How can that be comfortable?
A day rarely goes by that social media friends doesn’t post pictures of their dogs sprawled in some contorted sleeping positions, across some unlikely piece of furniture, asking “how can this be comfortable?”
It probably helps that almost every single one of the people we follow are dog people. But it also brings up the question – how are dogs supposed to sleep?
In our research, experts varied between five and 10 described sleeping positions dogs prefer. We’re going to go with five – others are variations on a theme.
One they all talk about, and give the same name to, is the “super hero” position. This is when your dog is flat on its stomach, front paws stretched out in front and back legs stretched out behind. The experts say this is mostly for cooling – fur on a dogs’ stomach is thinner and the dog can cool off faster by getting in contact with a cool floor.
They also say that it’s mostly a position that puppies use. And speculate that it’s the best for “leaping into action” when they wake up after their nap. Considering all dogs sleep from 10 to 14 hours a day, and puppies even more, we say they should be well-rested enough to “leap” any old time.
We actually see this one a lot from Torque, Hope’s French Bulldog, especially in the summer. He’ll even head into a bathroom with nice, cool tile floors for a nap if he’s hot. Smart creatures, dogs!
All curled up
The curled up sleep position is one seen most often in wild canids (wolves, foxes, coyotes, etc.) And, sadly, also in animals held in shelters. This position signifies that the dog is trying to stay warm, while at the same time protecting its vital organs.
We don’t think you can actually read all that much into it. Especially if your dog likes lying in circular, or oval dog beds. It’s not necessarily a sign that your dog is insecure – it just means that they like snuggling, even all by themselves.
Since some of our dogs (French Bulldogs) are physically incapable of achieving this position, it’s not one we see much of. Booker (Fran’s 7-year-old Boston Terrier) will use it occasionally, especially after he digs his way under the throw-blanket on the couch.
This is the all-sprawled-out, on their back, legs-in-the air sleeping position that our social media friends post most often. Their dogs are draped over the sides of couches, benches, people, even tables and exercise equipment. These are dogs that really know how to get comfy and relax with abandon.
We don’t see this one very often – Simon (Fran’s 1-year old Boston) is the only one who ever sleeps on his back. According to the experts, using this position indicates that the dog is relaxed, confident, and secure. Which describes Simon pretty accurately.
If your dog sleeps “crazy legs” we’d love to see any pictures you have – we think it’s adorable.
Side sleepers are also characterized by their confidence. It’s another position that leaves the dog’s vital parts exposed. All of our dogs use this and the next position the most:
Whether with you or another pet, the cuddle bug has to be in touch. It really is a way of telling us they love us, they want to be with us, and they’re happy and confident. It’s also the one that makes us say “awwww” the most. One of the most comforting feelings in the world is having your dog lying back to back with you.
What’s your dog’s favorite?
We’ve seen some unique and hysterical pictures of dogs sleeping, but inquiring minds want to know! Which position does your dog favor?