May 11, 2020

Last summer, we featured a blog about sleeping with our pets. Whether you share your bed with them or not, our furry friends require a lot of sleep, exceeding twice the amount as the average adult. Just like humans, sleep is a necessary part of their everyday lives. With 44% of Americans owning a canine, how much sleep do dogs need?


Sleep amounts

A dog spends about 50% of their day sleeping. How much sleep your dog needs really depends on their age, breed, activity level, and environment. On average, a dog sleeps for about 12 to 14 hours in a 24-hour cycle, with larger breeds and older pups getting roughly 18 hours of shut-eye. Puppies, on the other hand, sleep 18 to 20 hours a day.


How dogs sleep

Like all mammals, your furry friend also goes through different stages of sleep and a Rapid Eye Movement (REM) cycle. The one thing that sets them apart is that while dogs sleep more hours in a day, they are in shorter increments, not all in one night like us humans do.

Just like people, when a dog sleeps, their heart rate drops and their breathing slows. From there, they enter REM sleep and even begin to dream. That’s right, even dogs dream! If you look closely at them while they sleep, you can begin to see their eyes rolling around and they may begin twitching and squirming. This signifies healthy brain activity and is completely normal. Since dogs are natural protectors, they are always on alert and get woken up very easily.


Does my dog need a bedtime?

As humans, we’ve established a routine and generally go to bed around the same time every night. Dogs, however, can sleep anytime, anywhere! Like all animals, you don’t need to worry about setting a bedtime for your canine companion because they will do that for themselves.  


How to improve your dog’s sleep

The quality of sleep your dog gets matters just as much as the amount. To ensure they sleep comfortably, here are some things you can do:

  • Exercise: make sure to provide enough exercise throughout the day as this will help your dog achieve better sleep
  • Diet: it is important that your dog is getting enough nutrition and is eating well and sufficiently
  • Health: keep your canine healthy with routine yearly vet visits
  • Environment: provide a quiet and comfortable place to sleep, whether it be your bed or their own



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