When it comes to puppies, we think of how much energy they use. Whether they’re learning to run or just playing with anything they can reach, puppies are fun and excitable. But where does this energy come from and what happens when it runs out?
It’s common knowledge that kittens sleep a lot. This is something they don’t outgrow, even when they become cats. Young pups, in this instance, aren’t too different when it comes to sleeping.
How Much Do Puppies Sleep? Here’s Our Guide
How Much Do 8 to 16 Week Old Puppies Sleep?
Puppies Sleeping A Lot
Puppies, much like human children, will need differing amounts of rest as they grow and their bodies change. Pups between 8 and 16 weeks old require a nurturing environment to help them learn and grow.
They will be exceptionally skittish as they encounter new smells, objects and experiences. Introducing your puppy to a new home or your friends might be overwhelming.
To adapt and handle all of these new challenges, puppies at this age require anywhere from 18 to about 20 hours of sleep per day. This allows their developing brains to rest and process all of the information they learned.
And while it may seem like a very cute idea, you’ll want to avoid letting your puppy get into the habit of sleeping in places like your lap or on furniture.
Trying to change this behavior later might cause for territorial aggression and it will be harder to teach new methods of appropriate sleeping.
Daytime Snooze for your Pup
One of the major things your puppy (and you) will have to get used to is her being alone during the day time. During her early days, her energy levels will be high throughout the day. However, she’ll still need to rest.
Generally, puppies will need to take naps throughout the day. They will sleep at least 6 hours to replenish their energy for when you get home.
Puppies also experience the world through their nose, so to really help her be comfortable, leave a blanket, toy or other object with your (or her mother’s) scent to help her relax.
It’s also very important that your puppy be left alone during her daytime naps. Disturbing her sleep can lead to her being cranky or worse, being unable to sleep later. So make sure that any family members or children that are at home during the day know to leave your puppy to her sleeping.
Nighttime Sleep for your Pooch
The average amount of time puppies will sleep through the night is 14 hours.
They will do best if they have their own place to sleep, with or without you. Training your puppy to sleep alone might be difficult if they’ve already developed a routine of sleeping with you, his mother or littermates.
You can set up a sleeping area close to you the first few nights in order to help your puppy adjust and not feel as lonely.
You’ll definitely want to tire your puppy out before bedtime to make sure both of you get uninterrupted sleep.
If you prefer to use a crate or kennel for your puppy’s sleeping area, make sure the puppy is calmed and tired. Otherwise you’re in for a long night of whining and scratching.
With the proper training, you can teach your puppy to go into the kennel on his own. Some people do this by giving a treat after guiding them into the space. Others just say the word kennel and the puppy knows where to go and that it’s time for sleeping.
Try out various methods to see which ones works best for you and your puppy. Also try to have a crate or kennel that is large enough for him to be comfortable. Avoid getting one too small, as your puppy is going to grow and will want to stretch out and be able to relax while he sleeps.
Create a Sleep Schedule for your Dog
One of the best ways to make sure that your puppy gets all the sleep he needs for healthy development is to have him on a schedule. Much like your own day, have a plan for the time filled with various activities. Immediately after this time, have space and time reserved for your pup to recover and nap, if necessary.
After going for a walk or playing, your puppy will probably need to rest. It might seem a little odd that your puppy will be sleepy every hour, but it’s actually a very normal part of their development. They will nap for as short as thirty minutes and up to two hours.
Try to also prepare for any bathroom needs in order to avoid accidents. Training your puppy isn’t just about maintaining a feeding routine or house-training. Their sleep patterns are also a vital part of how they grow up.
A great way to get your puppy trained is to take him for walks at roughly the same time every day. That means if you take him out around 6pm one day, you’ll want to continue having his walks at that same time so that he learns the routine.
Use the time immediately after this activity, before he gets too tired, to have another bathroom break. When you return home, make sure that the environment is not too active or loud.
Before you get yourself ready for bed, if your puppy is already dozing, gently wake him for a final trip outside for the night.
Sleeping Tips for Your Puppies
When training your puppy on how and where to sleep, you want to avoid too many changes.
Don’t have his sleeping area in the living room one day and then in your bedroom the next. This will lead to confusion and make it harder for your puppy to learn what you want him to do.
Don’t Overtire your Pup
Also try not to overtire your puppy as that can lead to negative behaviors like extreme aggression.
Don’t Have Too Many Distractions
When you notice your puppy getting drowsy, calmly guide him to the area you want him to sleep. Keep this area clear of any potential distractions like toys or food.
Keep Noise Down & Dim Lights
If you prefer to have the television on while you’re in bed, but you want to keep your puppy close, keep the volume low and the lights dim. Over time, he will learn that the darkness and quiet are his signal to sleep.
In the early stages, you should expect that he’ll wake up in the middle of the night because of needing to go outside or general restlessness. But with gentle correction, you can get rid of any unwanted behaviors and both get a full night’s sleep.
Sleep is an important part of our daily needs and this is also true for our pets. Much like human children, our puppies need consistent, regular times to sleep so that they can grow strong and healthy.
Sleep training is the third part of teaching your puppy how to live with you, along with feeding and bathroom training.
Having a well-rested puppy is better for the household than a puppy who is tired all the time. Your pup will be happier and better adjusted with the right amounts of sleep.