Owning a dog is a lot more than just having a pet by your side. Dogs are your companions in every sense, your bodyguards when you are home alone, and your ankle heaters when they snuggle with you in your bed. This thought must have crossed your mind often, that why do dogs sleep at the foot of the bed? Or why do these little pups love to cuddle on your feet always? Let’s find out!
The pack behavior
Dogs are used to staying in packs when they roam around in the wild. They are habituated to sleeping closely to stay warm, to protect themselves and the leader. They also stay close to the leader as the leader has the best sleeping spot. For domesticated dogs, the owner is the leader, with the most ideal sleeping spot. This is the reason why dogs sleep at the foot of the bed or your feet.
Little puppies have an instinct to sleep by the mother’s tail. Also, they look for more warmth as they are little and need more comfort. They also sometimes sleep a little away to not be crushed if their mums rolled over! How adorable these pups are!
While warmth is one reason for your dogs to sleep at the foot of the bed, there are other reasons too.
- Some dogs like to sleep on the floor, close to your feet as they like cooler places to sleep.
- Sleeping at the bed’s foot also means that they protect themselves from fears or need the reassurance of you being the owner.
- This behavior also means that your dog is submissive. He feels the need to protect or guard you, hence holding you at the feet.
- When pups are little, they might experience separation anxiety and immediately lay by your feet to reassure that you are around. They sit there and mark their territory to other dogs.
It is not unusual for your dog to sleep at the foot of the bed. While you might have given a comfortable blanket and a pretty room; your dogs might still be snuggling at your feet. This behavior is common during cold winter nights if the house is not centrally heated.
Should you bother about this habit?
This habit is nothing to be bothered about usually. But if it is becoming too much for you to always see your pet snuggled on your feet, you can consider the following training tips:
- Divert your attention elsewhere and don’t pamper him when he lies on your feet.
- Gradually train him to sit a little away from you. Throw him treats a little further and then train him to sit there.
- Praise him when he obeys you and sits a little further.
- Show him the exact place where you want him to sit. Reward him when he does so.
- Be consistent in training him and don’t give up. He will learn gradually.
Dogs are loving and affectionate animals. You should not be surprised if they insist on sharing our bed and sleep between you and our wife! They love constant snuggles. Let them be the way they are!