Do Dogs Dream?

sleepdogHave you noticed your dog’s legs performing the running motion while your dog is asleep? Does your dog woof or whimper while sleeping? You may be wondering if your dog dreams. In today’s sleep blog, your Livonia, MI dentist, Dr. James Stewart, discusses a dog’s dream life.

The Answer Is…

According to scientists dogs dream just like humans do. Electroencephalogram (EEG) tests have been used to measure brain activity in sleeping dogs, learning that dogs have similar sleep patterns as humans and that they experience dreams in a similar fashion. Apparently, when dogs enter REM (rapid eye movement) sleep dreaming takes place just as in humans. While dreaming during REM both dogs and humans can experience involuntary muscle movements. Dogs often move their legs as if running, their breathing may speed up, they may have moments where they hold their breath, and they my let out a little bark, whimper, or whine.

Puppies vs Adult Dogs

Puppies dream more frequently than older dogs, probably due to the amount of new experiences they are processing. Smaller dogs dream more frequently than larger dogs. A dog the size of a Golden Retriever, for instance, might dream once in a 90 minute period, while a Toy Poodle dreams every 10 minutes.

Because dogs cannot share their dreams, we have no idea what they dream about. However, we can surmise from their actions while they are sleeping that they dream they are running, playing, maybe chasing a cat, and perhaps eating. Just as humans dream about their lives, a dog dreams about a dog’s life!

About Your Livonia MI Dentist Dr. Stewart

James R. Stewart, Jr, DDS, PC and our compassionate staff proudly serve patients of all ages from Livonia, Farmington Hills, Plymouth, Northville, Dearborn Heights, Garden City, and all surrounding communities. If you think you or a loved one is dealing with a sleep disorder, call our office today at (734) 425-4400, to schedule an appointment. At Dental sleep Medicine of Michigan, we are committed to forming trusting relationships with our patients so we can work together to achieve sound treatment and a future full of restful nights.