As humans, we know the importance of sleep. There’s nothing worse than having to plow through a day of work or school when you haven’t slept a wink the night before. And since we value our sleep so much, we have developed different strategies for getting as much sleep as we can. Some folks turn on a podcast while others may stick to earplugs. Sleep is important for our canine friends too. So how many hours a day do dogs sleep? And how can you help your dog get the hours of sleep they need? Here’s our dog sleep guide!
Is Sleep Important for Dogs?
Sleep is very important for dogs. Just as it is for humans, sleep is vital for our pups. During the day, electrical activity takes place in their brains. Then data gets stored in random places in the brain. It’s very disorganized. That information gets organized during sleep. Sleep helps your dog with learning, memory and brain development. It also boosts their immune system and pets that don’t get enough sleep are more prone to illness.
Are Dogs Nocturnal or Diurnal?
Any dog owner might guess that dogs are diurnal, meaning they are active during the day and sleep at night. However, this isn’t necessarily true. In fact, dogs are not nocturnal or diurnal. They’re social sleepers and simply take their cues from their owners. When their humans go to sleep, they do. So if you suddenly became nocturnal, your dog might be too.
How Many Hours a Day Do Dogs Sleep?
The average dog should sleep between 10-14 hours per day. The amount of sleep your dog needs will also depend on other factors such as their age. Seniors and puppies generally need much more sleep than adult pooches.
How Can I Get My Dog to Sleep Better?
So maybe you’ve noticed your pup tossing and turning. Or maybe they’ve been constantly waking you up in the middle of the night for playtime. How do you get your dog to sleep better at night? How can you improve their quality of sleep?
If your dog isn’t sleeping well, you might want to look at their lifestyle — specifically their exercise and stress level. Make sure your pooch gets enough exercise during the day, such as playtime and a good walk. You should also stimulate your dog’s brain during the day with fun games or a puzzle. This will keep them awake during the day and prevent naps, so at night they’ll be ready to snooze. After all, if your dog naps all day, they’ll have more energy at night. You also need to restrict activity right before bedtime. You shouldn’t excite your dog with an active game right before bed.
Did those tips not work? Then it’s probably time to talk to your veterinarian. Your dog’s sleep issues might be caused by an underlying medical issue. Your vet can recommend the best course of treatment including medication, supplements, natural remedies or other solutions. Again, sleep is important for dogs so it’s important to treat the problem sooner rather than later.