Why Do Pit Bulls Like to Sleep Under Blankets?

If you own a pit bull, you’ve probably witnessed the sometimes-hilarious habit of burrowing up underneath the blankets, especially at bedtime.

Some pit bulls will even sleep under a blanket every night, whether it’s hot or cold outside.

But why do these dogs love sleeping under blankets so much?

We don’t have all the answers, but there are several reasons that can explain these dogs’ affinity for a soft, warm place to cuddle.

1. They Are Natural Burrowers

Pit bulls have terrier heritage, and terriers have long been hunting dogs.

They were historically used to burrow around their property in order to get rid of small critters that may pose a threat to their owners or their farms.

This may help explain why pit bulls will burrow into a blanket when given the opportunity – they are acting instinctually.

They may be carrying out an innate behavior that ends up being adorable.

By carrying out instinctual behavior, your dog is just showing that he is exactly that – a dog.

Doing so may help him to get out excess energy and even sleep better at night as a result.

They may also feel satisfied that they are doing some sort of job.

Dogs have long been human companions and they enjoy having something to do for us, even if it isn’t really for us.

2. Anxiety Relief

Some dogs, including pit bulls, suffer from anxiety. Getting under the covers may help them to feel safe and secure.

They are pack animals and naturally want to sleep with their family.

When a litter of puppies is born, they naturally sleep in a pile on top of each other, so it makes sense that they want to sleep in closed groups as they age.

When they get under the covers, especially next to you, they may be exhibiting even more instinctual behavior that helps them to feel comfortable enough to fall asleep at night.

If you feel that your dog’s anxiety is at an unhealthy level, however, always make sure to see a vet.

3. Protection

Along the same lines as seeking relief from anxiety, dogs generally feel the need to be protected when they go to sleep.

This is another instinctual trait that was developed to keep them safe from predators and inclement weather.

This practice, known as denning, is very common in terriers, and pit bulls share the trait.

It explains why some dogs like to sleep in their crates at night and why others may opt for the blankets.

Blankets or towels create a closed, compact environment that emulates the protected spaces that dogs would naturally dig out for themselves in the wild.

4. Warmth

Even though pit bulls have fur, they can get cold just like we can.

If you’re feeling cold enough to snuggle under the blankets, there’s a good chance that your dog is too!

Not everything is necessarily an instinctual behavior, and they may just be using the blanket for its intended purpose.

If you’ve kept them warm by wrapping them up before, it’s likely that they’ll remember it and decide to jump under the covers on those cold and blustery nights.

5. Peace and Quiet

Just like humans, dogs need to have some peace and quiet in order to get a good night’s sleep!

In fact, they may need it even more than us as they have highly sensitive ears that can hear sounds from almost a quarter-mile away.

The coverage provided by the blankets may help to drown out some of the outside noises, allowing your pit bull to rest more comfortably and with fewer distractions.

6. They Are Scared

In some cases, a dog may hear a loud noise outside that startles or scares them, such as fireworks or thunder.

It is their natural instinct to seek shelter from these potentially harmful items, so they will run under the covers for protection.

This helps them to feel safe and calm them down from the stress they are feeling caused by the loud noises.

pit bull and boy sleeping on the couch with boy's left leg on dog's neck

7. They Want To Be With You!

Pit bulls are compassionate, loving dogs who are very loyal to their owners.
Their desire to sleep under the covers could very well stem from their adoration of you!
They see you getting under the sheets every night and they simply want to do what you are doing.

They like to have their family by their side, and what better place for that than under the covers?

They cherish their companionship with their owners, so it’s no surprise that they want to share the blankets with you. 

Just don’t let them get too greedy and take all of the covers!

Should You Let Your Pit Bull Sleep Under the Blankets?

The answer to this question is dependent on both your feelings and the dog.

Of course, if your dog was just rolling around in the wet mud, it probably isn’t encouraged to let him under the covers!

However, if he is clean and it doesn’t bother you, it’s perfectly fine to let him sleep under blankets.

He is just carrying out his natural instincts and this will allow him to get better sleep.

However, you don’t want to coddle him too much and have him thinking that he owns the entire bed!

If you think your dog is suffering from excessive anxiety, you may have a different case.

It might be beneficial to talk to a vet and try to find the root cause of the anxiety.

The dog may be getting relief when he gets under the covers, but this isn’t helping to get rid of the cause of the anxiety in the first place.

It may be as simple as needing more exercise during the day.

You may have to go through training to help your dog become less anxious, and this might include keeping him out of the blankets or at least reducing the amount of time he spends there.

If you don’t like having your dog in the bed but he seems adamant about sleeping under blankets, you can always designate an old blanket to keep on his bed or in his crate.

This allows you to sleep peacefully while emulating the natural environment that your dog wants to sleep in.

This keeps both of you comfortable while allowing your dog to get a healthy amount of sleep so that he’s ready to play tomorrow!

If your pit bull has breathing issues, it is important to take care when letting him sleep under the blankets.

Dogs will generally be able to get themselves out if they feel that they aren’t getting enough oxygen, but you can never be too safe.

You can stick to smaller, lighter blankets if your pit bull wants the comfort provided by sleeping under the blankets.

This will let more air in and make it easier for him to get out if he needs to.

Conclusion:

There are many reasons, both instinctual and learned, that a pit bull may love sleeping under the blankets.

They might not necessarily apply to your dog, but there is still much research to be done on the subject before we can draw any real conclusions.

We do know that there are connections to instinctual behaviors and burrowing in the blankets, so it makes sense that pit bulls often sleep under the covers, especially considering their terrier ancestry.

Whether you let your dog sleep in your bed is up to you, but if he does like to burrow, you can get small, light blankets that will work perfectly with his bed or crate.

There is nothing wrong with a pit bull sleeping under a blanket, and it makes for an incredibly cute moment when they burrow in!

So go ahead and let your dog enjoy himself, and get some great pictures and videos in the process!

Pablo About The Author: Pablo created dogbreedsfaq.com because of his interest in all the different breeds, and his desire to learn more. His inspiration comes from the many dogs he has owned throughout his life.