Why Does My Dog Sleep So Much?
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Is it bad if a dog sleeps too much?
It is normal for dogs to sleep through the night, and many dogs spend much of the day sleeping as well. While humans are used to the idea of sleeping when it's dark, we find it a bit strange how much our dogs sleep during the day. Anyway, why do dogs sleep so much?
Why do dogs sleep so much?
According to experts from the National Sleep Foundation, it is normal for dogs to spend about 50% of their day sleeping. Another 30% of the day is spent "resting", while the dogs are active, about 20% of the day. This is quite normal for carnivores - lions spend 18 hours or more a day sleeping and resting.
Most dogs sleep when there is nothing better to do. Since they don't have smartphones, work, or homework, sleeping is generally the best way to spend long, tedious hours.
How much your dog sleeps will depend on a variety of factors:
- Puppies and older dogs are likely to spend more time sleeping.
- Overweight and sick dogs can also sleep more than healthy dogs.
- Certain breeds are predisposed to getting more sleep (ask someone who has both a lazy Bernese Mountain Dog and a working line Border Collie).
Of course, hours and hours of dozing can also be a sign of a problem. Many age-related illnesses and problems can arise with a change in sleep patterns. Stress and separation anxiety can also manifest themselves in extra repetition during the day.
In most cases, a dog that sleeps 12 or more hours a day is not a cause for concern. That's normal! But owners should be aware that excessive sleepiness can also be a sign of potential problems, and it's best to speak with your vet when you have these concerns.
How to make your dog's day more exciting
Since most dogs do not go to work or school, it is common for them to be bored and alone all day. Combine a long, lonely day with the hours your human sleeps, and that's a lot of time for your dog to spend sleeping every day! If you feel like your dog is sleeping his entire life, consider what else you have to do with his time.
The best way to help your dog stay awake and active during the day is by using puzzle toys. From the super easy ones (rolling treats inside a towel or egg carton) to the high-tech ones (CleverPet), puzzle toys help keep your dog active during the day. Monitoring your dog with a dog camera can help you check if he is playing with puzzle toys or if he is ignoring them.
You can also liven up your dog's day with dog walks at noon and longer sessions of exercise in the morning and evening.
If you notice that your dog is sleeping even when there is something better to do, it might be time to seek help.
When to seek help
It is generally quite normal for your dog to spend most of the day sleeping or resting. That said, sleeping too much can still be a sign of problems with your dog's health.
There are a few tell-tale signs that your dog is sleeping too much:
- Your dog's sleep patterns have changed.
- Your dog sleeps even when there is "something better to do," especially if that thing tends to get his attention.
- Your dog's sleep is interfering with food or drink.
- It is difficult to wake your dog up in the morning.
- Your dog falls asleep suddenly, even in the middle of play (narcolepsy).
- Your dog wakes up suddenly or in a state of fear or stress.
- Increased sleep is accompanied by other physical symptoms, such as:
- Limp or limp
- Unwillingness to walk, run, or jump
- An increase or decrease in feeding, urination, or defecation.
- Increased sleep is accompanied by other behavioral problems, such as:
- Looking at the corners or the walls.
- An increase in aggression or fear.
- Walking, drooling, and other signs of anxiety.
Some of these signs may not be so scary if your dog is aging gracefully, especially if he has always been a bit lazy. But it never hurts to go in and ask the vet.
Your vet will likely have a lot of questions and will need to run some tests. Even if you have a detailed log of your dog's sleep and his other symptoms, identifying the problem can be tricky.
Don't let that put you off. Sleepy dogs can suffer from hypothyroidism, back pain, diabetes, anxiety, or any other serious ailments. Getting a thorough exam from your vet, which may include blood work and other tests, is the only way to know for sure.
Try to keep track of your dog's sleep patterns and other symptoms. Make sure he's at a healthy weight and has plenty to do during the day. If he's still getting an unusual amount of sleep, it might be time to see the vet.
Enjoy The Video Tutorial about Why Do Dogs Sleep SO Much?
Source: Alpha Paw
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