Is Your Pet Getting Enough Sleep?
Sleep is just as crucial for your cat or dog as it is for you. In younger pets, it supports developing brains, nerves, muscles, and other critical body systems. Sleep also provides the downtime both older and younger pets need to recharge their energy and maintain their health.
Is Your Dog Getting Enough Sleep?
Dogs sleep an average of 10 hours a day. Many factors contribute to each dog’s unique sleeping pattern. Some dogs adjust their sleep to coincide with their human family’s habits. Others sleep because they expend more energy during the day. As an owner, you can help establish your new puppy’s sleeping patterns by establishing certain rules.
- Implement a regular eat/play/sleep “schedule.”
- Provide a comfortable sleeping area.
- When your dog falls asleep, let him sleep.
Why your dog isn’t getting enough sleep
Is your dog getting enough sleep? If you’ve never asked this question, now is a good time. A sleep issue is sometimes a sign of an unidentified illness. It can also be a contributing factor to a potential medical problem. As your dog’s caretaker, it’s up to you to identify any sleep issues that may affect his health.
Just like humans, aging dogs become restless and may suffer from an inability to sleep. Some dogs deal with a condition that’s similar to human sleep apnea. Snoring, sleep disruption, and other apnea-type problems are often a concern with boxers, Shih-Tzu, and other brachycephalic dogs. These breeds often have issues with their nostrils, palate, and larynx.
The Humane Society article “Short faces, long medical bills,” discusses the care concerns and medical costs of these popular dogs. Their compact features contribute to breathing problems, snoring, sleep disruption, and related health issues. Brachycephalic dogs sometimes require surgical intervention to improve their health prospects.
Signs that your dog isn’t getting enough sleep
You can usually detect your dog’s sleeping problems by observing their actions during the day. When a dog sleeps poorly, they often behave the way you do when you need more sleep. Sleep diminishes a dog’s concentration, enthusiasm, energy, and performance.
Is Your Cat Getting Enough Sleep?
If it seems that your cat is sleeping the day away, that’s just about right. Over a 24-hour period, the average cat sleeps about 15 hours or longer. It’s a habit based on a built-in rhythm. As a cat behavior specialist, Pam Johnson-Bennett explains, cats sleep because they “…need energy for the hunt .”
Cats are crepuscular. They’re most active during twilight hours at sunrise and sundown. Their behavior mimics their big-cat relatives. Tigers and lions search the jungle for prey at night and often restore their energy with long hours of sleep. An indoor cat has these same night-stalker instincts. They’re most active during low light “hunting” hours. Domestic cats often modify these sleep instincts to remain in sync with their feeding schedules.
Signs that your cat isn’t getting enough sleep
If you notice that your cat is sleeping more or less than usual, she may have a health issue. Hyperthyroidism often causes an aging cat to sleep less and become overly active. If your cat sleeps longer than her usual “schedule,” it could be a sign of painful arthritis, kidney disease, cognitive issues, or other age-related conditions.
Contact Hebron Veterinary Hospital
Is your cat oversleeping? Is your dog getting enough sleep? Visit our contact page or call us at (860) 228-4324 to schedule a visit. You can also give us a call if you simply want to know more about sleep and how it affects your pet’s health.