Why do dogs sleep so much?

+91 votes
asked Mar 11, 2015 in Pets & Animals by Ramyond (1,490 points)
My dog Duke is a yellow lab. He’s my first dog, and he is currently a year and a half in age. I stay home with him all day and I’ve noticed that he spends most of his time sleeping and never goes outside without me. Is this normal behavior? When I took him home from the humane society, he was up to date with his shots and I was assured that he was completely healthy. My friends who gave him to me took him to the vet, where he was examined and again declared to be healthy.

Is his behavior normal? He’s generally happy, and his appetite is fine. I’ve had cats in the past and they sleep most of the day, but I’m new to being a dog owner so I’m not sure if this much sleep is typical. The temperature is climbing outside, so that could be related.

I hate to sound naïve, but I would like to hear your thoughts. Thank you.

3 Answers

+29 votes
answered Mar 14, 2015 by Kharisma (730 points)
Dogs tend to use their energy in large bursts and spend the rest of their time resting. Your dog is most likely fine, unless he seems constantly exhausted and unresponsive. If that is the case, you should consider taking him back to the vet for further testing and a second look. Otherwise, you could help your dog be more active by taking him with you when you go out, or spending time playing with him. Stay fun and energetic, and try not to worry, it sounds like your dog is healthy and content.
+6 votes
answered Mar 13, 2015 by Sedra (520 points)

Why do dogs sleep so much? This is because that is how they are physically predisposed. In fact, it would be more worrisome if your dog started spending more time awake.

This may be hard to believe, but an adult dog can sleep as much as 12 hours a day. This varies by breed, but larger dog breeds tend to need more sleep. You’ll also find that younger dogs need more naps through out the day, and can sleep for up to 16 hours. Although dogs sleep more than humans do, it is not continuous sleep. They tend to wake frequently.

These figures vary based on other factors. For instance, a dog with an active lifestyle will need more sleep than one who lounges around the house all day. Additionally, if the dog is alone all day in an empty house, he might sleep just to pass the time.

Reference: https://dogshealth.com/blog/why-dogs-sleep-so-much/

+1 vote
answered Mar 19, 2015 by Drena (510 points)
Dogs often get tired. Small dogs are especially prone to exhaustion because of their stature. A small dog takes smaller strides and any distance they move will take more energy than a large dog. Additionally, dogs are usually up at night, but they stay quiet and patiently wait for you to wake up.
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