Have you ever noticed that right before your pup settles down each night — or even before one of her naps — she digs and scratches at her bed?
Believe it or not, she’s not purposely trying to destroy that expensive bed you got her.
“All of this behavior is completely normal, natural canine instinct!” Dr. Stephanie Austin, a veterinarian at Bond Vet in New York City, told The Dodo.
So why does she dig at her bed so much?
According to Dr. Austin, there are actually several reasons:
Your dog has a natural instinct to create a safe space or “den” for herself to sleep in, just like she would if she were out in the wild. It’s just her deep-rooted instinct kicking in to make sure she’s comfortable and protected from any potential intruders for the night.
“And to make sure there are no snakes or other threats hiding in the place [where] she’s about to settle down,” Dr. Austin said.
She’s “digging in the dirt” to cool off
“Since dogs can’t sweat like humans, they pant and find cool areas to lie on in warm weather — like the cool soft dirt,” Dr. Austin said. If she’s scratching her bed on a hot night, she’s just trying to cool it down so she can sleep better.
She’s making a comfy place to curl up
Would you want to sleep on a lumpy bed? Just like how you might arrange your blankets just right for optimal coziness, she’s doing the same thing with her bed.
While you can’t prevent your pup from digging on her bedding — and shouldn’t, since it’s just her natural instincts kicking in as she’s getting ready to sleep — you can make sure that she isn’t ruining anything too pricey.
To help, make sure your pup’s sleeping area has blankets just for her so that she doesn’t accidentally scratch up one of your favorite throws — and let her do her thing.