Why does my dog sleep on my feet?

Why does my dog sleep on my feet? I’ve heard that question asked many times on online forums so I decided to do a blog on it.

Dogs are pack animals so it’s in their nature to stay together to stay warm. It’s not something they can help doing because the habit is engraved in every dog’s DNA. From birth, puppies have to stay close to each other and to their mum for warmth, comfort, and companionship. When they are separated from their mother, and from each other, they miss that warmth and companionship so they will tend to try and create that feeling staying as close to their owner as they can to fill the gap for that nostalgia.

While some dog owners may find this behavior so cool and amusing, others find it so intriguing and sometimes can’t stand it and end up avoiding the dog. Come to think of it, you go out of your way to get your puppy a good dog bed yet he or she just won’t stay on the bed, instead, it comes to lie on your feet nagging you for attention.

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Why does my dog sleep on my feet?

Here are some specific reasons as to why your dog would love to curdle or to lie on your feet.

  1. To feel loved
  2. To feel safe when scared
  3. Sickness
  4. For warmth
  5. Claiming its territory


  • Showing you love

Dogs are generally loving animals, no wonder they are our best friends. They have very creative ways of expressing their affection towards us. If you see a dog play with you, getting between your legs and sleeping on your feet are signs that your dog loves you, or at least feels comfortable around you. The dog will also dog this when it sees you home after a whole day without you around just to let you know that it missed you so much.

Dogs are very intelligent. A dog will know if you’re in trouble and will be glad to walk with you through the trouble to the end. When your dog sees you crying for instance, it will come close and sleep on your feet in a bid to comfort you and calm you down.

  • He is feeling insecure

When dogs feel insecure they start acting strangely and it’s easy to notice. There are many things that get a dog anxious. A visitor, another dog, food or change in weather is enough to get it all worked up. To kill the anxiety, it needs to be near a familiar territory and staying near you can help. But it can’t stay around you standing all through, at some point it’ll get tired of standing and lie at your feet. When it happens, try to understand the situation your dog finds itself in and let it stay at your feet as much as you can tolerate. If you can, cuddle it.

  • In search of warmth

You’d expect this a lot over the winters. When it gets cold, the cold penetrates through your dog’s fur and it hurts. Like we all appreciate warmth during winter, your dog will appreciate some warmth too. To get some warmth, it’ll lie with you in bed, hide in a closet, squeeze itself between your legs or at least sleep on your feet.

  • Claiming a territory

Dogs can be possessive; they will sleep on your feet to mark territory, especially if another dog or a visitor is within the vicinity. If you only have one dog, it will grow up knowing it owns you, you are its family and it will feel like an intruder is not allowed to invade its space. It could also happen when you take your dog out to the park where you’re the only person it knows. If you own two or more dogs, there will be some sort of a struggle among them whenever you are around because each of the dogs will want to have a nice spot at your feet to sleep. It comes naturally.


So, when a dog comes to sleep on your feet, generally it’s often because it feels safe around you. It doesn’t matter if he or she is claiming a territory, looking for some warmth, feeling insecure or in showing you love; the bottom line is that he has some bond with you which it’d love to exploit.

I guess that answers the question “Why does my dog sleep on my feet” satisfactorily.

I hope that you found this post insightful. Feel free to get in touch with us.

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