In this article, we will answer the following question: Why does my Yorkie sleep so close to me? We will give you six common reasons why a dog likes to sleep with you. We will also talk about the pros and cons of having your Yorkie sleeping with you, and let you decide whether this is a behavior you want to encourage or dismiss.
Why does my Yorkie sleep so close to me?
The main reasons why your Yorkie sleeps so close to you are because he is lonely and seeks comfort, he wants to impose his domination, he feels safer next to you and he will know when you have to leave. Below, we give more details about each reason.
- He can’t stand loneliness: A dog may not stand being alone, especially at night, for several reasons. Either he has already been abandoned and fears above all that it will happen again.
Either he is fearful by nature and the slightest noise frightens him. Either he has a too-close relationship with his master and cannot stand his absence. Thus, he prefers to lie down beside you in order to feel your comforting presence.
- He imposes his domination: While this may not be the only reason that your dog sleeps with you, it is possible that by squatting your bed, or sometimes even your pillow, he is trying to show you that he is the real pack leader.
In fact, in a pack, it’s always the alpha male who sleeps in the highest places. However, this explanation only works if your dog is already the dominant gender.
- He seeks comfort: Silly, but if your pooch likes to sleep in your bed, it might just be because he appreciates the comfort. Indeed, the mattress is soft, the sheets are silky, your body provides heat … In short, everything is done to make your dog feel good!
While you love having your dog join you every night to spend the night with you, you should know that those who think it’s unhygienic are not completely wrong. Indeed, dogs, while walking, unwittingly pick up many parasites.
External parasites, such as fleas and ticks, cling to their coats and then lay their eggs in every corner of your home. As for internal parasites, which are intestinal worms, some can be transmitted to humans … At least you have been warned!
- He likes to sleep near you: If your dog sleeps with you, it is above all because he likes it. Indeed, dogs are pack animals. They usually fall asleep near members of their clan, glued to each other.
This way of sleeping in a group is particularly reassuring for your dog since it allows him to feel safe but also to enjoy your warmth. By sleeping near you, he, therefore, seeks comfort and this also allows him to be able to sleep peacefully, on both ears.
In addition, sleeping at your feet shows that your dog also wants to be able to protect you in case of danger. Indeed, he gets between you and the possible threat. Especially since most of the time, dog owners sleep with their feet facing the door. However, this allows their animal to see the danger coming more quickly.
- There is no risk of getting run over: You will understand, there are several reasons why your dog sleeps with you. But if he likes to fall asleep at your feet, it is also and above all because this sleeping position is more secure for him.
And for good reason, by staying at your feet, he is less likely to be crushed in the middle of the night than if he were next to you. Indeed, he knows that if you were to suddenly turn around in your sleep, it could hurt him a lot, while at your feet he is not afraid.
At most, you will wake him up for a few seconds when you move your legs. He learned to sleep near his mother’s tail like a puppy so he wouldn’t accidentally get run over by it. In addition, sleeping there allows him to easily escape from bed to eat, drink, or sleep in a quieter place.
- He knows when you are leaving: Your dog is the most loyal being. And, let’s face it bluntly, he’s totally dependent on you. So, by lying at your feet, he makes sure that you don’t leave somewhere without him.
Indeed, to get out of bed, you will have to move your feet and therefore wake your dog. The latter will then be the first to know that you are awake. And then he’ll be instantly ready to follow you.
For or against sleeping with your dog? The 9 essential points
5 benefits of sleeping with your dog or puppy
- Sleeping with a dog reduces your stress levels: Scientific research shows that when a human pats their dog, the brain secretes oxytocin, and cortisol levels drop. The secretion of these hormones helps promote well-being. That said, sleeping with our dogs can help lower our stress levels and sleep better!
As a result, some people have seen their insomnia improve, and their symptoms of depression decrease.
- The dog is a social species like us: The same research mentioned above tells us this is just as true for dogs! They can feel the same level of well-being when we are near them thanks to the secretion of oxytocin.
Dogs enjoy being with their humans (generally speaking!) And spending time with them. Often, near us, they feel good, reassured. For anxious dogs, sleeping near us is a time when they feel safe, and their stress decreases considerably. Which is very beneficial for them!
- To stay warm!: If you’re like me and hate being cold when you go to bed at night, this might be the best reason to sleep with your dog! Dogs give off a lot of heat, so they make a perfect heater!
