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What your dog’s sleeping position says about him

 by james on 20 Jun 2022 |
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Dogs communicate in many ways, even while they’re asleep. Here are what some common canine sleeping position say about your pet.

What your dog’s sleeping position says about him


Just like people, dogs have unique sleeping positions that offer insight into their personalities. Whether you are looking for signs of his health or happiness, watching Fido sleep can provide insight into how your pet is feeling. Here are what some common canine sleeping positions say about your companion:

1. Curled in a ball: Sleeping curled up is more common than you might think. Not only does this position keep dogs warm, but it also protects their vital organs. Sleeping in a ball allows our pets to spring to action quickly if a threat arises. Do not be concerned if your pet sleeps like this, however, as he may simply be conserving body heat or doing what comes naturally. 

2. On his side: Sleeping on his side leaves your pet’s vulnerable stomach exposed, so only a dog that is comfortable in his surroundings will sleep in this position. Even pets that normally sleep on their sides may switch it up in a new location or around a new person, so do not be alarmed if your side-sleeping pet  curls up when something is new.

3. Sprawled out: Affectionately known as “splooting,” dogs that sleep in a “Superman” position are ready to jump at a moment’s notice. Puppies or dogs that simply love being in on the action are known to favor this position—especially if they are tuckered out and flop down after playtime. 
 
4. Dead bug: Sleeping on his back, paws in the air, is a way for your dog to cool off. Exposing his vulnerable belly means your pet is extremely comfortable in his surroundings, so take it as a compliment if this is your companions sleep state of choice. 

5. The “lion pose”: Similar to cats’ loafing position, sleeping belly-down with his head rested on his paws is your dog’s way of casually dozing. He can be ready to jump up in a moment’s notice, so dogs are typically not fast asleep in this position. Your dog may be in tune with what is going on around him, but taking a moment to recharge.

6. Snuggled up: Dogs that sleep cuddled up to you or other pets are showing the ultimate sign of affection. Snuggling while fast asleep puts him in a vulnerable position and your pet is showing he trusts you completely in doing so. Do not violate this trust by disturbing your sleeping pet, but enjoy the quality time together. Dogs will often snuggle back-to-back—a natural position for both protection and warmth in packs in the wild.

If you notice anything unusual about your dog’s sleep, it is important to take him to the veterinarian for a checkup, as changes in any routine behavior can a sign something is wrong. A drastic increase in the time spent sleeping can signal a health problem, too, so make sure to check in on your pup regularly to ensure he stays happy and healthy.

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