Why Do Dogs Sleep at the Foot of the Bed?

As you climb into bed at night, you cozy up with your blankets and begin to drift off into a deep sleep. For a moment, you decide to move your leg for better comfortability. When your leg begins to slide across your mattress, something of a heavy origin stops your foot. Pulled out of your sleep, you sit up to see what is in the way of your leg. It is your dog and she is sitting at the foot of your bed. Sometimes, dogs love to relax with us and understanding why they sit at the end of our bed can help us better understand their canine nature.

You want to make sure that your dog remains in the correct habits of knowing that you are their alpha leader.

Why do animals sit at the foot of the bed?

Night Vision:. Sleeping at the foot of the bed allows your kitty to get up and move around without waking or disturbing you while you sleep. It also allows them to keep watch over you throughout the night.

Why do dogs sleep at the foot of the bed Reddit?

Despite what some people argue, many dogs are instinctively pack animals. As their pack leader, your pup sees you as their protector. So it stands to reason that he or she will want to stay right against the alpha for security and protection. Also, in a pack canines will sleep touching one another for warmth.

Why does my dog sleep right next to me?

Your dog wanting to sleep next to you is also a sign of affection and closeness. It means they like your company and consider you a member of the pack. Sleeping by your side also proves their loyalty, trust, and willingness to protect you.

This is one of those million-dollar questions where the answer will likely only be unlocked that day our dogs learn how to talk. Until then, at this point we can only make some educated assumptions as to why dogs sleep by their owner’s feet.

According to the study mentioned above, dogs tend to display a ” secure base effect ” similar to that found in parent-child bonding. Dogs also seek their owner’s presence for exploration purposes and for reassurance at times of distress.

Veterinarian Dr. Jennifer Masucci shares possible causes of excessive face rubbing in dogs. The Bernese mountain dog is blessed with a heavy coat that requires some extra care. Usually, dogs who are protective will tend to grow increasingly stressed the more the perceived threatening person or animal gets closer to the owner.

It was noted back then that, most men, given the choice, chose seats that were facing the door. This likely stemmed from a protective standpoint, so that any dangers coming from the entrance could be quickly recognized, versus having the back to a door.

You decide to sit down in the evening to read your book or watch some Netflix, and your dog decides to sit down with you as well, lying down next to your feet or even sitting on top of your feet. It might be their favorite place to curl up for a snooze.

Generally speaking, keeping close to your feet is normal dog behavior and isnt something you should be worried about. But it can become a problem if it is a sign of fear or stress, if it is accompanied by aggressive behavior, or if they take it to excess and you find yourself tripping over your dog as they try to stay close to you.

While we will go on and give a number of other reasons for why your dog sits at your feet, they all relate back to this pack instinct. Dogs have the natural instinct that staying close to their alpha is the right thing to do in a variety of situations. They huddle for warmth, they stay close together for safety, and they arrange themselves in a way that reflects the hierarchy and the connectedness of the pack.

They like to stay close to the alpha, who tends to be the biggest and strongest of the dogs, and has earned their position by protecting the pack. This could be the presence of a stranger (animal or human), a thunderstorm, or even a smell in the house thats a bit different than usual. This behavior is fine if it is limited to sitting and paying attention to what is happening in the vicinity.

This is one of the many reasons why dogs need to be properly socialized as part of their training, so they can learn to share you with other inhabitants of the house and not to get aggressive or overly territorial when other entities get too close. If you have multiple pets, you might notice that if your cat jumps onto your lap, your dog will come over directly to remind everyone of their connection with you. Again, this territorial behavior is nothing to worry about if it is limited to sticking close to you as a form of signaling.

Chances are, if this is their motivation, they will try and get as close as possible, so they will nuzzle and move around quite a lot while settling down in order to get as much skin contact as possible. This is especially common with smaller breeds, as they find it much more difficult to maintain their body temperature in the cold. In fact, it can be an important part of your bond, and a good moment for you to give your dog some love and attention with a nice scratch behind the ears.

However, if you find that they suddenly want to spend all their time at your feet, it might be that they have suffered a significant scare. This has reduced their confidence, which is a problem if they dont even feel safe in their own home. This behavior can also be a problem if their territorial or protective mode spills over into aggression and they begin to bark at others, or worse.

Also, your dog may have a tendency to take this to excess, and you may find they want to sit at your feet at inconvenient times, such as when you are cooking, and that you are practically tripping over them as you try to move around. If you give them a nice scratch behind the ears or other types of reward or affection while they are sitting at your feet, they will learn that this is the positive outcome of this behavior and will be inclined to do this more often. If you banish them to another room, this will feel like a punishment for completely natural behavior.

Many dogs love to sit on their owners feet, as part of an effort to stay close. Generally speaking, it is not a good idea to let your dog sleep in your bed with you. This is mainly for health reasons, as they can transfer illness, especially fleas and other parasites, to humans with this kind of proximity.

