Your Dogs Sleeping Positions Meaning

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In the 1980″s I was a kid who’s good old farmer of a dad believed dogs were meant to stay outside day and night. Of course, we only had Labrador Retrievers and Siberian Huskies big dogs that could handle the harsh North Dakota winter weather.

The only time we were allowed to bring our dogs in was when the temperature hit below zero, we lived in a big house which made it fairly easy for my brother and me to sneak our dogs in at night the rest of the time.

I was 10 years old or so before I ever saw a dog sleeping on it’s back. It was my Aunt Delores’  Doberman Ringo, she was belly up paws straight up in the air sound asleep on their recliner.

My mom started laughing at the silly sight and yelled for her sister Delores, my aunt sees her dog and screeches ” Beverly!! She could be dead laying like that, you don’t know”

My mom still laughing at the silly sight answered with “oh Delores she is fine, I have just never seen a dog sleep like that before.”

Besides your dogs sleeping positions being comical and giving us a good laugh your dog’s sleeping positions meaning can tell you a lot about your fur baby’s mood.

Out of loving memory of my mom, Beverly E. Waa, and Ringo came the inspiration for writing about your dog’s sleeping positions meaning.



sleep positions meaning/zombie

Let’s start with my favorite and probably the goofiest looking position you will see your dog in, the Zombie position also known as crazy legs.

When you see your dog on his back, belly up, legs in the air like a zombie first off you can be sure your fur baby is quite comfortable in his surroundings to leave himself so vulnerable while sleeping.

He could also be trying to get your attention, fatty will wiggle all around making noise and knocking pillows to the floor and sometimes he falls asleep in the middle of it, we call it his doggy fit.

Then there is the reason that goes back to before dogs were pets and that is to submit and show they have no intention of getting aggressive.

If your dog sleeps this way a lot he is probably quite laid back and easy going our FattyBoy loves sleeping like this and he is quite the goofball.


In this sleeping position, your pooch is on either side with his legs stretched straight out. The side sleeper is a bit more common than Dogs sleeping positions meaning/side sleeper

the zombie.

If you see your dog in the side sleeping position your dog isn’t trying to conserve any heat or protect their vital organs.  In this position, you can be sure your dog is comfortable and feels safe.

No matter the size of your dog this sleeping position is a space-consuming position, our big dogs take over beds, couches, and walkways to sleep in the side sleeper position.

There is no hidden message here your pooch is simply tired and comfortable and ready for a good nap. A side sleeper is a confident pooch that most likely has a strong bond with his human or humans.

My Dolly sometimes falls asleep while trying to show Fatty she is submitting so if your dog is awake and laying on her side near another dog or human it’s very likely she is trying to show they mean no harm.


If your fur baby has his/her belly flat on the floor with their front paws extended in front and back paws straight back that’s the belly flop or some call it the super pup.

If your dog sleeps like this you likely have a very active and playful furbaby. This position allows your pooch to jump up for play easily.

The belly flop sleeping position is a sign your pooch is full of energy and ready to play at any moment. This sleeping position also helps your pooch stay cool.  On hot days our dogs lie on the cool linoleum in this position.


We have all seen the furball, in this sleeping position your pooch is rolled up with paws tucked under his face.Dogs sleeping positions meaning/furball

In the wild dogs and wolves sleep in this position to protect their organs it also makes them smaller and harder to be seen by animals hunting for prey.

If your dog is in the furball sleeping position it could be a sign that he is unsure of his situation, he could be stressed out or could simply be that he is just trying to stay warm and conserve heat.

Unless there has been a big change in the home or he is in new surroundings chances are he is simply conserving heat.


In the lion sleeping position, your pooch will be on his belly with his back paws flat on the floor his front paws stretched in front and his head resting on his paws.

When you see your dog in this sleeping position he likely is just resting and not in a deep sleep. When my dogs think we are going for a ride and get tired of waiting this is usually how they lay and wait for me.


The bed buddy dog sleeping position is where your dog wants to be curled up next to or back to back with their human or other pack members, smaller dogs will curl up in their human’s lap.

My FattyBoy as big as he is, if he can’t find a spot next to me sleeping he will lay on top of me in the side sleeper position.

If your dog is your bed buddy and prefers to be next to you, you can be sure that your dog loves you and you likely have a strong bond. Like FattyBoy your dog is probably a confident and happy dog, at least when you are close by he is.

If you have a dog that prefers to sleep alone it doesn’t mean he loves you any less than the dog that wants to sleep with you some dogs like their space when they sleep and some get too hot sleeping close to you or other animals.



An adult dog sleeps anywhere from 12-14 hours a day and that is perfectly normal for all dogs. Some dogs sleep closer to 12 hours and some closer to 14 hours, it depends on many different factors.

Because a dog’s sleep is easily interrupted they only spend about 10% of their sleep time in REM which is why they need more nap time than us humans who spend about 25% of our sleep in REM.

Your dogs sleeping positions meaning here or anywhere for that matter aren’t known facts because there haven’t been nearly enough studies done on dogs sleeping positions meaning for anyone to say for a fact what they really mean.Dogs sleeping positions meaning/comfortable

So at this point, until they have done more thorough research on dogs sleeping positions meaning we can only speculate or guess.

My fur babies sleep in the positions I have mentioned and the mentioned personality traits are absolutely true of my dogs and could be of yours as well.

Until actual scientific research is completed on dogs sleeping positions meaning, we can’t truly know the meaning of dogs sleeping positions. In all reality, your dog’s sleeping positions meaning may be as simple as it’s the position most comfortable for your dog.


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2 thoughts on “Your Dogs Sleeping Positions Meaning

    1. Hi Barb, I’m glad you found it interesting, thank you for taking the time to read my post and for taking the time to comment/
      We are fairly new so love seeing people checking our information out and finding value as well.

      Best Wishes
      Lisa Waa

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