Why Do Cavaliers Sleep on Your Head? Is This Real Love?

Zack Keithy, our author, is a certified veterinarian technician (UC Blue Ash) for over 6 years (contact him here). The articles written here are based on his expertise and experience, combined with a review by our expert vet reviewers including Dr M. Tarantino. Learn more about us here.

Cavalier King Charles Spaniels have got to be some of the cutest dog breeds out there, and there’s no wonder why they are consistently ranked top 10 for most popular dogs.

Their endearing personalities and love for cuddles make them the perfect companion for those who want a loyal and affectionate pet.

But why do Cavaliers sleep on your head?

The reasons why Cavaliers sleep on your head range from them showing their personalities, being protective, and just being outright comfortable in that spot. This behavior is mostly harmless, but if accompanied by undesirable actions, may require you to make some changes.

In this post, I will show you the 12 most likely reasons why your Cavalier King Charles Spaniel wants to sleep on your head, and if you should do anything about it.

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Dear Dog Owner

12 Reasons Why Cavaliers Sleep On Your Head

Reasons Why Cavaliers Sleep On Your Head

Have you ever wondered why your furry companion, the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel, loves to curl up and snooze on top of your head?  

This adorable habit has several reasons, from seeking warmth and comfort to displaying affection and trust. 

So, the next time your pup wants to catch some z’s on your head, take it as a sign of one of the following!

1. Protecting You

Some Cavaliers have a strong instinct to protect their owners, and by sleeping on your head, they are symbolically keeping a watchful eye over you.

2. Love For The Pillow

Your faithful furry companion snoozing on your pillow might seem silly, but it’s just their way of showing love for your soft and cozy cushion! 

Like us, dogs love a good nap on a comfy pillow, and your pooch is no exception.

If you let your four-legged friend sleep by your side but don’t provide their own cushion or bed, they’ll naturally gravitate towards yours. 

And why wouldn’t they? Your pillow is just so soft and irresistible!

Plus, your dog is probably copying your sleeping habits. After all, if you’re both snoozing on the same bed, why not share the same pillow too?

3. Loyalty

Sleeping on your head is possibly a display of loyalty and devotion. Your Cavalier sees you as their leader and always wants to be close to you.

4. Affection And Love For You

Your Cavalier loves you and wants to be close to you. Sleeping on your head is a way for them to show their affection and love and feel close to you.

5. Cold Weather

Your furry friend snuggling next to your head during chilly nights is its way of keeping warm. 

The warmth radiating from your body provides a cozy sleeping experience for your pup. 

And if it can’t snuggle under your blankets, your head becomes the closest source of warmth. So, it becomes the perfect spot for your loyal companion to curl up and catch some Zs.

6. Way To Bond With You

By sleeping on your head, your Cavalier is bonding with you and forming a closer relationship. 

This breed is known for its friendly and affectionate nature, and this behavior helps strengthen the bond between you and your pup.

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Doggy says, you might be keen to read this too: Why do chihuahuas sleep so much?

7. Comfortable

Your Cavalier may find your head a comfortable spot to sleep. It may have a familiar scent, be soft and plush, or provide comfort, giving them peace when sleeping.

8. Asserting Dominance

It could signify that they believe they’re the top dog in the pack! Sleeping on or by your head is their way of saying, “I’m in charge here.”

To see if this is true for your pup, look at their behavior during the day. Do they love to lead the pack on walks? 

Do they sometimes show signs of aggression towards you, like headbutting you hard? If so, they may be trying to assert their dominance over you.

But don’t worry; with some training and lots of love, you can help your pup understand that you’re the one in charge. 

After all, who wouldn’t want to be the alpha of such a cute and cuddly pack? I know I wouldn’t mind!

9. Separation Anxiety

Separation anxiety is a doggone bummer for our furry friends! 

When your dog is left alone for long periods without enough playtime and snuggles, it can feel lonely and restless, causing your Cavalier to not sleep at night.

If this is the case for your pet, they may sleep on your head to feel close to you and alleviate their anxiety.

This can result in the dog feeling bored, lonely, and disconnected, leading to various symptoms, including: 

  • Self-isolation
  • Irritable and abnormal behavior, such as excessive barking or chewing
  • Changes in eating habits
  • Incontinence
  • Gastrointestinal problems like upset stomach or diarrhea. 

It’s important to recognize these signs and work with a vet or professional dog behaviorist to address separation anxiety and provide your Cavalier with the necessary care it needs.

10. Still A Young Puppy

Getting a puppy can be a joyous experience, but it can also be a big adjustment for you and your furry friend. 

Before living with you, your puppy spent lots of time snuggled up with their mom and siblings. So, when you become their new pack, it’s only natural for them to want to be close to you at bedtime.

