Your dog sees your stomach as a first-class mattress.
As soon as you say,
“Time to sleep.”
They plop down on your belly and go off to dreamland.
Why does your pooch do this?
In this article, you’ll discover:
- Can dogs sense pregnancy?
- 11 odd reasons why your dog sleeps on your stomach.
- 3 things to do when your pooch likes sleeping on your belly.
- And much more…
Table of contents
Why does my dog sleep on my stomach?
Your dog sleeps on your stomach for reasons such as seeing it as an opportunity to cuddle, being comfortable, having a close bond with you, being protective or overly-attached, wanting attention, feeling relaxed, trusting you, wanting warmth, or sensing you’re pregnant.
11 odd reasons why your dog sleeps on your stomach
#1: Time for cuddles
Your dog’s favorite spot to sleep isn’t your bed.
Nope, not their dog bed as well.
It’s your stomach.
For some reason, they enjoy dozing off on it.
Out of all the places in the house where they can lay comfortably, they choose the one where they can slide off anytime.
And so you wonder why.
Well, the reason for this could be because laying on your stomach guarantees petting.
They see it as an opportunity to receive some cuddles before sleeping. So they take it.
Think of it as having a home massage.
Sleeping is so much better after your session, isn’t it?
That’s how it is for your pooch. Because it’s in your instinct to stroke them, they feel much more comfy and relaxed before they sleep.
Every night your pooch sleeps on your belly like it’s a special bed made just for them.
Sure, you’ve tried making them sleep somewhere else.
But it all ends up in vain.
Every time you let them sleep on their dog bed, they often wake up and walk around. They disturb and bother you until you let them sleep on your stomach.
They always, always want to come back to their favorite sleeping area – your belly.
“Why’s my dog like that?”
If your pooch can’t sleep anywhere else but beside or on top of you, you may have a clingy dog.
These are over-attached pooches who can’t be away from their dog parents. So much that they even have their own dog term. They’re also known as…
These kinds of dogs follow you around, stay as close as possible, and want to be with you always – even as you sleep.
But take note. Velcro dogs could develop separation anxiety if they don’t learn to be independent.
Dogs who have separation anxiety experience a tremendous amount of anxiety and stress whenever they’re separated from their dog parents.
If your pooch sleeps on your stomach because it’s impossible to keep them away from you, you need to assess them.
Are they showing anxiety whenever you leave them?
Do they do destructive behaviors such as chewing on furniture or barking and howling non-stop when alone?
If yes, then you might need a vet or dog behaviorist’s help.
Curious to know more about this topic? You can check this article here.
#3: It’s a puppy thing
Aren’t puppies the cutest?
Especially when they pile up as they sleep. It’s the most adorable thing in the world!
Ehem, please excuse my obsession with them. I just can’t help it.
I mean, just look at these little pups while they sleep.
I know, right? Super cute.
Anyways, another reason why your dog sleeps on your stomach is because it’s what puppies do.
Dogs are social animals. Being close to their own siblings improves their pack’s bond.
Aside from that, they also like piling into their siblings because it gives them warmth and comfort.
If your puppy always sleeps on your belly, it’s probably because it’s their instinct to do this.
They try to look for the same comfort by trying to pile or lay on your stomach.
#4: A sign of affection
There are many ways your pooch can show they love you.
They can lick your face. Share with you their favorite toy.
Or smile when they look at you.
Hey, even sniffing your crotch can mean that your dog adores you.
So if your pooch sleeps on your stomach, don’t worry too much about it. It can just be another sign of affection from your pooch.
This just means they have a special bond with you.
#5: Being protective
Sleeping makes us unaware of our surroundings. Therefore it makes us unguarded and at risk for any potential threats or attacks.
While you may think that your house is totally safe, your dog’s still wary.
They sleep with their one eye open.
Figuratively, of course!
They can’t help it, it’s in their DNA to be on alert all the time.
So to protect you when you sleep, they may lay on your body, and that includes your stomach.
By doing this, they’re close enough to defend you from any attacker. Or maybe bark at them until they go away.
Aside from that, your dog will also be alerted for any sudden movements you make. Like standing up for a pee or to get a drink.
In this case, your dog’s hoping you get some midnight snacks too.
#6: They feel safe with you
Your dog trusts you.
That’s why they aren’t scared or cautious of being close to you, even when they’re sleeping.
They sleep on your stomach because you give them a sense of security. They know you won’t harm them in any way.
“Mama/Papa, I feel the safest when I’m with you.
I wuv you.”
Awwwww! Isn’t your pooch the sweetest?
Dogs are often trusting of humans. There’s even a saying that I’ve heard before that somewhat says:
“If a dog’s abused by 99 people, and only 1 person has shown love for them, they’d still be able to show their unconditional love for that 1 person.”
This means that even if your dog might be neglected or abused before, they’ll still be able to give their full trust.
And one way of showing this is by staying close to you, even when they’re in their most vulnerable state such as sleeping.
