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Does your adorable pooch sometimes get restless around the house or outdoors? Perhaps he just can’t find one place to lie or sit for long periods of time. One minute he will lie next to you in bed and the next one move to the couch. When you are convinced he’s comfortable, he wakes up and goes outside to lie in the backyard. This behavior is understandably worrying for rookie and seasoned dog owners alike. In this post, we seek to explore why dogs will move from spot to spot.
Reasons Why Dogs Get Restless
Moving from one spot to another can indicate a number of issues. These can be any of the following:
This one is a no-brainer. Dogs, like humans, can move from one spot to another in search of the best position for maximum rest. Think about the way you toss and turn in bed at night or when watching TV on the couch. At one point, the best position will be when they are sleeping on the side. When that doesn’t give sufficient comfort, you resort to facing up or sleeping on the belly.
Your dog also knows when he’s uncomfortable and will switch positions just to feel great. Perhaps the bed doesn’t give him what he’s looking for. Lining his body on the couch may do the trick for him. If not, curling under your feet may offer the ultimate comfort he’s after. Who knows? Maybe the mattress placed on his bed is too hard or too soft for his liking. Could it be that he’s outgrown the bed but you don’t know it yet? These are some of the questions to think through.
2. Too Hot Or Too Cold
This one goes hand in hand with comfort but qualifies to be a reason of its own. Depending on the environmental conditions, a dog will either choose a relatively warm or cold spot to sit or snooze in.
Don’t get surprised if your canine friend leaves the comfort and warmth of his warm bed just to spend his entire night on the floor. Or, if he moves from the fluffy rug in the living room to dig through the backyard for a place to sit. The bed is likely too hot for him. You can very well relate to this as a hot-blooded mammal.
When it’s too cold, your pup will move from spot to spot in search of a warm and snuggly place to rest his head. When you wake up from your spot, he will occupy it just to feel the warmth and your closeness. It’s all about striking the right temperature.
3. Separation Anxiety
Most dogs love and thrive in human company so much so that when the owner isn’t around, they can’t settle down. Examples include Chihuahuas, Shih Tzu’s, Labs, Pugs, and bulldogs. When left for too long, these dog breeds will move all over the place and even take on some destructive behavior.
Your lovely canine friend may put his head down for a while but when he doesn’t see you, his stress levels will mount. To alleviate the stress and anxiety, he will pace up and down. This one is rather concerning as the dog may destroy things or bark incessantly to get you to come to him. If you live with other people or in apartment settings, this behavior can be horrifying.
The fourth probable reason for canine restlessness is discomfort as a result of an ailment. When you are unwell, it can be a tad hard to get sufficient rest. Even something as simple as a headache can be quite hard to navigate and can cause you to move from place to place. Dogs feel what humans feel when sick. They feel pain, discomfort, soreness, you name it. For instance, if your pup has skin allergies, he will feel like scratching himself round the clock. As a result, he will rarely catch a long snooze. On the contrary, he will be up every few minutes and will likely move positions in a bid to feel some relief.
5. Search For Safety
Dogs in the wild are never entirely safe. To them, there’s always danger lurking by. There are male dogs always keen on becoming the next alpha males of the pack. The only way to do that is by killing the other males in the pack. The nearby pack dogs are similarly on the same killing mission. Although domesticated, modern dogs still have some of these tendencies. If they sense they are in danger, restlessness almost always follows suit. If you have a male dog at home, he may pace around a lot if another male is nearby. If it’s a female, she may exhibit the behavior if she is on heat (for non-neutered pooches).
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What to Do
Why does my dog move from spot to spot? Hopefully, now you have an answer why your dog behaves this way. But can your dog about it?
Well, every problem has a solution—even in the canine world. The issue of restless can either be alleviated with the help of a vet or the owner himself. The actual solution will depend on the problem at hand. If, for instance, the issue is discomfort, you only need to ensure that your pup’s sleeping arrangement is right for him. Check if the mattress is comfy enough and if it still fits your Fido. Watch how he paces and which position suits him the most. If he sleeps on the cold hard floor, his bed is probably warmer.
If all your findings lead to something other than discomfort and temperature, check for separation anxiety. Does the dog seem to rest better when you are around? Does restlessness go along with other destructive behaviors? If you answered yes to the questions, chances are your pup just wants human company. Make arrangements to provide the same for him. If nothing still fixes the issue, your adorable pooch may be unwell. Bring him to the vet to check him out.
A restless dog is not fun to be around. Watching him go from room to room and spot to spot can make you worry to the point of being sick. However, you don’t have to be. Simply find the root cause of the behavior and address it as soon as you can.
Sable M. is a canine chef, professional pet blogger, and proud owner of two male dogs. I have been an animal lover all my life, with dogs holding a special place in my heart. Initially, I created this blog to share recipes, tips, and any relevant information on healthy homemade dog treats. But because of my unrelenting passion to make a difference in the world of dogs, I have expanded the blog’s scope to include the best information and recommendations about everything dog lovers need to know about their canine friends’ health and wellbeing. My mission now is to find the most helpful content on anything related to dogs and share it with fellow hardworking hound lovers. While everything I share is in line with the latest evidence-based veterinarian health guidelines, nothing should be construed as veterinary advice. Please contact your vet in all matters regarding your Fido’s health.