Why do dogs sit on you?(7 Reasons for this Behavior)

Did you ever wonder why do dogs sit on you? Do they still choose to sit on your lap even when there are plenty of other places around the house where they could rest their tired doggy eyes?

Well, we have listed seven common reasons that might explain why dogs love so much to sit on you and what you can do about it should you decide it’s too much for your liking.

1- To Show Dominance

It is possible that your dog would prefer to sit on one’s lap than have someone else sit in their spot because they see you as being very special in the household. It may also be that your dog believes it is showing dominance while sitting on your lap, and they may feel more possessive of you than other pets or family members.

In extreme cases, your dog may bite the person attempting to take them off your lap because why would you be okay with that? Although it isn’t likely to get much better without professional help, this behaviour should be discouraged.

2- To Spread Scent

Dogs use their smelling sense way to mark their territory. Dogs do this by urinating on different parts of the house, objects or people that they consider property. 

You may notice this behaviour more often in the presence of other dogs or if your dog rubs up against you when you reach out to pet him — such as on your lap or when sitting next to you on the sofa – it’s because he’s trying to push his scent onto what he considers his own space through contact with you. A curious behaviour!

3- To Show Affection

Ever wonder why dogs like sitting on people so much? Researchers at the University of Cambridge say it’s a common dog behaviour. It’s done for two different reasons.

  • Some dogs need to keep in contact with their owners
  • Others crave attention.

4-To Start Playtime

Sometimes your dog may sit in your lap to try and initiate some playtime! If you’re sitting down either on the floor or on the grass, your dog may sit on you or wriggle over into your lap. 

This might happen if they want to play a chase or wrestle with you. You can tell that this is why they’re sitting on you.

5-To Comfort You

Dogs have the amazing capacity of expecting human emotions, and they can even interpret peoples’ decisions knowing when people need to be comforted.

Your dog might crawl into your lap if they sense you’re feeling down, but anyone who owns a dog knows that they’ll pick up on this energy more easily and, as such, will offer their attention and warmth accordingly.

Some dogs are trained pets – called therapy dogs! Their owners take them to hospitals or nursing homes to cheer up the residents, but all dogs appear to have an intrinsic desire to make sure their humans are feeling okay.

6-To Feel Safe

You may especially notice that your puppy seeks to sit on your lap when you feel worried or scared. In this case, your puppy is trusting that you will protect them from whatever it is they’re scared of when they sit on you.

 As long as the behaviour of approaching you for comfort doesn’t turn into fear or aggression towards you or others, this behaviour should not be a problem.

7- To Keep You From Getting Up

Your dog may be smart enough to realize how sitting in your lap and looking adorable makes you more likely to sit and pay attention to them rather than go on about your day.

 In this case, you’re essentially teaching them to sit by positively reinforcing the behaviour. Most dogs will not nip or growl at their owners when they finally get up for obvious reasons.


The relationship between humans and dogs is amazing and very precious. They will do just about anything to show their love for us, but sometimes they are so eager to please that they can act out in ways that may seem concerning at first glance. 

One of the behaviours they use to show how much they care is sitting on our lap. There are some reasons why your dog may want to sit on you, one of them being that you’re relaxing on a couch together anyway! 


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