#7: Seeking attention
Another reason why your doggo sleeps on your stomach is because this position provides you with their best view.
It makes you see them and focus your attention on them alone.
Maybe you’re too busy these days.
Or you’ve forgotten to spend time with them because you went out.
So to make up for lost time, your dog sleeps close to you because they miss you.
#8: Your tummy’s jiggly
Okay, first of all, no offense here.
We all have jiggly bellies (more or less) because of the fat in our tummy.
So if your pooch sleeps on your stomach because it jiggles and it’s soft, don’t be embarrassed.
Your dog enjoys and loves sleeping on it because it’s comfy and super cozy for them. 🙂
#9: It’s warm
“Oh mah goodness. It’s friggin’ cold!
Can I sleep on your tummy, pwease?”
On cold nights, your pooch may prefer sleeping on your stomach because they’re trying to warm up with your body heat.
Did you know that studies show that the Australian Aborigines used to sleep with 3 dogs during harsh winters to keep themselves warm?
Hence the term ‘three dog night’. This also became the inspiration for the name of the American rock band ‘Three Dog Night’ during the 1960s.
Read next: Why does my dog sleep on my head?
#10: Your breathing’s relaxing
Your dog sleeps on your stomach because they enjoy the rhythmic pattern of how your breathing goes. It’s relaxing for them how you exhale in and out.
Think of it like being lulled to sleep. Or maybe being in a rocking chair.
The more you sway on it, the sleepier you become.
Aside from that, your dog must be hearing your stomach churning as well.
Dogs have a great sense of hearing. So the way your stomach sounds must be relaxing for your pooch.
#11: You’re pregnant
Last but not the least, your dog lays on your stomach because they’re sensing something. Or rather, someone.
Is it a new member of the family, perhaps?
Your dog may be sensing your pregnancy. That’s why they’re clingier than ever.
You’re not alone in this. Many women all over the world claim that their pooch starts laying on their stomach as soon as they get pregnant.
Some even said their dogs knew it before they did.
“Amazing! But how can my pooch sense that I’m pregnant?”
First is the change in your scent.
Because of your dog’s amazing sense of smell, they can detect the hormonal changes in your body.
The second is your mood.
You may be getting irritable or the surge of emotions is causing you stress. And since your dog is intuitive, they get close to you to improve your mood.
Third, are your actions.
Your movements must be getting slower. That’s why your pooch is being extra careful of you. You may also notice that they walk slower when you’re taking them outdoors.
Fourth are the physical changes in your body.
Your tummy is getting bigger, so the dog’s being more protective of you. (Also why your dog sleeps close to you.)
Your sweet pooch could possibly be hearing your baby’s heartbeat.
And because unborn babies cry as soon as they’re 28 weeks or older, your dog may be hearing their first cries too.
That’s why they lay their head and sleep on your stomach.
3 easy tips on what to do if your dog sleeps on your stomach
#1: Let them be
Your dog sleeps on your stomach. And you’re loving every moment of it.
If the feeling between the two of you is mutual, then there should be no problem.
Just enjoy your moment with your pooch. You’ll never know when they’ll suddenly change their behavior.
They may be clingy now, but they may stop being like that after some time.
Especially for puppies. When they mature, they may grow out of their habits because they’re already adults.
Take it from my mom. She always say,
“Just enjoy your time with your children.
You never know. It may be the last time you pick them up or carry them.”
#2: Avoid their advances
If the sleeping habit of your pooch bothers you, an effective way to stop it is to move away from them when they try to sleep on your stomach.
Turn on your side as soon as they initiate getting close.
Now, if you slept before them and you wake up to your pooch dozing off on top of your belly, gently slide them off.
They may wake up from their slumber. But it’s okay.
Just as long as you’re not hurting them, then that’s fine.
When you ignore their advances and move away from them when they try to sleep on your stomach, they’ll get the hint eventually.
They’d learn over time that you don’t want them doing this habit.
#3: Give them their own sleeping space
By giving your dog another place to sleep in, they’ll stop invading your personal space.
If you want to encourage your dog to become more independent, you need to sleep separately from them.
This can be done by providing them with their own bed.
Their dog bed must be extraordinary. Something that will make them want to sleep on it as soon as they see it.
Rub your scent on it.
I know, dogs usually do this. But if you have an old t-shirt, try wrapping it on their dog bed like a bedsheet.
This will make your dog feel more comfortable with it because it now smells familiar.
Putting their favorite toys on it also helps.
Oh, and don’t forget that it must be padded! It must be soft and cushiony like our bellies.
You can also put their dog bed beside yours. This way, they’d still be able to see you.
Bonus: Be careful if you’re preggy
Being pregnant is a crucial stage for you. So you want to be careful as much as you can.
If your dog’s large and heavy, it’s best to prevent them from sleeping on your stomach. (Although laying their head is still okay.)
Some dogs will be more careful around you during this time.
But still, it won’t hurt to take some precautions. 🙂