Updated at: 05-01-2022 - By: petstutorial

If your dog is resting on your legs often and you’re contemplating the cause and how you can fix it. This article will help you understand several possible causes and suggest what you can do to end the habit.
What is the reason my dog lie upon my legs? One of the possible reasons why your dog is resting on your legs is that it’s to be comfortable, has anxiety over separation, is waiting for something , or it is a natural habit.
Because there are many possible reasons for your dog to be doing this, it might be beneficial to look at what might make each than likely to represent the primary motive. Once you’ve got an idea of what the root cause is it will be much easier to convince your pet to cease.


Reasons why your dog sleeps on your legs

Below are some possible reasons your dog is sleeping on your leg and the factors that make each one possible to become the primary cause.


It is possible that it sees sleeping on your back more comfortable. It is more likely if it decides to sleep on top of you instead of sleeping in its bed, especially when it rests its head against you, and doesn’t appear to exhibit any unusual behavior.


The majority of dog breeds were bred to be able to co-exist with their owners, and are more secure in groups. Laying down or sleeping on your back might be helping them feel more secure as it can make the dog feel part of a larger group and less susceptible.

It’s being protective

The reason it does it is that it’s trying to protect. This is especially likely if it is defensive when you are near other animals or people. It will also be more likely to act this way when other people are in the vicinity.

Encouraging the behavior

It is possible that you’ve pushed it to do this by providing it with things it likes in the event it decides to do it. If you provide it with things like back rubs or belly rubs when it lies down on you, it’s likely to repeat the behavior in order to earn more rewards. It is better to remove it from you and give it rewards when it lay down in the way you would like it to.


It could be because it is experiencing some anxiety about separation and is anxious to know when you’re departing. It’s more likely to display symptoms of anxiety prior to your leave , and if it prefers to rest or lie on your body in the daytime, but just before you leave home , and not once you’ve returned at home.

It is being affectionate

It is possible that it’s just loving. It is more likely if it tries to make you do a belly rub or back rub before you fall asleep.

It is waiting for something

It could be due to it looking to receive some kind of reward from you. It’s more likely to be more active times when you usually give it something like food or walking.


Things to consider

Here are a few factors to take into consideration when figuring out the primary reason your dog is doing this.

What else happened when it first started doing it

If your dog didn’t always sit in your laps, it might be helpful to think about what occurred when it first began doing it. If it began doing it in a sudden manner it could be because of things like learning that the behaviour is rewarding or caused it to get nervous.

What is different when your dog sleeps on your legs

It’s also helpful to determine if there’s an exact time when your dog prefers to lie on your legs. it might be that the time of day has something to have to do with it. If, for instance, you notice that it is more likely to do this prior to the time you usually leave for work, it could be doing it to avoid having to wake up before you go away.

What to do about your dog sleeping on your legs

Below are a few ways to deal with your pet lying upon your legs.

Avoid encouraging it

Like we said there is a chance that it’s the case that it’s learned that certain behaviors are reward. Instead, it is best to reward it for sleeping in the position you would like it to and not rewarding it for when it is trying to rest in your legs.

Reduce reasons why it might be anxious

Like I said, it might be because it is experiencing separation anxiety. It can be helpful to lessen the amount of anxious it becomes by allowing it to exercises, peeing it and feeding it before going out to ensure that it doesn’t need to wait for so for so long.

Positive reinforcement training

Another option is to teach your dog to lay down other than where it is, using Positive reinforcement. This is when you can encourage your dog’s behavior in a particular manner, by rewarding it each time it exhibits signs of being this manner.
To make use of it to get it to lie or sleep in a particular spot, you could try something like the following:

  • Create the space you’d like to sleep in the most cozy.
  • Make your dog sit and be rewarded
  • Inspire your dog to lie down and rest by giving it treats
  • Repeat the procedure a few times per day until it understands that lying there will result in rewards


Give it another place to sleep

It can also be helpful to get it to lie down or rest in the position you prefer by creating a comfortable space. It is best to keep it cool and dark and not overly bright, and quiet and it should have room for it to lay down.
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