What Should You Do If You See A Deer Laying Down And What Does It Mean?

Aashita Dhingra
Oct 13, 2023 By Aashita Dhingra
Originally Published on Dec 24, 2021
Every animal that belongs to the wild lays down

A deer lies down for many reasons, and most of the time, it is because it is in its bedding period!

A large number of people actually do not know that a deer goes through a period of bedding. Deer bedding is when deer lay down to get some rest for a period of approximately 30 minutes and also chew cud at the same time.

Deer sleep and rest almost anywhere and you may have often seen one in such a position. There is a wide range of reasons why deer show this behavior.

They look for spots in a forest that they like and they'll keep coming back to them frequently.

If you own a yard and find deer often laying in your garden, it is probably because they have found a perfect spot in your yard where they love lying down for the purpose of either sleeping, resting, and eating!

Deers love feeding on vegetation like grass and small plants irrespective of whether it is a male deer (buck) or a female deer (doe). If your yard has these things in it, they will come here to eat and return back to their bedding location.

They may spend more time in your yard once they find out that the food supply is adequate too! At times, they can also live here because deer might not feel happy with the distance between the food source and their bedding area as deer like to stay close to their food sources!

This shows that there is a strong relationship between a deer's feeding area and bedding area.

Is it normal for deer to lay down?

Every animal that belongs to the wild lays down. The reasons they lay down may vary and differ from animal to animal but in most cases, it is because they are getting ready to get some rest or sleep!

All animals need food and there is not any animal that can go without food. Similarly, deer find areas that are safe so that they can graze in comfort instead of being under the threat of a predator.

Once they feel like a spot gives them a sense of security, they will begin using it as a resting or sleeping area too.

It may seem strange to you but deer are prey animals and as a result, live under constant threat. Forests have dangerous animals living in them too, so deer may wander off into suburban areas and you might find some into your yard too as it looks safe!

The size of your yard, the kind of plants that are grown in it, and the safety it provides deer are all factors that could potentially attract deer to your garden! Even when they lay down, they are aware of their surroundings and can tell if a predator is within close range or not!

Some deer can lie down so still, without making a move, that they may appear dead but will suddenly sprint away if you try getting close to them.

As well as open yards, deer also like to lay down in open spaces like an open field near forests as they find these spaces give them a sense of security and they feel safe from becoming prey to deadly predators.

Also, being in the open provides them with the opportunity to know if a wild predator is approaching so that can make a run for it when needed.

When they are lying down, they are not entirely in a state of relaxation and they do not fully put their guard down. When a deer assumes a lying down position, it looks like it is sleeping but this isn't the case!

Deer have the capability to sleep standing up or lying down, so it does not make a difference.

Deer also place themselves in a position that is similar to the direction of the wind to know if there is any danger behind. These biological features keep them safe.

A female deer or doe may also lay down on the ground or on grass so that giving birth to her young is easier. If a doe finds out that the area is secure and safe from any dangerous threats, she'll return for other birthing seasons.

Females spend quite some time in this spot to feed and nurse their young as the area may also be a food source.

This makes it easy instead of going out in search of food. In general, deer are known for sleeping during the day, specifically in the early afternoon to late evening.

They are most active just before the night sets in. This is a major reason why some deer that wander into suburban areas and highways end up losing their lives because they get hit by cars.

What should you do if you see a deer laying down?

When you see a deer laying down, it is best to call animal control or a wildlife helpline within your area to ensure that the right authorities take the animal and relocate it to a more suitable environment. Do not approach the deer if you are unsure of what to do as this will only frighten or scare it.

If it is a young deer or a fawn, leave it where it is as the mother may be nearby and will return to her young one. There is another important factor to keep in mind when you see a deer laying down near your house.

Deer are huge carriers of black-legged ticks because these insects prefer a deer's blood.

This tick is widely responsible for spreading a disease called Lyme disease in people and other wild animals too. If infected, it can remain for life so this disease can be quite fatal if not treated immediately.

If a deer finds a location or an area that provides it with security and food, it will choose this spot to lie down and sleep. A deer is more likely to come back to their spot day after day and night after night!

Yards meet all these three needs and as a result, many people will have seen deer in their yards at some point. If lots of deer are constantly entering into your yard, the best way to keep them away is by growing plants that can ward them off.

Keep deer-attracting plants away from your house. You could also try building a high-rise fence around your yard which will ensure that deer do not enter.

Does a deer sleep during the day or night?

Deer are animals that tend to sleep during the day rather than at night. It is usually at night when they are most active.

They use darkness to move, acting as a cover from being hunted by potential predators. This does not mean that they do not sleep at night at all.

Some deer sleep at night but only as a means of conserving their energy. They are also not heavy sleepers as self-protection is their biggest concern and they'll try every method possible to keep themselves and their young ones safe from the dangers lurking in their environment.

A deer can be aggressive or dangerous when its sleeping or resting, so it it best if you do not try to approach one. They are known to sleep either by laying down or even by standing up!

They have also been observed to sleep with their eyes open or half-open! Since they are still in tune with the elements in their surroundings, this provides them with increased chances of survival considering the fact that they are prey animals and are under constant threat.

Wildlife experts claim that there are unique nasal glands that lubricate the noses of these animals. This helps them to detect any harmful animals around them.

Should you let deer sleep in your yard?

If your yard has tall grass, plants, vegetation, it will be inviting and appealing for deer to enter and bed.

Yards typically have spots that deer feel that will provide food, safety, and sleeping requirements. If you find a deer being a constant visitor in your yard, this is probably because the deer feels comfortable and safe.

If you notice a deer laying down or sleeping in your yard often, it is best to avoid going near it as this will only agitate it.

You can inform your local animal care helpline or any other wildlife care group. They will come and remove the animal from your premises and relocate it to a more suitable one!

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Written by Aashita Dhingra

Bachelors in Business Administration

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Aashita DhingraBachelors in Business Administration

Based in Lucknow, India, Aashita is a skilled content creator with experience crafting study guides for high school-aged kids. Her education includes a degree in Business Administration from St. Mary's Convent Inter College, which she leverages to bring a unique perspective to her work. Aashita's passion for writing and education is evident in her ability to craft engaging content.

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