Have you ever noticed how your dog sleeps? It’s no secret that dogs do unusual things, many of that are hard to understand to people.
You know that dogs tend to stare at you while you’re eating, and the reason behind that behavior is that they just want a bite of whatever you are eating.
One of the most common behaviors in dogs (and also one of the hardest to understand) is dogs sleeping with their bum facing you.
Dog owners who let share their bed with dogs, know that it’s nothing unusual to see your dog’s bum facing your face, or nearby.
Have you ever wondered why your dog, or dogs, sleeps facing away?
Humans like to sleep close to their partners, and in general show affection face to face. Although dogs are huge lovers of body language, this isn’t common for dogs.
So far you might have noticed your dog sleeping in some really interesting positions. What if your dog each time sleeps with its bum facing you? If this happens, you should not be worried, as it’s standard behavior for dogs.
In fact, depending on the breed, this kind of behavior can be even a protective pose or a playful pose. Another reason might be that your dog just loves to get scratches on the bum.
It is fair to say that dog’s bum is far more complex both socially and physiologically than a human butt.
Now that we have presented you with some of the possible reasons why dogs do what they do with their bums, let’s elaborate on that more. First…
Is It Normal For Dogs To Sleep With Their Bum Facing You?
Dogs are adorable while sleeping. Many of them are fast to fall asleep on any surface, at any time of the day, and in one of the most unusual poses.
Dog owners tend to worry if their dog is comfortable and if anything annoys their dog while sleeping, and if they get enough sleep. Dogs are creatures of the pack and they know how to sleep. On top of that, they usually get just enough sleep as they should.
Dogs do sleep as long as people do and they spend the majority of their day being awake, hence their ability to react to any sound.
All in all, it is completely normal for dogs to sleep their bum facing you. It is their natural instinct. In other words, they are telling you that they mean no harm and that they are found by being vulnerable toward you.
For them, the bum facing you is not any sign of poor behavior or some kind of disrespect. For many dogs, it is just how they are comfortable to sleep on your bed. Dogs do not see bumps as humans do.
Have you ever noticed dogs smell each other bums? For them, this is a form of greeting. Plus, they often do this to claim something as theirs.
Some may face their bum toward you just to tell you how much they love you. In many situations, they are just doing their best to show you their protection skills and to let you know that you can sleep peacefully because your Fido is there to guard you.
Are you based in an area of extra cold days and nights? If that is the case, your dog might be just trying to keep himself warm.
Dogs do get cold, especially if they have a thin coat or they’re hairless. What if you see dogs rubbing their butts on carpets or grass or floors? The most common reason behind this behavior is due to parasites and scratching problems.
If this type of behavior keeps on repeating, make sure that you contact your veterinarian.
Now that we know that it is normal for dogs to sleep with their bum facing you, let’s see what are the most common reasons behind this behavior.
Sure, we have mentioned just some of them, but more as an overview of the bum behavior. Now, let’s explain the reasons for this bum behavior in-depth.
1. Security Comes First
Both humans and dogs are social beings. Not only that both humans and dogs thrive when they are around other living beings, but they need companionship to survive.
As pack animals, dogs love to be part of the pack. This is why many dog breeds are in fact prone to separation anxiety and have a hard time staying alone.
Dogs live to establish a strong bond with other human beings. If they are part of the dog pack, they will see their family members as their pack.
Since they want to be around their pack, they will not only follow them around, but they will want to share a bed with them as well.
In fact, most commonly they will insist on that. By spending time with their human and sharing activities with them, dogs tend to make the bond between them and people stronger.
As expected they want to make sure that their people are safe all the time. For your dog, you are the leader of the pack.
In your dog’s eyes, you are the alpha, and your dog wants to be close to you to stay safe. Yes, your dog believes that you are the only one who can keep him safe.
To help you stay safe while sleeping your dog might choose to sleep bum facing you, in case of any trouble.
While bum facing you, your dog will keep an eye on the door or any doorway, and be ready to jump at any sign of trouble or disturbance.
Although this is very humane for them, it may be stressful if you are based in an apartment in a building with many residents.
Barking at every move during the night can feel overwhelming to your neighbor, so make sure that your address this type of behavior during the training phase.
2. Your Dog Trusts You
Just like humans, dogs love to reward nice behavior. Since they cannot use words to express their love toward you, they will use their body.
