Nowadays we all understand the importance of a regular and consistent good night’s sleep and how important it is to both our physical and mental health. But what about our dogs? How do you know your dog is sleeping well too?
And that’s not all…
If your dog is not sleeping well at night, chances are, she’s not letting you sleep well either. Right?
So what is a good night’s sleep for a dog? And how do you go about ensuring that your dog is sleeping well?
Let’s find out…
How a Dog Sleeps
Dogs tend to sleep about 12-14 hours a day. And puppies even more than that.
And it’s not like they’ll snooze for a solid 12 hour block. No…
They follow what’s called a polyphasic sleep cycle, meaning they sleep several times during a day. So when your dog sleeps during the day, it’s not like how power naps work for us.
For them it’s proper sleep. Meaning, if your dog sleeps a lot during the day, it’s likely she won’t sleep as much at night.
So how do you make it so that your dog sleeps more, and soundly at night?
5 Tips to Make Sure Your Dog is Sleeping Well at Night
You might not be able to ensure that your dog gets continuous, uninterrupted sleep at night in sync with your own. But there are several things you can do to make it so as much as possible…
1. Make Sure Your Dog has had Plenty of Exercise and Play During the Day
While you – and really shouldn’t – stop your dog from sleeping a lot during the day, you can try and reduce that time by engaging her more in exercise and play.
Try to increase the number of walks. Or play a half an hour extra every day.
Remember that bigger breeds need more exercise.
If your dog runs around and plays more through the day, naturally the chances are she’ll sleep much better at night.
2. Follow the Routine to a T
We all have our internal clocks, which is affected by our habits and routines. It’s the same for your puppy.
If you want to make sure your dog is sleeping well and soundly at night, the shortest route is to make it a routine. Be consistent in putting her to bed at the same hour every night.
And make sure other stuff are part of the timetable as well…
- Dinner at least a couple of hours before turning in
- Then a walk/potty break a little after mealtime
- Quiet time leading up to bedtime
- Make sure you don’t feed or play around in the hour leading up to bedtime to keep her energy levels relaxed
Sticking to a proper routine day in and day out will really help set your pup’s sleeping habits.
3. Is There Anything That’s Disturbing Your Dog’s Sleep?
Would you be able to sleep well with stuff like bright lights on in your bedroom, loud noises, or poor bedding?
See to it that your dog’s bed is in an ideal spot and environment. That means:
- A good bedding
- A quiet, cozy spot – not too warm or cold
- Pin-drop silence is not really good to sleep in. Your dog is liable to wake up at the smallest sound. A low, rhythmic sound is great for good sleep – the simplest would be an audibly ticking clock
- Very dim lights, if at all any
Also, it’s a bad idea to let your pup sleep with you on your bed. You two are bound to wake each other up when you move or toss and turn.
Plus, if you are sensitive to allergies etc., it’s a doubly bad idea for obvious reasons.
4. Synchronise Potty Breaks to the Sleep Schedule
We’ve already mentioned this in the point about establishing a routine, but keeping consistent potty breaks before bed-time is a great way to reduce the possibility of your pup having to wake up in the middle of the night to go.
Don’t you think?
Don’t let your dog drink during the couple of hours leading up to bedtime. She’ll be quite alright, don’t worry – unless she has a medical condition that needs her to hydrate more frequently. It would be best to check with your vet.
5. Consider Any Medical Issues
If your dog continues to have trouble sleeping despite following all this, there is a chance the problem runs deeper.
Older dogs can develop this problem. And if your dog is sick or injured, pain or discomfort can of course really hinder sleep.
Make a visit to the vet if your dog continues to struggle to sleep soundly. Better yet, make notes of any changes in behavior, habits and so on to better paint a picture for your vet and help the diagnosis.
We hope you found these tips on how to make sure your dog is sleeping well at night useful! If you have any other tips or suggestions, do let us know in the comments section below…
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