Dogs on the bed or dogs off the bed?

Is your bed a no go zone for your pets or is it OK for your pets to sleep on the bed? I was very adamant when Leroy was a puppy that he was going to sleep on his puppy bed on the floor beside my bed, no way was I going to share my bed with the dog. Yeah right!

It wasn’t long before Leroy was sleeping on the bed. He was quite clever because he would start out on his bed and give me a false sense of security that he would stay there. Then at some point throughout the night he would sneakily get up on my bed and make himself comfortable. I would then awake to an empty puppy bed while Leroy was snuggled next to me, thumping his tail with a look of “I don’t know how it happened but I ended up on your bed”.

I would then demand he got off the bed, and return to his dog bed which he did. I would puff up my chest and remind myself I am the top dog. Then the next morning I would wake with Leroy on the bed again but had no memory of him jumping up through the night. Each morning I would wake up to find him on my bed and each morning I would go through the same ritual, telling him to get off and putting him back on his dog bed.

I had bought him a very comfortable dog bed so there was no excuse of him not sleeping in it. I would find him on it during the daytime all curled up so he definitely liked it. For a joke one night I pretended to go to bed in his dog bed. He was most confused as I faked falling asleep in it. He didn’t seem to mind and seemed to be amused at my antics. I didn’t last too long. I moved back into my bed and Leroy jumped straight into his dog bed, did a few circles and fell asleep. I woke up the next day with his head on the pillow next to me.

I would like to think I decided he could sleep on the bed but really I know I caved in. I could never catch him doing it and he eventually won me over with his cute morning face of innocence. He still starts out the night on his dog bed and sneaks up at some time through the night. I now have a rug on my bed which seems to protect the quilt from his dog hair.

I would say in general beds are best left for humans to sleep in but who would I be fooling. I love waking up to Leroy. The first thing I see is a big smiley face full of joy and excitement of what the new day holds, yes he could express that from his dog bed and I know deep down how wrong it is that he sleeps on my bed but….I’m a sucker!

Whether you prefer your dog on your bed, in a dog bed or sleeping outside, the key thing for having a well behaved dog is that it is your choice – when and where. The fact is that dogs are pack animals and much prefer to sleep with the pack. In cold climates it’s very natural for them to lie against or near each other for warmth. Digging ‘the dog bed’ is also very natural because dogs would ‘burrow’ shallow beds to sleep in. For example clearing away leaves, twigs, or grasses to create a ‘sealed’ dog bed. Hence why the seem to bunch up the doona in their favour or do a 100 circles prefer settling down. Keep this in mind when expecting your dog to sleep in their own dog bed and not yours. It’s not always the ‘comfort’ factor but the company factor that they naturally crave.