If your dog has been sleeping with its back to you, this post will show you why it might be doing it and what you can do about it.
So, why does my dog sleep with its back to me? Possible reasons why your dog sleeps with its back to you are that it has learned that it gets rewards when it does it, it does not want to be bothered, it finds it comfortable, it is being protective or that it makes it feel safer.
Since there are many possible causes, it would help to consider what might make each of them more likely. Once you have a good idea of the most likely cause, it should be a lot easier for you to decide what to do about it.
Why your dog sleeps or lays with its back to you
Below are some common reasons why dogs sleep with their backs to their owners and what would make them more likely to be the reason why yours has been doing it.
Encouraging the behavior
It could be the case that you have encouraged it to do it by rewarding it when it sleeps with its back to you. For example, if you scratch its back, when it sleeps or lays with its back to you, it will likely do it more in order to get more rewards.
Instead, it would help to encourage it to sleep the way you want by rewarding it when it shows signs of sleeping that way and ignoring it when it does not.
It doesn’t want to be bothered
The reason why it does it might be that it wants to avoid being bothered. This would be more likely if it does not always sleep with its back to you and if it does it more when it wants to sleep. In this case, it would help to make sure that it is able to sleep easily at night since it could be the case that it is trying to get extra sleep during the day due to issues sleeping at night.
It finds it more comfortable
It might be the case that there is a particular way that it likes to sleep or lay in a certain spot. This would be more likely if your dog does face you when you sit in a certain spot but less likely if it sleeps with its back to you even when you are in a different spot
It is being protective
The cause could be that it is being protective. This would be more likely if it sleeps in a location that allows it to see entrances to the room and if it tends to get protective around the home.
It makes it feel safer
It could also be the case that it does it because it makes it feel safer because you are behind it and it can see what is coming from the other direction.
Things to consider
Below are some things you can consider when figuring out the main reason why it has been doing it.
What else happened when your dog first started sleeping with its back to you
If your dog has started sleeing with its back to you suddenly, it would help to consider what else happened when it first started. It could be the case that there was an event that caused it to start doing it.
The causes could be that it realized that it gets rewards when it does it, you started sitting in a different spot or you might have started bothering it a lot when it wanted to sleep.
What is different when your dog does not sleep with its back to you
It would also help to consider if it always with its back to you or if it just does it sometimes. If it just does it sometimes, it could be due to things such as being protective and wanting to face the door or not wanting to be bothered.
What to do about your dog sleeping with its back to you
Below are some things you can do about your dog sleeping with its back to you.
It is not uncommon for dogs to sleep with their backs facing their owners and it does not mean that your dog does not like being around you. Unless you want your dog to sleep in a different way, the best option would likely be to let it continue sleeping the way that it wants to.
Positive reinforcement training
Positive reinforcement training is where you encourage your dog to behave how you want it to be rewarding it when it shows signs of behaving that way. To use it to get your dog to lay facing you, one option would be to get it to lay where you want it to and to reward it for doing so. You can watch the video below to see how.
Avoid encouraging the behavior
As mentioned above, it might be the case that it has been doing it in order to get rewards from you. If you want to get it to sleep facing you, it would help to avoid rewarding it when it does not, and to reward it whenever it does face you.