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How Much Sleep Do Dogs Need Each Day?

By on February 14, 2018

There are always recommendations about how much a baby, adolescent, adult, or senior human being should sleep. Many of us fall short of the recommended amount and, as those sleepyheads can tell you, effects can definitely be harmful. Whether it throws off diet, prevents us from exercising, or just makes us less-than-one-hundred-percent, a lack of sleep is a problem.

But what about your dog? How much sleep does she need to stay in optimal physical, mental, and emotional shape?

Brian Morgan, an editor and dog lover from Southern California and the Web site Dog Bed Zone has some great information to share in this guest post to Pets in Omaha. Read his story below and let us know about your dog’s sleep on our Facebook page!

How Much Sleep Do Dogs Need Each Day?

As a pet parent, you will be required to assume a handful of responsibilities to ensure that your pet is happy and healthy. The good news is that a dog’s needs are pretty basic. In fact, they need many of the same things as you. They’ll require a sufficient amount of sleep, a comfortable bed, plenty of exercise, and a healthy diet. So, how much sleep do dogs really need? This is a question that is not easily answered. Nevertheless, it will be explored in more depth here.

Depends On Numerous Factors

First and foremost, you should understand that there is no universal answer here. The specific amount of sleep a dog needs will depend on numerous factors, including the dog’s breed and age. Suffice to say, some dogs will require less sleep than others. Size and activity level can also play a role in determining how much sleep is required. It is believed that dogs always require more sleep than humans.

The Average

While there is no definite answer to the question of amount of sleep needed, there are some averages that you can depend on. Typically, most adult dogs will sleep approximately fourteen hours a day. Bigger breeds, older dogs and puppies can sleep anywhere from 18 to 20 hours each night. You shouldn’t be too frightened if your pooch doesn’t get the exact amount of sleep. Since there are so many factors at play, it is completely normally for any dog to get more or less than the average on any given day.

Back Or Belly Sleepers

It is also important to understand that each dog will like to sleep differently. Some prefer sleeping on their back, while others sleep on their stomach. There is nothing wrong with either. In the wild, dogs tend to sleep on their stomach, because they wish to protect their bellies from possible attacks. In your home, it will be common to see your dog sleeping on his or her back. This generally means that they’re incredibly comfortable and feel completely safe around you and your family.

What Could Cause My Dog To Sleep Too Much?

Does it seem like your dog is sleeping entirely too much? If so, you might just be paranoid, but there could be a problem at hand. There are numerous reasons for dogs to sleep too frequently. Environmental factors, such as too much light or sound, can impact a dog’s sleep and cause them to sleep more of less. Simultaneously, the dog’s diet is vitally important. A low-quality diet might not provide your dog with the proper nutrients that they need. In return, they may feel lethargic and sleep a tad bit longer.

If your dog is ill or has recently had surgery, there is also a good chance that they’ll sleep more. Always keep an eye on your pooch. If you notice too much sleeping with a loss of weight, change in appetite, or coordination issues, you should definitely take your pooch to the vet. There is a possibility that something may be wrong.

 

All in all, as a dog owner, you’ll be able to gauge whether your pup is getting the right amount of sleep after a short period of time. Use your judgement, observe, feed her a healthy diet, and make sure she’s exercsing. Her body will tell her what’s needed and you should o whatever you can to give your pup what’s required.

photo credit: Lincoln Animal Ambassadors

About Eric Forrest

Eric is a pet lover, bookworm and dad. He's had 5 family dogs, 4 cats, a cottontail rabbit he nursed back to health, and two ducks. Cats are his preference, but Eric loves all little critters.

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