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Doggy Sleeping Positions

  • Heidi

Decoding Your Dog by How They Sleep

It may seem surprising, but most healthy adult dogs sleep anywhere from 12 to 14 hours each day. But what do their sleeping positions mean, and how can you help them get the best sleep possible? Here are a few of the most common sleeping positions in dogs.

The Superman

It’s hard to confuse this position with others if you’ve ever seen Superman in flight. That’s because dogs in this pose stretch out on their bellies with their legs spread out in front and behind them like they’re flying. Experts think dogs in this position are trying to cool down. However, many small breeds and puppies often enjoy this sleeping position, so it could just feel good, too.

If you have a dog that enjoys the Superman pose, it’s worth looking for an elevated dog bed with tight, breathable mesh fabric that can help keep them cooler while they sleep.

The Doughnut

This position is easy to recognize because your dog curls up into a little ball with their nose close to their tail. Domesticated dogs aren’t the only animals who enjoy this sleep position; it’s also common in the wild. That’s because it helps conserve warmth and regulate body temperature, protects vital organs, and is easy to jump up from quickly.

Dogs who like sleeping curled up in a ball often enjoy self-heating dog beds or orthopedic options with wraparound bolsters that provide plenty of cozy support and comfort.

The “Sunny-Side-Up”

Does your dog love sleeping sprawled out on their back with an exposed belly and legs in the air? This pose leaves your pup’s most sensitive areas vulnerable, and it’s hard to get up from. That means you can take this sleep position as a sign that your dog feels very comfortable and relaxed. Of course, it can also tell you they’re hot. In this pose, your dog can cool off quickly because belly fur is thinner and paws hold a dog’s sweat glands, so exposing them to the air can help them beat the heat.

When your dog prefers a sunny-side-up sleep position, try a gel-cooled bed or a lounger. Lounger beds come in rectangular or oval shapes with bolsters that can provide security and back support all night long.

The Side Sleeper

Humans aren’t the only animals who love sleeping on their side, so do dogs! This position is especially common for medium-sized and larger breed dogs, who often sleep on their side with their four legs extended. If your dog sleeps in this position, you can rest easy knowing they feel comfortable, relaxed, and safe in their surroundings.

Side sleeping dogs often enjoy pillow beds for a soft, burrowing experience or orthopedic foam designs that provide the ultimate support.

The Snuggle Bug

Do you have a dog who loves to cuddle with you or other animals in your household? This is often a holdover from their puppy days when they used to snuggle to help regulate their body temperatures. In adults, this behavior often reveals a completely comfortable dog who is affectionate, loving, and trusting.

When you can, enjoy some extra snuggles with your dog to help strengthen your bond. And, to help them stay cuddly and cozy even when you aren’t around, opt for a self-warming sleep lounger bed or “snuggery” styles that encourage burrowing.

Want to learn more about a dog’s sleep style? Watch the video below!

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