If you notice that the dog is sleeping more than usual, you should know the possible reasons behind this behavior and when it could be a problem.
Sometimes we are led to think that our dog is the laziest living being on Earth, because he really sleeps many hours a day. But are we really sure to know why Fido is able to exceed 10 hours of sleep per day?
Not everyone knows that most dogs should sleep approximately 12 hours a day: if your dog falls within this average, everything is perfectly normal. But if your dog has always been lively and active, and suddenly you realize that he sleeps much more than usual, there may be some problems behind the change and it is important to investigate the motivation.
A change of habit in sleep – wake rhythms it must always be considered a wake-up call: sometimes, behind a dog that sleeps more than usual, there is a stressful condition, but in other cases there may be decidedly more worrying reasons regarding his state of health.
Let’s find out together for what reasons the dog sleeps more hours than usual and in what cases we should actually worry.
Dog’s sleeping habits: why does the dog sleep more than usual?
They can hide behind a change in their usual sleep routine physical, psychological and health reasons. In general, the best thing to do when we notice that our dog starts to sleep more than usual or, on the contrary, to stay awake many more hours than he did in the past, is certainly to contact our trusted veterinarian who can investigate the possible causes and identify the most suitable remedies.
Here is a series of factors that can affect the dog’s hours of sleep, which we will see specifically in the following paragraphs:
– canine race,
– stress and anxiety,
– dog activity levels,
– thyroxine deficiency,
– bacterial infection
– viral infection,
– anemia in the dog,
1. Age of the dog
The dog’s sleep-wake rhythm provides on average about 12 hours of sleep per day, which in many cases even reaches 14. However, there are age-related exceptions: older dogs and puppies, in fact, need to sleep more and they often go to sleep 18 hours a day. In particular, puppies between 4 months and 1 year of age are so active in waking hours that they need several hours of sleep to recover their energy.
2. The breed the dog belongs to
The breed to which dog belongs can determine a number of aspects that also affect the number of hours of sleep per day: the size, activity and speed of aging are just a few examples. For example, a large dog needs to sleep more hours a day, while a dog of a small breed sleeps less and ages slower. Among the most lazy and sleepy dog breeds, we remember for example the Newfoundland, the Bassett Hound and the Greyhound who can sleep without major problems even 18 hours a day.
3. Stress, anxiety and boredom
If the dog is subjected to a psychologically difficult phase, during which he experiences problems such as anxiety, stress and boredom, it is possible that the reaction is to sleep a lot. The dog who sleeps a lot due to anxiety and stress he can be helped through mentally and physically stimulating activities that can improve his psychophysical condition.
4. Level of activity
Some dogs are employed in activities that require some concentration: for example, dogs that work as cops or lifeguards. Dog’s level of daily activity also and above all affects the number of hours the animal dedicates each day to rest.
5. Thyroxine deficiency
Thyroxine is the main hormone produced by the thyroid gland and a deficiency of it causes it a pathological condition called dog hypothyroidism: when thyroxine is scarce, the chemical processes that take place within the body’s cells begin to slow down and with them the entire metabolism of Dog. The consequence is that the dog will appear tired and lethargic thus tending to sleep longer than usual. Older dogs are particularly affected by hypothyroidism problems, while the most likely breeds are i Dachshunds, i Labrador, i Pinscher.
Diabetes is a very common problem among dogs, which is characterized by the body’s inability to produce the amount of insulin necessary to properly dispose of the blood sugar present in the blood. If you have diabetes, your dog is likely to sleep more than it did in the past. Between breeds more prone to canine diabetes, we remember for example the Dachshund.
7. Bacterial infections
In particular, the leptospirosis it is an infection caused by highly contagious bacteria that the dog can contract by coming into contact with the urine of a sick animal. It can also be transmitted easily through water or the soil and is particularly widespread where the climate is warmer. Among his symptoms lethargy and a tendency to sleep more is present.
8. Viral infections
Among the causes for which the dog sleeps more than usual is certainly the infection with parvovirus, a highly contagious viral disease that mainly affects puppies within the first 6 months of age. It affects the dog’s ability to absorb nutrients through food, so the animal becomes weakened and other symptoms appear including the dehydration: the best way to avoid this disease is to vaccinate the puppy at the right time.
9. Canine anemia
Anemia is a condition that reduces the red blood cells in the dog’s blood, due to parasites that feed on the animal’s blood: among these parasites dangerous for the dog we remember, for example, nematodes, hookworms, tapeworms. The tendency to sleep more hours than usual may also appear among the symptoms of an infection of a parasitic nature.
10. Dog poisoning
Dogs are big eaters and are also very curious, so they would taste practically anything that happens within reach of the muzzle: be careful, however, for those foods that can be toxic to dog. If you suspect that your dog may have swallowed something dangerous and notice that he looks lethargic and tends to sleep a lot, take him immediately to the vet.