If your dog has been taking up the whole bed, this post will show you likely reasons why and what you can do about them.
So, why does my dog take up the whole bed? The most likely reason why your dog takes up the whole bed is that it naturally likes to sleep that way. It could also be due to dominating behavior or having learned that the behavior is rewarded.
There are actually a number of possible reasons why your dog has been doing it and it could be due to a combination of reasons. However, there are some things you can consider to help figure out the main cause and there are some things you can do about it.
Why does my dog take up the whole bed?
Below are likely causes and what would make them more likely.
The reason why your dog does it might be that it is being dominant. This would be more likely if your dog also does things such as growl when it is doing it. In this case, it would be best to stop your dog from sleeping with you until it starts to behave.
Encouraging the behavior
It could also be the case that your dog has learned that the behavior is rewarded. If you tend to give your dog things such as extra attention, when it does it, it will likely do it more in order to get more rewards. Instead, it would likely help to get it to sleep elsewhere as soon as it starts taking up the whole bed and to avoid giving it any extra attention after.
It simply finds it comfortable
It could also just be the case that your dog wants to extend its paws. This would be more likely if your dog does not push you off the bed too strongly and if it sleeps in a similar way to how it does during the day. In this case, it could help to try to get your dog to sleep facing in a different direction.
Your dog is being possessive
It might also be the case that your dog is trying to protect a particular spot on the bed. This would be more likely if your dog does it when you are sleeping near the spot that it likes to sleep in. Again, in this case, it would help to stop your dog from sleeping with you until it starts to behave.
Your dog is being affectionate
Another possible cause is that your dog is actually showing you affection. This would be more likely if it does things such as push its back against you when it does it and if it rubs its back against you.
Things to consider
Below are some things to consider to help figure out the main cause.
If your dog has always taken up the whole bed
If your dog has not always taken up the whole bed, it would help to consider what else happened when your dog first started doing it. If your dog started doing it suddenly, it might be due to things such as learning that the behavior is rewarded or becoming possessive over a certain spot.
The body language it shows
It would also help to consider the body language your dog shows when it takes up the bed. If your dog does things such as wag its tail, it would be more likely that it is showing affection or doing it for rewards. Whereas, if it does things such as growl, it would be more likely that it is being possessive.
What to do about my dog taking up the whole bed?
Here are options you have when dealing with it.
Avoid encouraging the behavior
As mentioned above, your dog might have learned that the behavior is rewarded. Instead, it would help to get your dog to sleep somewhere else then to stop giving it attention as soon as it starts taking up too much space.
Get your dog to sleep elsewhere
Another option would be to just get your dog to sleep elsewhere. One way to do so would be to put a dog bed down in your bedroom for it to sleep in instead.
Get it to sleep on a different spot on the bed
It could also help to get your dog to sleep in a different spot on the bed and facing a different direction.
Why does my dog lay against me in bed?
The reason why your dog lays against you, in bed, could be that it makes your dog feel safer and that it is being affectionate. It could also be because your dog naturally likes to sleep that way.