While cats are known for their love of sleep, our canine friends also love to sleep as well. You may have noticed that your puppy sleeps more than usual, and it can be pretty concerning to think about what this could mean.
It’s likely nothing serious if your pup is healthy and happy. It will most likely sleep more than usual for a short time before regaining normal sleeping habits.
In this article, we will go over some of the most common reasons why puppies sleep so much, as well as the possible medical concerns associated with those different reasons.
Dog owners may be startled to notice a sudden change in their pet’s sleeping habits. Puppies go through periods of rapid growth, particularly between three and six months.
Puppies sleep more than usual because growing takes a lot of energy. That leaves extra tired dogs at night.
In the late teen stage, between six months and one year, puppies will have nearly tripled their birth weight. That means there are tons of nutrients going into your puppy every day to fuel his development.
In adulthood, dogs continue developing well past one year old, although it slows down significantly at this point. If you have a puppy or older dog who seems to be sleeping more, you don’t have to worry about it being lazy. It is simply working on growing up.
How Many Hours Do Puppies Sleep?
Typically, your puppies sleep as much as 18-20 hours per day, but that’s split between nighttime sleep and naps. If your puppy seems to have slowed down on their napping, they are most likely sleeping that extra time at night, which is okay.
Some puppies have jam-packed days. They may be very active and play hard all day long, or they may have a lot of energy that can only be soothed by staying up at night.
If your dog is busy playing all day long, they will bite off more than they can chew and be exhausted come nighttime.
While it is natural for puppies to sleep a lot, some possible health concerns can cause this. There may not always be an answer, and sometimes these puppies will grow out of their current sleeping habits.
If you notice your dog has trouble breathing or seems congested, then it may be due to an obstruction in its airway that needs medical attention. Often, these obstructions become secondary infections because dogs get sick, and their immune systems get weaker.
That means your dog may need antibiotics along with any surgery to remove the blockage in the airway so your pup can breathe freely again.
Dogs can have a condition called sleep apnea. This condition causes dogs to stop breathing for some time during their sleep. This is an unfortunate condition, but there are treatments for it.
Narcolepsy is a very serious sleep disorder that mainly affects younger dogs. Dogs with narcolepsy will often fall asleep when they stand, lie down, or even in the middle of a meal.
Cushing’s Disease and Addison’s disease
Medical conditions like Cushing’s disease and Addison’s disease often cause dogs to sleep more than usual and become lethargic.
Cushing’s disease symptoms include:
- Excessive thirst
- Weight gain despite a low-calorie diet
- Hair loss
Addison’s disease symptoms include:
- An increased heart rate
Both diseases are treatable as long as you seek help in time. Monitor your dog carefully if it is sleeping more than usual with the above symptoms.
Some behavioral issues can cause dogs to sleep more than usual, like depression from separation anxiety. If your pup had a previous owner, it could have such anxiety due to missing them.
But don’t panic yet! Many common problems like this can be resolved with some TLC and medical attention if necessary. Don’t let excessive sleeping scare you into thinking there is something wrong with your dog.
While these are some common issues associated with dogs who seem to sleep more than usual, there are other possible explanations.
For example, many puppies mellow out during adolescence, leading them to want to cuddle up next to you on the couch instead of chasing toys all day long.
If this is the case, there is nothing wrong with your pup. It’s just part of its natural development. Individual dogs may sleep more than usual because they feel safe and comfortable next to their family.
Dogs bred to herd usually have much shorter life spans. These dogs are constantly moving around and pushing themselves. So, if you have one of these pups who seem to sleep all day long, there’s nothing wrong with your dog.
It’s also important to note that you should never wake up a sleeping dog if he is in a deep sleep. If your dog is having trouble waking up, you can always help him out by calling his name or lightly shaking his shoulder but remember to be gentle; dogs are sensitive animals.
Dogs often get more sleepy when it is hot outside. Intense heat may cause dogs to become more lethargic and sleep more extended periods.
On the other hand, many dogs become more active when the weather is cold outside. If it is colder outside, they will most likely spend more time awake because their body temperature is higher than any other animal around them.
In conclusion, your pup may be sleeping more than usual for various reasons. This doesn’t necessarily mean there is something wrong with it or that you are doing anything wrong as a dog owner. Always take your dog to the vet if it has trouble breathing or seems sluggish for an extended period.