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Are My Pets Getting Enough Sleep?

 by yunus on 29 Apr 2016 |
1 Comment(s)
As all pet owners know, when their pets are sleeping, they sleep hard. It might be a dog sleeping upside down on the couch or a cat stretched out at the most uncomfortable angle possible, just to ensure that its entire body is in the splash of sun on the floor. Waking up the pet isn’t easy when it’s in a warm spot, taking a nap.
But after watching your pet snooze much of the day, you may start wondering whether the animal is sleeping more than it should. Then if that same pet is spending much of the night prowling the house and keeping you awake, you may start to wonder if the pet is sleeping enough.

Finding the Right Amount of Sleep

It’s important that you understand whether your pet is receiving the right amount sleep. When a pet is not sleeping enough or is sleeping too much, it could indicate an animal that is suffering from some sort of illness or disorder. The amount of sleep that each pet needs will differ for numerous reasons.
?Activity. A pet that doesn’t have much of an activity level may sleep more than average, in large part because it’s bored. To keep this pet healthy, you need to ensure the pet starts getting more exercise and sleeps less.
?Age. An older pet will begin sleeping more than it did in its early adulthood, while a young animal will also sleep more than the average.
?Instinct. If you have a pet that normally is a nocturnal type of animal, such as a cat, it may sleep more during the day, when you can see its activity level. But it may quietly be awake throughout the night, when you cannot see what it’s doing, meaning you may think it’s sleeping too much.
?Job. Some pets are working animals, where they may volunteer at a hospital or work with humans as a police animal or a companion animal. The more the animal works, the more it will mimic the sleep patterns of the human with which it works.
?Predator. Animals that are natural predators, such as dogs and cats, will tend to sleep more. Those that aren’t natural predators, such as horses or rabbits, will tend to sleep less.

Figuring Out an Average

Because of the reasons listed above, discerning the amount of sleep each type of animal needs is a bit of a challenge. Additionally, an animal in captivity will sleep a bit differently than an animal in the wild, skewing the average.
?Least sleep. Pets that need the least amount of sleep include horses at about 3-4 hours per day and cows at 4-5 hours per day. A fish doesn’t need much sleep either, but studying sleep patterns of fish is extremely difficult.
?Similar sleep to humans. A human requires about 8 hours of sleep, which is similar to rabbits (8-9 hours) and primates (9-10 hours).
?Most sleep. A dog will require 12-14 hours of sleep per day, while a cat may sleep 14-16 hours of sleep daily. Rodents and parrots also sleep about 12-14 hours per day. If you have a reptile or a turtle as a pet, you may notice it sleeps much of the day during the winter, which is a time when it would be hibernating in the wild.
While it’s important to keep an eye on the amount of sleep your pet is receiving, it might be even more important to pay attention to a change in the animal’s sleep pattern. If an animal has a sudden change in sleep habits that cannot be explained by an environmental change or by an instinct to hibernate in the winter, it could indicate a potential illness, so be aware of your dog’s health. For example, arthritis in dogs can be heavily disruptive to sleep patterns. An altered sleep schedule could be an early indicator of a problem such as this. Check with your veterinarian if you are concerned about any change in sleep patterns!


Lisette - Comment
Lisette28 May 2016Reply
Unless you have a Greyhound... they sleep 20 hours a day! LOL

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