In fact, dogs are experts when it comes to using their body language to express love, sadness, or even when they are in some kind of pain.
This is why they may choose to move their bum to face you – to show you that they trust you.
A dog’s natural instinct is to screen his surroundings and to scan for any sign of potential danger so it can react properly.
By turning their back toward you, your dog is actually telling you that he has no fear of you harming him, but the opposite… When your dog turns to you his vulnerable back, it means that he has your front.
Another way for your dog to tell you that he trusts you is to place himself on his side or his back when he is next to you.
Dogs show trust in many ways, including being relaxed around you, following commands, and maintaining eye contact with you.
Don’t forget that dogs are experts when it comes to reading people’s emotions. If you are in the bad mood and tend to be loud, your dog will be fast to pick up on that.
At moments like this, your dog may be less trusting of you, or he may try to comfort you by demanding extra love.
If this happens, do not get mad with your dog, just remember that he does his best to make you feel better. On the other hand, if you are in a great mood, your pup will pick up on that one as well and be equally happy.
3. Your Dog Loves Comfort
As humans, we tend to overanalyze behaviors, especially those in dogs, and other animals that we cannot immediately understand. Sometimes deeper meaning of certain behaviors is just not necessary.
In most cases, certain behaviors in dogs are far from complex. Sometimes, the reason why your dog turns its bum facing you while sleeping is just because for Fido that is the most comfortable positing to sleep in.
Just like how you need to be comfortable while sleeping and to have a good night’s rest, your dog needs equal treatment.
How to know if your dog is comfortable while sleeping? All that you have to do to get an answer to this question is to monitor your dog.
This means that you need to look at his body’s sleeping position and how fast or not his breathing is.
If your dog is lying on the side with its bum facing you and legs extended, and breathing really slowly and evenly, that is a sign that your dog is sleeping comfortably.
Should you be worried if you hear soft moans in your dog while sleeping?
If you hear your dog lets out soft moans this means that your dog is in the REM phase (Rapid Eye Movement). This is the phase in which the majority of deep sleep and dreaming occurs.
If your dog is dreaming it is best not to disturb him, even if his bum is in your face.
What to do if this bothers you? If this is the case, you should move.
It may sound harsh, but your dog needs a fair amount of sleep as well and you should let him have it.
4. Scent Marking
Dogs love to mark their people. Have you ever noticed how your dog always chooses the side of the bed that is yours? This is so they can enjoy your scent.
Some dogs will face their bum toward you so they can mark you with their scent. All dog breeds have scent glands, also known as anal sacs, that are located on both sides of their anus.
These glands will release unique pheromones – every dog has their own pheromones that are only perceivable by other dogs.
Simply said, your dog might be using his glands to mark you with his unique scent.
5. To Avoid Eye Contact
If your dog is a more reserved type or a shy dog, he might be using bum facing position to avoid eye contact or to protect himself if feeling stressed.
You should not take this too personally, because for dogs eye contact isn’t the same as it is for humans.
When you look at a human or dog’s eyes your body will release the hormone called oxytocin, which gives that happy feeling of love and bonding that humans love so much. However, when you stare at your dog’s eyes they just might not understand the reason behind it.
At least they cannot understand the reasons behind it without the proper visual or verbal confirmation.
In most cases, dogs will maintain eye contact with someone that they love, but most of the time, they will avoid it. For dogs, staring is a sign of dominance.
Do Not Forget Flea Infestation/Anal Gland Infection
If you know your dog’s common behaviors, you will know easily to recognize when he is in some kind of trouble or pain. That being said, you should know how your dog acts daily – if he scratches this frequently there might be something wrong with it.
Observe your dog. If you notice any funky smell coming from the dog’s anus, there might be an indication of an anal gland infection or a flea infestation. This can be one of the reasons why your dog bum facing you.
If that is the case make sure that you schedule an appointment at your vet’s office.
Last But Not Least…
Reasons for bum facing may vary from dog to dog and some may be health-related, while others are just a form of love. However, in some really rare cases, your dog just might need some space.
Some dogs are more active than others and some downtime is more than desirable to help them cool down.
When your dog is sleeping it is important to let him enjoy it at his own pace.
If you are sharing the bed with your dog make sure that you provide him with enough space to sleep peacefully.