How Can My Dog Sleep All Day?!

I have always been amazed at how after a night of sleep I wake up to start my day and our dog is staring at me blankly, not knowing what to do with himself, and just waiting for me to crate him. Sometimes he actually goes into the crate on his own. From there is snoozes for a couple of extra hours. How could he be so tired at 7:00 in the morning after a nights rest? My first theory was that he must be awake at night patrolling the house because that is something he does during the daytime as well, but after some research I realized that it is a normal behavior for dogs to sleep so much. 

It is normal for dogs to spend a good part of their life sleeping because that’s how they’re genetically designed. The time to worry is when your dog isn’t sleeping as much as he used to. Changes in sleeping patterns can indicate a problem such as a health issue or stress.


All dogs sleep a lot, some more than others. In fact, depending on the breed, your dog might sleep up to 18 hours a day. According to Pet Place, larger breeds sleep more. On average, a dog sleeps about 12 hours or so. Dogs don’t sleep the way we do. Instead, they take a lot of short naps. This helps them recharge their energy quickly, so they can be ready to get up and go again.


Wild dogs tend to be very active at night, often hunting in the darkness. Domestic dogs have adapted to their humans’ schedules, though, and they might snooze the night away as long as they have a comfortable place for it, complete with a comfy bed and also a room at an appropriate temperature.


Just like humans, dogs experience REM (rapid eye movement) sleep cycles. These are the deepest sleep cycles, necessary for the brain to process information. Since dogs sleep for short periods only, they need to sleep often in order to get enough REM sleep and be able to keep their brains in top working condition. While it takes humans 90 minutes to reach REM, dogs will reach REM in about 15 minutes, according to Perfect Puppy Care. This means they can wake and go back to sleep and be back in that vital REM sleep quickly. If you’ve ever seen your dog making weird sleeping noises or kicking his legs, you’ve seen REM sleep.


While tons of napping is common, your dog should not be asleep all the time. In between naps, he should be active and moving around. If you think Doggie is sleeping too much, he might be suffering from depression or a medical condition and need to take a visit to the vet. Some medications also cause sleepiness. Old dogs also sleep more, as do newborn puppies.

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