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Does it ever feel like every time you look at your dog, he's sleeping?  How much do dogs sleep? The short answer: it depends. Unlike humans, who typically are awake for 10-12 hours or more straight, then sleep for 8 or so hours at night, dogs don’t have such a regular pattern. They typically take a series of short naps throughout the day.

Research confirms what pretty much every dog owner knows: dogs dream when they sleep, just like people do. I can attest that my dog Dusty, has a very active dream life. He runs, woofs, wiggles, and eats while asleep.



Many of our Bostons snore and snort as they move all four legs charging through their dreams. Some of them come out of their naps only to go potty, eat, IMG 7109drink play full tilt with each other and suddenly they are all back asleep for another nap.  Research estimates that dogs spend as little as 10% of their sleeping time in REM sleep, the active sleep stage where dreaming occurs. Because dogs sleep in shorter bursts than humans it is thought that dogs may need more sleep.




Getting an idea of how much sleep is a normal amount for your pet will allow you to better notice any changes in his sleep patterns.

Once you total it all up, dogs typically sleep anywhere from 12 to 18 hours a day. The "normal" amount of sleep for a dog varies greatly, but certain factors predict if a dog will be at the higher or lower end of that range.  Just about now I could do with a nap... But it is time to let the dogs outside. [Yawn].


These factors include: Age

Puppies tend to sleep more than adults do. Their batteries have shorter BABEL 6110charges, so they wake up bouncy, run around until they're exhausted, then fall asleep to recharge.

Senior dog tend to sleep more as well. As they age, it takes more effort for them to do the things that came easily in their younger years. Much like puppies, they need to recharge their batteries more often. Activity Level

Active dogs sleep less than inactive dogs do. Part of this is they tend to have more energy and are doing things for a greater percentage of the day than inactive dogs are. Working dogs, like service dogs and search and rescue dogs, are working for more of the day and sleep less.
Less active dogs, such as companion pets and dogs who are home alone during the day, are likely to sleep more out of boredom. 

 Poor Diet Low quality diets slow down your dog in two ways. First, they don't provide your dog enough BabeScooter 3897of the right nutrients to give your dog the energy he needs to be more active. This leads to a lethargic dog. Secondly, poor quality foods contain fillers and ingredients that are difficult to digest. Think about how you feel after a big meal: you just want to sleep because your body is diverting your energy towards your digestive system. It has a lot of work to do. Likewise, when your dog's food contains ingredients that are tough to digest, your dog's body has to spend more energy digesting and less energy playing. 

Size  Many giant breed dogs, like Saint Bernards and Newfoundlands, tend to sleep more than smaller dogs, sometimes as much as 18 hours a day. This is why those breeds make excellent apartment dogs: their energy level is low enough that they do well in small spaces so long as they get daily exercise.


It's a good idea to get a sense for how much sleep is normal for your dog.

That way, if you notice a sudden change in his sleeping habits, you'll know something is going on. A change in sleeping habits may be as a result of a change in diet, needing more exercise, a change in life cycle, or something wrong internally.

If you notice a sudden change, take a look at what may be causing it and call your vet if needed.How much do dogs sleep? It varies greatly, anywhere from 12 to 18 hours a day. It will vary based on your dog's size, energy level, and age. 

  Dogs who have a lot to do generally sleep less.

A dog who's cooped up in a crate or stuck inside a house or apartment for long hours will sleep a lot more than a working dog, such as a farm dog or a police dog. Sometimes, a dog will sleep simply because he's bored.

jake3 2011



Is this a problem that you are having to deal with?

What do you suggest?

Here is some ideas that we came across. But we are looking for more ideas.

Providing an environment that includes plenty of activity or places to explore will cut down on the amount of time your pooch spends sleeping during the day. If your dog is accustomed to sleeping in a crate, kennel, or other small space he or she may have a hard time sleeping in an open room.


Some dogs get a big energy push right after eating, so if you feed your dog late at night, she may be too energetic to get to sleep. Try feeding her earlier, and be sure to let her relieve herself before bedtime.

Puppies may miss the noise and warmth of a litter.


Dogs are creatures of habit-- a change of sleeping situation may be the problem. If something stressful to the dog has recently happened, perhaps this needs to be addressed and a clock that makes a rhythmic ticking sound. Put these articles under a cushion or a blanket where your dog sleeps! It should work like magic. You can also put the clock next to your dog. However you could also try putting a radio on softly.

 And here’s one I always suspected. Dogs who lie back to back are bonding with one another. When they lie with their back resting on you, they are bonding with you. This contact shows a desire to be with the other dog or human. It’s a way of showing affection.



It will help if you offer a good bout of exercise just about 1 hour before bedtime.  If you do this too close to the time that you wish to go to sleep, it can actually cause them to have more energy and be “rev’d up”.  Therefore, about 1 hour before you wish to call it a day, bring them for a brisk walk, play fetch or do any other activity that will stimulate them for approximately 20 minutes.



Now, it will be time to relax. Lights all over the home should be dimmed. TV’s and any other devices that make noise should be lowered.  While no one needs to whisper, voices should be calm and on a quieter level.
Then, one should give the command word “Sleep”.  Do keep in mind that no dog will simply go to sleep on command…However saying this word will help your Boston learn that when the word is said, play time is done, a walk is not expected, no one will be grooming him or her...And a Boston  will learn that their human family members are about to lie down on their beds and activity will pause for a while.