When we got a puppy, we already had an idea in mind of what type of 'dog parents' we thought we would be. Fun but firm, loving, but with 'pet' rules.
What rules, you ask? Well, through our hours of watching The Dog Whisperer, we had determined that our puppy would need to be crate trained, and would need to have boundaries, like not using our furniture. And, this puppy would certainly never gain a spot at the foot of the bed. After all, our bed was a place for just us, and I sleep best with the maximum amount of space possible.
It only took about two months for the furniture thing to go out the window. We rescued Riley when she was very young. I believe that she was only 5-6 weeks old despite being told she was the standard 'eight weeks old.' Because of her age, and the adjustment, she wasn't a very good sleeper for quite a while. While her middle of the night bouts ended quickly, we simply could not get her to sleep past 6AM. Ever.
So, one morning while we were visiting friends on Long Island, B decided that the easiest way to coax her back to sleep was to let her lay on the couch with him. They both fell asleep and the rest is history. Since we have two sectional couches at home, it hasn't been a very big deal to allow Riley to take up some of the space when we're having a movie night, etc.
Fast forward about twenty months. Shortly before the holidays, I was out of town overnight for business, and I learned that B had let Riley sleep 'in my place' in the bed overnight. While this seemed innocent, I secretly worried that it would become more routine over time. Just like the couch did.
Before I knew it, I had convinced myself that Riley and I would both sleep better after B left for work if she joined me in the bed for an hour or so each morning during the week.
I'm sure you can guess that one thing then led to another, and we now have a 65lb. lab sleeping in our bed about 3-4 nights per week. How did this happen? Trust me, I know we have no one to blame but ourselves, but short of buying a king sized bed in the immediate future, I see no other solution than to try and get her out of this habit. It might be harder on me than it is on her, but I think it's time for me to put my 'Momma' foot down.
Anyone else have this problem with their dog(s)?!!?