Why Does My Dog Sleep in Between My Legs?

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Author: Tilly Walker

Being a pet parent, you must have encountered a situation, where your canine companion likes to curl up and sleep between your legs. One common question pops into many pet parents’ heads, i.e. Why does my dog sleep between the legs? Right?

Well, to clear your clouds of doubts, we have done some research work. After good observation and research work, come up with the nine good possible reasons behind your pup’s weird habit of sleeping between the legs.

In this article, along with the reasons, we have added some tips to overcome the issue. Plus, a few dos and don’t bullet points are also there for your better knowledge to handle the situation wisely and get rid of this behaviour.

So, without wasting any more time, let’s just quickly check out the possible reasons and solutions to overcome the issue.

9 Reasons Why Your Dog Sleeps in Between Your Legs?

Well, it has been observed that many dogs love to sleep next to their pet parents, burrowing under the bedsheet covers, sometimes between their legs. Have you ever wondered why dogs do things like this?

To help you find out, we have jotted down the possible reasons behind such sleeping habits. Let’s just dig in and get in-depth knowledge regarding why your dog sleeps in between your legs.

1. You Are a Member of the Pack

One of the common and possible reasons behind your pup’s sleeping habit between your legs could be he considers you a member of his pack. In other words, dogs belong to packed animals, they like to spend time in groups and sleep together, it’s good for their survival.

you are a member of the pack
Credit:Anna Ostanina

Your canine companion considers you a leader and feels protected around your company. So, they prefer that physical touch, and like to sleep next to you or sometimes between your legs. It’s their way of saying they trust you and love you.

2. Warm and Security Factors

Another possible reason could be the warmness, and security factor. Dogs like to stay warm and secure, and sleeping between their beloved one’s legs or beside them is one of the best options. When they were small, their mother used to cover them. And provide that warmness and security vibe, which they search for in their beloved parents.

3. Your Dog Wants Your Attention

Sometimes, it becomes so difficult to spare time for your beloved companion, that you forget to play or give him time. In such situations, they start feeling neglected, and just to grab your attention they start mimicking a few habits, sleeping between your legs being one of them. This one is the easiest way to grab your attention, and when this trick work, you give him attention. He takes into account, that by doing so you will always listen to him and give him your time.

your dog wants your attention

So, if you notice, your furry pal is struggling to get your glimpse or attention. It is suggested to spare time for him, and, make him feel important and valued. For that, all you need to do is play with him, cuddle, or snuggle and you will notice his happy face.

4. Expressing His Love

Touch is not only human’s love language, but animals also shower their love or express it via physical touch. Yes, you heard it right, it’s a universal language of showing love. Being a pet parent you must have read or encountered many gestures, where your furry pal licks your hand, gives a love bite, move around you, etc…

All these are one of the ways of expressing their love towards you. Similarly, sleeping next to you or being unconscious is one of the signs he is expressing his love, to feel secure sleeping next to you or between your legs.

If your canine companion is not hurting you, and peacefully sleeping, then you can allow them. But, if you wish to get rid of this habit, then it is recommended to start commanding them step by step and train them not to repeat the habit.

5. Fear or Anxiety Could Be a Factor

Well, separation anxiety is the real concern. It’s true if your pup feels neglected, or you don’t give them too much time, then they start feeling low, and develop, fear or anxiety factor. So, to feel connected, and warm, they try to get the physical touch. Sleeping between the legs gives them confidence that you are with them, and they feel connected.

fear or anxiety could be a factor
Credit: gollykim

There are also a few shy dogs, who easily get frightened when they see new pets or people in their surroundings. So, if your canine is one of them, you need to be extra careful. It’s your responsibility to calm him and build the confidence you are with him and not going to leave.

6. He Might Be Jealous

Oh, yes! The jealousy factor might be one of the possible reasons behind this sleeping behaviour. We can’t deny the fact, dogs easily get jealous when their beloved gives attention to other pets or any other human being in front of them.

So, to stay close, they prefer moving around you. Or just sleeping in the same bed or wanting any kind of physical touch, i.e. sleeping between the legs, all these make them feel they are close.

To overcome the jealousy factor, it is advisable to shower equal love on your canine companion. Especially, when you are snuggling with other pets, do not make them feel lonely or anything. In this way, they will get rid of their insecurity and will reduce the habit of adopting such behaviour.

7. Your Dog Likes to Burrow

Another possible reason could be your pup likes to burrow. As many dogs have the habit of digging and then burying themselves to feel the warmness. Similarly, your canine companion may find the bedsheet attractive. So, they dig themselves and land in between your legs to feel warm and comfortable to have a sound sleep.

your dog likes to burrow
Credit: Evrymmn

If your canine companion has the habit of digging, then you should provide them sand, or take them to the backyard area to satisfy their habit. It can stop them from digging into the bedsheet and landing in between your legs to sleep.

8. Accidentally Trained Them to Sleep Between Your Legs

It might be possible you only encouraged his habit of sleeping in between your legs. In other words, accidentally you let him sleep between your legs while paying attention, or sharing your bed to spend time or snuggle with him.

