If you’ve just bought a new puppy, you might have noticed that they are energetic little bundles that have endless amounts of energy. Amazingly, a puppy can also sleep just as much as they’re awake.
Puppies spend a lot of time resting and sleeping in the first 2 months of their lives. As they are developing both physically and mentally, letting them sleep for long periods of time can be highly beneficial.
If you’re concerned about any awkward sleeping habits, there’s not much to worry about since this is natural. Here’s why puppies tend to sleep so often.
Can Puppies Have Too Much Sleep?
From the moment that a puppy is born, they are already growing at a faster rate than human babies are capable of doing. For them, eating and sleeping will take up a majority of their time until they can freely start to move around on their own. This is usually way before they find that forever home, usually around 8 weeks, they grow enough in size and energy while they practice moving around.
When they aren’t suckling from their mother, a puppy will spend much of this time sleeping and resting. A whopping 22 hours out of the day is how much newborns will spend resting. This isn’t uncommon and allows a mother to move around, eat and drink, and gain strength after having a new litter.
Dog breeders will know that puppies spend a lot of time resting and sleeping in the first 2 months of their lives. After this, a puppy will begin to be more active by playing with other puppies, walking around, and obviously resting when they get tired. It will also be no surprise that a puppy does get tired very easily even when they seem so full of energy. One second, they can be going crazy, and the next, they’ll be sleeping for hours.
Their sleep schedule is based on the energy that they burn off very quickly, so yes puppies do tend to sleep a lot to conserve this energy. So the next time you ask yourself should I let my puppy sleep all day, the answer is yes.
Creating A Sleep Schedule
Creating a sleep schedule for a new puppy isn’t going to be too hard since it’s likely they will be sleeping before you tend to sleep at night. The below schedule can work quite well if you have the time during the day to, otherwise you may have to delegate the following schedule to whoever is looking after them. If you work from home then you may benefit from this article, “Working From Home With A Puppy”.
|Early Morning||The first thing to do in the morning is open the door to allow your puppy to go to the toilet. This is especially important for toilet training, try to follow the same advice when toilet training.|
|Breakfast||Your feeding time for breakfast can come either straight after you let your puppy out for the toilet. Alternatively, you could start getting your own breakfast ready before feeding your puppy.|
Remember to let your puppy outside again after eating, this is a natural reaction for young dogs and it may prevent any unwanted accidents.
|Main Morning||Some of the mornings will be taken up by play or sleep. It’s important to play with your puppy so let their stomach settle their food and then begin any activity with them. After some playtime, your puppy will be ready for a nap, although they may not think so. Use a crate or pen to give them their own space, make sure it is comfortable enough, and ideally, they should fall asleep.|
|Mid-Day||If your puppy has been asleep, take them outside to go to the toilet. You can feed them at this point, of course, if you are going for 1 meal in the morning and 1 in the evening, then give them a smaller portion to see them through. Once your puppy has eaten take them outside for the toilet again. After this, you can conduct some training exercises, which your puppy will find mentally and physically stimulating.|
In the event, your puppy did not sleep during the main morning, try giving them a feed then a toilet breaks, and try again to get them to sleep.
|Main Afternoon||If you have conducted some fun training exercises with your puppy during the mid-day period. Then having a bit more of a chilled afternoon is good, with the added possibility of a nap. If your puppy had an intense mid-day period then having a nap in the afternoon is important.|
Remember if your puppy does sleep then let them out for the toilet whenever they wake up.
|Dinner||It’s more than likely that your puppy will wake up in the late afternoon/early evening. I would encourage you to feed your puppy when you are having your own dinner, but whatever time you choose, just make sure it is consistent, this way your puppy will develop a sense of routine. Dogs love routine and getting on it early will help with training. Don’t forget to let your puppy out for a toilet break.|
|Evening||You don’t want your puppy to sleep during this time, so keeping them entertained is important. The early evening should start with some games and slowly calm things down towards the later evening.|
|Going To Bed||Bedtime can be a difficult thing to time. Consistency is key here as you start to build a stable routine for your puppy. Remember your life shouldn’t stop just because you have a new puppy. Choose a bedtime that suits you and a location that does not require access until the morning. Your puppy will soon get used to its bedtime routine and you will often have a happy and content puppy in the morning.|
Looking after a brand new puppy can be a difficult task sometimes, hopefully, the above schedule can give you some idea of how to approach your puppy’s sleeping habits. Although this schedule has an awake cycle you should still be confident in letting your puppy sleep all day, if that is what they need. All the components above help to create good sleep psychology and you need to follow them all to really reap the benefits. Play around with some ideas and see how your puppy reacts, and change things to suit your puppy’s personality and energy levels. Looking after your puppy will get easier, but sometimes it’s knowing when times might change and things get easier. Check out this article to find out more. “When Do Puppies Get Easier”
Remember that different breeds can have different energy levels, just like their personalities differ too. If you choose to raise a border collie or springer then you should be prepared for high energy levels and it is unlikely your dog will end up sleeping all day. However, if you were to choose a dog such as a basset hound then you shouldn’t be surprised if they end up sleeping all day long on the sofa.
What time should a puppy be put to bed?
