Sleep in a dog & cat, how long do they sleep?

Sommeil chez le chien et le chat

Sleep is crucial to the health and well-being of our pets, but how long does a dog or cat actually sleep? Although both species are mammals and share many similarities in their sleep cycle, there are also important differences between the sleep patterns of dogs and cats. In this article, we will explore how long dogs and cats sleep and the factors that influence their sleep patterns.

A cat's sleeping time 

Cats are fascinating and mysterious animals. Their tendency to sleep a lot is one example. If you are a cat owner, you have probably noticed that they sleep most of the time. On average, an adult cat sleeps between 12 and 16 hours a day. However, it is important to note that cats do not sleep in one block, but rather in several naps throughout the day.

Cats are nocturnal animals, which means that they tend to be more active at night. During the day they tend to take short naps, often interrupted by periods of activity. If you have a cat at home, you have probably noticed that they have periods of high activity, followed by long periods of sleep. Cats are able to go from being awake to asleep in no time, allowing them to recover quickly from their exertions.

The different sleep phases of the cat 

Light sleep

This is the first phase of the sleep cycle. The cat is in a state of semi-sleep, but remains awake. The cat is still alert, as evidenced by ear movements and sometimes half-open eyelids. During this phase, your cat will change position if disturbed while sleeping, so you should not force it to stay in the place you have designated for it. 

Deep sleep

This is the most important phase of sleep for cats, as it promotes cell regeneration and revitalisation of the body. Also known as the mental rest or body regeneration phase, deep sleep in cats can last around 30 minutes. During this period, brain activity is minimised, breathing becomes slow, muscles relax and eyelids remain closed. Your cat will tend to curl up on itself or, alternatively, stretch out to the side during this phase. For an adult cat, this usually represents between 9 and 12 hours of total sleep, whereas in kittens this phase is almost non-existent.

Do cats dream?  

Like humans and many other mammals, cats are known to have phases of REM sleep, also known as REM sleep, where dreams occur. During this phase, cats may show paw movements, facial expressions and vocalisations that suggest they are dreaming. 

It is important to ensure that your cat has a comfortable place to sleep. Cats like warm, comfortable places, such as cushions or cosy blankets. If your cat has a comfortable place to sleep, it will be happier and more relaxed. It is also important to ensure that your cat has a safe environment to sleep in, free from potential predators.

Discover our treats "Soft & chewy Calming" for cat ! 

Dog sleep

Dogs, like cats, are popular pets and they also have distinct sleep patterns. Dogs need a lot of sleep to stay healthy and the amount of sleep they get can vary greatly depending on the breed, size and age of the dog. On average, an adult dog sleeps between 12 and 14 hours a day, but puppies and older dogs tend to sleep longer than healthy adult dogs.

What is the average amount of sleep a dog gets?

The amount of sleep a dog gets depends on its age and daily activity level :

  • Puppies need a lot of sleep and can sleep up to 20 hours a day, which is about 90% of their time.
  • Adult dogs reduce their sleep time to about 12 to 15 hours per day, which is about 50 to 65% of their time.  
  • Older dogs may spend up to 75% of their day sleeping, averaging about 18 hours per day.  

Sleep requirements can also be influenced by physical exertion, weather conditions and the dog's level of boredom or exercise.

The different sleep phases in dogs

Deep sleep for dogs  

Deep sleep for a dog is a phase of the sleep cycle characterised by complete muscle relaxation and reduced brain activity. During this period, the dog is immobile, breathing is slow and regular, and muscle tone is low. Deep sleep is essential for the dog's physical and mental recovery, promoting tissue regeneration, memory consolidation and strengthening the immune system.

Does the dog have dreams?

During REM sleep, the dog's brain returns to near-normal activity, the muscles relax and the body becomes more relaxed. It is during this phase that the dog consolidates its memories of the day through dreams. Are you wondering if your dog can dream and have nightmares? The answer lies in his behaviour during sleep. As mentioned earlier, dreams in dogs occur when they enter the REM sleep phase. During this period, you can observe muscle contractions and eye movements under their eyelids. Their muscles are completely relaxed, but their intense brain activity allows the production of dreams. According to science, it is likely that dogs dream about events during the day: their walks, their games, their interactions with other dogs and even their beloved owners.

Sleep disorders for dogs

Sleep disorders in dogs can have a negative impact on their health and well-being. Common sleep problems in dogs include insomnia, sleep apnea and nightmares. Dogs can also have sleep problems due to medical conditions such as arthritis, allergies, hyperthyroidism and heart failure.

As with cats, it is important to provide dogs with a comfortable and safe place to sleep. Dogs need a comfortable bed and a quiet place to rest, away from noise and distractions. Dog owners should also ensure that their pets get enough exercise and mental stimulation to promote quality sleep. 

Ultimately, sleep is essential to the health and well-being of pets, whether they are cats or dogs. Understanding each pet's unique sleep patterns and providing an appropriate sleep environment can help ensure their long-term health and happiness.

What we can do to improve your pet's sleep:  

  • A cosy place to sleep : Make sure your pet has a comfortable place to sleep, adapted to their preferences (enclosed and cosy spaces for cats, larger beds for dogs).
  • A sleep routine : Establish a regular sleep routine by putting your pet to bed at the same time every night and waking him up at the same time every morning.
  • Stimulate your cat or dog:Provide your pet with enough exercise and physical and mental stimulation during the day to promote restful sleep at night.
  • Healthy & Balanced Feeding: A balanced diet, adapted to the specific needs of the animal, can promote a more restful sleep.You can use our calming treats specially designed for pets, such as Calm Bites for cats and Serenity Bites for dogs, to reduce anxiety and stress. 

Soft & chewy Serenity

In summary, cats and dogs are popular pets with distinct sleep patterns. Cats need several naps throughout the day and sleep on average between 12 and 16 hours per day, while adult dogs sleep on average between 12 and 14 hours per day. Cats have nocturnal sleep patterns and can sleep at any time, while dogs require REM sleep for quality sleep. It is important to provide our pets with a comfortable and safe sleeping environment so that they can rest and be happy. So the next time you see your cat or dog sleeping, know that it is perfectly normal and necessary for their health and well-being. Take the opportunity to watch them, as there is nothing more soothing and cute than seeing your pet well rested.