Westies or West Highland Terriers are small in size but high on cuteness and energy. They are great to keep as pets, but naturally, require the right kind of care.
Although Westies are not very high maintenance dogs, you need to be aware of their regular habits before considering adoption.
As a Westie owner or a soon-to-be Westie owner, concerning yourself with the sleep cycles of your pet is important.
Sleep patterns are not only a part of health management but also a general aspect of living with a pet.
How Long Do West Highland White Terriers Sleep?
The exact hours a Westie sleeps are variable from one dog to the next. Each West Highland Terrier has different health requirements, and this is reflected through sleep habits.
Other factors to consider are their level of exercise, eating habits, and overall energy levels.
On average, a Westie is likely to sleep for at least 13 hours on a regular basis. This may seem high for new Westie owners, but is a reasonable amount for this specific breed.
West Highland Terriers have higher sleep requirements than their humans. Failure to complete 13 hours of restful sleep can even impact their health in the long term.
With this information in mind, it’s recommended that you read up on the other specifics of Westie sleeping habits too.
When Do Westies Sleep?
Adopting a new pet is obviously exciting. But overlooking certain details can cause exhaustion if you aren’t prepared.
Not knowing when your Westie will sleep can eventually create problems when your usual lifestyle is disrupted. Prepping for a new pet thus also includes accommodation and training for the right kind of sleeping habits.
At first, your Westie may not conform to the same sleeping habits as the family. This can require an adjustment period for both the pup and the new owners.
Since Westies require more sleep than their owners, they are likely to nap during the day as well. Although you may be tempted to play with your new pup, it is recommended you allow them their proper rest.
After the adjustment period, your Westie will eventually learn to fit the sleeping patterns of the family. Since they are quick learners, they will pick this up faster if actively trained.
Although they will continue to nap frequently, most of their sleep requirements will be fulfilled through the night.
Where Do Westies Sleep?
Once new pet owners are acquainted with the timing of their Westie’s sleeping, the location must be considered too.
The place your Westie chooses to sleep is heavily influenced by the pet owner’s preference. Some allow their Westies to sleep in their own beds, while others create a separate sleeping station.
The location of your Westie’s naps will also be determined by how you train it. In the beginning, they may choose to sleep erratically and shift locations frequently.
Ultimately, the sleeping station your Westie picks out will become an important secure location for them. They will become psychologically attached to their sleeping station and even treat it as a sanctuary.
Randomly allowing your Westie to sleep in different locations can eventually lead to a sense of displacement and even anxiety.
For this reason, training will become important to ensure your Westie’s optimal mental health.
Related: Best Dog Beds for Westies
Should You Train Your Westie to Sleep in Crates Or Beds?
This is an important choice for any pet owner to make.
On one hand, sleeping with a pet can be comforting with nice cuddling sessions. However, some may also find it to be a nuisance over time.
Although there is no right answer, allowing pets to sleep in beds can deprive them of their own safe space. Giving your Westie a crate of its own can thus be beneficial.
A balanced option many owners opt for is crate training with the crate placed in the bedroom. This prevents separation anxiety while also providing independence for your Westie.
In either case, ensure that you don’t shut your Westie off from the bedroom they are used to sleeping in. Otherwise, this can discourage them from sleeping and disrupt their sleep cycles.
How To Crate Train Your Westie
The right kind of training for optimum sleep involves something known as crate training. The crate is the sleep station where your Westie should ideally sleep.
Crate training is important because it adheres to the instinct of your pet to make a den for itself.
A crate can be just a sleeping station or combined with a pen area for playtimes as well.
Crates basically allow you to create a designated area for your pet to retire to be alone or for resting.
The training involves making your Westie feel comfortable in their crate over time. You can encourage comfort by including plenty of padding, toys, and any other comfort items in the crate. Ultimately this can be a slow process and must take its natural course.
Once your Westie feels adjusted in their crate, they will not choose to sleep elsewhere. This will also help to set up a sleeping routine.
Since they will know when they have to get to their crates, they will associate the place with their schedules.
One thing to avoid at all times is associating the crate with punishment. If you banish your pup to its crate for timeouts, they will no longer see it as a safe space.
What Is The Importance Of Stable Sleep Cycles and Training?
Sleep cycles and training are intrinsic to making sure your Westie adjusts to his new home.
Good sleeping habits can only be attained through appropriate training. This will also ensure that your Westie knows when to sleep and when to wake up and exercise.
An untrained Westie can eventually become unhealthy due to non-uniform sleeping, exercise, and eating schedules.
What Do Sleeping Patterns Tell You About Your Westie?
Since West Highland Terriers are naturally hyperactive pups, they are quick to tire. It isn’t unlikely for your pet to nap multiple times during the day and shouldn’t be a source of concern.
However, there are some factors of caution to keep in mind and remain alert about.
If you know your Westie’s normal sleeping pattern, you can easily spot any aberrations. If your Westie sleeps more than their usual amount, it could be a red flag.
Continue to monitor your Westie’s sleeping habits in case of multiple red flags. If excess sleeping is coupled with overall weakness, then this could indicate something serious.
Additionally, look out for red flags like a lack of appetite and even depressed moods. If your Westie isn’t as enthusiastic about playtimes as before, it can be a major sign that something’s wrong.
In such cases, you should immediately take your Westie to the veterinarian for a general check-up.
These symptoms can be indicative of some pretty serious autoimmune disorders and sometimes even cancer.
As far as the health of your pet goes, ensure you only adopt from responsible breeders to avoid future risks.
It goes without saying that every Westie is unique, as is every pet owner. Thus you can always train your Westie to sleep according to your given preferences.
However, knowing the amount, location, and timing of your Westie’s sleeping is important for giving them the right training.
Additionally, improper or inadequate knowledge about Westie’s sleep cycles can leave you ignorant of their health issues.
Now that you know everything about Westie sleeping patterns, you can ensure the best health and happiness for your pup!