HOW DO DOGS SLEEP SO QUICKLY?
By now it should be obvious to you that your dog likes to sleep. They fall asleep on any surface and just about anywhere imaginable. Sometimes, you just have to wonder what is going on in their head when they are asleep. Are they dreaming of something, why is he or she twitching in sleep? etc.
We will address all these questions but first, let’s address the main question.
HOW DO DOGS SLEEP SO QUICKLY?
The reason why your dog sleeps quickly is because they live an extremely boring life. This may come as a surprise to many people, but our dog’s life is not full of excitement and adventure as many would imagine it.
You see dogs don’t have jobs, homework, goals in life, etc. They have so much time on their hand that they actually laze around all day, some more than the other. The National Sleep Foundation states that dogs spend not less than fifty percent of their time sleeping every day, the other fifty percent is further split thirty percent just lazing about and twenty percent being active. So you can say your dog only spends a fifth of his daily life fully awake, that’s about four hours daily being fully awake.
HOW MUCH DO DOGS SLEEP?
Going into specifics
1. Puppies tend to sleep more than any group of dogs combined. An average puppy can sleep up to twenty hours. The reason for this simply being that developing well takes a lot of energy, similar to that of a growing human child.
2. Larger dogs are more disposed to sleep for a longer period of time than their smaller counterpart. The reason simply being that smaller dogs need to build up less energy than larger dogs need to function.
3. Working dogs are naturally known to sleep less than non-working dogs. The reason for this being their natural way of life needs them to be involved in some form of mental task to be fulfilled.
4. Older dogs or as we like to refer to them, senior citizens are known to sleep for a longer period of time, nearly but not quite getting to the rate at which puppies sleep. The reason for this is simple, as they age their body functions are not performing at their peak as they used to during the youthful age, so they spend a lot of time trying to build up and recuperate the lost energy for their daily functions. Unfortunately, this is the natural progression of any living thing.
5. Sick dogs and dogs with severe health like ones with weight problems, joint problems, etc. tend to spend a lot of time sleeping. In fact, sleeping too much is one of the symptoms of a health problem
THINGS TO LOOK OUT FOR.
a. Your dog prefers to sleep even when there is something more important to do. For example, is it time to eat? Is it time for their daily walk or exercise? etc.
b. Your dog suddenly falls asleep in the middle of a play or exercise session.
c. Your dog’s normal sleep pattern changes. For example, you find that he is more active in the nighttime than daytime, but before this, he was more active in the daytime.
d. Your dog suddenly jumps up while sleeping.
e. You find it harder to wake up your dog (usually dogs are supposed to be light sleepers)
f. There is a general change in your dog’s physical state. For example limping, sudden increase or decrease in urination and defecation, excess drolling, aggression, staring at walls, etc.
Now some of these things may occur for older dogs but as with everything, there is no harm in being sure, understand where your dog’s health status is important as, without that, you cannot properly take care of your dog.
MAKING YOUR DOG’S DAY MORE REWARDING
As we have already mentioned, our dog’s daily life is boring. The best we can do for them is to fill these periods with exciting activities for them. Our dogs would quickly adjust their routine to fit ours if they are going to get attention from us, in fact, there is a likelihood that your dog is already doing that now hoping that you give them the needed attention.
i. Provide them with toys to engage them when you are not around, puzzle toys are usually good for dogs who like mental activities, Rawhides, and chew toys, and good for one that wants to ease teething pains and exercise their teeth.
Just be sure to choose the toys that fit your dog’s character and personality
ii. Schedule daily walks and plan daily exercise routines for your dog. Whether you do this yourself or you hire someone to do it, your dog will be appreciative of the fact that he or she is able to explore their surrounding, understand, and feel safe in the system you have created.
iii. Create time for yourself and your dog. Your dog wants to bond with you more than anything you can provide. Create an environment in which your dog would feel part of, whether it is time to play with you and the family or just time to sit still and enjoy the quiet moment.
Whatever it is, the main thing is to do something with your dog that makes them feel part of the family.
WHY DO DOGS WAKE UP SO EASILY?
The simple answer to this question is that dogs are very light sleepers, even though they sleep very quickly, their sleep cycles are very short.
To explain more, dogs go through different stages when they sleep, their sleep cycles are like that of human beings, the only difference is that while a single sleep cycle is enough for a human being and lasts a longer period (seven to nine hours), Dogs have shorter sleep cycles. This cycle is repeated over and over again for the twelve to fourteen hours of their sleep.
A dog sleep cycle is like this, their breathing rate slows down at the beginning and in about ten minutes they enter deep sleep, the next stage is spent in a dream state and they wake suddenly, in a high breathing rate, beginning another five to ten minutes of a slow descent into sleep again.
Learn more about dog sleep here WHY DOES MY DOG WHIMPER IN HIS SLEEP?
Basically, even though your dog is asleep, most of the time in the same period, they are also awake.
HELPING YOUR DOG TO SLEEP BETTER.
Since our dog’s sleep cycles are short, the least we can do is to make their sleep worthwhile for them. Follow these steps to make sure your dog gets the best out of its sleep.
i. Provide a comfortable spot for your dog to sleep. This can be a place in the house that is private to your dog. You can provide a dog bed for him or her in that spot with toys and other things that will make the place comfortable for your dog. The aim is for your dog to understand that this place belongs to them only.
ii. Exercise your dog properly when he or she is awake, if possible play with them during this period too. The aim is to satiate their physical needs so that when it is time to rest, they would be tired enough to rest properly.
iii. Feed your dog properly, make sure they get the water and nutrients they need for their body to function properly. You can even discuss with your vet doctor on dog supplements that you can give your dog together with the proper dog food to get the best out of your dog.
iv. Make sure to keep your regular vet appointments for your dog. Being up to date on your dog’s health status and being proactive about it is the only way to keep your dog healthy and strong.
BASIC DOG SLEEPING POSITIONS
Basically, there are three positions our dogs love to sleep in:
1. Curled into a circle
Dogs usually sleep like this when they are new to the environment. It is an indication that they are yet to feel comfortable in this environment, maybe you just moved into a new home or you just adopted your dog.
Most dogs that are in abusive relationships usually sleep in this way. It allows them to quickly react to any attack that may come their way.
Finally, your dog may curl up simply because he or she is feeling cold, in this situation, there is no need to read some extra meaning into the position.
2. Sleeping on their side with legs stretched out.
This is the most common dog sleeping position, it shows the dog is comfortable in the environment but still ready to spring into action if there is any sign of threat in the vicinity.
3. Sleeping on their back with all paws raised up.
This is the utmost submission state, a dogs belly is the most vulnerable part of their body, exposing this part like this and sleeping is a dogs way of saying he or she believes the place is totally safe and even if there is any danger, you are more than capable of dealing with the situation without any input from him.
For those that sleep with their dogs, learn more about dog sleeping positions here WHY DOES MY DOG LIKE TO SLEEP UNDER THE COVERS?
Our dogs sleeping quickly is just a function of their way of life. You can say this is the way nature has designed them. That is the same reason why they also wake up easily making our dog’s natural guards for us. The least we can do for them is to make them comfortable with us whether they are asleep or awake.
Hi, I am Charles Nwankwo Editor-in-Chief, Mydoggything.com. Gleaning from Professional Dog Trainers, behaviorist, Registered Veterinarians, and Breeders. We are passionate about making dog care easy for you. My job is to make sure that you get the best-updated dog care information to understand and take care of your dog or dogs.