In accordance with evolutionary history, sleep is common in dogs. On average, these canines can spend about half a day sleeping. Ideally, Sleep is of vital importance for dogs; there are usually no underlying conditions related to it. However, Sleep latency differs in different breeds and is mostly influenced by dogs’ personalities. While excessive slumber in dogs, as usual, there may be some situations where an overly exhausted dog poses as a sign of potential health complication.
Possible Reasons why your dog Sleeping Pattern has Changed
It is not bizarre for dogs to sleep most of the time throughout the day. A good number of breeds are known to sleep for about 14 hours a day or even more. On the other hand, hours of sleep can also be a cause of the alarm and might be a sign of potential issues. Here are various reasons that expose your pets to a change in sleeping patterns.
Boredom can lead to behavioral changes in your fur baby. Most behavioral changes that result from boredom are destructive behaviors. Your dog might decide to tear your shoes or cushions. After such energy-draining activities, your dog might retreat to the corner and take a nap.
Sometimes, your dog may act listless and lie on the floor, looking depressed from the never-ending boredom. For this reason, dog owners are encouraged to take their pets out more and have engaging activities with them.
- Age and Breed
Each breed has different sleeping patterns, some species are predisposed to specific sleeping habits, and others are not. And as they age, they become even more relaxed and continuously inactive. Active and working dogs spend more time awake doing different tasks. On the other hand, home bred pets will spend most of their time dozing off.
Long hours of sleep in dogs are also associated with breed type. Some pets just enjoy over-indulging in sleep, and it is nothing to be alarmed about.
- Added Weight
Hormones generally run your pup’s body; they play an immense role in controlling sleep, fat storage, and other factors. Hormonal imbalance can lead to serious weight gain in your fur baby. That said, an overweight dog is easy to spot. They have zero tolerance for exercise and sleep every chance they get.
Weight gain is associated with an unhealthy lifestyle. Lack of exercise and unhealthy nutrition contribute largely; thus, you are encouraged to enroll your pet in an exercise program. You are also expected to slow your pup’s intake of sugary foods that might have high calories.
Mental health is not just limited to humans, similar to us; dogs occasionally suffer from sessions of depression. While depression in humans is more complex compared to dogs, it is apparent that they undoubtedly experience bouts of depression. It is relatively easy to spot a depressed dog; they are prone to withdrawing themselves and sleep most of the time. Older dogs sleep fewer hours compared to puppies, so if you notice them adapt the sleep pattern of puppies, then there is a possibility your dog is going through some problem.
Depression in dogs is sometimes linked to other underlying health conditions, but the primary cause of depression is associated with loss of another companion animal or owner. As a pet owner, you are advised to check any mood changes and before ruling out any treatment, contact your veterinarians.
Dogs are hard to read; most of the time, they suffer in silence because they are not able to express themselves. Sure sometimes there’s limping and whimpering but, every now and then, your dog might sleep it off. There are two types of pain your dog may encounter; Chronic or acute pain. Some underlying severe conditions like arthritis and urinary tract infection might be the primary cause. That is why pet owners are advised to contact veterinarians before administering any treatment.
Dogs sleep more and eat less when in pain; they are trying to avoid vigorous movement for fast healing. They assume a lying position with their front legs on the ground and stretch themselves out flat on the floor. It is imperative to note that some breeds are very snappy when in pain. They prefer to stay alone to fasten healing. They will try to hide or protect the hurting part.
Narcolepsy is a chronic sleep disorder that attacks the nervous system in both humans and dogs. The condition is relatively rare, but it is common in 17 breeds because these breeds have some striking similarity with humans. This condition is triggered by excessive daytime sleep and lack of energy. It is characterized by episodes of muscle paralysis and loss of consciousness. While it is not something to be worried about, it could lead to some long-term effects in the future like hallucination and sleep paralysis.
Narcolepsy is a congenital condition that is linked with mutation and has no cure. There’s however, an anti-cataleptic medication that can help manage symptoms. The disease is not life-threatening; however, owners of dogs that are predisposed to this condition are advised to learn a thing or two about the condition.
When to Seek Medical attention
When their withdrawal and sleep patterns are accompanied by other symptoms like vomit diarrhea, it could indicate additional underlying severe health conditions.
Hyperactivity in dogs can also be a cause of worry. Extra energy is not something to worry about; however, it can also be a signal for an immediate health check-up. It is also an indication that your pet is not comfortable, and they are trying to convey the message to you by acting hyper. It could be anything from fever to stomach upset. You are therefore advised to contact your vet if things get any worse.
It is essential to note that humans sleep pattern differs from dogs, and it is comparatively acceptable for your fur baby to sleep throughout the day. The length of your dog’s sleep cycle should not be a matter of concern; however, changes in sleep patterns to long hours of sleep can also be a potential health predicament. You are therefore encouraged to monitor your dog for any changes to establish if there is any connection to a possible medical condition.