Dogs are known for being the “sleepy dog” breed. Most of them love to curl up in a warm place and take a nap. But what if your dog never seems to sleep? This can be a cause for concern, as new strange behavior can often be a sign that something is wrong.
In this blog post, we will suggest some potential causes of insomnia in dogs. So read on to learn why your dog isn’t getting a good night’s sleep and how you can help it.
Why Does My Dog Never Sleep?
Here are some of the most common reasons why your pup doesn’t get any shut-eye at night:
Your Dog Hears or Sees Something At Night
One of the most common reasons for insomnia in dogs is anxiety. If your dog is anxious, it may be noticing something happening in the environment each night that is causing it to be on edge. This could be a noise outside, another animal moving around, or even something as simple as a change in the house (like a new person living there or new pets).
This is a dog’s protective instinct kicking in and it can be tough to calm them down once they’ve gotten worked up.
There Isn’t a Comfortable Sleeping Area
If you don’t let your dog sleep in bed with you, up on the furniture, or provide it with any bedding, it may be tough for them to get comfortable at night. This is especially true if you have an older dog.
Dogs like to have a warm and cozy place to sleep just like we do, so make sure they have a bed or some blankets in their sleeping area.
Your Dog Has Separation Anxiety
If your dog doesn’t sleep with you at night or you have recently started leaving it alone during the day, they may be experiencing separation anxiety. This is a type of anxiety that occurs when dogs are away from their pack (ie. you and your family).
Dogs with separation anxiety will often bark or howl at night, pace around the house, chew on things, have accidents indoors, and generally seem stressed.
Your Dog is Too Hot or Cold
Just like humans, dogs need to be at a comfortable temperature to fall asleep. If your dog is too hot or cold, it will likely have trouble sleeping through the night.
Your Dog is in Pain
If your dog is suddenly having trouble sleeping at night, it may be in pain. This could be from an injury, arthritis, or another health condition. If you think this may be the case, there may be other symptoms including limping, crying out when touched, and decreased appetite.
Restlessness from Bordom
Sometimes, a dog’s insomnia is caused by something as simple as too much excitement during the day. If your dog has a lot of energy and isn’t able to burn it off during the day, it may be hard for it to settle down at night.
This is especially common in puppies and young dogs who are still learning how to control their energy levels.
If you have a short-snouted pup such as a mastiff or pug, or an overweight dog, they may be at risk for sleep apnea. This is a condition where the dog’s airway becomes blocked while sleeping, causing it to wake up frequently.
If your dog has sleep apnea, you may notice it snoring loudly or gasping for air in its sleep. This leads to your dog suddenly waking up. Over time, this can cause fatigue and sleepiness during the day.
If you think your dog may have sleep apnea, it’s important to take it to the vet for an evaluation.
A New Home or Environment
If you’ve recently moved or your dog is staying in a new place, it may be having trouble sleeping due to the change in environment. Dogs are creatures of habit and often do best when they have a set routine.
When this routine is disrupted, it can cause them to feel anxious and stressed, which can lead to insomnia.
What to Do if My Dog Never Sleeps?
If you’re dealing with an underslept dog, there are a few things you can do to help:
Add More Exercise to Your Dog’s Routine
If your dog isn’t getting enough exercise, it may be one of the reasons why it’s having trouble sleeping. Dogs are active creatures and need to burn off energy during the day.
A good way to tire out your dog is to add an extra walk or play session to its daily routine. If you can’t do this, make sure you are at least providing your dog with a lot of love and attention so its mind is occupied.
Use Ambient Noise
If your dog is hearing or seeing things at night, it may be hard for it to fall asleep. Dogs have good hearing and can often pick up on things that we can’t.
To help your dog relax and fall asleep, try using some ambient noise such as a fan or white noise machine. This will help to block out any outside noise that may disturb your dog.
Get Your Dog a New Bed
If your dog is used to sleeping in a crate, it may be more comfortable if you get it a new bed to sleep in. Dogs like to have their own space to sleep and feel safe. A new bed will give your dog a place to call its own and may help it relax and fall asleep at night.
Try Calming Supplements
There are a number of supplements on the market that are designed to help dogs relax and fall asleep. These include things like CBD oil, valerian root, and chamomile. Many of these will come in the form of treats, so it will be a nice way to reward your dog at the end of the night.
Try a Calming Vest
If your dog is feeling anxious, a calming vest may help. These vests are designed to apply gentle pressure to the dog’s body which has a calming effect. This can be helpful for dogs who are stressed or have anxiety.
Calming vests are available in a variety of sizes and can be found at most pet stores. They can provide instant results without the use of medication.
Visit the Vet
If you’ve tried all of these things and your dog still isn’t sleeping, it’s important to take them to the vet for an evaluation. There may be an underlying health condition that is causing insomnia.
The vet will be able to determine what is causing the problem and how to treat it. In some cases, medication may be necessary to help your dog sleep.