Our advice for ensuring you and your puppy get a good night’s rest
Our Generation Pup study has confirmed what all puppy owners have suspected all along – puppies sleep less at night than older pooches.
We investigated their sleeping habits at 16 weeks and 12 months, revealing that puppies sleep more during the day.
By comparison, once a dog reaches one year of age, they are much more likely to sleep for longer at night – matching their
human owner’s sleep patterns.
We’ve also learned that given the choice to get close to their humans at bedtime, most dogs (86%) chose to do so.
Here’s our advice for keeping your pup (and everyone in your house) well-rested.
- Keep your puppy’s brain and body engaged with walkies, playtime, and short, fun training sessions to give them plenty to dream about.
- Create a safe, comfy space in a quiet area for your puppy to relax in.
- Evening routines can help prepare your puppy for a good night’s sleep, and if you tend to do the same types of activities your puppy will learn what to expect.
- Help your puppy switch off by getting rid of unnecessary distractions. Shutting the curtains and settling down on the sofa will help get them ready to catch some Zs.
- When pups are growing tired, they might suddenly appear to be very energetic and dash about the home, an activity that is often called the ‘zoomies’. They can also become agitated or restless and might even start to bark or mouth owners by grabbing their owner’s hands or clothing with their teeth. It’s easy to assume their sudden burst of energy means they need more exercise, but in reality, they probably just need a good kip.
- Puppies are used to sleeping in family groups so may need to learn how cosy being in their own bed can be. This can take a little time, but you can help them by staying close by and ready to respond if they appear distressed.
Common sleeping habits
We can also reveal the most common habits dogs have whilst sleeping, according to their owners:
- 73% said their dog shows small twitching movements in their legs. This could be many things but 30% said their dog looked as if they were chasing something (or someone!) in their sleep.
- 38% said they thought their pooch spent a lot of time dreaming.
- 13% said their dog would often snore “very loudly” during the night.
- 9% said their dog is known to wake up during the night and have disturbed sleep.
- The most common sleeping position for a dog is stretched out on their side.
We need you and your pups help
We are calling on people across the UK and Ireland with a puppy under 16 weeks of age to sign up to the Generation Pup study, to help us to learn more about our four-legged friends.
By taking part you could help us gain valuable insights into how our dogs’ health and behaviour change over time, to find new and better ways to care for them.
For more information and to sign up please visit the generation pup website