Do Dogs Know When Humans Are Sleeping?

Yes – they absolutely know. Dogs have evolved to understand the body language of a human, and thus, they can tell the difference between you sleeping and being awake. They know about sleep because they also sleep, so it is not difficult for them to process your sleep time. If you study how dogs communicate, you will know that they can pick up your condition (sleepy consciousness) with little difficulty.

Apart from that, dogs can also follow through on alarms. If you have a clock that makes a nearly-annoying buzz, the dog will learn to associate it with your rising. Then, it will also start curling and looking up, waiting for you to make the first wake-up move.

This read is going to talk about why dogs love sleeping with humans. Contrastingly, it will also mention some reasons why you shouldn’t let your dog on your bed. To this end, you will get answers to some sleepy doggy questions. Don’t sleep; just read. Let’s go!

Dogs And Sleeping With Humans

When your dog was a puppy, it is adorable and sweetly tiny. You wanted to spend all the time with it because the canine felt so delicate and so cushy. You even chose to sleep with it all the nights, cuddling with it until morning came.

Now, your pup is all grown up – it even feels a little too overwhelming. Because the situation has changed, you are now wondering whether or not you should continue sleeping with it. You need to make a choice soon, but the dog seems to be contented. It comes to bed with you every night, even when you feel like you want all the space to yourself. So, really, why will your canine keep insisting on sleeping with you?

The main reason why the dog doesn’t want to let you go as a sleep partner is LOVE. The dog loves you, and when you’re by its side, it feels absolutely safe. The dog smells your scent and feels even more secure. Also, the extra warmth that your body provides helps the dog to keep everything smooth.

Your canine has sound logic, and now, I am going to open you up to the reasons why the furry critter doesn’t want to stop the nighttime business. But if you’re in a hurry, here’s something:

A Boiled Down, Enriched Summary

This table shows the reasons why dogs love joining humans in sleep and some comments:

The ReasonComment
Your dog is in love with youNo cause for alarm
The dog is agingNeeds medical attention
The dog could be having a phobia of thunderstormsNeeds therapy and warmth
The dog may be suffering from trauma, a terrible background, or ugly past eventsNeed frequent care and love
Environmental changesNeed time to adjust
The dog could be sickNeeds medical attention
The dog could be sensing, scenting, or smelling somethingNeeds you to check for any mishaps
The dog could be wanting your warmth and cushinessNeeds a blanket
The dog could be jealous, you know, in a territorial wayNeeds patience
The dog could be showing its loyaltyNeeds attention
The dog may be trying to be overprotectiveNeeds reprimanding
The dog feels safer around youNeeds warmth and care
The dog operates like a pack animalNeeds to be guided

Now check them out (explained in detail):

1. Your Dog Is In Love With You

No other reason is greater than this one. Because you are the dog’s primary caregiver, they see you as an alpha, and they love, respect, and care for you. This makes the canine want to spend most of its time with you, including sleep time.

2. The Dog Is Aging

This reason happens to many beings, even us. When your Fido grows old, things like patterns of sleep change. They start becoming uncomfortable with their positions and places of sleep, and all they crave is to be by your side.

When aging happens, you should talk to your vet and see if anything can improve the situation. They should give you options for treatment or medication to help the dog enjoy its golden years. But, some unfortunate cases may move you to ask for your dog to be euthanized, and you need to be ready and prepared. It could be that the dog wants to sleep forever.

3. The Dog Could Be Having A Phobia Of Thunderstorms

If you reside in a location where the weather is usually upping and downing, you know that extremes can be scary. In a thunderstorm, thunder can strike a little too loud. The sound can get your dog feeling fearful, uneasy, and anxious, which may make them want to be by your side.

Sometimes, dealing with pets with thunder or storm phobia can be difficult, but you shouldn’t give up. You can get some medicine that will get the dog calm and sleepy, right by your side.

4. The Dog May Be Suffering From Trauma, A Terrible Background, Or Ugly Past Events

Dogs get psychological problems as much as we do. If a dog used to be abused, it would become a little too attached and sensitive. The canine will always have self-doubt and unsureness that will make it want to be with you, especially at night. This is because, during the dark, the dog knows it is most vulnerable.

5. Environmental Changes

Like us, dogs are creatures of habit. Once the environment stabilizes, and the routine gets set, the dog thrives impeccably. When things are changed or switched up, the dog may become insecure and confused. This could be something like moving out or just moving an item to a new position.

A confused, insecure dog will quickly develop fearfulness, and in turn, it will stick with you. You will hear the dog scratching your door, wanting to come in and sleep. That could happen, and you should be ready when your confident Shiba Inu suddenly becomes a scared Scooby-Doo.