- Do not feel alone and strengthen the bond with your dog: I’m not telling you anything if I tell you that having a dog (or several!) Makes you feel less alone! Sleeping with your dog can help him bond with you stronger: he feels good, he is comfortable and it is often a very positive experience for Pitou to be able to be glued to his human.
For an anxious dog, sleeping with his human is probably one of the rare times when he can actually sleep well, relax, and reduce stress.
- Funny stories when sleeping with your dog: I am convinced that many of you have experienced unusual situations with your four-legged friend! Our advice: don’t forget to take pictures!
4 very common, but unfounded, myths about co-sleeping with your canine companion
- “If my dog/puppy sleeps in my bed, he’ll think he’s the pack leader.” – Just because your dog is sleeping in your bed is not going to make your dog dominant or make him think he is the pack leader. In fact, for several years now, research in animal behavioral sciences has confirmed to us that there is no hierarchy between humans and dogs!
Either way, how could your dog think that sleeping glued to you means he’s superior to you? All he knows is that he is fine, comfortable, and reassured right now! The concept of superiority is far too complex for him! Your dog wants to eat, drink, sleep, and have fun, not to “dominate” you!
- If my dog sleeps in my bed, he will be spoiled too much and he will want more and more. False. Like anything with our dogs, if we are clear about what we want and what we don’t want, our dogs will be able to discriminate. Just because Fido is sleeping in your bed doesn’t mean he will start to exhibit unwanted behavior. There is no connection between these two elements.
Our dogs are very intelligent, but they don’t know the concept of “being spoiled”! Fortunately! Otherwise, many would have swollen heads! They can’t tell if sleeping in a bed with their human is a privilege or not. They feel comfortable in it and generally, they just like it. Often they feel safe there too!
- If my dog sleeps in my bed, he will become addicted and suffer from separation anxiety. False. There is no connection between a dog’s phobia of being alone and having them sleep with you. Many dogs would suffer from separation anxiety otherwise!
On the contrary, for a dog who doesn’t like to be alone, when he is near you, it is surely one of the rare moments when he is not stressed and where he can finally relax and fall asleep without having afraid you will leave him alone.
However, it is still important that at the same time you teach your dog to love being alone at home!
- If my dog sleeps in my bed, he will never want to sleep anywhere else. False. Sometimes it is possible to make your dog sleep in the bed and sometimes make him sleep elsewhere. By keeping in the habit of sleeping elsewhere on occasion and making other places comfortable and positive, voila!
Your dog could sleep in his crate, on a pillow, in a pen, whatever. Of course, you have to make sure that the dog is comfortable in the cage and that it is well trained in it.
A recent study found that almost half of dog owners allow them to sleep with them in bed. Nowadays for most people, sleeping with pets in bed is a psychological comfort. According to sleep studies, having a pet in bed with you can have a positive effect on sleep quality.
There are pros and cons to sharing a bed with your pet. We consider it a modern phenomenon that we sleep with our cat or dog, but in reality, it is nothing new. In ancient times, many people occasionally slept with them, especially in winter. Also, in many cultures, they shared sleeping space with humans, warning them of the approach of predators and even bending over to their owners and giving them warmth.
In the end, it is up to you, but if you ask us, there is nothing wrong if your Yorkie sleeps close to you!
FAQ on Why does my Yorkie sleep so close to me?
What does it mean when your Yorkie sleeps a lot?
When your Yorkie sleeps a lot it means that he is generally very active during the day and needs to rest. A healthy Yorkie can sleep between 13 to 18 hours each day, including naps.
Does your Yorkie sleep with you?
Many Yorkies sleep with their owners, even adjust to your sleeping schedule. You can train your dog to sleep in his bed, or with you in the same bed!
Are Yorkies expensive to take care of?
Yorkies are not more expensive to take care of than most of the dogs. Food for a Yorkie may cost you around $300/year. But you should add to the bill veterinarian care, toys, tickets (if you want to travel with your dog).
Petersson, M., Uvnäs-Moberg, K., Nilsson, A., Gustafson, L. L., Hydbring-Sandberg, E., & Handlin, L. (2017). Oxytocin and Cortisol Levels in Dog Owners and Their Dogs Are Associated with Behavioral Patterns: An Exploratory Study. Frontiers in psychology, 8, 1796.