Understanding Your Dog–From Sleeping Positions and Behaviors

Pet Care


February 27, 2020

How much do you know about your pet?

Dogs are known as man’s best friend. Man and dogs have had a close relationship for thousands of years.

Whatever dog breed you have, it is your responsibility to take good care of your pet, and understanding his or her behavior and sleeping positions can help you give the best care possible.

  1. The Different Dog Sleeping Positions and Their Meaning
  2. Dog Sleeping Behaviors and the Quality of Your Pet’s Sleep
  3. Things to Keep in Mind 

The Different Dog Sleeping Positions and Their Meaning

First let us check the following six posistion:


Image source : https://animalchannel.co/dog-sleeping-positions-meaning/

Whether your dog has a personal bed or shares the same bed with you, you should know about the different dog sleeping positions and their meaning.

As a domestic pet, a dog brings joy to many and is one of the best stress relievers. When they feel tired, and their energy slows down, dogs go to sleep. For them to stay healthy and active, they need enough rest.

You probably have noticed that your dog sleeps for up to 14 hours per day or more. This is a good sign that your pet is healthy,such as this sleeping position.

If you share the same bed or couch with your dog, it is easy to notice the sleeping positions of your pet. There are different dog sleeping positions, and as a dog owner, you need to know what it means. It will help you understand more about your pet through some scientific explanations. Here are some of the different dog sleeping positions:

The Cuddle Bug

Does your dog snuggle up against you or act as a cuddle bug? According to studies, this sleeping position has a simple explanation. When your dog cuddles, it has something to do with temperature.

Cuddling starts while your dog is still a puppy. It is the best way for puppies to regulate their body heat. As puppies grow and mature, they also adapt the snuggling behavior, which is a learned feeling of comfort. Note that if your dog sleeps in this position, it keeps your dog warm and comfortable.

On the Side

This sleeping position is also called as the “side sleeper.” If you notice that your pet sleep in this position, it means that your dog is easy-going and relaxed. It is one of the best dog sleeping positions though your pet’s vital organs are exposed.

Also, in this sleeping position, you will notice your pet kicking unintentionally as his or her limbs are free to move. Moreover, twitching is common in this position. This position also makes your dog feel safe and comfortable.

The Donut

It is among the most common dog sleeping positions. You will notice this sleeping position when your dog curls up into a little ball. According to research, when a dog is undisturbed, expect your pet to do the “donut” sleeping position.

There are two reasons why some dogs prefer this sleeping position. Research has shown that dogs with this sleeping position want to make themselves small. Moreover, this position helps them regulate body temperature.

Sprawled Out On the Tummy

Not all dogs do this sleeping position, which is sometimes called the “Superman” position. Some dog breeds like the bulldog sleep in this position. You will notice that your pet’s limbs are all stretched out, and his or her tummy is against the floor.

When puppies need to nap frequently, they sleep in this position. There’s a high possibility that this sleeping position of your dog is related to temperature. Moreover, dogs who sleep this way are usually ready to jump up and play.

Back-to-Back or Snuggled Up

If your pet sleeps in this position, whether with your other pets or with you, it means that your dog wants to bond or be close to you. This sleeping position shows that your dog feels safe and comfortable.

Dog owners can gain their pet’s complete trust through this sleeping position. Does your dog want to sleep with you in your bed? It is the best time for both of you to get close to each other.

Curled Up

Does your pet curl up in a ball, nose-to-tail? This sleeping position of dogs is among the most common. Also, it is among the best ways to protect your dog’s vital organs.

When dogs sleep in this position, keep in mind that they do it to conserve body heat. If the weather is cold, most dogs sleep this way. You can observe that your pet feels comfortable in this sleeping position. 

The Lion Pose

If your dog’s head is on top of his or her paws while the paws are stretched forward, this position is called the “lion pose”. It means that your pet is not having a deep sleep. Moreover, your pet may think while in this position. Not all dogs do this sleeping position, but it is a way for your pet to doze and nap.

On the Back, Paws Up in the Air

What about this dog sleeping position? Many different kinds of dog breeds sleep this way. If your pet sleeps in this position, especially when the weather is hot, it helps your dog cool off as his or her belly is exposed.

Note that your pet is very comfortable in this position. Help your pet by not disturbing him or her while sleeping in this position.

Dog Sleeping Behaviors and the Quality of Your Pet’s Sleep

Do you think your dog had enough rest? When you see your pet nap or sleep, it is best to observe his or her behavior. By doing so, you will know if your dog has had enough sleep or not.

Everyone knows the importance of sleep. Dogs also need enough rest by napping or sleeping. Being a responsible dog owner, you should not only feed your pet but also help him or her to have quality sleep.

Know and understand your dog’s sleeping behaviors from now on,then you may find lost of secrect your never know before.

Twitching and Wagging with Soft Barks

Dogs who get a nice and deep sleep move a bit. You will see your dog twitching, wagging, and making soft barks which are common. Sometimes, you will also notice your dog grunting and kicking. This kind of deep sleep helps your pet stay healthy and active.

If you have a puppy or a senior dog, you will notice that this sleeping behavior of your dog happens more frequently. Note that cold weather is one of the top reasons why your dog twitches.


Do you think your dog’s sleeping behavior is not normal? If you think so, try to wake your dog by calling his or her name to check if the reason is due to an intense dream. It could also be a sign of a seizure.

Observe your dog if the twitching becomes excessive. It is best to ask for a professional’s help than doing nothing for your dog. Your beloved dog is probably having a seizure. If you want to make sure that your pet is safe and healthy, call your trusted veterinarian immediately.

Circling and Digging Before Lying Down

There’s nothing to worry about if dogs circle and dig on their sleeping area before going to sleep. It is their way to get comfortable while sleeping.

It’s normal for dogs to circle and dig, but it could also be a sign of pain. If you see that your dog is excessively circling, consult your trusted veterinarian.


Dogs also suffer from nightmares. Excessive movement while sleeping is a sign that your dog is having a nightmare, which is also a sign of distress. Help your pet calm down by calling your dog’s name in a gentle tone or stroke his or her back.

Dozing Off

Sometimes, you will notice your dog lightly dozing. Are you curious why many dogs act that way? The most common reason is boredom. Try to have fun with your pet through some exciting activities like playing fetch.

Things to Keep in Mind

There is always a reason why your dog sleeps in a certain position. Now that you already know the different dog sleeping positions and behaviors, you can be a responsible dog owner. It is not easy to take good care of a dog.

Do your best, and you don’t have to worry or panic when your dog doesn’t have the same sleeping position every day. If your pet sleeps in an environment or surroundings which are not familiar, the sleeping position of your dog could change.

Even when an unfamiliar person is around your dog, there will be an automatic switch of sleeping position. For your pet to feel more comfortable, prepare a large dog bed as a gift to your pet, where it can stretch out and nap.


Whatever reason you have in taking good care of a dog as a pet, knowing the meaning of your dog’s sleeping position and behavior is a must. Keep in mind that sleeping position may affect the overall health of your dog. 

Image source : https://animalchannel.co/dog-sleeping-positions-meaning/