Many dogs have instinctual hangovers from past centuries, when they weren’t nearly as domesticated as they are today. One of those behaviors is the circling of sleeping areas, which is something that might baffle you or make you laugh.
According to Live Science, however, it’s an instinct left over from ancient dogs who lived in the wild and who had to make their own beds, as well as ward off predators like snakes and other animals that may have been lurking in unseen areas. Circling around an area would also to convey to other dogs that a territory had been claimed, Leslie Irvine, a sociologist at the University of Colorado explained. “Even though our dogs now sleep on cushions, the behavior endures,” she told the publication.