Why Does My Dog Kick Me When Lying Down? [Is That A Major Problem?]

Having a pet animal has several benefits. Moreover, if your pet is a dog, you will receive virtually all of the advantages. It gives you humble companionship as well as loyalty.

When you start to pet parent a dog, there you are going to face some difficulties. You must know many things about dogs and their behaviors. So, why does my dog kick me when lying down?

Dogs tend to circle their territory before sleeping or lying down. It is a very normal behavior of dogs. Sometimes dogs kick when lying down or sleeping. There can be many reasons behind this.

If your pet dog starts kicking more than the normal range, then it is a matter of great concern for you. Without knowing the exact reasons behind it, you cannot help your dog.

Let’s get into the reasons!

9 Reasons On Why Does My Dog Kick Me When Lying Down

Why does my dog kick me when lying down

  • Marking their territory
  • When felt threatened
  • Due to Muscle spasms
  • Over Excitement
  • Wants to play
  • Due to pain
  • Seizures
  • Weather
  • Neurological issues

1. Marking Their Territory

Marking Their Territory

The major purpose for kicking while lying down is for dogs to mark their territory. Scent glands are located at the rear of a dog’s footpad. From the kicking feet, they emit the pheromones.

Territorial claims, sexual availability, prospective food trails, and danger alerts are all created and communicated by these pheromones.

When they kick against the ground, they want to leave their scent, including identical pheromones, behind for marking the area as its territory. They try to mark their territory to the land space or toy.

Dominant dogs will do this to warn other dogs to keep away unless they want to get into trouble. And also, submissive dogs can do this to remind the owner that he is there for the owner.

2. When Felt Threatened

When Felt Threatened

When dogs feel threatened, they frequently kick their rear legs. It can be aggressive, but it can also be a form to be dominant.

This is a possible reason if it happens when your dog is frightened or in a new setting with new people or a new environment.

3. Due To Muscle Spasms

Due To Muscle Spasms

Uncontrollable kicking might be caused by muscle spasms. Muscle spasm is the tension and pain of the muscle.

It might be muscular spasms if your dog appears to be kicking involuntarily and your chance to be nearby. A variety of factors can cause such incidents.

Spasms can also be caused by dehydration or an electrolyte imbalance. This might be the case if your dog doesn’t drink enough water or is in really hot weather.

Muscle spasms can be caused by nerve injury, inflammation, or arthritis. You should take your dog to the veterinarian if you believe it is experiencing muscular spasms.

4. Over Excitement

Over Excitement

Sometimes the dog looks to be dancing as it kicks its legs. It’s sometimes referred to as the “happy dance.” When dogs get excited, they kick their feet.

Some dogs do this rarely, but others do it regularly as a means of expressing enthusiasm. It’s the equivalent of a youngster jumping up and down when informed they can go to the park.

5. Wants To Play

Dog Wants To Play

Often, the kicking can also indicate that the game is in progress. Many dogs kick to indicate that they want to play with you.

It might also be a tactic to grab the owner’s attention. It’s usually followed by a belly rub when they roll over onto their back.

6. Due To Pain

Due To Pain

Having arthritis pain, the dog may kick while they are lying down for sleep or while they are sleeping. It depends upon the age of the dog. At a younger age, usually, dogs don’t get arthritis.

If the dog is not that much younger, you can take an assumption that the kick may be from the pain of arthritis. Immediately you must conduct a veteran for the pet dog.

7. Seizures


Seizures are the most worrying reason for your dog kicking you. Petit mal seizures afflict just one part of the body.

It is resulting in involuntary motions such as kicking. Seizures that are classified as grand mal are significantly more alarming. In the seizures, the dog’s bodily motions will become uncontrollable.

This form of seizure is associated with incontinence and full-body shaking or spasms. Grand mal seizures cause the dog to lose consciousness.

8. Weather


During summer, a dog may kick to separate himself from you. It’s the same as kicking your blanket off your body while sleeping.

It’s an instinctive action that’s unconscious. When a dog becomes overheated, he will kick to move away from other heat sources.

Your dog may, ironically, kick in its sleep due to the cold. When your dog is chilly, his muscles will spasm. Kicking helps the dog to warm up, like how people shiver.

Check the thermostat if your dog kicks while sleeping. In smaller breeds, this is more common.

9. Neurological Issues

Dog Neurological Issues

Kicking is very common for dogs. Usually, dogs kick while they want to mark their territory. They tend to circle their area. They keep circling the area before sleeping or lying down.

But if the dog keeps circling many times and it takes much time to settle it down, it may have neurological issues. Consulting a veteran would be good for it.

