There are a lot of funny things and odd expressions that dog owner’s witness from their canine companions. It is these adorable things that make them man’s best friend. One of the cutest behaviors of dogs is how they always seem to curl up into a ball when they fall asleep. While this may seem completely random, there are actually a few reasons why dogs do this. The big reasons why dogs do this are rooted in their basic instinct and in their evolutionary behavior for survival.
“When dogs sleep in the wild, especially where it’s cold, they’ll dig a nest and curl up into it,” said Dr. Margaret Gruen, an assistant professor of Behavioral Medicine at NC State University’s College of Veterinary Medicine, “This gives them warmth—tucking into a ball conserves body heat. It also protects their most vulnerable organs in the abdomen from would-be predators.”
What Dr. Gruen is saying is that the curled up position is the most optimal position to sleep in the wild. Not only does it keep them warm but it protects their organs from being attacked. If they do fall prey to some predator, only their back is exposed, and they have some chance to escape and come out of the attack with a flash wound. It is a very strategic tactic for sleeping.
Another reason why dogs sleep like that is that the dog is making a nest when they curl up. It is instinct to curl up and stay safe in an area. Even if the dog is at home, they revert back to their basic instinct to curl up and sleep.