Let me tell you one more thing, dogs do observe every action of yours. So, if you let them sleep between your legs, they might consider it as a totally fine behaviour. And will continue doing so unless you stop them or train them not to do it again.

Be careful, with your behaviour. Plus, from the initial phase, only guide them on what is right and wrong. Further, don’t adopt any such behaviour, which is bad, or else you will end up observing your pup is also doing the same thing.

9. Your Dog Needs Emotional Support

Last but not the least, your canine companion might be needing emotional support, so he preferred sleeping between your legs. Yes, you heard it right! Just like humans, dogs do need emotional support from their beloved in the form of physical touch or just sitting or sleeping with them.

It might be possible he is feeling lonely, or having mood swings, which makes them sad or depressed. During that phase, he just prefers sleeping between your legs or with you. As it gives him mental satisfaction, he is around a safe environment, and you will take care of him properly.

It is recommended if you notice your pup is sad or feeling lonely, spend time with them and shower lots and lots of love, making them feel good and secure.

Have you ever thought about why your dog sleeps so much? Check our guide on, “my dog is sleeping a lot” for more details.

Dos and Don’ts if Your Dog Sleeps in Between Your Legs?

After exploring the reasons why your dog sleeps in between your legs. Now, let’s dig into the dos and don’ts factor if he continues to sleep in between your legs. This will help you to overcome your dog’s issue. Also, get rid of this sleeping pattern if you are not comfortable with it.


  • Make time for him, give him full attention, and make them feel he is important to you. Regularly, play with him, cuddle sessions, and shower lots of love.
  • If he is sick or suffering from pain, it is advisable to take him to the vet. It’s important to take care of their health and provide speedy recovery.
  • Provide them with a comfortable bed to sleep in, which is more attractive, and comfortable than your legs.
  • Divert his mind by providing toys, so that he moves away from your bed and runs towards the toys to play.
  • You can train them again to sleep in t own bed and not between your legs.


  • It is suggested not to encourage his behaviour to sleep between your legs. Once or twice is completely fine to allow them to sleep like that, but not on a regular basis.
  • Don’t make it a habit to sleep in your bedroom, guide them to sleep in their own bed.
  • Never offer them treats to make them sleep in their own bed. Because this will give a wrong sign that he will go to bed only when he will get the treats.
  • If you find your furry pal is scared or having an anxiety attack, don’t neglect it. Immediately take his matter into consideration and overcome their fear.

These are the few dos and don’t factor, which one should keep in mind when dealing with such behaviour. Solve your canine companion’s concern, and shower only love and care, in return, he will only give you joy.

If your dog is older or has joint issues, providing them with the best orthopedic dog bed can help make them more comfortable sleeping in their own space.


Do dogs pick a favourite person?

Yes, dogs do pick a favourite person, apart from their pet parent, they do observe who helps them with their basic needs, shower love and affection, and make them feel secure. According to these factors they pick their favourite, and in return show the same love, and affection, and protect them.

Should you allow your dog to sleep between your legs?

There is no harm in letting your dog sleep between your legs, unless and until they are not hurting you, or creating discomfort. You can allow them to sleep peacefully, and feel protected, but if you want to get rid of this behaviour, then simply train them to cut down the habit.

Do dogs feel safe when they sleep with you?

Well, yes, when you bring your canine companion to your family, they add you to their pack or consider you part of their family. If your canine companion comfortably sleeps with you, it means they trust you and feel protected in your company. Sleeping together gives your pup emotional support, which is good for their mental health.

Why do dogs take your spot when you move?

Dogs observe your spot in the house, and when you move from your place, they sit there to protect your territory. This means that they are showing affection towards you and feel the need to defend your territory from other people or pets.

Well, It’s a Wrap!

Confidently, we were able to answer all your related questions about “why my dog sleeps between my legs”, or why do dogs sleep at your feet. Plus, now you also know how to stop your canine companion from adopting such behaviour, as we discussed the dos and don’t point in brief.

Let’s just quickly recall it!

It is normal for your canine companion to sleep between your legs, they might be doing this out of fear, anxiety, love, or feel comfortable, might be suffering from pain or sickness, or any other related reasons. So, whatever the reasons could be, if your furry pal needs you, then it’s important to look after them. Plus, help them to overcome their issue on a priority basis.

In addition, it is one of the common behaviour, which dogs adopt, so no need to worry about it. Just look after the matter, and try to overcome the issue to give your furry pal ease, and make him feel comfortable and secure.

Here’s a piece of advice, never ever neglect your canine companion, and if you find them feeling finely or in depression then immediately take the matter into concern and consult the vet if needed.

So enjoy those moments when your pup is cuddling up against you. Nothing beats unconditional love from your dog.

If your dog’s burrowing and digging behavior is disruptive, like digging in your bed, be sure to address it through positive reinforcement training. To understand more about why your dog digs in your bed, check out our article on,” why does my dog dig in my bed?”.

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Tilly Walker
Tilly Walker is an avid animal lover and dog owner for several years. She owns a mix breed Cockapoo named Rio. She, along with her group of friends who wanted to help others learn more about the proper ways to take care of their pets, founded this website.

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