When you’ve just added a new canine member to the family, it can be challenging to know what they need right away. You’ll probably have to experiment when it comes to toys, playtime, eating, and walking routines. When it comes to sleep, it’s hard to know just what each dog needs. Some puppies seem like they sleep all day, while others hardly get any shut-eye at all. If you’re concerned about your pup’s sleep schedule and are wondering if you should let your dog sleep all day, read on for more information.

Why Do I Need to Worry About My Dog’s Sleep?

A dog will get his best rest when he is comfortable and relaxed. Your dog’s sleep habits could clue you in on a few things that your dog might need. As you pay careful attention to any changes in their nighttime behavior, you’ll likely see a few changes that would benefit your dog’s sleep. We’ll talk more about those changes in feeding and bathroom breaks that could help you and your dog get better sleep.

Does My Dog Need a Sleep Schedule?

Experts agree that many dogs don’t need a sleep schedule if they can self-regulate reasonably well. Some dogs prefer to sleep late and can go up to twelve hours without needing to relieve themselves or eat breakfast. Other dogs may start misbehaving if they don’t have a regular schedule. When in doubt, putting your dog on a sleep schedule that you’ll stick to is a good choice.

How Much Sleep Does My Dog Need?

In general, dogs sleep a lot more than humans. They can spend up to half of their day sleeping and 30% of their time just relaxing. Older and larger dogs may require even more sleep than that. Their sleep patterns are also quite different from ours, too. They’re much more irregular, so they spend less time in REM sleep. This means they aren’t entering that deep, restful state as often. To make up for the difference in sleep quality, they’ll simply sleep more often throughout the day, whenever they get bored or tired.

How Will I Know if My Dog Is Sleeping Too Much?

Because of those irregular sleep patterns, and the amount of sleep they need, your dog will likely doze during the day. If your dog is waking up in the middle of the night to cry or misbehave, it’s probably less to do with how much he is sleeping and when he needs to go outside to use the bathroom.

To manage midnight bathroom breaks, pay attention to when you feed your dog and how much access he has to water before bed. If he’s eating a late dinner and waking up early to go outside, you’ll need to set up an earlier feeding schedule. That way, he can use the bathroom before bed and be fine until breakfast. Alternatively, if you tend to wake up late, your dog may have learned he can’t hold it in until you wake up and will start urinating in the house or crying to be left out in the middle of the night. You might need to rethink your own wake-up time to make sure your pup is able to attend to his needs in the morning.

Contact Canine College for Dog Training

Are you having a hard time getting your dog on a sleep schedule? Are you looking for obedience training?  At Canine College, our professional dog trainers are experts in helping your furry friend get settled in at home and learn important skills and behaviors. Check out the group and private dog training courses we offer, and get in touch with us today to get started!

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