Have you wondered why your Beagle appears to sleep more than you? Or are concerned your Beagle sleeps too much or doesn’t sleep enough?
Beagles sleep between 10 to 12 hours per day. Beagle puppies, however, will sleep for much longer typically 18-20 hours per day. If your Beagle is active, they will require more energy, which means they are likely to need more sleep.
Like in humans, both the quality and quantity of sleep are equally as important to our Beagle friends. This post will provide information on what impacts your Beagle’s sleep and what five things you could consider to help your Beagle have a restful sleep.
How Much Sleep is Enough Sleep For My Beagle?
When Beagles are not up to mischief, eating or out on their walks, we often see them on their backs sprawled out with their four paws in the air and usually snoring their heads off! So how much sleep do they need?
Beagles will often sleep between 10-12 hours per day; this will usually be spread out between their overnight sleep and the naps they take during the day. Several factors will influence the amount of sleep they will have:
Levels of activity: like in humans, if we have been for a long walk or maybe a jog, we tend to sleep better and longer. The same is true in Beagles; if they are more active, they will sleep longer.
The age of the Beagle: When a Beagle is young, 0-18 months, they will sleep longer, anything between 18 and 20 hours. As they are developing and growing, they need the rest to grow into healthy adult Beagles. When a Beagle is older, they too will also sleep longer; they get tired easier and need more rest. Usually, from around 7-8 years old, you may see your Beagle slow down and sleeping a little longer.
Size of the Beagle: Beagles easily put weight on, they can be scavengers, hoovering up food while on the walk or just at home. Also, it’s quite easy to overfeed your Beagle with treats. Obese Beagles will sleep longer; however, being overweight can cause health problems for them.
Beagles need the right amount and quality of sleep to ensure they get the rest they need to be healthy and energized.
If you are unsure of whether your Beagle is sleeping enough, or you have seen a change in their sleeping habits, I would recommend you seek professional advice from your qualified veterinarian. Health issues can cause too little or too much sleep; it is also always good practice to seek professional help for your Beagle.
Do Beagles Sleep Differently to Humans?
On face value, it doesn’t appear that Beagles are all that different from us when they sleep. Their routine is not too dissimilar to ours; they will go to bed and wake up at the same time as us. They will also quite often dream; there is nothing cuter than seeing your Beagle buddy squeaking, wagging her tail and moving her paws, in her sleep. You wonder what they are dreaming about – I always think my girls are chasing hares.
But surprisingly, there are differences. When we sleep, we will go through multiple stages of sleep. The final stage, which is where we get the most rest is the REM (Rapid Eye Movement) stage. This occurs in mammals (including humans and dogs) it is characterised by eyes moving rapidly and is where we dream. There have been scientific studies, which suggest dogs will spend 10% of their time in REM sleep whereas humans will spend typically 25%. As Beagles are not getting as much rest (or REM time) as they need, they require more sleep than humans.
Another difference is Beagles will sleep in short bursts throughout the night, whereas humans will sleep typically in single or multiple bursts. Wolves are where Beagles and all other dogs came from, and therefore would hunt at night when it’s easy to find prey. So Beagles will tend to have power naps rather than one long period of sleep. You will also notice that the smallest sound will suddenly awaken your Beagle, again this is due to their hunting ancestry.
Five Tips To Help Your Beagle Get Good Sleep
When we get up in the morning and go to see our Beagles, they are happy to see you. Unlike humans, if they have had a bad night’s sleep, they can’t tell you. So sometimes it can be a worry, not knowing if your Beagle is getting the rest she needs to be happy and healthy.
Here are some tips on how you can help your Beagle get good sleep:
- Make sure they have their own den: Beagles, like all dogs, like to have their very own place to sleep. Beagles adapt exceptionally well to crates with the right training. We have always used crates with our Beagles and have ensured they are a cosy, clean and warm place to go. If your house is drafty, place a blanket over the crate, to reduce draft. And use an insulated blanket on the base of the crate or bed. We have always used Vet Bed; these are warm and can be easily thrown in the washer machine to clean. Make sure their bed or crate is not near any background noise, such as dishwashers or washing machines, as this can be noisy for your Beagle.
- Give them plenty of regular exercise: Beagles are high energy dogs. Ensure you walk them at least once a day for a minimum of 30 minutes. Both exercise and play, not only contribute to better sleep; they are good for your overall Beagle’s health. Playing and training your Beagle is excellent mental stimulation and can also improve sleep quality.
- Ensure they have a nutritious and balanced diet: Beagles easily put weight on, which leads to lethargy and more sleep than they probably need. Try to make sure your Beagle has a healthy balanced diet, we feed our Beagles a raw food diet and find not only does this promote overall health benefits, but they also sleep well too. Your qualified veterinarian will be able to talk you through the options on feeding.
- Stick to a routine: Beagles, like all dogs, love routine. Try to make the bedtime routine the same, in terms of the time they go to bed and where they sleep. In the past I’ve as a very special treat let my Beagles sleep upstairs with me when I’ve returned to the old routine of sleeping in their crate downstairs, sometimes they have cried when I’ve put them to bed. They love my ‘big bed’ so much!
- Health: Keep an eye on your Beagle, if you see a sudden change in sleep, i.e. they are sleeping more or less than usual. Consult your veterinary practice for advice. A change in sleep pattern could be due to health problems. Also when my Beagle Bracken passed away last year, Baylee, the Beagle friend she left behind, started to sleep pretty much all day (as well as night). I sought advice from my vet, who checked her over and advised it was probably depression. Baylee was grieving for her friend.
Does my Beagle have dreams like me?
All the years I’ve had Beagles and Labradors (when growing up), watching them sleep, I’ve often wondered if they dream and if they do, are as vivid and fun as our dreams. We don’t have the option to ask our furry friends how they slept, all we know is from the twitching, tail wagging and whimpers, we believe they’ve had a dream.
Scientists have assumed that because dogs have similar sleep cycles to us, and we both enter the REM stage, that like us, they will have dreams. Although there is no hard evidence to support this theory when you see your Beagle running, or wagging her tail, take comfort in she is doing the movements of regular activity. So maybe she is indeed chasing that hare in her sleep!
In summary, Beagles will sleep between 10-12 hours and will need longer if they are young or old. If you are unsure your Beagle is getting enough or too much sleep consult a qualified vet for advice. If your Beagle is healthy and you think she isn’t sleeping enough, maybe think about buying her a new bed, crate training or introducing routine and more activity into her day. Nothing tires a Beagle like a long walk in the fresh air!