Why Do Dogs Press Against You When They Sleep?

Why Do Dogs Press Against You When They Sleep?

As much as we love to sleep soundly, our pets love it too. And most of the time, when they have nothing else interesting to do, have finished their exercise, or are bored playing with their favorite toys, they would just come in search of us.

Why?; to take a nap, of course! They would climb onto the sofa next to you or sprawl on the floor, touching your legs. Anyhow, they will somehow find a way to touch you while they sleep.

But why do dogs press against you when they sleep? Many dogs see their owners as their pack leaders or protector. But they could also touch you while sleeping to share your warmth. Or maybe they simply love you too much not to be clingy.

Our dogs’ sleeping habits can tell us a lot about them. Yet, having a clingy four-footed best friend might make you doubt if you should stop this clinginess.

Personally, I prefer them the way they are, so I don’t see why I should change my pet’s habits. But because this is 100% up to you, you may decide whether you should deter your doggo from touching you while sleeping or let them do what they always have done.

My dog Sparkles has always been closer to my mother than me. I figured out that is because mom is the one that always takes care of him while I – although I am his owner- was always away at work.

So I have seen him pressing against my mom’s legs whenever he lays on the floor and tagging along behind when she’s going through house chores.

This “pressing against” has given me so many doubts as to why they do it, so I thought of researching it. So after the research, I found so much info about why dogs press against you when they sleep.

So if you have been wondering, “why do dogs press against you when they sleep?” quite often, this article is dedicated to you. 

Why Do Dogs Press Against You When They Sleep?

Our doggos just adore us. They would circle us, always being around, lick our hands and faces, wag their tails excitedly as soon as we came home from work, etc.

And their ways of showing affection literally have no limits! That is the exact reason why dogs press against you when they sleep.

But it might bother us when they always try to be cuddly and snuggly to us. They will leave saliva all over our hands and clothes and will sometimes get over clingy. 

And if you love to sleep at night with zero disturbances, you might even hate giving your fu ball permission to get onto your bed.

That is totally understandable; considering whether to encourage or cut down on this behavior is up to your personal choices. 

Yet here are some reasons for your question – why do dogs press against you when they sleep?

  • You encouraged that behavior

Have you ever cooed to your pet or given him belly rubs when your pup slept pressing on you?

And does he always rub or push onto you whenever sleeping? Then maybe your cooing and belly rubs have encouraged your pet to do this.

  • Separation anxiety

If you are always away from your home and return after long hours of work, your dog might get separation anxiety.

So your pet might want to wake up when you move around, which is why he’s doing this.

  • He feels much safe this way

As I already explained before, your pet sees you as his leader. He will count on you to protect him from danger. And sleeping next to you will definitely ease his mind to fall asleep.

Because when you are right next to him, where he can feel you all the time, he will feel secure and protected. 

Other than these, being protective of you is also a common reason for the question, “why do dogs press against you when they sleep?”

Why Does My Dog Push Up Against Me When Sleeping?

If you and your dog have a history of sharing a bed, then it’s no wonder if you have doubted why dogs press against you when they sleep.

You might get woken up in the dead of the night because your dog just stretched in sleep all over your face. While you might be rudely interrupted from your good night’s sleep, this action might be how they say I love you.

You might notice how your pet loves to cuddle up next to you in bed and fall asleep soundly. Another plausible cause is that he loves falling asleep in the warmth of your body.

Or the way you smell calms him down to fall asleep. Not only would this habit of your doggo make him feel secure, but you will also always be reassured that you are protected throughout the night after you close your eyes. 

Your pet will keep an eye on you through the night. 

Sure, he will fall asleep, but they are always on alert. Because of their intensified senses, they can sense it even when a slight disturbance happens. 

Yet, if you don’t want your pet always to sleep pressing next to you, you could stop the habit through positive reinforcement. You may ask your dog to go to his bed, praise him, and complement him with a tasty treat when he obliges. 

So, now you know that your pet pushing against you while sleeping is not bad. That is how they try to feel protected in the shadow of their pack leader or show how much they adore and love you. 

But every human differs in unique ways. So while some of us might enjoy this cute behavior of our pet, some might totally stand against it.

So it is completely up to you to decide whether you want to stop your pet from pressing against you while sleeping or not.

And it is better to take action to discourage this habit since your doggo is in his puppy stage to make things easier to handle.

But always remember not to punish him or scold him when he does it. Instead, use positive reinforcement.

Thank you for reading this post. Stay tuned with Jack Russell Owner for more interesting posts about your favorite dog breed.


  • Sofia Williams

    Sofia W. is a professional dog trainer who completed Certified Professional Dog Trainer (CPDT-KA and CPDT-KSA) certifications. Also, she has completed the Pet Nutrition Coach Certification. Sofia is interested in creating nutritious food formulas for dogs to give them a longer and healthier life. She believes food and training are a collective combination of a healthy dog. So, she is with us to share her expertise and knowledge with other dog parents.

    [email protected]

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