We all love to cuddle up with our furry friends when it’s time to tuck in, but what if your snuggle buddy isn’t there?
Why won’t your dog sleep with you anymore? It could be a combination of issues, including:
- Your bed may be too small, hot, soft
- Other pets on your bed
- It aggravates your dog’s health issues
- Your dog prefers to sleep alone
Whether your dog has never slept with you or recently stopped, there may be an easy fix to get them back to snuggling.
Reasons Your Dog May be Avoiding Your Bed
There are six probable reasons your dog may not sleep or suddenly stop sleeping with you.
1.) It’s Too Small
If you have a large dog and are a large person, or if your bed is relatively small, there may not be enough room for your dog to fit comfortably.
While it may seem like the bed is large enough to accommodate all parties, think about how you and your dog sleep. Maybe you both like to stretch out at night, and your dog is tired of being pushed off the bed.
Additionally, if your bed is small and in a corner, your dog may feel claustrophobic, pinned between you and the wall.
2.) It’s Too Hot
If your dog sleeps with you less in the summer months or you keep your house very warm, sleeping on fluffy blankets and a thick mattress could make your dog too hot. Also, if you tend to cuddle your dog while sleeping, the combination of sheets, body heat, and warm bedding may be overheating your dog.
They may sleep on the floor or by a window because it’s cooler. If your dog stays in the room but chooses the floor at night or sleeps in the coolest part of the house, then they are likely too hot to share the bed.
3.) It’s Too Soft
Just as people switch to a stiffer mattress as they age, your dog, too, may find a soft mattress uncomfortable. If your dog is old, ailing, have mobility issues, or prefers stiffer surfaces, it may make your soft bed painful or more difficult to jump on and off.
Your dog may not like sinking into the mattress—feeling suffocated by all the fluffy pillows and blankets. If you use a particularly thick comforter, this may be the case.
4.) There Are Too Many People or Pets on It
Do you have other pets? Did you get a new partner? Is your dog afraid of a pet that always sleeps with you?
The simple answer may be that there’s no room left on the bed or your dog doesn’t like to share. If you have three cats and a bedmate, your dog probably can’t fit comfortably with everyone else.
Additionally, if there have been changes to the sleeping arrangements like a new pet or partner, your dog may feel unwelcome, replaced, scared, or cramped.
Maybe it’s just you and two dogs, but one dog bullies the other off the bed while you sleep. If your pets don’t get along, don’t expect them to sleep together just because you’re there.
5.) They Have Health Issues Preventing Them
Specific health issues like mobility, joint pain, chronic pain, heart problems, value problems, and various diseases may make the bed uncomfortable for your dog to sleep in. Many animals in pain or ailing choose to sleep on cool, hard surfaces in the same way that you may lie on the bathroom floor when you feel ill.
If your dog has mobility issues like hip or joint pain, they may not be able to jump onto the bed or stand up again on such a soft surface. You can try setting up a stairway to help them get up, but they may not hang around if they’re uncomfortable.
6.) They Would Rather Sleep Elsewhere
Like you might enjoy a stiffer or softer mattress or pillow, hate sleeping on the couch, or do not mind sleeping on the floor, your dog has preferences.
Maybe they want to sleep with or near you but enjoy sleeping on your bathroom rug or hardwood floor. Perhaps you got it a doggie bed that it especially enjoys. There may be no underlying issue or cause at all.
Another possibility is that it prefers to sleep in a place where it can guard you, like by the front door.
One last topic that can be both the cause and solution of where your dog sleeps is training. Whether your dog had a previous owner that taught it not to sleep on the bed or you have taught your dog this by accident, it may influence their choice of sleeping spot.
If you give your dog treats, toys, attention, or other rewards for sleeping somewhere besides your bed, or you snore, yell at, roll on to or kick your dog while sleeping with them, they may have learned not to sleep with you.
While this may be one of the causes, it can also be a solution. You can train your dog to sleep with you through positive reinforcements like cuddles, belly rubs, treats, toys, or attention when they get in bed with you.
Try making a routine out of it. When you’re ready to go to sleep, entice your dog onto the bed with a treat, scratch its favorite spot once they’re up, then pet it until it relaxes.
If you’re insistent on getting your dog to sleep with you, then consider their preferences and sleeping habits. Try different bedding or enticements. Ask your partner if you have any sleeping habits that your dog may find annoying, like talking in your sleep. It’s all about baby steps.
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