Why Does My Dog Sleep On His Back?

Does your beloved dog sleep belly up and on its back? If you answered yes to this question you are part of a large group of dog owners. This percentage is close to 10% and this means there are thousands of dogs out there who prefer to sleep on their backs with the legs straight up. If you are a responsible owner who has such a dog, you will most likely want to find out why their dog likes to sleeps like this but more importantly is it bad for the dog’s well being and health.

The question of “why does my dog sleep on his back” is explored over at VetStreet where they discuss whether this behavior is normal.

Why Does My Dog Sleep On His Back?

Why Does My Dog Sleep On His Back

Does your dog sleep on it’s back? Should you be worried?

Perhaps not surprisingly, sleeping belly up is not a common behavior among wild canids. Their greater security concerns are likely responsible for an unwillingness to bare all. After all, to offer up one’s soft underbelly when you’re already at your most defenseless is not exactly in a predator’s best interest –– much less in his nature.

And this may help explain why some pet dogs are more willing to sleep with their bellies exposed than others. It seems that more relaxed, easy-going dogs are over-represented among those who regularly assume a belly-up position –– the dogs most temperamentally distanced from their wild cousins.

Of course, there’s a lot to be said for the role of socialization as well. Dogs who engage in this behavior tend to be secure, well-socialized individuals who enjoy safe, stable, comfortable surroundings.

So what does that say about dogs who aren’t into baring their bellies?

Probably not much. It seems this favorite posture is a preference above all else.

Source: VetStreet

So hopefully this has allayed your concerns if you had any around whether sleeping on their backs caused any health issues for your beloved dog. It is actually perfectly normal for domesticated dogs and in fact it is a true testament that they are actually relaxed and having a deep sleep.

In addition, sleeping belly up:

May also be because your dog is trying to cool down. Dogs have a hard time cooling themselves given that they only sweat through their paws and pant to adjust the body temperature. This is probably one of the reasons why some dogs sleep on their back. The belly skin is more exposed and uncovered with fur so it will allow greater exposure to air and cool the body temperature down. So especially on hot summer days, this is actually a good thing for your dog.

Is also a submissive position so it means that hierarchically, your family structure including the pet dog is correct and this means that dog is less stressed and can bear it’s belly.

So in summary, the question of “why does my dog sleep on his back” can be simply answered by the fact that it is comfortable. It means your dog feels secure and is actually having a deep sleep. So we would definitely consider it a good sign and something that is positive. So do not worry and embrace it. Take a cute picture instead.

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