Sleeping Style or Position That They Prefer

Sleeping Style or Position That They Prefer

People prefer many sleeping positions, from side to back to stomach. And then there are the various positions that dogs prefer. The most common dog sleep position is-

  1. The side sleeper – the dog lies on one side, and his hindquarters are elevated higher than his chest.
  2. The stomach sleeper – the dog lays on his belly with his hindquarters raised higher than the chest.
  3. The back sleeper – some dogs choose to lie on their backs, but others prefer to lie on their bellies like puppies.
  4. Superman position – the dog lies on his belly with his hindquarters raised higher than his chest, head and tail.
  5. The belly sleeper – this is the most popular position, and it is similar to the back sleeper except that the dog lays on its belly with its tail held up.
  6. The side-lying position – when a person sleeps on their sides, they lay on one side with their head and legs between their arms above and below them.
  7. The classic curled-up position – this position is adopted by dogs that sleep on their bellies but curl their bodies so that only their nose and eyes can be seen.

Dominant or Submissive Behavior

Dominant or Submissive Behavior

Due to the fact that dogs are pack animals and have wolf lineage, submission is a natural trait. There is always the pack leader or the alpha dog. The lowest-ranked dog is also present, as well as every dog in between. A dog will submit to you as a gesture of respect and show that he respects and trusts you.

Even if he may not be the best watchdog, this doesn’t mean he won’t be there to protect you. It simply implies that your dog recognizes you as the pack’s leader and has faith in your ability to look out for him and provide him with security. When they sense danger or are terrified, some dogs may also display submissive behavior. This may be sparked by a variety of circumstances, including other aggressive canines, lightning storms, or even mistreatment.

Dog Keep Kicking Me in The Head

Dog Keep Kicking Me in The Head

Dogs may be highly active while they are dreaming; if your dog’s legs are close to your head and he dreams of rushing across a field, his (or her) legs may move in accordance with the dream, accidentally kicking you in the head.

Dogs are known to dream while they are sleeping. A dog may dream of things he wishes to do, of things he has done in the past, and of things that worry him. He may even dream of being chased by a predator. On occasion, your dog’s paws or legs may move when he is dreaming, especially if your dog dreams about running or chasing.

When your dog dreams, he is not actually conscious of what occurs in his dream. This means that your dog is unaware that his legs are moving while he dreams of running and chasing things. In essence, he doesn’t know his legs are kicking you in the head, and the move is happening through pure coincidence

Common Dog Behavior and What Do They Mean?

Common Dog Behavior and What Do They Mean

Every dog owner has to watch a specific behavior, no matter the breed or size. Here are some of the most commonly seen behaviors and what they might mean.

  • Barking – The dog is alerting you to a noise (think doorbell or sirens). Barking may also mean that your dog sees a small animal or something outside and wants you to come to investigate.
  • Howling – Dogs may howl when they are left alone or they sense danger.
  • Yawning – The dog is bored and needs a nap.
  • Excessive grooming – The dog may be covering up an injury, or possibly you have used too many nail clippers.
  • Crying – The dog is in pain and requires immediate attention.
  • Groans – The dog is lonely and needs friends.
  • Eating dirt – It will be a while before your dog shows interest in the yard again. Avoid punishment or negative training methods to control this “habit.” Dog beds, balls, and other toys may help you manage the situation.

All of these behaviors are normal, but owners must learn what they are doing and what they mean.

Final Words

Dogs make excellent pets for a variety of reasons. One of which is their ability to alleviate loneliness. There are moments in our lives when we are not surrounded by our many friends or our family members.

Having a dog as a companion may be quite comforting at these times. Dogs are the most loyal pet for humans. But to get used to pet them, one needs to have more patience and give attention and time to the pet dog.

When your pet dog is kicking at the normal rate, you have to determine the reasons behind it, and after that, you must take the required steps according to the reason. I hope now you know why does my dog kick me when lying down.


How To Stop My Dog From Kicking Me With His Back Legs?

Your dog may be trying to cool down by kicking and pushing you when it’s sleeping off in an effort to escape from the┬áheat of your body. Giving your dog some space will probably halt the kicking since it is a natural and involuntary activity.

Why Do Dogs Kick Their Back Legs When They Are Awake?

Dogs do this to mark their territory, which is the true reason they do it. Dogs strive to leave their smell behind when they kick against the ground because they have scent glands on the rear of their feet. Dominant dogs will act in this manner to warn other dogs to avoid them unless they desire problems.

Does Circling Help My Dog Get Comfortable?

Yes, circling helps dogs get comfortable. When a dog circles while sleeping, it is calming to them. It is an instinct that many animals do to feel secure.

Why Does My Dog Kick Me When I Rub His Belly?

This is due to the scratch reflex of dogs. When a dog feels something scratch his belly, he instinctively starts kicking out to remove the object and protect himself. The dog may also try to bite when scratching is performed on his belly.

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