Why Does My Dog Hump His Bed?

Are you confused by your dog’s constant habit of humping its bed? You’re not alone! Both male and female dogs hump their beds, which can lead to general confusion for a dog owner and even embarrassment if company is around. But what is causing your furry friend to take on this inappropriate habit, and most importantly, is it normal behavior? In this article, we look at why your dog is humping their bed, whether frequently or temporarily.

Why Do Dogs Hump?

It is common to see a young dog humping in public places. Sometimes, they hump their owners’ legs, and sometimes they do it with other dogs. Mounting is a natural position for dogs, and unneutered and unspayed dogs under the age of one hump more frequently than older dogs.

It is expected that the dog might be exercising his sexual stimulation and aggressiveness by humping the dog bed. Humping should not always be associated with signs of sexual desires in dogs or even dominance towards other animals or their owners; it could be due to several other things.

Why Do Dogs Hump When They Are Fixed?

Why Do Dogs Hump When They Are Fixed

Many pet owners will be surprised if they notice their dog humping, even though it has been spayed or neutered. After all, shouldn’t getting fixed take away a dog’s natural urge to hump? Not necessarily!

Dogs hump for a variety of reasons, many of which have nothing to do with the act of mating. Therefore, it can be perfectly normal for your fixed pet to hump toys, other dogs, and even their dog bed.

While many are surprised to see a female dog engage in mounting behavior, this is a natural instinct for both female and male dogs.

6 Common Reasons Why Your Dog Humps His Bed

Why Your Dog Humps His Bed

Your furry friend may be engaging in the unwanted behavior of humping its bed due to excitement, breed aggression, or even a medical issue that needs addressing.

While sexual arousal and hormone changes are the most common culprit of your dog humping its bed, we have gathered 6 additional common reasons why your dog can’t seem to stop humping its bed. Read on to find out more!

1.   Your Dog is Being Playful

One reason your dog humps his bed is that he sees the act as playful behavior. Dog owners who find humping irritating often scold the animals for the behavior. However, if you don’t make your dog realize that humping is bad behavior, he may see it as part of a normal play or day, the same way he sees barking and jumping. If you don’t incorporate anti-humping rules into a dog’s behavioral training, he will likely hump his bed – especially when you are not around to see him!

In addition, some dogs hump their beds because they are happy and see this as a similar act to wagging their tail to show that they’re pleased. You may also notice them humping a stuffed animal for the same reasons.

2.   Your Dog is a Dominant Breed Type

Your Dog is a Dominant Breed Type

A dog’s genetic predisposition to humping can also be why your dog humps his bed regularly. Certain breeds like Rottweilers and Chihuahuas are known to hump their beds, owners’ legs, and even visitors’ legs. This can become a highly embarrassing situation for dog owners. With these breed types, you may only be successful in distracting them from humping for a while before they resume the act.

Not only is the tiny Chihuahua known as one of the more dominant breed types, but smaller dogs are more likely to start humping earlier in life than larger dogs. This increases the odds that you will notice this humping behavior in toy breeds like the Yorkie, Maltese, and Chihuahua! 

3.   Your Dog is Experiencing Medical Issues

It is wrong to assume that humping is a sexual act, especially in male dogs. Sometimes this dog behavior is the result of medical issues such as skin irritation and prostate problems. The possibility of humping being of a sexual nature is more common in a puppy than in an adult dog. For instance, prostate problems often result in urinary incontinence, but you may continuously notice the dog humps because of the pain associated with the issue.

Similarly, when the skin around the genitals of the dog becomes inflamed and irritated, the dog may only show his displeasure by humping his bed. Therefore, conducting a physical and medical examination on your dog when you notice frequent humping of his bed is essential.

4.   Your Dog is Anxious

Dog is Anxious

Do you notice that your dog particularly likes humping its bed when you’re about to leave the house or after they go for a walk? In this case, your pup may be humping its bed as a form of comfort. Not only may it feel soothing to them, but the physical stimulation can help calm their anxious mind. Many dogs suffer from separation anxiety and anxiety from the loud noises of cars and trucks when going for walks.

5.   Your Dog is Bored

A bored dog is almost always an understimulated dog, and your furry friend’s mounting behavior may result from just plain boredom. Both physical and mental stimulation are important for your dog to feel content, and they may be humping their bed purely for something to do.

6.   Your Dog is Seeking Attention

A dog who is not given enough attention and does not have enough mental stimulation or physical exercise during the day is more likely to engage in humping behavior. This is a common reason many dogs hump people, other animals, and their dog bed. Sadly, a dog craving attention will accept negative attention over no attention at all and may be humping its bed because they know you will tell them off.

When is Humping the Bed a Problem?

Brief humping of the bed may be a routine play or show of excitement for your dog, which may not be a source of concern. For instance, while running or playing outdoors, some dogs may take turns humping each other in a harmless expression of interest or excitement.

Humping becomes an issue when your dog indulges in it several times within an hour. It is important to detect this issue early and discover its underlying cause before creating a major conflict between you and the animal.

Can You Train Your Dog to Stop Humping?

Can You Train Your Dog to Stop Humping

Yes, it is possible to train a dog to stop humping. However, the issue is that you may never know when he starts engaging in this behavior, especially when he is in his bed.

As mentioned above, humping may be a sign of medical issues. If, for instance, your dog is constantly licking or chewing its own body, it could be a sign of distress and a need for urgent medical attention. Therefore, the first step you should take in helping your dog overcome excessive humping behavior is to help him get medical help when necessary.

Secondly, your dog may hump his bed when he does not get enough stimulation, primarily through exercise. You should also check any issue that may aggravate the problem within their private space. If you are the busy type, you may want to schedule a weekend exercise routine as a start to distract your dog and reduce humping behavior. You may want to add extra few minutes early in the morning or late in the evening before you begin your normal day’s work.

Once you have ruled out the medical and environmental triggers of humping, you can turn to behavioral fixes for the humping behavior. Since humping is about domination, the primary training should be about making the dog realize you are in charge. This training calms the dog because he will learn to trust you and behave even when you are not around him.

You should pay attention to the period when your dog normally humps his bed and repeat the “Stop” command until your dog stops humping the dog. You may also install the voice command that relays your voice message every hour, especially when you are not with the dog.

Final Thoughts

As mentioned earlier, not all bed-humping behavior should be linked to sexual aggressiveness. Many are born out of environmental and medical causes, while some dogs purely hump the bed out of excitement and happiness. While a thorough investigation into the issue can bring a lasting solution, bed humping is generally not a cause for concern – if you don’t count embarrassment for the owner!

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