Young puppies often have different sleeping habits and may not fully develop the habits they will have as adults. 

While it might be tempting to let your little furball snooze on your bed, it’s important to remember that puppies are still learning to control their bladder and bowel movements. 

Keeping them in their cozy bed is best until they can handle things better.

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11. Trained Behavior 

Your reaction to finding your furry friend snuggled up next to your head can make all the difference in shaping their behavior. 

Showering them with treats or picking them up can reinforce the behavior and encourage them to do it again in hopes of more goodies.

But shouting or using force won’t solve the problem either. These negative methods can actually make the situation worse and encourage bad behavior.

Instead, try to redirect their behavior with positive reinforcement, like offering them a comfy bed of their own and showering them with love and affection. 

That way, you’ll have a happy and well-behaved pup snoozing by your side every night!

12. Medical Condition

Although this may be unlikely, if your Cavalier suddenly starts sleeping on your head, it may signify a medical condition, such as pain, discomfort, or Syringomyelia.

Syringomyelia can alter a dog’s behavior, including its sleeping habits.

This can cause pain, discomfort, and other neurological symptoms, including changes in sleep patterns. 

To alleviate their discomfort, dogs with Syringomyelia may start sleeping in unusual positions, such as on their owner’s head. 

Suppose you suspect that your Cavalier has Syringomyelia or any other medical condition. In that case, it’s essential to consult your local vet for a proper diagnosis and treatment plan.

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Is It Bad If Your Cavalier Sleeps On Your Head?

Well, it depends on the individual’s perspective! 

I personally feel like the chosen one when my pup decides to come to snuggle me, but others might find it uncomfortable and inconvenient. 

Regarding your dog’s well-being, as long as you both are comfortable and the sleeping arrangement doesn’t interfere with your sleep, it shouldn’t be a problem. 

Just remember to give your pup a cozy bed of its own, too!

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How To Create Healthy Sleeping Boundaries With Your Dog?

A good night’s sleep is essential for everyone, and having your dog sleep soundly and comfortably can benefit both of you. 

By setting clear sleeping boundaries, you’ll ensure that your dog feels secure and loved while giving yourself the space you need to get a good night’s rest.

  • Establish a designated sleeping area for your dog, such as a bed or crate.
  • Gradually train your dog to sleep in its own area by using positive reinforcement techniques and making the designated area comfortable and inviting.
  • Avoid allowing your dog to sleep on your bed or couch, as this reinforces the dog’s belief that it is acceptable.
  • Limit the time your dog spends in bed with you. Gradually decrease the amount of time over several weeks.
  • Set clear boundaries with your dog and consistently enforce them. Only let the dog into your bed or couch if it is specifically invited.
  • Seek professional help if your dog is exhibiting separation anxiety or other behavioral issues impacting its sleep habits.

Remember, setting healthy sleeping boundaries with your dog is not about denying your furry friend affection but rather about setting healthy and beneficial boundaries for you and your dog.

Why Do Cavaliers Lay On Your Face?

Doggy says, you might like this too: Why are Chihuahuas so clingy?

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Why Do Cavaliers Lay On Your Face?

Cavaliers may lay on your face as a sign of affection and trust, seeking comfort and security. They may also try to warm themselves, seek attention, or establish dominance. Establishing healthy sleeping boundaries with your dog to maintain personal space and comfort is essential.

Do Cavalier King Charles Spaniels Like To Cuddle?

Yes, Cavalier King Charles Spaniels are known to be affectionate and enjoy cuddling with their owners. They have loving and friendly personalities, which makes them great companions. Cuddling also helps strengthen the bond between a Cavalier and its owner.

Are Cavaliers Clingy?

Yes, Cavaliers are known for being affectionate and clingy dogs. They enjoy spending time with their owners and like to be close to them, often following them around the house. 

In Conclusion: Why Do Cavaliers Sleep on Your Head?

According to me, it’s pure love when my dogs sleep close to me, and I don’t resist them.

However, for good discipline, I tend to put them back in their bed to spend the rest of the night, and they love it there too!

What about you? How will you handle this?

Check out other dog behavior articles on our blog such as why is my cavalier peeing in the house, why is my dog in heat having accidents, do cavaliers like to swim, and many more!

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Zack Keithy
Zack Keithy

Hey, I'm Zack, the Chief Editor here. I was formerly a Certified Veterinary Technician (CVT) for a good 6 years before moving on to greener pastures. Right now, I am still heavily involved in dog parenting duties, and it is my desire to share all our knowledge with fellow dog owners out there! Connect with me on LinkedIn, or read more about Canine Care Central!

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