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Research Shows Service Dogs Help Autistic Kids Sleep Better

A recent research study found that living with a service dog helped autistic children fall asleep faster, stay asleep longer, and feel less anxious at bedtime. The results were published last month in Frontiers in Psychiatry.

In addition to experiencing improved sleep with a service dog at their side, autistic children in the study were more likely to sleep in their own room instead of wanting to sleep with a parent. Other studies have found that service dogs reduce autistic children’s struggles and their parents’ stress levels and therefore improve the functioning of the entire family.  

Good Dog! Shadow, and her girl Stella exemplify this finding.

Megan, Shadow's handler and Stella's Mom, shares:

“Having a good dog has been life changing.  Stella’s ability to sleep through the night has drastically improved having Shadow by her side for comfort and support. Before having Shadow, Stella would wake up several times through the night which no longer happens. Shadow takes her job very seriously at bedtime and loves to be part of Stella’s bedtime routine. She is the best and has given me the priceless gift of sleep!”

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