As a dog owner, it’s hard to ignore how much your canine friend sleeps, but have you ever wondered if they are resting too much? It’s important to understand your dog’s sleeping patterns and how much rest they should be getting, especially when they are very young and as they get older.
How Much Sleep Do They Need?
Generally, a dog sleeps between 12-14 hours every day. Most of this is done during the night when their owners are also sleeping, and some of it is done during the day when their owners are at work. Puppies sleep excessively as they burn up all of their energy running around and causing havoc. Older dogs also tend to sleep a lot, because as they age they slow down. Another factor to consider is the size of your dog, the bigger they are – the more they tend to sleep. If you are concerned about the amount of time your dog sleeps then take them to the vet, as over-resting could be a sign of onset diabetes and some infectious diseases like parvo virus, Lyme disease or rabies.
Getting to Know Their Habits:
Dogs often circle on the spot before nestling down and taking a nap. Like us humans, dogs like to find the right position and level of comfort before they can drift off. Some dogs like to dig at their blanket, rearrange their beds and burrow, which is connected to their pack mentality and psyche. Dogs circle before lying down to mark their territory and burrowing is an instinctive action.
In A Ball, On Their Backs or Sprawled Out:
Experts believe that if your dog sleeps in a ball, that this relates back to pack mentality – curling in a ball is a much safer way for a dog to sleep because it offers them protection from predators. Dogs that sleep no their back with their bellies in the air display signs of being extremely happy in their environments. This level of exposure shows that they feel safe and content. If your dog is sleeping sprawled out, they are probably overheating and are looking for ways to bring their body temperature down – this could mean turning the heating down or opening a window.
Do They Dream?
Some dogs are known to twitch, run and bark in their sleep which could be an indication that they are dreaming. Experts believe that when a dog does this, they are in the REM phase of their sleep pattern – which is a close link to how humans sleep. If you see your dog acting this way whilst asleep then don’t be alarmed, they are probably just dreaming of long walks and big sticks.