A dog's sleep needs vary based on his or her age. For example, puppies need more sleep than adult dogs. This is because your puppy is growing and the physical, mental and emotional maturation takes up a lot of energy. Puppies can actually sleep up to 20 hours a day. They don't sleep it straight though and are actually bad at sleeping through the night. Instead, they take lots of nap throughout the day.
Senior dogs also need more sleep than adult dogs. But, unlike puppies, it's because their metabolism is slowing down. As dogs age and slow down, they need more rest to recover their energy (just like humans). Because of this, it's normal and natural for your older dog to sleep more than they used to.
Pro Tip: If your senior dog seems extra lethargic and slow, it could be a sign of an underlying condition like arthritis or another disease. It's best to take your senior dog to the vet twice a year to monitor his or her health.
How much sleep a dog needs can also depend on his or her breed. For instance, large dogs tend to need more sleep than small dogs. This is because larger dogs tire out more quickly, as they have more weight to carry. Large, sleepy breeds include Mastiffs, Great Danes and Saint Bernards.
Some are known to be "lazy" or less active breeds and these dogs tend to sleep more than other breeds. Dogs that tend to get labeled this way include English Bulldogs, French Bulldogs, Pugs, and Basset Hounds. On the other hand, more active dogs - like Labrador Retrievers, Golden Retrievers and German Shepherds - are actually more likely to sleep through the night.
How Much Is Too Much Sleep?
Dogs sleep a lot and it's usually nothing to worry about. But if you notice your dog's sleep habits change suddenly, you may want to call your vet as a precaution. This is because some conditions, like diabetes and hyperthyroidism, can disrupt sleep habits. Signs that your dog's sleep patterns have changed include sleeping quite a bit more or less than usual, grumpiness, difficulty concentrating and disorientation. In general, you can trust your dog that he or she will sleep when needed, but call your vet if you're in doubt.