If your Labrador has been sleeping a lot then you are probably wondering why and what you can do about it.
This post will show you a number of reasons why your Labrador might be sleeping so much and what you should do.
So, why does my Labardor sleep so much? An adult Labrador will naturally sleep for 12 hours per day, puppies and older Labrador will sleep for even longer (source).
There are actually a number of reasons why your Labrador might be sleeping so much. Depending on the cause there are also a number of things that you can do about it.
Why your Labrador sleeps so much
Each of the different reasons why your Labrador sleeps a lot will likely come with some clues. Below are some possible reasons why your Labrador sleeps a lot and what would make them more likely.
The cause of your Labrador sleeping a lot is likely to be because it does it naturally. It is natural for a large dog like a Labrador to sleep for 12-14 hours per day (source). If your Labrador is a puppy or it is old then it will likely sleep for even longer.
If the weather has become hotter, where you are, it could be the case that the hot weather has been causing it to feel fatigued. In this case, it would help to give it access to shaded areas, water, a cool room throughout the day and it would help to walk it in the mornings or evenings when it is cooler. It would also help to avoid letting it be out in the sun for too long since it might cause it to get heatstroke.
It could be the case that an illness has been causing it to sleep more. This would be more likely if it has started sleeping more suddenly and if it has been showing other signs of being ill such as being fatigued when awake. In this case, the best option would be to take it to a vet.
The reason why it sleeps a lot might be that it is understimulated and bored. Labradors are a breed that is meant to get quite a lot of exercise daily. If yours has not been getting much exercise it would help to make sure that it does. Generally, it is recommended for them to get an hour of exercise daily.
The cause could be that there is an issue with its diet. This would be more likely if it has started sleeping more since a change in its diet. It could be that it is eating too much, too little or that it is eating things that it should not be eating.
It would help to make sure that no one else has been feeding it without you knowing and that you have been feeding it correctly. You can look here to see some tips on what you should and should not feed it and it would help to consult on its diet with your local vet.
If it is young or old
It is normal for puppies and older dogs to sleep even more. The reason puppies sleep more is that they are rapidly growing and they rebuild their muscles when they are asleep. Older dogs sleep more since it requires more energy for them to move around and they get tired more easily.
Things to consider
If it suddenly started to sleep more
It would help to consider whether or not your Labrador started sleeping a lot suddenly since it could be the case that it was caused by an event that occurred.
If it did start sleeping more suddenly it would be more likely to be due to things such as an illness, a change in its diet or the weather becoming hotter. In this case, it would likely be the best option to take it for a checkup with the vet.
Whereas, if it has always slept a lot then it would be more likely to be due to normal behavior.
When your Labrador sleeps a lot
It would also help to consider the timing of when it tends to sleep more since the timing could have something to do with it.
If it tends to sleep more at certain times it would make it more likely that it is due to things such as the weather becoming hotter, being fed the wrong foods or too much food or it could have simply formed a habit of sleeping at that time.
What to do about your Labrador sleeping so much
Below are some things you can do about your Labrador sleeping a lot.
Allow it to
Sleep is an important function that dogs need to do in order to be able to rebuild their muscles and to recover from the things they do when they are awake. So, it is important to allow your Labrador to be able to sleep when it wants to and to try to figure out why it might be sleeping more if it doesn’t seem to be normal behavior.
Make sure that it is able to sleep comfortably
It would also help to make sure that it is able to sleep comfortably at night. The room it sleeps in should be cool, not too bright and there should be a space for it to lay down.
Make sure that its diet is right
It is also important to make sure that it is eating the correct foods in the correct quantities. You can look here to see what you should and should not be feeding it and it would help to consult with your vet on its diet and how much you should be feeding it.
Keep it cool
It would also help to keep it cool when the weather heats up by giving it access to a cool room, shade and water. It would also help to walk it in the morning or evening when it is not as hot outside.
Take it to a vet
If you cannot figure out why your Lab has been sleeping so much or it has started sleeping a lot suddenly, the best option would be to take it to a vet. By doing so you will be able to rule out the possibility of it being due to a medical cause and to get expert advice tailored towards your particular Labrador.