Does your adorable Beagle snuggle under the covers? This cute habit is usually endearing to most pet parents, while others have their concerns about the behavior. If your dog loves to burrow under blankets, tables, or anything nearby, this could be a natural instinct or your dog trying to tell you something. Your dog's ancestors were den animals when they lived in the wild. This means your dog inherited a natural instinct to burrow. Dogs burrow for a few different reasons such as wanting to feel safe or showing signs of discomfort or illness. The information below will help you get to the meaning behind your dog’s burrowing instinct.
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The Root of the Behavior
This behavior is natural to dogs and not something you should be concerned about as a pet parent. In the past, dogs lived in the wild. They would often create a den-like environment for various reasons. One important reason is when a dog had puppies. They created a safe haven for the birthing process and beyond. This was a dog's natural instinct to keep themselves and their puppies safe from predators. Your dog is domesticated now but he still has natural instincts hidden within his DNA. Domesticated dogs live a bit differently than their ancestors. In the past, they foraged for food, hunted, and built dens to protect themselves from predators, harsh weather, and other environmental issues. Today, most dogs are domesticated, especially your sweet little Beagle. Your dog creates a den-like environment to feel safe, secure, protected and calm. Chances are he pushes his blankets together to create the perfect luxurious den like structure.
Some dogs bring their favorite toys along for added comfort. Pet parents often experience their dog burrowing under the blankets on the bed. If you have ever woken up in the morning with a stiff neck or back pain due to the position you slept in because your dog was under the blankets, your dog definitely likes to burrow. Pet parents who are comfortable sharing their bed with their dog usually get used to their dog hiding under the covers snuggled next to them all night. However, pet parents who prefer their dog sleep on top of the covers or in their own bed have a dilemma. The natural instinct isn’t something that is easy to stop. It’s similar to making you stop sleeping the way you feel most comfortable and safe. Nobody wants to stop doing something that makes them feel good, safe, comfortable, and relaxed. So, as a pet parent with a dilemma, What can you do?
Encouraging the Behavior
Encouraging the behavior is not necessary since it’s your dog’s natural instinct. However, discouraging your dog from performing this behavior is difficult. If you don’t like your dog sleeping under the covers with you, there are a few things you can do to help the situation. You can train your dog to sleep in his own bed. Providing your dog with a soft cuddly dog bed and an extra blanket will help. There are dog beds on the market that are specifically designed for dogs that like to burrow. These types of beds will allow your dog to burrow anytime he pleases.
Since dogs are den animals, you can get him a dog crate to use as a den-like environment. You can place a blanket over the top for added security as well as place a small bed and blanket inside. This type of den is beneficial to dogs that prefer den-like places. It’s also an excellent place to keep your dog when you are out of the house. You might not be able to prevent the behavior since it is natural, but you can find ways to allow your dog to continue his behavior without interfering with your sleep. A dog crate or specially designed dog bed is known to help.
Other Solutions and Considerations
Your dog will typically be happy practicing this behavior throughout his entire life. It will most likely be the preferred way your dog likes to sleep. However, if you are truly disturbed by the behavior, you can ask a professional dog trainer for advice. Sometimes providing dogs with a safe environment, blankets, and other accommodations will help lessen the frequency your dog burrows. A professional dog trainer will determine if your dog can be persuaded not to continue the behavior. Some pet parents enjoy watching the dog cuddle up and sleep peacefully as they are snuggled in their little cave-like space.