This typically translates into a sleeping dragon who has been slumbering from millennia (though he will probably get woken up during the plot's unfolding, and that's probably bad news). Their long (sometimes millennia-long) sleep may be handwaved as dragons being so long-lived that a century-long nap is a reasonable hibernation time for them.
On the other hand, more comedic examples will take full advantage of the comedic potential of these gigantic hellbeasts acting like grouchy old men who never want to go out.
May be based on the Truth in Television that snakes (on whom the earlier European dragons were based) and, indeed, most reptiles, are prone to laying down for hours on end.
Naturally a subtrope of Our Dragons Are Different. Often combined with Orcus on His Throne and All-Powerful Bystander, depending on the power level, intelligence and general monstrosity of dragons in the setting. On the other hand, very rarely related to Dragon Their Feet, despite the names' similarities.
- Magic: The Gathering: The card Slumbering Dragon depicts a dragon curled up and asleep in its lair while two figures sneak past. It enters play unable to attack and can only do so after the opposing player attacks with a creature card they control, symbolizing the dragon only waking up after being attacked first.
- In the My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic fic The Lazy Dragon of Dragonvale, the titular character is lazy even compared to other dragons. He was the last of his clutch to hatch and the last to leave home (and only because his mother got fed up with him loafing around and literally tossed him out), and spends as much time sleeping as he can manage. Rather than pillaging villages, he decides to found a village of his own simply because he was in a nice spot for one and finding a pre-existing village was far too much work. Most of the story revolves around him sleeping in one spot until a problem arises, waking up to deal with it and going back to sleep.
- Teriarch in The Wandering Inn is quite lazy, preferring to contact his sole human friend, Lady Reinhart, through spells rather than actually visiting her. He does offer to fly to Magnolia's manor when he learns she is in danger (she's actually safe, and makes fun of the very idea he'd get out and do something), but retracts it as soon as he learns she's in no imminent peril.
- In Harry Potter, Hogwarts School's Canis Latinicus motto translates as "Never tickle a sleeping dragon", alluding to the idea of long-slumbering dragons who may turn fierce when woken up but are safe otherwise. However, the dragons actually seen in the books later on don't reflect this trope.
- In the second part of Beowulf, the dragon Beowulf had to face is described as having been sleeping on its hoard within its lair, only awakening when a thief snuck inside and stole a goblet from its treasure.
- The Hobbit's Smaug appears to have simply been sitting on his gold for an exceedingly long time until he is enraged by Bilbo stealing from him and goes on a Roaring Rampage of Revenge. This is almost certainly an allusion to Beowulf, where much the same happens, as Tolkien was a scholar of English literature and is know to have studied and translated Beowulf specifically.
- Dungeons & Dragons:
- In 1st Edition Advanced D&D, all dragons encountered inside their lairs had a percentage chance of being discovered while asleep. This ranged from a low of 5% for Bahamut the Platinum Dragon to a high of 60% for a white dragon.
- The Slayer's Guide to Dragons mentions how dragons must sleep for long periods of time, especially as they grow older. The oldest are only awake for fifteen minutes of every day, which means they spend nearly 99% of their time asleep. The book explains that dragons will take long naps to balance out this ratio.
- Played for Black Comedy in Nightmare Ned. In the Attic/Basement level, at one point you come across a dragon head mounted on the wall... but then you see that she's actually just sleeping, and the rest of her body is visible near the wall◊. Despite this grisly introduction, she's actually really friendly. Waking her up will prompt her to tell you poems (albeit somewhat macabre ones) with a cheerful Granny Classic voice.
- In Super Mario Odyssey, the Ruined Dragon can be found after his boss fight lounging in his boss arena and complaining about being tired. Though this is in large part because he spent so much energy in the fight against Mario.
- Slack Wyrm centers around this trope. It features a lazy Villain Protagonist dragon who often takes advantage of the nearby villagers and other characters.
- In Kill Six Billion Demons, the dragon Demiurge Mammon has spent the last few centuries holed up in a vast Treasure Room at the heart of an infinite, extradimensional labyrinth in his fortress of Yre, attended only by the Priests of the Count who run his multiverse-spanning bank.
- My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic: In "Dragonshy", a dragon only poses a passive threat because of the smoke it breathes out while sleeping. It spends most of the episode asleep on its hoard — it's stated it will keep sleeping for a century if left undisturbed — and the biggest reaction it has to the ponies before Rainbow Dash kicks it in the snout is to yawn, stretch and go right back to sleep. Not even quakes on the mountain it nests in are enough to wake it.
- The Tom and Jerry Nutcracker feature film has a sequence where Tom finds himself in a cave inhabited by numerous sleeping dragons (whom he naturally wakes up to disastrous effect).