How many hours do dogs sleep a day?
Generally speaking, adult dogs require between 12-14 hours a day (24 hour period).
This may seem a lot, but this is a total figure and accounts for their nighttime sleep, as well as their day snoozes.
Puppies require more sleep, which can be anything up to 20 hours. Older dogs will generally require more sleep too.
Let’s explore the dog sleepy time world a little further. We’ll cover how many hours do dogs sleep a day, do they dream, when it’s time to talk to the vet and everything else you wanted to know.
Do dogs sleep all night?
In a calm environment, yes. A dog is very likely to spend the whole night sleeping – because you are generally sleeping as well.
However, dogs are light sleepers. If they are out all night in the backyard, squirrels and other critters may wake them up.
The same goes if they spend their time inside but share their home with cats or other pets.
In essence, the stimulus is the most important factor. It has less to do with the Sun or Moon being in the sky. but with other disruptions that can mess with their sleep.
How many hours of sleep do dogs need in a day?
Adult dogs need at least 12 hours of sleep, while young puppies (under 12 weeks) will need at least 18. It’s perfectly fine if it all consists of naps.
If your puppy is not getting enough sleep, it can actually be bad for them (just like it is unhealthy for you). A few reasons the lack of sleep happens are lack of exercise and/or stress.
It’s okay if it’s an odd day here and there, but if it’s a long-term issue it can lead to the weakening of their immune system along with other health risks.
When a dog starts sleeping less than usual, try getting them to be more active. Go for long walks and simply play more.
Any type of activity is good since it will tire them out. Exercise is also a fantastic way to manage stress.
However, if this stress comes from the change in their environment, a bit of cuddling and reassurance may do the trick. For almost all dogs, as long as their owner is present and happy, everything is more likely to be okay with them.
Obviously, if they still aren’t getting enough sleep and the problem persists, consult your vet for further advice.
Do dogs dream?
Yes, they do. We don’t know exactly what their dreams consist of, mostly because they are not willing to talk about them. Yet.
Joking aside, quite a few researchers have looked into this topic.
What we do know is that dogs experience the REM (rapid eye movement) phase. It makes for about 10% of all of the dog’s sleep.
But the part that is not yet conclusive is if this type of sleep is as important for the well-being of dogs as it is with humans.
Humans that “lose” their REM sleep have a high risk of developing several health issues, like memory problems, depression, diabetes, cardiovascular diseases, obesity, etc. But dogs? We just don’t know yet.
To be on the safe side, avoid disturbing them when they are munching on something or chasing someone in their sleep.
You can film it and share it online, though – the world would be thankful for it. Just do it quietly so you don’t wake them up.
My personal opinion is that they absolutely do. I have witnessed all our family dogs twitching and making funny noises while they are fast asleep. If they aren’t dreaming, then god only knows what is going on!
How many hours do senior dogs sleep?
Senior dogs may need more sleep than other adult dogs, maybe as much as small puppies. We’re talking anything between 15 and 18 hours each day.
This mostly has to do with stress. Their senses weaken as they age, and quite a few dogs become blind or deaf when they get old.
This makes it difficult for them to navigate the world, which in turn causes them stress and anxiety.
It’s super important to pay attention to their favorite napping spots at this age. A puppy can conk out anywhere, but an older dog will need some sense of routine and familiarity.
Make sure that their spot is always supplied with doggie beds, pillows, blankets, etc, and is always nice and comfy.
Also, make some space in the areas of your home you spend the most time in – wherever you are is the safest and most comfortable place they can be.
However, also make sure that you are keeping up with all your doctor’s appointments. We’ll talk a bit further on about what can it mean if your dog sleeps too much.
Since senior dogs are not as playful as young pups, it’s a bit difficult to tell if there is a cause for concern. If possible, keep a sleep journal and bring up any changes on your next visit to the clinic.
Where should dogs sleep at night?
If you ask your puppy, it’s in the bed with you. Possibly between you and your partner (if you have one) so they can get snuggles from both sides.
However, it may be wise to train them to use a proper dog bed. There are actually quite a few good reasons for it, both beneficial and practical.
Let’s return for a second to us discussing your puppy’s sleep patterns: they are most likely to get a full night’s sleep if there are no outside disturbances. Guess what? You are a type of disturbance.
If you move a lot during the night, every single one of those movements will affect your pup’s sleep. The night is when they are most likely to get their REM sleep in, so it’s better not to mess with that.
The other thing is that a dog bed can become a source of familiarity and comfort.
If you end up moving, travelling, or your dog needs to go to a puppy hotel or stay at the vet’s overnight, having their bed in this foreign place will help them cope with that stress.
And in the end, dogs love mud, puddles, and rolling in anything and everything. Do you really want all those things in your bed? Didn’t think so…
Why does my dog sleep all day?
There are a lot of reasons why your dog sleeps all the time. The simplest answer… They were awake when you were out. It just happens that you only get to see them playing Sleeping Beauty.
Both activity and inactivity may lead to change in sleeping habits. Obviously, a dog that is completely exhausted will need some shut-eye.
Breeds that were meant to be guide dogs will exhaust themselves by keeping a watchful eye on your surroundings. But the same goes for the dog that didn’t get their fair share of walks and playtime.
Just like you may end up simply taking a nap when you’re bored, your dog does it as well. You get a pass if it’s particularly rainy outside or a tornado is passing by your house.
But, if the puppy sleeps a lot due to boredom (since you don’t take them out enough), their health may be at risk.
Your first go-to move whenever something seems wrong should be to try playing and exercising them more. Not only can this often fix quite a few issues, but it can also tell you if it’s time to get the vet involved.
If they don’t want to play, something bigger could be happening and it’s time for some expert opinion.
These are issues that you will not be able to deal with by yourself. We are talking about potential anaemia, infection, poisoning, diabetes, or hypothyroidism. It could equally be something less severe though, so don’t panic.
Also, if your dog needs to take medication for another issue, sleep could be a side-effect. Be mindful of this.
In any case, as a general rule, remember that too much sleep plus lethargy (often plus lack of appetite) -equals a trip to the vet.
However, if they still enjoy their favorite snacks and wag their tail when you pick up the leash, everything could well be fine.
Maybe make that walk a bit longer than usual!!!
How many hours does a dog sleep in a 24-hour period?
As mentioned above, a dog will usually get their daily sleep from series of naps in the day, as well as their main sleep at night.
It’s perfectly normal for an adult dog to get up to 14 hours of sleep each 24-hour period. Puppies may need up to 20 hours easily.
Their total sleep time usually consists of a combination of nighttime sleep and multiple daytime naps. A dog is far more likely to squeeze in all of their beauty sleep while you’re out the house or when you are sleeping as well.
Also, the breed matters. The larger the dog, the more Z’s they’ll generally require, although this isn’t a hard and fast rule.
Big dogs are truly mellower than small ones!
To wrap it up, it’s fine if your dog sleeps a lot during the day. It’s also fine if they have an odd day when they don’t.
What you have to pay attention to are other signs like their appetite and do they get excited about walks and playtime.
You should only worry when the change in sleep pattern combines with a refusal to eat or play – or when the change lasts for more than a couple of days.
Also, keep an eye on any shift in sleeping patterns if your dog has a preexisting condition.
Other than that, while they’re awake – show them affection when they’re stressed, ensure they eat/drink properly and give them adequate exercise to tire them out.
When asleep – leave them to enjoy. They’re probably dreaming of chasing rabbits, eating pasta on a date – or getting into the biscuit tin.
As always, if you ever have any concerns, contact your vet asap for guidance.