It’s a lovely day outside as you’re walking your pup down the block. You smile at the stranger on the street as your dogs exchange friendly sniffs. You continue on your way, smiling from the light-hearted interaction. For a moment, the world feels like a more connected place.
As different as you may be from that person walking down the street, you realized you do have one thing in common. You both woke up and got dressed today!
You both put your pants on one leg at a time, as the saying goes.
Clothes play such a universal and consistent part in daily life. Clothes can be powerful enough to transport us back to a time of sweet memories.
Sweater-weather may whisk you back to the sound of fall leaves wrestling as you chased your pup while wearing your favorite hoodie. Your gym shorts may remind you of summer meet-ups at the dog park and lively games of fetch with your dog.
In many ways, as they also say: clothes do make the man.
Interestingly, your clothes may also have a profound impact on your dog too!
Your clothes may intrigue your dog so much that you frequently find them laying on them.
What’s up with this?
It’s totally normal for your dog to want to lay on your clothes. They may be doing this to feel close to you, to cope with separation anxiety, or because they think your clothes are comfy. Sometimes they do it to mark their territory or to get your attention.
In this article, I will explore the common reasons why your dog always lays on your clothes. I will also answer whether it’s okay for your dog to lay on your clothes.
Finally, I will wrap things up with some simple tricks to help discourage your dog from laying on your clothes.
Come and join me as I lay it all out!
Your dog may be laying on your clothes for a variety of reasons. From seeking comfort to making their presence known, your dog definitely has a goal when they snuggle up on top of your attire.
Let’s take a look at some of the explanations behind this doggy behavior!
Your dog may always lay on your clothes because…
Ever steal your significant other’s sweater because you love that it smells like them? Your dog may be sleeping on your clothes for the same reason! To your dog, you are home. The love and protection your dog feels from you are real, and your dog wants to feel like you’re with them all the time. If you ever go away, you may find them cuddled up on top of your clothing when you get home!
This takes “missing you” a step further. Your dog may miss you but may also feel anxiety when you’re not around. A dog with separation anxiety may feel high levels of boredom, loneliness, and stress. In this situation, they may become destructive to cope.
If your dog suffers from separation anxiety, they may do more than merely lay on your clothes. An anxious dog may rip your clothes to shreds in a misdirected attempt to self-soothe. Your dog is not trying to be aggressive; they just don’t really know what to do with themselves.
Instead of scolding them, take them to the vet and explain what is going on. They will be able to get to the root of the problem and properly treat your dog’s separation anxiety.
Sure, your dog loves your scent, but they may also want you to love their scent too! Your pup may want to redistribute their smell onto your clothes just to reinforce the idea that “I’m here!” This may especially be the case if your clothing is new or if there’s a new dog in the picture. Your pup wants it to be clear that they are in the building. Spreading their scent onto your clothes is a pretty direct way to let everybody they’re around!
If a certain jacket or blouse feels nice when you wear it, chances are your dog may like it too. Dogs like to feel cozy and burrow themselves into plush fabrics. Your big, warm sweater may be so comfortable that your dog just can’t resist. You may find your pup nestling their nose or piling your clothes into a comfy dog bed of their own making.
Your dog may be laying on your clothes in the hopes of getting your attention. Since your clothes smell like you, your items are inherently linked to you. In your dog’s eyes, they may be doing to your clothes what they wish they could do to you!
If you’re occupied, your dog may be using your clothes as a substitute to get your attention. This can be a more toned-down version of jumping on your legs. If your dog has gotten your attention this way before, they know it works and may continue to do it.
There is nothing inherently wrong with your dog laying on your clothes. This is not a sign of disrespect, dominance, or disobedience. This is usually a benign behavior that may mean your dog misses you. They may want to be even closer to you than you already are.
But let’s take a moment to explore the opposite point of view.
Potential downsides to your dog laying on your clothes could be:
Maybe the potential downsides I listed above are causing you to think twice about letting your dog lay on your clothes. That’s totally understandable! Here are a few simple tricks to discourage your dog from laying on your clothes:
There are undoubtedly small nuisances that can come along with your dog always laying on your clothes. You may deal with dog hair, doggy smell, and wardrobe items that mysteriously go missing from time to time.
But think of what you may gain! The comfort, memories, and familiarity associated with your clothes are all very soothing elements. The cozy feel of the fabrics and the uniqueness of your own scent hidden within your wardrobe are staples in your life that you can carry with you for years.
Why not let your dog share that simple pleasure?
And as your pup lays on your clothes, they will contribute their own scent to the mix. What’s theirs is yours, and what’s yours is theirs anyway, right?
This sounds like the true meaning of being knitted together, truly, as a family.