Canaan, CT  06840
View map »


Website »

More information

There’s a new theatre in the neighborhood, committed to producing ambitious, thought provoking plays and readings. Thrown Stone, the brain child of  co-artistic directors Jason Peck...

Cost: $29-$49

Where:
Ridgefield Conservatory of Dance
440 Main Street
Ridgefield, CT  06877
View map »


Website »

More information

Each year Stamford Downtown hosts a distinguished outdoor sculpture exhibit designed to attract both local and regional audiences. Art in Public Places Outdoor Sculpture exhibit features sculptures...

Cost: Free

Where:
Stamford Downtown
, CT


Website »

More information

Juried artisans showing one-of-a-kind works in  fine arts and fine crafts will be featured at the 3rd Annual Stamford Art Festival on Saturday and Sunday, July 29 and 30, from 10 am to 5 pm,...

Cost: Free admission

Where:
Harbor Point
00 Washington Blvd #200
Stamford, CT  06902
View map »


Website »

More information

Experience the joy of setting sail and shutting off the engine as we sail through Long Island Sound. Sit back and relax or take a turn at the helm, the choice is yours. Sails depart from...

Cost: $40/adults, $20 for children ages 5-12

Where:
Cove Island Park
1281 Cove Rd
Stamford, CT  06902
View map »


Website »

More information

Show More...
Show Less...
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