Sleep is essential for the physical and mental health of all living creatures, including our beloved canine companions. Unfortunately, just like humans, dogs can suffer from sleep disorders that can cause them to experience insomnia or other sleep disturbances. It is important for pet owners to be aware of the signs and symptoms so that they can take appropriate action to ensure their pet’s well-being.
Which Sleep Disorders Can Affect Dogs?
While less frequent in canines than in humans, there are several sleep-related issues that dogs can experience
One of the most common sleep disorders in dogs is sleep apnoea, which is characterised by pauses in breathing during sleep. Sleep apnoea can be caused by obesity, allergies, or structural abnormalities in the airway.
Other sleep disorders in dogs include narcolepsy, which causes sudden and uncontrollable episodes of sleep, and REM sleep behaviour disorder, which causes dogs to act out their dreams during the REM stage of sleep.
Additionally, dogs can experience insomnia or difficulty falling asleep, restless sleep, and excessive daytime sleepiness.
If you suspect that your dog is suffering from any sleeping issues, it is important to consult with a veterinarian. They can help determine the underlying cause of the sleep disorder and recommend appropriate treatment options. As your local Armadale vet, Railway Avenue Veterinary Hospital is here to help with any concerns you have regarding your pet’s sleeping behaviours. Make an appointment with us today.
Recognising the Signs and Symptoms
It can be difficult to identify sleep disorders in dogs, as their sleeping patterns and behaviours can vary widely depending on their breed, age, and individual temperament. However, there are some signs to look out for:
- Excessive daytime sleepiness – Excessive tiredness during the day and sleeping more than usual in a 24-hour period.
- Restless sleep – Frequent tossing and turning during the night or appearing to be restless or uncomfortable.
- Snoring or loud breathing – Loud snoring or breathing noises during sleep may be a sign of sleep apnoea, which can cause disruptions in your dog’s sleep.
- Night time waking or pacing – Frequent waking during the night or pacing and wandering during sleep time.
- Changes in behaviour – Increased irritability or aggression could be a sign of sleep deprivation.
If you notice any of the above or suspect that your dog has a sleep-related issue, it’s important to contact your trusted Mount Richon vets. Often there may be underlying causes and the problem may not necessarily be a sleep disorder. A thorough examination will help diagnose any issues and allow for prompt treatment to help your furry friend feel their best.
Ways to Promote Good Sleep
Creating a comfortable sleeping environment is important for ensuring that your dog gets the restful sleep they need. Here are some tips to better your dog’s sleeping environment:
Provide a comfortable bed – A good quality dog bed that is the right size for your pooch can make a big difference in their comfort. Choose a bed that is soft, supportive, and provides adequate cushioning to relieve pressure points.
Keep the sleeping area clean – Regularly clean your dog’s sleeping area to ensure that it is free of dirt, dust, and other allergens. Wash your dog’s bedding frequently and vacuum the surrounding area to keep it clean.
Provide appropriate bedding – Depending on your dog’s preferences and the weather, provide appropriate bedding. For example, in colder weather, use warm and cosy bedding, while in warmer weather, use cooling mats or bedding that allows for good air circulation.
Control noise and light – Minimize noise and light in the sleeping area to help your dog get a restful sleep. Use blackout curtains or shades to block out light and keep the area quiet.
Maintain a consistent sleep routine – Establishing a consistent sleep routine can help your dog get into a regular sleep pattern. Stick to a consistent bedtime and wake-up time and provide exercise and mental stimulation during the day to help your dog sleep better at night.
These simple things can help you create a comfortable and relaxing sleeping environment for your dog, which can help them get the rest required for optimal health and wellbeing.
Railway Avenue Veterinary Hospital is home to trusted, local Armadale and Mount Richon vets who will care for your pet as if it’s their own. If you have any concerns about your pet’s health, or if you are looking for a compassionate vet in your local area for check-ups, vaccinations, and more, make an appointment with us online now or call 08 9497 1547 today.