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Why Does My Dog Scratch My Bed Sheets?

    “Why does my dog scratch my bed sheets?” is quite a common question to ask if you have a furry friend living with you. Dogs just love to be close to their owners, dig holes, spread their scent all around. What could be better for your pooch than doing all of that in your bed? Maybe taking a nap in that comfy spot he has just fixed up for himself.

    Ok, you may not totally agree with your dog when he does all of that, but you can’t really say he doesn’t have a point. Anyway, this is not the only explanation for why your pooch is scratching the bed sheets. The fact that he loves you and wants to be with you as much as possible is only one of the possible reasons behind this behavior.

    In this article, we will investigate all the possible explanations why your dog is acting this way. It is not always easy to identify the origin of behaviors like scratching the bed sheets, but after reading this post you will have a much better idea. We will also give you some useful suggestions on how to avoid that your dog continues digging holes in your bed (that’s only if you want him to stop).

    Reasons Why Your Dog Is Scratching Your Bed Sheets

    The reasons behind your dog scratching the bed sheets can be various and not easy to recognize. Some of them have to do with pack behavior and instincts, others depend on your dog’s temperament and way of being. Only if you know your pooch well you’ll be able to easily identify why he likes to dig into your sheets. In some cases, it may take some extra time to identify the root cause of this behavior. Below are the main reasons why a dog likes to scratch sheets:

    1. He Wants To Get Comfortable

    Yes, that’s right, your pooch is simply looking for a nice place to get comfy. What is better than your bed for that. It is soft, it has your scent, and it is nice and spacious. To make it even better and get rid of any wrinkles your dog will scratch the sheets before laying down. If your pooch likes to rest on soft things then this could be the reason why he likes your bed so much.

    How To Deal With It

    If you think your pooch is scratching your bed sheets because he likes comfortable spots then you can easily break his habit by buying him a soft dog bed. There are plenty you can choose from but the ones in memory foam are usually the best ones. To get him into the habit of laying on his bed rather than on yours, you can give him a little reward when he goes to the right one. This positive reinforcement will make him understand what you want him to do much quicker.

    2. Territorial Behaviour

    Your dog scratching the sheets might have to do with territorial behavior, rather than looking for a comfortable space. For wolves and dogs that live in packs is very important to identify what territory is theirs and what things are theirs. To do that they leave their scent around by peeing and touching objects. Their paws have glands that leave a unique odor that can be recognized by any other dog passing by. So if your pooch has other territorial behaviors, it is possible that by scratching your sheets he is just claiming his property. He thinks the bed and whatever is on it is his and he wants to give a clear message to all the other household members.

    How To Deal With It

    If you want your pooch to stop this behavior you will need to be quite strict. Anytime you see him getting on the bed you have to tell him firmly to get off. He has to understand that you are the pack leader and that the bed is yours. It can take some time to get your dog to follow your command, but if you are persistent he will eventually understand and do what you are asking him.

    3. He Is Bored

    Another reason why your dog is scratching your bed sheets could be because he feels bored. This can happen if your pooch hasn’t had enough activity during the day and his energy levels are too high. This lack of stimulation can get him over-excited and trigger the urge to destroy things in the house. By scratching the bed sheets he is relieving himself from the stress of not being able to go for a run outside.

    How To Deal With It

    If your dog is scratching your bed sheets because of boredom, the best thing to do is to make him exercise more. By performing this behavior your pooch is trying to tell you that he needs to go out more often. Try taking him for longer walks and make him run as much as possible. This will make him feel more tired and less stressed and he won’t need to attack your sheets anymore.

    4. He Is Feeling Cold

    Your dog could be scratching your bed sheets because he is feeling cold. If you notice that this behavior happens mostly during the winter months then you have your answer. Especially if your pooch is getting older or doesn’t have a lot of fur he might be just looking for a warm place to rest. Dogs in the wild often dig holes in the dirt to get warm and rest themselves. This could be just what your pooch is trying to do with your sheets.

    How To Deal With It

    If your pooch is scratching your sheets because he is feeling cold you should try to make him rest in a part of the house that is warmer. You can also give him a blanket to put in his own bed. Anything that can make him feel warm will be very appreciated by your pooch and will avoid your sheets getting crunched up.

    5. He Wants To Be Rewarded

    If your dog has ever scratched your bed sheets and instead of telling him to get down you laughed, petted him, or gave him a treat, he will think that this behavior is good. Even if having your dog come next to you while you are in bed can be cute it will make him think that it is something you like and for which you might give him a reward.

    How To Deal With It

    If you don’t want your pooch to think that he is entitled to part of your bed and sheets you will have to avoid any positive reinforcements whenever he gets on them. You will have to just tell him firmly to get off the bed and give him a pet or a little treat when he does what you asked him to do.

    6. She Is Expecting Puppies

    The last reason why your dog might be scratching your sheets could be because she is pregnant. When a dog is expecting she will try to find a comfortable and safe spot for the puppies. Scratching the sheets is something she will instinctively do to create a kind of nest. What can be more cozy and safe than your bed for your dog?

    How To Deal With It

    If you prefer that your dog doesn’t do all of this you can try to get her a dog bed that is comfortable and spacious. To make her feel safe during this period you can make her sleep next to your bed. This way she will be able to smell your scent and hear you breathing and this will make her feel much calmer and protected.


    There can be multiple reasons why your dog is scratching your bed sheets. Some depend on how you trained your dog and others have to do with his personality and way of being. If you want your pooch to stop behaving that way there are some efficient techniques that will help you. You just need to be firm and patient with your dog, so that he can understand what you want him to do without getting stressed out.