Why Dogs “Dig Up” a Bed Before Lying Down

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Those of us who love and cohabitate with dogs are often amused – and confused – about certain behaviors that seem to make little sense.

They sniff the entire yard, then walk in a circle before finding the perfect place to poop.

And then there’s the pouncing, the intimate greeting of other dogs… and yes, the way they scratch and dig at their beds before lying down in them.

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We might not ever know the reason behind some canine behaviors – not for certain – but here are some expert opinions on why a perfectly good bed needs to be scratched and “dug up” before it’s deemed acceptable to your pooch.

It all harkens back, like most domesticated animal behavior, to the dog’s wild and untamed roots.

We also see wolves digging at spots in the woods before lying down, and the behavior seems to help them regulate their temperature in cold weather. Digging a hole helps them raise their body temperature in the winter, and in the summer, digging a little deeper lets them lie down in cool soil.

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A nice hole also has the advantage of providing a nice place to hide, so they can enjoy a more peaceful sleep.

None of these reasons apply to a dog’s nice, warm bed indoors, of course, but they can’t stop behavior that evolved over thousands of years just because they’ve got in made in the cushy shade in the here and now.

Maybe they know that, and they’re just sort of trying to fluff their pillows, to achieve the best possible and softest spot for a snooze, before deciding to lay down.

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If your dog’s scratching and digging indoors seems obsessive, you should talk to your vet, otherwise, there’s no reason to worry.

Except about the bed, which might need to be replaced if you don’t buy a sturdy enough one at the outset.

Does your dog do this? If so, drop us a comment and maybe a pic!