Whether on the couch, in bed or even on the towel that you spread on the floor to sunbathe, it is not uncommon for you to end up with your dog sleeping on it. Surely it has happened to you and you have wondered why this mania is due and how you can react to it.
In this article we are going to explain where the dog’s taste for being in close contact with you comes from , if it is appropriate for you to allow it or if, on the contrary, it is better that you avoid this behavior.
The way dogs sleep
Dogs are social and sociable animals. Their ancestors lived in herds in which everyone collaborated to achieve the survival and perpetuation of their genes. In this cooperation the moment of rest was included. All the members of the pack slept together . In this way they protected themselves from the weather and potential dangers.
They slept in a fetal position, curled up, glued to each other and upwind to better maintain body temperature. In contrast, today’s dogs do not sleep in danger, but the instinct to get together to sleep is still very much alive in them. And we are his herd.
This is the basis of his determination to sleep as close to you as he can, even if that includes crushing you. It also explains his bewilderment when we do not allow it or close the door of the room . If you have more than one dog at home you can see that it is not uncommon for them to rest together. It is a comfort if you do not allow him to accompany you.
My dog wants to sleep with me
That need for close contact when sleeping that leads the dog to hit and get on top of us, as we have seen, has a simple explanation. Resting with us offers you a number of important benefits. We highlight the following:
- Attachment: contact during rest allows to reinforce the bond established between caregiver and dog. For him, thanks to the domestication process, we are his reference figure, hence the importance of maintaining this attachment.
- Protection: like its ancestors, the dog instinctively knows to sleep together. Thus, he seeks your protection, but, at the same time, he is protecting you in a moment of maximum vulnerability such as rest. In other words, you are a safe place for him.
- Temperature: Although it will sleep on you all year round, it is likely that in the warmer months it will end up lying on the ground to cool off. But the rest of the year it will stick to your side or on you to keep warm. This close contact is the best way to preserve body heat.
- Comfort: dogs are not stupid and there is no doubt that our favorite bed or sofa is going to be a good place. Especially if your bed is not very soft, it is cold or you have some discomfort in the joints.
- Affection: in general, dogs are affectionate and sticking to us is a way of showing us this affection. In addition, it is a reciprocal feeling that, with our closeness, feels reciprocated.
Is it good for my dog to sleep with me?
The truth is that a dog will be interested in sleeping on you if they trust you. Therefore, that desire is usually synonymous with the fact that you have created a good bond with him. It is news to congratulate that reaffirms your role as a caregiver . The dog is showing us that he is so comfortable with us that he relaxes to the point of falling asleep.
In reality, humans function in a similar way. We need to be in a calm and relaxed environment to fall asleep and we will not do it in the presence of strangers. Therefore, there is no harm in allowing your dog to sleep with you . Of course, if you decide to leave it, it has to be always. It is not worth one day yes and another not.
Dog education is based on consistency. Think about what you want and make the decision. Do not change it and make sure that all members of the household respect the agreement. By the way, that the dog sleeps on you does not mean that it intends to dominate you . Different case is that he growls at you or prevents you from accessing the bed. That is an education problem to deal with.
What to do if I don’t want the dog to sleep in my bed?
The dog’s resting place is a personal choice. If you’ve read this far, you know why he wants to sleep on you. But, if you don’t feel like leaving him for whatever reason, he will have to accept your decision. They will not be less happy about it as long as you tend to their needs. Of course, it would be recommended that you allow him to sleep in a bed next to you.
What if my dog doesn’t want to sleep next to me?
Not all dogs have an interest in sleeping with their caregiver or don’t do it every day. Some may simply have trouble climbing onto beds or sofas due to age or health problems. Others fall asleep with the rest of the animals in the house, if any, and no longer make the intention to change their beds.
It is also possible that you adopt a dog that does not seek this close contact with you because he has suffered some trauma in his previous life. These dogs can take a long time to establish a bond of trust so that they are encouraged to sleep with us. You have to respect their times. The payoff is worth it.