There are a variety of reasons why your dog wants to sleep with you all of a sudden. This can include their health, your dog’s instincts, your dog’s personality, or external factors. You may have encouraged your dog to join you and may not have realized that you’d done so.
Let’s dig into the reasons why your dog is now sleeping with you. Keep reading to learn more.
Testing Boundaries and your Patience
Dogs are individuals in their own rights and have their preferences, even opinions. If your dog likes the comfort of blankets, then they may try to claim the bed as their territory.
Your dog will most likely not have anything against you being there. They’ll be happy sharing the bed as long as you don’t kick them out.
Remember, things have changed over the last year. Before lockdown order which has kept us home 24/7, your dog would be alone for several hours at a time. Your dog may have seen or known that the bedroom was off-limits.
The situation may have changed, and now your dog has gotten used to being with you all the time. If your dog follows you into the bedroom during the day, he or she may start barking at Night when you lock your dog out of the bedroom.
Dogs are Nesters
Nesting is an instinctive behavior. Wild dogs will nest in a den and make it comfortable. They scratch to ‘adjust’ the shape, walk in a circle to chase critters away, and claim the territory.
Now, you have an understanding of your dog’s nesting habits. You’ve seen it in your dog’s bedtime routine.
They will go to their dog bed, pillow, or whatever they sleep on, scratch at it, and do circles. They may even put a corner of their pillow or blanket in their mouth. After they have finished their ‘ritual,’ they will curl up and go to sleep.
Your dog may have started sleeping with you because they’ve discovered the bed is great for nesting. They may have done this because they don’t have a dog bed or a blanket to make the floor comfortable.
Your dog is ill or you are
This is something you should be aware of, even if it isn’t a comforting possibility.
Dogs are sensitive, and they could be sensing that something about your health is off. They likely see you as the ‘pack leader,’ and they get worried about you when they notice your low energy levels or you have deteriorating health.
If your dog is having health issues, they may want to be close to you since they find it comforting.
You are your dog’s beloved owner and friend. Also, you provide your dog with food, shelter, and protection. This means your dog knows the two of you take care of each other and is showing you he or she will stick with you.
Be warm at Night
Wild dogs are pack animals. They hunt and sleep in packs.
This an instinct that has remained in domesticated dogs. If you have multiple dogs, you may have noticed that they sleep next to each other. They do this to keep themselves warm.
So, if your house or apartment is chilly at night, such as the winter months of Alaska, your dog may be sleeping with you to be warm.
No matter the size of your dog, they will always see themselves as your loyal protector.
Since this is how they see themselves, they figure they can’t protect you if they are not at your side and in their sights.
By sleeping with you, your dog is making sure that they can see and hear what is alarming. They can also keep track of what you’re doing. They will wake up when you do. This explains why most small dogs will sleep between your legs.
When you move, your dog will become alert and switch into protection mode.
Dogs are intelligent and have complex emotions. Your dog could be sleeping with you because of health issues.
Wait, you say, we’ve covered this. Yes and no. We’ve covered that dogs will sleep you for comfort due to physical health issues. Here we’re talking about the psychological health of your dog.
Your dog may be suffering from separation anxiety. If this is the case, then your dog will do anything and everything he or she can to be close to you at all times.
They may be experiencing separation anxiety because you spend long periods of time outside of the house. This anxiety could be due to you closing your dog out of a room that you spend a lot of time in.
Your dog will whine, bark, nibble at things while you’re away. If your dog is suffering from separation anxiety, they may try to escape and try to find you. As soon as your home, your dog will be able to see you and be next to you, then your dog will feel fine.
This will translate into your dog sleeping with you to stay close with you.
You think that your dog is sleeping with you out of the blue. But you could have encouraged your dog without realizing it.
At one point, your dog may have felt like playing with you. You were on your bed, and they jumped up to join you. You thought nothing of it and started playing with your dog. Or you pet and cuddle with the dog.
When you do this, instead of putting your dog back on the floor and telling him or her ‘no,’ then you’re encouraging your dog to continue joining you on the bed.
A changed household
Another reason why your dog is sleeping with you now is that a change has occurred in your house. Sleeping with you may be their way of dealing with the stress of the change.
Changes that could be affecting your dog include:
- A loss of someone in the family
- Moving to a new apartment or house
- Your work schedule has changed
- You bring another pet into the house
- You bring a new baby home
Be supportive of your dog and give him or her lots of love.
Something frightened your dog
Dogs have better hearing than humans. When dogs hear a loud unknown noise such as fireworks, they get frightened and look for a place to hide.
My own dog, a golden retriever/border collie mix, would get frightened every time a train went by our house. She would find a corner to hide in and shake. This happened for the first couple of months we had her. Now, a train going by is a familiar sound, so it doesn’t bother her. Though even after 12 years, she still barks when fireworks go off.
Dogs are sensitive and will curl up with you for comfort.
Dogs have their own personality. There are many reasons that your dog is now sleeping with you. Take a look around to see what it may be and make sure both of you are healthy. In most cases, it’s something minor that’s easily correctable with training.