Why Does My Dog Lay on Top of Me?

dog lay on me
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There are times when you come back tired from work, go to the refrigerator to take a drink, lay down, pat your dog, and take your drink. Suddenly, your dog jumps to lay on you.

This might not exactly be what happens to you, but you should get what I’m trying to illustrate.

Your dog is always eager to lie on you when you’re laying or sleeping, and this is becoming more often that you start to wonder if the behavior is normal for dogs.

The question that runs through your mind is “why does my dog lay on top of me?”

The simple answers to your questions can be divided into two parts, which are:

1. Your dog is trying to let everyone around know that he/she is in charge, and you’re already taken. 

2. The dog might just want to play with you and spent some good time with you.

To buttress these answers, below are some reasons your dog mostly wants to lay on you while you’re either laying or laying down.

  • To show dominance over you
  • Just a normal behavior of its breed
  • To spread their scent on your body
  • To play and cuddle with you
  • Just to show affection

To Show Dominance over You

Ultimately in a dog’s life, there is always a wish to be connected with a group or pack. In packs or most groups, there’s always the battle for dominance.

For animals that are undomesticated, this sort of behavior is normal and plays out itself as there emerges consistently a top dog, but in your home, this is quite a dangerous thing.

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Normally at home, you should be the clear leader of your pack, as you supply meals, security, shelter, etc. for your dog or dogs. Once in a while, your dog will want to test your dominance over your group.

Some of the ways this manifests itself are: disobeying an already laid down house rule, stealing your meals, running out of the house, going to the runway before you when taking a stroll, persistence on leaping on you, and obviously, “laying on you while you lay “

Dominant behaviors can be adjusted easily with “Obedience Reinforcement Techniques”.

If you observe that your dog is attempting to display aggressive behaviors towards other family members or pets while laying on you, then instructing it and a few timeouts will help correct the problem.

Dogs are social creatures and crave attention a whole lot. Whatever makes you take away your attention is sufficient punishment for them.

If the behavior continues, you may consider talking to your veterinary doctor. The act may have other root causes that your veterinarian may address.

Just a Normal Behavior of Its Breed

Certain breed of dogs, e.g. Great Danes pile up on each other. In a sense that these dogs are like town-folks, they do not have any problem in getting into other peoples company.

This can be far different from asserting dominance. They aren’t trying to prove anything; they just feel comfortable getting into other people’s business.

You being the pack leader should be accustomed to this (I presume you’re the pack leader)

Laying on you or a member of your family members may only be one of the means that your dog resides along with you. Try to find out more about the breed of your dog before deciding on something.

To Spread their Scent on Your Body

Anytime your dog lays on you and places its tail on your body, you should know instantly that the dog wants to rub its scent on your body. In the dog’s world, tails are highly necessary for communication.

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Most dog owners believe that when their dogs wag their tails, the dogs must be happy. To be honest with you, that isn’t true at all.

The scent of every dog is unique to each of them. It is usually scented from their anal glands, and that’s the reason you see several dogs sniffing each other’s rear — mostly when they see each other for the first time. So anytime a dog wags its tail, the dog is only trying to spread its scent.

The emotions your dog may be feeling while wagging its tail to communicate with you really matters. 

For example, the tails of Alpha dogs are up most of the times; they wave their tails evenly sideways as a way of showing that they’re in control of anything going on around them.

Dogs that are scared normally hide their tails in the middle of their legs and dogs without tails are normally very careful about their relationships with dogs that have tails.

To Play and Cuddle with You

Yes, your dog might just need to play with you, especially once you notice that laying on you is always accompanied by rolling you over and maybe some playful sounds.

You will indulge your dog with a small play fighting and cuddles. That depends on the kind of relationship you have built up together with him or her.

They only need some quality time with their pet parents, and that’s it — nothing more, nothing less.

One thing of significance is worth noting. Whatever makes your dog attempt to lay on you has to be in your terms rather than on its insistence.

Clearly, this has to be accomplished through some form of obedience training to our dogs.

One powerful method of doing this practice would be to stand up anytime your dog attempts to lay on your torso with no consent. 

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Your dog may insist, but you must stay resolute (after all, you are the leader of this pack).

Once your dog calms down, you can now set and invite your dog to lay on you by saying the word “chest” (or any other command word that you wish to use). Your dog is very likely to oblige.

After some time, then you can use the command “away” and then indicate where you need it to go.

Anytime the pet follows through on the commands, be certain you reward them with a tap or a treat. The point here is to be more consistent with the rewards.

If your dog is doing so to assert dominance, it’s more crucial that you remain resolute in the process and you may even use a timeout as a deterrent for your dog.

The longer your dog knows your torso is a place of privilege rather than a right, the better your relationship.

Just to Show Affection

It’s not hard for people to overlook this part of a dog’s life in the hectic schedules in our life.

Our dogs want to be affectionate with us almost every time, and one of those ways is to lay down on us.

If we are observant, we will notice that those occurrences pick up mostly when we become too busy for them. In their way, they are currently trying to remind us that they are vital in the scheme of things.


Something additionally overlooked by pet parents is the fact that our bodies will be the perfect warming systems for our pets ever.

Their kennel or another spot might just be too cold for her or him, and our bodies will be the perfect place to snuggle up and enjoy any affection and warmth.

Dogs can lay on you for several reasons; but there is a sure thing: when you have a dog near you, everyday gets better!

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