Rather than sleeping through the night, they are likely to wake and be restless for a period of time, which may disturb you. Also, most dogs are bed hogs and are likely to slowly expand over the course of the night, until you wake in the morning curled up in the tiniest corner of your bedor falling out. This behavior is not generally a problem, and you might even welcome it as part of your bonding experience with your pup.

It only becomes problematic if they are doing it because they are suffering from fear or stress, if it is accompanied by aggressive behavior, or they do it at inappropriate times and are constantly tripping you up.

Introduction

As you climb into bed at night, you cozy up with your blankets and begin to drift off into a deep sleep. For a moment, you decide to move your leg for better comfortability. When your leg begins to slide across your mattress, something of a heavy origin stops your foot. Pulled out of your sleep, you sit up to see what is in the way of your leg. It is your dog and she is sitting at the foot of your bed. Sometimes, dogs love to relax with us and understanding why they sit at the end of our bed can help us better understand their canine nature.

The Root of the Behavior

Dogs are of the canine origin. Throughout their life, they are going to play out their dog-like nature in everything that they do, which includes their daily patterns. Your dog considers you to be the owner, the pack leader, and the golden one. From the time they are a puppy, they begin to understand this concept and will look to you for all their needs and desires. As you may have noticed, your dog honors, loves, and cares for you in that way. When you go to relax in your bed, your dog is going to play out this belief system with you. Due to your role as the leader, your dog knows that you get to have the best area for comfortability that there is. Yet, they love you and still want to be around you, so they will linger around your comfort area. It is why your dog may sleep at the end of your bed by your feet instead of right directly next to you. Secondly, your dog absolutely adores you and can be quite protective of you. If this is the case, you may notice that your dog hovers around your sleeping area to be your protector. If anything were to happen to you, your dog would be the first to know because she is at the end of the bed where there is a front row seat to the surrounding areas in the room. Although having your dog only sit at the end of the bed might seem harsh, it is important and your dog actually loves the idea of you as the alpha leader. It is a way that you are being generous to your dog. Most importantly, your dog wants to be with you. If you allow your dog to sit at the end of your bed, they will be more than happy with it and your relationship with your dog may grow deeper.

Encouraging the Behavior

Depending on the personality of your dog, you will begin to notice where they like to relax and what their habits are. If you notice that your dog loves to sit on your bed by your feet, then that is perfectly alright. In fact, it should be something to encourage in your dog if you decide to allow them on your furniture. You want to make sure that your dog remains in the correct habits of knowing that you are their alpha leader. Sometimes, if you allow your dog on your bed, they can stretch out and go beyond their designated area of the end of the bed. It is important to emphasize the boundary with your dog when allowing them to relax on your bed. If you do not want them to sit at the end of your bed, you can bring their bed into your room and keep it near you. Your dog will then know that you still want them around while you are in your room but would like to keep their sleeping area and your sleeping area separate. Remember, your dog knows that you are the alpha and deserve the better sleeping area over them so they will be happy if youjust let them relax in the same area as you, whether it is on the end of your bed or the floor.

Other Solutions and Considerations

Sometimes, your dog may be wanting to be at the end of your bed for more than the normal reasons of wanting to be near you, wanting to protect you, and wanting to sleep on your bed. If you notice that your dog likes to be elevated on furniture, you can create a bed for your dog that is a higher up. This way, your dog will know you get to be on your bed and they must not be on it, but they can have their own bed that is the same height as yours. From this structure, they will feel just as close to you, but remain aware that you are their leader.

Knowing the Owner’s Whereabouts

Unless your dog belongs to one of those independent breeds or is a loner by nature, consider that most dogs are eager to be nearby their owners. According to a study conducted by scientists at the University of Veterinary Medicine, Vienna, dogs perceive us as family, and to be more exact, they develop a child-like bond with their owners.Domesticated dogs have been living in close proximity with humans for about 15,000 years (and likely more!) and dogs have gotten so used to being around us, that dogs tend to choose us as social partners over their con-specifics. Owners of dogs are well aware of this strong bond which is so very close to the bond that is seen between an infant and the mother.It’s not surprising therefore that dogs like to be around their owners, and this often entails sharing sleeping areas or sleeping very closely to their owners, which often means right attached to the owner’s feet!

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Assuming a Protective Role

As with everything dog related, there are no rules set in stone that apply to every dog. Sometimes dogs sleep by their owner’s feet because they feel a need to assume a protective role.This can likely be the scenario if the sleeping-on feet-behavior tends to often happen when there are people or other dogs around and the dog is known for being “protective.”Dogs who are prone to protect the owner, resorting to guarding him/her as a precious resource, tend to lean into the owner or if the dog gets tired of leaning or starts relaxing more, he or she may lie down and sleep on the owner’s feet.Usually, dogs who are protective will tend to grow increasingly stressed the more the perceived threatening person or animal gets closer to the owner.When the dog’s “space bubble” is invaded and the person is getting too close to the owner for comfort, the dog will likely either bark, growl or lunge towards the person or dog in hopes of discouraging close proximity.