Ever wonder why dogs sleep so much? Sleep significantly improves our brain performance, mood, metabolism, immune function, and disease resistance. Sleep is a necessity for dogs, just as it is for humans.
Giant breeds sleep the most of any dog breed. Newfies, Mastiffs, St. Bernards, and Great Danes are known for their massive size… and their epic naps.
What is your dog currently doing? There’s a good chance he is sleeping unless it is time for dinner. Dogs sleep a lot, as every dog owner is aware.
Dogs sleep so much because it s what their body requires, just like it is with humans. The difference here is that dogs sleep way more than humans.
According to the American Kennel Club, dogs sleep 12 to 14 hours every 24-hour cycle. They sleep 50% of the time, are awake 30% of the time but laze around, and are active 20% of the time.
Dogs require a good night’s sleep to function, recharge, and maintain their health. Your dog is more likely to become ill if they don’t get enough sleep, develops a “bad mood,” becomes confused, or even becomes hostile. Imagine how you would feel after 4 hours of sleep and no coffee.
Table of Contents
Dog Breeds That Sleep the most
- Saint Bernard
- Great Dane
- Bernese Mountain Dog
- Great Pyrenees
- Cocker Spaniel
- Basset Hound
- Chow Chow
- Shih Tzu
- French Bulldog
- Lhasa Apso
- Miniature Pinscher
The Bulldog is renowned for its sound sleep. If you want a loving and devoted companion who is happier in his bed than in the garden or on walks, he will typically spend more time sleeping than awake. In addition to his extraordinary ability to sleep, the Bulldog also deserves special mention for their loud snoring. The Bulldog snores a lot and loudly.
Larger dog breeds typically need more sleep than smaller breeds. Running around takes a lot more effort when you’re a small person, and the Mastiff is a massive breed with massive sleeping needs.
Almost all Mastiff breeds require a lot of sleep, and their wrinkly skin and drooping eyes make them appear tired.
The Greyhound has been described as a couch potato travelling at 40 mph. They can outrun any other breed when a leash does not restrain them. They are nearly impossible to capture.
They are sprinters, not marathon runners, affecting their daily energy levels. When they get home, they plod around, seek affection from their owners, and sleep for several hours daily.
4. Saint Bernard
Another giant breed related to the Mastiff is Saint Bernard. The breed was developed to find and rescue lost travellers in snowy mountains, and they are among the world’s strongest dog breeds, capable of pulling weights several times their body weight.
But it’s difficult to imagine this when you see them at home. They do not get overly excited, but they do sleep a lot.
5. Great Dane
Another massive breed is the Great Dane. Great Danes are the world’s largest dogs. Despite their size, they are known to be exceptionally gentle and affectionate.
Aside from having to lug their weight around all day, the amount of concentration required to avoid hurting people may be what makes them such drowsy dogs. They will sleep a lot and need a lot of space to stretch out.
6. Bernese Mountain Dog
The Bernese Mountain Dog is known for having a lot of energy. This is true whether he is in the field or the mountains. He will work nonstop and appear not to need rest. When he returns home or to the ranch, he will fall asleep and sleep for hours. Give him his daily exercise, and he’ll curl up with you and sleep all day on the couch.
7. Great Pyrenees
The Great Pyrenees is next on our list of dog breeds that sleep a lot. In the case of this breed, they were bred to tend to their flock and protect it from predators. They are calm and quiet while guarding their flock unless a predator appears, in which case he will use all of their energy to fend them off. It’s perhaps not surprising that he can sleep for hours when he gets home.
8. Cocker Spaniel
The Cocker Spaniels are typical Spaniels. They will retrieve and hunt birds and other prey in fields, rivers, and water. They will get muddy and dirty and love every minute of it. By the time they get home, they will have expended all of their energy, which means they are ready to lie in front of the fire, sleep, and prepare for another day of hard work.
9. Basset Hound
Another breed well-known for its ability to sleep is the Basset Hound. They appear to be able to sleep for hours on end, get up for a short walk, and then return to their extensive sleeping pattern. This is especially true if your Basset enjoys long walks and his working habits of getting out and hunting.
10. Chow Chow
Many owners find the Chow Chow to be a difficult breed. There is no doubt that this breed enjoys sleeping, but if you are looking for a dog to sleep on you, you should look elsewhere. Because Chow Chows prefer undisturbed naps, they will not appreciate you interfering with this alone time.
11. Shih Tzu
The Shih Tzu is the next on this list of nappers. Excess sleep is not just a trait of the giant breeds. One of the best examples of a small breed that can sleep most of the day is the Shih Tzu. As a full-grown adult, he is likely to sleep over 12 hours daily. The Shih Tzu could be your ideal dog if you want one for 50% of your life.
12. French Bulldog
The French Bulldog is more famous for being wild and crazy. When you first meet them, they’d most likely be full of energy and charge around to show it. However, once they get used to you, they’ll see you as more of a pillow than a toy, so be prepared for some serious snoozing.
13. Lhasa Apso
Another friendly breed that enjoys nothing more than a good nap is the Lhasa Apso. They will enjoy playing with you and going for walks, but once they become tired of the excitement, they will most likely fall asleep in their space or even yours.
In many ways, the Pug resembles the French Bulldog. They are both of similar size and share a desire to meet new people. Every time you come home from work, school, or simply nipping to another room, he’ll act like he’s never met you. He will, however, sleep for hours after he has recovered from the excitement.