The dog will continue to sleep with you until normalcy comes back.

6. The Dog Could Be Sick

If you become sick yourself, your canine will want to be by your side at all times – even when you are sleeping. When the dog becomes ill, it will be very clingy, wanting to be all over you – no matter the time, day or night.

7. The Dog Could Be Sensing, Scenting, Or Smelling Something

Sometimes, dogs are intuitive uncannily.  When they detect a problem but don’t seem to know it, they will stay around you, hoping that you will figure things out.

8. The Dog Could Be Wanting Your Warmth And Cushiness

Sometimes, the only thing a dog may need from you is your warmth. It could be that its bed is not very comfortable or it was separated from its mother soon. To fix this problem, you can introduce a new dog or a stuffed animal. That way, the dog will remain warm without needing to come to you.

9. The Dog Could Be Jealous, You Know, In A Territorial Way

Is there a new pet, perhaps a cat, that is spending a little too much time with you? Like many animals, dogs act jealous when they notice competition. So, the best move to make is by hopping into your bed and getting glued. As time goes by, the dog may see that the new member is not a threat. It will then go back to its normal sleeping area.

10. The Dog Could Be Showing Its Loyalty

Dogs are – without argument – one of the friendliest, most loyal animals in the world. When they become members of a family, they take up protective roles. They always see it as their duty to love, protect, and show love at all costs. When nighttime comes, the dog may want to join you in bed for security purposes.

11. The Dog May Be Trying To Be Overprotective

To understand this reason, you first need to know about the wolf, the dog’s direct ancestor. Out there in the wild, a wolf assumes an alpha role, especially when it is in a pack. The dog is genetically predisposed to acting in the same way, especially at night when humans are most vulnerable.

So, the dog will sleep by your side to give you the protection it thinks you need.

12. The Dog Feels Safer Around You

Because dogs are domesticated, they are not always inclined to be defensive when predators approach them. The modern dog is pampered to a very high degree – to the point that you should be defending it. So, if the canine feels threatened, it will spend all of its time with you, even at night.

13. The Dog Operates Like A Pack Animal

Like wolves and all other canines, dogs are drawn to packs. And what you know about a pack is that it always stays as a unit. So, the dog will be inclined to spend all its time with other pack members like you. 

On The Flip Side: Why Your Dog (Or Any Other Pet) Shouldn’t Be In Bed With You

Dogs are the most populous pets in the world (if I can say that). We love to be with them because of their heartwarming and impressive traits. However, we need to establish boundaries with them as we continue to relate.

In the previous section, I have tried to explain why dogs would love to sleep with others. But hey, do we have to agree with them? In many instances, it is not the best thing to share your bed with your dog. If your sleeping on your bed, your dog should either be on the floor or in a bed inside its kennel.

If you disagree, wait until you read the rest of this section.

The Bubonic Plague Could Get You

If you’re a lover of history, you should know about the Black Death. In the European books of history, the bubonic plague, which was peddled by fleas on rats, is one of the most horrendous events. The keyword is fleas, which can be carried around by the cat or dog you want to bring to bed.

When the dog has a flea infestation, and you sleep with it, the fleas will jump onto the sheets. It is interesting to know some 23 cases of the bubonic plague on humans were documented between 1977 and 1998. And actually, they can all be tied to the cat in the families involved.

So, you should not allow the cat near your furniture, let alone your bed. Also, you should groom it from time to time to prevent any parasites from acting up.

You Could Be Welcoming Worms

If you’re well-versed in pet health matters, you know well that dogs can get infected with mango worms and all other kinds of internal parasites. If your dog accidentally gets roundworms or hookworms, they could transfer them to you.

Some parasites lay their eggs on the dog’s coat, meaning that the eggs can get hooked to the fabric of your bedsheets quickly. I wouldn’t want you to deal with any worm problems and avoid sleeping with your dog.

The Dog Or Cat May Scratch You

If your dog scratches you while having a flea infestation, you could get devastatingly adverse health issues. A simple scratch can cause diseases to the kidneys, liver, and even spleen.

Leave alone scratches – licks can also transmit deadly diseases, and you know how much our pets love licking us. So, if you’re sticking with the idea of sleeping with the dog, you should ensure that it has a clean bill of health. But, I strongly advise that it rests separately.

Meningitis Could Be Knocking On Your Dog

In ’85, a sexagenarian woman in the UK went down with meningitis after engaging in repeated kissing with her dog. In another case, a cat used a toy, and when a newborn baby handled it, it got the same diseases. Licking hasn’t been that deadly, has it?

Licking is typical in dogs – they do it to show love, affection, and attention. However, it also opens you up to some diseases. So, you should be careful.