This is always up for debate between dog owners but is a no-brainer for parents who have a young child. You need to start a schedule that provides dinner and playtime before their sleeping time. You also need to encourage a puppy to remember that potty time comes after playtime or food. Puppies will learn very quickly within a week or so of repeating this schedule. Try to develop a time that suits you, remember the more relaxed you are the better you can care for your pooch.
Make the room where your puppy is sleeping comfortably by lowering the lights so these simulate dusk-like hours. Since most people who go to work will be in bed by 10 pm and wake up at 6 am, your puppy might already be asleep quickly in the right conditions. Don’t be a night owl and stay up past midnight watching Netflix, be mindful of your new puppy by letting them sleep without interruption. remember that dogs have a great hearing so although you have the volume low any interesting noises will certainly cause your puppy to stir.
Why you should never wake a sleeping puppy?
New owners make a terrible mistake by letting their puppy sleep next to them. This is not promoting good sleeping habits since any little movement can wake a puppy. If you’ve ever heard that old expression about letting sleeping dogs lie, this is where it starts. Young puppies need to sleep in their own bed close to their bed or in the same room. Be sure that there is little noise that will wake up a puppy, as it interrupts their natural sleep cycle.
It can also make a puppy nervous, aggressive, and cranky if you do wake them up. Let them nap or sleep when they need to so they are fresh and energetic when they wake up. If not, you will find that this can turn happy puppies into little monsters in very little time. Even if you’re playing with them or they’re around little kids, you need to give a puppy a break if they’re literally out of steam!
An angry puppy that’s being pestered by a small child to play when they start to nap is the worst combination of seeing a puppy bark and bite because they need their rest. Give your puppy as much time to recharge and sleep, so they aren’t a danger later to you or friends who are around your new puppy.
Should I Pet My Puppy While Sleeping?
Never wake a sleeping puppy by petting them since this will wake them up for certain and can have unpredictable results. There are very specific reasons that you would ever need to wake up a sleeping puppy. The first reason has to do with a puppy that is having a nightmare.
There is plenty of proof that dogs can dream and can wake up from having overactive dreams of running or barking. Little puppies are more impressionable and can have nightmares where they are whimpering and sound like they are scared.
It’s best not to touch them at all if you are concerned even if you’re being gentle. The best method would be to call your puppy calmly and repeat their name several times. Chances are they will not wake up from a bad dream but feel the comfort of a voice they recognize that is soothing to them.
Still, you should never try to comfort a puppy that is crying, shaking, and making noise while they are asleep or napping. This fear can turn to instant anger at a perceived threat and even result in a puppy snapping at your hand out of fear. Once again, calmly call their name and let them know everything is alright, or simply let them sleep through their bad dream until it passes.
How much exercise should a puppy get during the day?
Many so-called expert dog websites tell you how much to play with your puppy. The truth is that all puppies are different, so their level of energy will vary as much as their breed. Some experts will recommend between 5-15 minutes of exercise for puppies under 6 months. It’s important to know that you’ll see when a puppy gets tired when you play with them.
They’ll be jumping and running around and then suddenly stop and lay down to rest. It’s not uncommon that a new puppy will tire within 5 minutes of any playtime activity. When puppies are awake again, they’ll have more energy after a quick snooze. When starting any playtime activity, start with training basics such as following you where you walk. Another can be to learn commands such as stay’ or sit’.
Most puppies won’t be so open to learning these commands before 6 months, but it doesn’t hurt to introduce these commands so they are familiar with them. You can also bring in exercise bonuses such as walking with them on a pet harness. Ordinary playtime must not exceed 5 minutes if they are 2 months old up to twice a day. Past 6 months, this limit can increase to longer playtime as they are stronger and tend to sleep less.
If you want to learn more about how much to walk your dog, especially as they get older, then check out “Managing Your dogs Energy Levels” for some great insights into the exercise they need every day
Should I wake my puppy in the morning?
Puppies have a natural built-in alarm clock that is called their stomach. A new puppy will be very hungry in the morning and that is when you can start their breakfast schedule. They can essentially wake up with you if you wake up at sunrise around 6 am or so. This can also be a good time to start potty training to get a puppy to learn when and where to go potty. Don’t try to wake a puppy if they are still tired in the morning. When your puppy grows up you may want to continue an early morning wake-up and walk your dog in the morning, but what are the benefits of walking your dog in the morning.
If they were especially active the night before, they still might need their rest. But if you can see they are slowly starting to wake up, you can coax them from their dog bed to start a morning routine. Keep in mind that not every puppy will wake up when you do, so this can take some practice until they learn routines that you want to train them with. Older puppies around 4 to 5 months will pick up on your morning schedule soon enough.
Letting your puppy sleep all day is not something to worry about, but creating a routine and a sleep schedule should help control their need for sleep. Your puppy will wake up when they are good and ready. If they’ve missed some naps from the previous day, they might even sleep in longer as a result.
Different breeds of puppies can be different types of sleepers and it’s not always a concern that your puppy sleeps all day. It is important to check their general health and make sure they are not sleeping all day for some underlying reason. Hopefully, this article has helped answer the question of whether to let your puppy sleep all day and develop a good routine for them. If you enjoyed this check out some more great dog content on our home page.