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Emily Singer

A View from Emily Singer

Quantifying Myself: How Four-Legged Friends Disrupt Sleep

84 = average ZQ sleep score

  • June 17, 2011

The Zeo sleep monitor is the first consumer device that allows users to track their duration and stages of sleep—REM, deep, and light sleep—during the night. I had tested the Zeo for a few days when it first came out, but using it daily for a few weeks was more illuminating.

According to Zeo, my cat disrupts my sleep long before I wake up to feed her.

I found that sleeping in by an hour dramatically improved my ZQ score—a proprietary algorithm that incorporates sleep duration and quality to create a single number for the night’s sleep. That convinced me to give up on attempts to work out in the morning and embrace an evening gym routine.

I also discovered that my cat is wreaking more havoc on my sleep than I thought. She wakes me up for breakfast every morning at 5:30 a.m., but looking at my Zeo data showed that my sleep pattern is disturbed for the hour before that. (Apparently it takes her a while to wake me up.) So I bought an automatic feeder with a timer, which helps.

I’d love to know what she’s doing while I sleep and see how our patterns interact. (I briefly considered attaching my Fitbit to her collar.) But Green Goose, a startup that is developing stick-on sensors, says it is soon coming out with its first application, designed for pets. I don’t have any additional information at this point, but I will certainly try it out as soon as possible.

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