The Dog Could Trigger Some Allergies

If environmental allergens trigger you, ensure that no pet sleeps in the same room as you do. If Fido decides to come in with the fur, dander, and dust in its coat, you will not like the squeezing.

The dog itself may not be an allergen, but many dogs carry on them allergens. The items – like dust and pollen – usually stick on its paws and in its fur. Then, they pin you down with all the allergic reactions. Indeed, it won’t be an exciting thing to sneeze and bear a stuffy nose throughout the night, or would it?

The Dog May Surprise You With Some Chocolate

To be clear, I am not talking about chocolate, or cake, or anything sweet for that matter. I’m talking about poop. I bet you wouldn’t want your dog to make a doodie on your sheets, or would you?

As natural scavengers like some types of hyenas, dogs will play and eat their poop without thinking twice. Since a dog also handles poop using its paws, your sheet could be browned. I know that that is unsettling, but you are in control. You know what you should do.

Sleepy Dog Questions

Is There Anything Behind How Dogs Pick Whoever They Will Cuddle With?

There is nothing like a popularity contest when a dog chooses to cuddle with your partner instead of you. However, dogs sometimes have their favorite person: he or she who walks, feeds, and plays with it.

Other factors that come into play to influence the dog’s cuddling choice are injury and illness. During those time, the dog will spend its time with the person who cares for it the most.

Why Would A Dog Refuse To Sleep On A Bed I Bought It?

It is both sad and frustrating when a dog chooses to lie its head somewhere else after you went above and beyond to buy the best dog bed. If you do some little investigation, you may find out that the dog does not like the smell of the bed material or doesn’t find it comfortable.

To make the bed attractive, get something that has your scent –like a blanket or yesterday’s t-shirt. That may do the trick, but if it doesn’t, you may consider changing the type of bed. Read more about dog beds here.

Is There An Explanation For The Constant Jerking And Twitching That My Dog Keeps Engaging In?

When a dog is in a deep sleep, it is likely to undergo muscle spasms. Occasionally, it may bark, whimper, or even growl. The good thing is that you have nothing to worry about since the behavior causes the dog no harm. When your dog starts to behave erratically, you can soothe it by petting it. Also, you can record the video and show it to the dog the following morning – that would be fun!

My Dog Is No Longer Interested In Sleeping With Me. What Could Be The Issue?

Dogs do not get personal with the things they do, although past events may affect them significantly. If the dog decides to sleep elsewhere, it could be because of many things, even the simplest reasons.

For example, any change in the routine or environment gets the dog confused, meaning that it will spend a lot of time adjusting. It will stay away from your bed and find a new chill spot.

The other reasons could be medical, but those will need a proper diagnosis from a vet.

When I Let My Pup Sleep With Me, Does It Think That It Dominants Me?

This is a reasonable hypothesis, but no evidence supports it.

I Am Interested In Sleeping With My Dog. How Do I Do It Well?

It all goes down to good training, and so, take these instructions home:

1. Get to the bedroom with your dog, that is, while you are leading it

2. Do not allow it to jump up until it gets your permission

3. Establish some order. Do not allow the dog to get under your blanket or on any of your pillows

4. When the dog exhibits any aggression, remove it from the bed

5. Always go to the vet or reputable breeders for vaccines and checkups

6. Use anti-flea and anti-tick medication, and even the preventatives

7. Once you’re done cleaning the pet, wash your hands thoroughly. Also, clean after the pet

8. Make regular changes to your beddings and sheets

What Are The Situations In Which I Shouldn’t Allow The Dog To Be In Bed With Me?

As I have already mentioned, sleeping with your dog in bed isn’t the best idea. If you love it, be advised to stop it, even temporarily. If you’re suffering from any conditions and want to share the bed with your dog, talk to your vet first.

Avoid sleeping with your dog if it:

1. hasn’t been vaccinated

2. has diarrhea and has taken enough potty training

3. has tick, fleas, mites, and worms

4. scratches or bites

5. drools and snores

6. is as large as the Great Dane

You should avoid sharing your bed with the pet if you are a light sleeper or have any sleeping disorders. If you have allergies, serious health issues, a shaky immune system, or open wounds, you should avoid it.

May the dog and the human sleep separately – amen!

Final Words

We already established that dogs do know when we are sleeping. They join us in bed, and we accommodate them with open hearts. However, it could get to a point where you no longer need your furry canine friend to be your bedroom partner.

If that is the case, try breaking the habit without using any trauma-inflicting methods. It won’t be easy, but for a patient pet parent, anything can be done. The dog will not take it well that you don’t want to spend bedtime with it anymore. As they say, it is our best friend and will want to be by our sides no matter what. But do what you have to do to stay safe and sleep well.

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