Are you a new pup parent wondering how much your puppy should sleep? Afraid your “lazy” lapdog is spending too much time snoozing?
Contrary to “pawpular” belief, puppies aren’t bursting with energy 24/7. Just like human infants, our fur-children will spend most of their day sleeping.
Below, we’ve broken down everything you need to know about how much puppies should sleep, how to create a sleep schedule for your puppy, and how to balance playtime with naps and potty breaks.
How much should puppies sleep?
Your puppy’s sleep habits will vary based on their age and activity level. Newborn puppies spend “ruffly” 90% of the day sleeping, about 21 hours.
On average, puppies between the age of 8 and 16 weeks sleep for 15 to 20 hours per day and can only stay awake for an hour at a time. It’s perfectly normal for your puppy to take frequent naps lasting as little as 30 minutes or as long as two hours.
Just like babies, puppies usually won’t sleep the whole night through until they’re about 16 weeks old, according to the American Kennel Club.
How to create a sleep schedule for your puppy
Canines are creatures of habit and need a strict routine to stay happy and healthy. If you don’t want them to wake you at all hours of the night, you’ll need to establish set times for eating, pottying, playing, and sleeping as early as “pawssible”.
Here are four tips on how to create a solid routine for your puppy.
Give your doggo a comfy place to snooze.
Whether you choose to pamper your pup with a big fluffy bed or opt for the classic crate, it’s important that your puppy understands where their sleep spot is.
Puppies are notorious for falling asleep at the drop of a hat. It can be tempting to let sleeping dogs lie, but if you notice your buddy’s eyes drooping, try to direct them to their bed before they conk out on the couch.
Tire them out before naptime -- but don’t overdo it.
Have you ever experienced the wrath of a tired toddler or exhausted infant? Puppies experience the same sensation when they’re overexhausted.
Avoid the temptation to play with your pal for hours at a time in hopes that they’ll sleep through the night. This will actually have the opposite effect! (Not to mention it’s unhealthy for their developing brains.)
Plan two to three sessions of playtime, training, and walks between 30 and 60 minutes long. (Remember, puppies can’t stay awake for more than an hour!) Afterwards, your pup should fall asleep naturally.
Don’t have the time to walk your puppy three times a day? Book a Wag! walker to ensure your pawesome pal is getting all the stimulation (and sleep) their developing brains need!
Don’t disturb your furry friend.
We know how tempting it is to go for the belly rubs while your precious pup is asleep, but you must resist this urge to create a solid sleep routine. Just as you wouldn’t want anyone to disturb you while you’re sleeping, show your puppy the same courtesy.
Set times for potty breaks.
Ideally, you should give your pal a potty break right after they wake up in the morning and just before they fall asleep at night. Puppies will need bathroom breaks more frequently than adult dogs -- usually every one to two hours.
Raising a puppy isn’t exactly a walk in the dog park. Our fur-babies might only stay awake for four to five hours per day, but many puppy parents will agree they can wreak some serious havoc in that short amount of time!
Worried about how much your puppy should sleep? Don’t be. If you think they’re sleeping too much, chances are they’re getting the “pawfect” amount of zzz’s needed for healthy cognitive development.