Why Is My Dog Sleeping All The Time?
If you are a new pet parent and are wondering, “why is my do sleeping all the time?” you are not alone. Dogs spend most of their time sleeping both during the day and at night. For new dog owners, their sleeping patterns and habits can be baffling. It’s like every time you look up from whatever you are doing; you find your dog curled up in a corner catching a snooze.
So, is it normal for dogs to sleep so much, or should your dog be in the Guinness book of records as the laziest dog ever? How much sleep should a dog get in a day, and at what point should you get concerned? Let us read and find out.
How Much Sleep Should a Dog Get in a Day?
Dogs spend approximately 50% of their day sleeping, 30% resting, and only 20% being active. The above percentages translate to 12-14 hours of naps and sleep per 24-hour cycle. While for human beings, 14hours is oversleeping; it is normal for dogs. Some dogs can even sleep for up to 18-20 hours per day. Sleep is essential for dogs because it gives their bodies a chance to repair itself.
Why Do Dogs Sleep All The Time?
All dogs sleep a lot, but some more than others. Several factors influence a dog’s sleep pattern. If you often wonder, “why is my dog sleeping all the time?” here are some reasons why.
Puppies and senior dogs need even more sleep than the average dog. They can sleep for up to 20 hours per 24-hour cycle. When puppies are active, they play a lot and get exhausted; hence need the downtime to recover. They also need to sleep so that their body energy is diverted to growth.
Older dogs, just like senior human citizens, are mostly just tired. Older dogs could also be suffering from age-related conditions like arthritis hence the need to rest often.
Larger dog breeds tend to sleep more than average size or smaller dog breeds. They also age faster, so the extra napping could be credited to the age factor. Some breeds like the English Bulldog and Greyhounds are predisposed to sleeping longer. They can sleep for up to 18 hours per day.
One theory put forward as to why dogs sleep a lot has to do with their domestication. Most dogs are often not as driven as their cousins in the wild, with no need to hunt for food.
Also, most pet families leave their dogs alone while going to work and or school, so the dogs tend to get bored. With all the time in the world and nothing to do, I bet you would sleep too. Active dogs like the police or working dogs spend less time sleeping. If you are still wondering “why my dog is sleeping all the time?” there are other reasons for nurturing and the environment.
Why is My Dog Sleeping More Than Usual?
- Change in the environment: Changes like moving to a new place, switching up activities, or even losing a loved one can cause the dog a bit of stress. Their coping mechanism to change is sleeping.
- Diet: If your dog is not properly hydrated, it may cause them to sleep more.
- Weather: Dogs generally sleep more in hot sunny weather climate.
Each dog reacts differently to changes in their environment. If you feel they have been affected by any changes, give them some time to adjust and plenty of love. If all the above makes sense, you are still wondering, “why is my dog sleeping all the time” then there might be a problem.
Medical Reasons Why your Dog May Be Sleeping So Much
When a dog suddenly exceeds the 12-14-hour range of sleep for no reason, you should probably be concerned. Dogs, just like humans, are prone to serious health issues.
In such cases, dogs may sleep more to cope with the pain or simply because their bodies are weak. Some of these conditions include:
Hypothyroidism is a thyroxine deficiency that significantly reduces the chemical processes related to metabolism in the dog’s body. It often leads to systemic complications. Older dogs are more prone to hypothyroidism, but it can occur among dogs of any age.
Just like humans, dogs can also get both types I and type II diabetes.
- Bacterial and viral infections
Bacterial and viral infections like leptospirosis, parvovirus, and kennel cough, can interfere with the dog’s bodily functions causing it to be weak.
Bloodsucking parasites in dogs, like tapeworms and roundworms, can cause anemia. Peculiarities in your dog’s sleeping pattern and behavior can indicate that they are unwell.
Tell-tale Signs That Your Dog is Sleeping Too Much
You should probably get concerned if the following changes in behavior accompany the changes in your dog’s sleep pattern.
- If the sudden increase in sleep is accompanied by increased inactivity, your dog may suddenly spend more time staring at the walls.
- If the need to sleep causes your dog to ignore the activities, it normally enjoyed or looked forward too. For example, your dog may suddenly stop coming to meet you at the door when you get home.
- If the excessive sleeping interferes with your dog’s feeding schedule
- If the excessive sleeping is accompanied by frequent urination
- If the excessive sleeping is accompanied by behavioral changes like aggression or pacing about
“Why is my dog sleeping all the time?” by now, you should have a working theory. If the symptoms suggest underlying health issues, please visit the vet immediately.
The correct diagnosis, medication, and care will go a long way in restoring your dog’s sleep pattern.
While 12-14 hours of sleep per day may seem excessive to humans, it is just the right amount of sleep for dogs. Physiological and environmental factors may cause dogs to sleep for up to 18 hours. Dog schedules with activities like dog walks give your dog structure. Remember, dogs have personalities too, so do not use comparison as a basis for establishing whether your dog is sleeping too much.
Always be observant and make a note of any changes in your dog’s behavior or sleep pattern. If you cannot get to the root of any change or your gut tells you something is wrong, go to the vet immediately. Now that you have the answer to “why is my dog sleeping all the time?” you can stop fretting about it and just enjoy having your dog around.