15. Miniature Pinscher
Although the Miniature Pinscher is a breed that is more commonly associated with high energy, he is also an accomplished napper. Allow them to play for a while, and a few minutes later, they’ll be more than happy to cuddle up next to you and take a restful nap.
Your dog’s sleep requirements are influenced by some variables, some of which are listed below.
Sleep and Life Stages
As dog age, their sleep requirements change. The most sleep is needed by puppies, old dogs, and sick dogs. Large dog breeds like Mastiffs and Newfoundlands need more sleep than most dog breeds.
Puppies: It makes sense that they need the most sleep. Puppies have a lot to learn, and dogs learn while they sleep. They need 18 to 20 hours of daily sleep to accommodate their developing bodies and brains.
Even while they are playing, your puppy might flop over to take a nap. However, once they are a year old, they will start to sleep like adult dogs.
Adults: Adult dogs “appear” to sleep the majority of the day, but their actual sleeping patterns are 50% sleep (done mostly at night), 30% drowsy, lazing around (one eye is always on you, right? ), and 20% active.
Only about three hours of the day will be spent sleeping; the rest will relax and lounge.
Older dogs will sleep more during the daytime to replenish their energy and remain alert when humans are around. Even ageing humans need more sleep because ageing causes our bodies to slow down.
Dogs are considered polyphasic sleepers because they doze intermittently throughout the day. Anywhere and at any time, they can sleep. Humans are monophasic sleepers because we sleep continuously at night for 7-9 hours.
Rapid eye movement (REM) and non-REM sleep cycles are both enjoyed by both species (deep sleep). Dogs only sleep for 45 minutes at a time in short cycles. They will alternate between REM and non-REM sleep twice, each cycle lasting about six minutes.
Our sleep cycles last between 70 and 120 minutes, and we repeatedly alternate between the REM and non-REM stages. Our REM cycles will lengthen throughout the night unless that annoying alarm wakes us up.
All dogs sleep to learn. That brand-new trick you showed Mr Tappytoes? He is reviewing it in his dreams and will soon have it down perfectly!
Additionally, muscles and tissues are growing and repairing during this time. Sleep enables an active or working dog to go all day long while waking up alert and prepared.
What Can Affect Your Dog’s sleep?
Depending on age, temperament, breed, health, and activity level, your dog may sleep longer or be restless. Some of the reasons that may affect your dog’s sleep include the following:
Breed: Giant breeds need more sleep than smaller breeds due to their size. Good examples include Newfoundlands, Mastiffs, Elkhounds, and St. Bernards.
Age: Older or sickly adult dogs and puppies sleep more, with puppies dozing off in the most absurd positions.
Exercise: Active dogs, while sleeping, tend to have longer, deeper sleep cycles. An interesting fact about where dogs sleep is that indoor-sleeping dogs sleep for 80% of the night, compared to outdoor-sleeping dogs, who only sleep for 60% to 70% of the night.
Environment: Dogs who are at home sleep more soundly. It must be because being away from home is similar to what it is for us—a strange environment with many strange sounds.
When Is sleep Too Much for a dog?
The main sign to watch for is a significant change in your dog’s sleeping patterns. It’s a good idea to consult your veterinarian if your normally active dog suddenly starts dozing or your sleepyhead is always awake.
According to the AKC, excessive sleeping in dogs has been connected to illnesses like canine depression, diabetes, and hypothyroidism. So it makes sense to investigate any unusual changes in sleep to see if there is an underlying cause.
Do Dogs Have Sleep Disorders?
The sleeping patterns of dogs can also be very poor. Like us, they are susceptible to sleep disorders, which can harm your dog’s health. The most typical are listed here:
Narcolepsy: Your dog may have narcolepsy if it frequently falls asleep on its own throughout the day. If you think this might be the issue, talk to your veterinarian when you take your pet in for a checkup. Doberman Pinschers and Labrador Retrievers are the breeds of dogs most likely to develop this.
Brachycephalic breeds, such as Bulldogs and Pekinese, are most susceptible to developing sleep apnea. During sleep, their narrower upper airways prevent breathing. Consult your veterinarian about ways to help your dog sleep better if they snore loudly or have irregular breathing.
Hypothyroidism: This condition develops when the thyroid gland in your dog doesn’t function properly, slowing your dog’s metabolism. This induces sleep in your dog, which is unquestionably a cause to visit your veterinarian and examine the thyroid.
Cognitive Aging: An older dog’s declining mental abilities will cause sleep cycles to be disrupted. Your dog might occasionally lose track of housetraining, feel anxious, or become disoriented. Your veterinarian is an excellent resource for managing the signs of canine dementia and enhancing sleeping habits.
Lack of sleep can cause dogs to become aggressive, anxious, and stressed. Maintaining your dog’s happy, boisterous personality will be easier if you ensure it gets plenty of downtime.
When to Get Help?
Other behavioural issues like focusing on walls or corners come with more sleep. Your veterinarian will probably have many inquiries and might need to perform some tests. Even if you have a thorough log of your dog’s sleep patterns and other symptoms, it might be challenging to pinpoint the issue.
Drowsy dogs may have an ache or pain, endocrine conditions like hypothyroidism or hyperadrenocorticism, anxiety, or other serious illnesses. The only way to be sure is to have your dog undergo a thorough examination from your veterinarian, which may include blood work and other tests.