These little dogs with their cute, dark faces are no strangers to long hours of sleep. If you’ve had a pug before, you know that it’s not uncommon.
But there comes a time when every parent of a pug starts to wonder the obvious question—how much is too much? We can help you with that.
What’s Normal at Different Age Brackets?
Like humans, dogs also need sleep so that they can function properly. And it’s nice when they get enough sleep because when they are well-rested, they are active, energetic and less prone to acting out which is great news for all pet parents.
But when a pug sleeps so much that they are not socializing or getting enough exercise, it might be a matter of concern.
First of all, it is important for you to know that it is perfectly normal for a puppy pug that is about three weeks old to sleep for about 22 hours a day. Yes, they pretty much wake up only to eat.
Puppies that are three to eight weeks old sleep for about 20 hours every day. Those few extra hours will be spent exploring their surroundings.
Adult pugs that are two to five months old are likely to sleep for 18 to 20 hours a day at night and a nap or two during the day. If your dog is an active one, they are likely to fall asleep just about anywhere in the house.
Pugs that are six months to nine years of age sleep for roughly 14 hours a day. After the first six months, they transition into this sleep schedule and stay in it for a few years before they transition into their old age.
They might take a few naps during the day if they didn’t get enough at night. This might also happen if you are a late sleeper because they like to keep up with you.
Once they are older than nine years of age, they go back to sleeping about 20 to 60 minutes more than a regular adult pug. This is because of a decrease in their level of activity and metabolism too.
Usually, these changes happen gradually. And pugs are known for their long sleeping hours which is probably why these dogs are considered to be lazy.
But if your pug’s sleep time is out of these windows, you might have a reason to worry about their well-being. It is easy to start by seeing if they are getting enough exercise and entertainment.
Also Read: How to Stop a Pug From Snoring
Problems and Possible Solutions
Now, we’ve said that these dogs might take naps during the day to make up for the time they missed at night. But even these compensatory naps should not be longer than five hours.
If that happens, you might want to get to work. Start by checking if their routine is healthy for a pug their age and also mention it to the vet when you take them in for their routine check-up.
But before that, here’s a look at the common reasons and what you can do about it.
Reason #1: Boredom
This should not be surprising because even humans do this on occasion. It is only fair that when your little canine has nothing to do, they go for a quick nap.
It is a perfectly valid reason and it is actually not a terrible idea. This is particularly true if you are working during the day and they have nothing to amuse themselves with.
Just make sure that they are not throwing tantrums because they are unhappy that you are not around and you should be fine.
But if you want to solve it, you have to think of different ways in which you can stimulate your pup even when you are not at home.
A ball toy with treats is often the go-to for many pet parents who are not home during the day. Your pup will keep themselves engaged with the toy and as long as it keeps squirting out treats, it will be something they will enjoy doing.
Just remember not to add treats that might cause other problems like weight gain.
You can also try and get some help from friends or family members a couple of times during the week. Ask them to check on your little guy or drop them off at the pet guardian’s place before you leave for work.
Tell them that they should take your pug for a walk or play with them for a little while. You can also get a dog walker to do the same if you have those services available in your area and can afford them.
There is also a whole range of interactive toys available in the market that can be controlled with your smartphone. You can activate them at will or schedule them to play with your pug at regular intervals.
Doggy daycare is another good option. If you have a daycare meant for dogs in your neighborhood, you really lucked out. Otherwise, you can contact services that send a pet sitter to your home too.
Also Read: Are Pugs Good With Kids?
Reason #2: Not Enough Exercise
This is an easy habit to form and a rather tough one to break. And it applies to pugs just as it does to humans.
If you don’t get your pug to play around the house and be physically active, it is easy for them to turn into a tiny little couch potato.
The first step towards fixing this problem is to let your pug outside the house if that’s an option and spend some time playing games with them. If you can’t let them out, you can do this indoors too.
You could also start by taking them out for a walk a couple of times every day and get their body moving from the corner of the house they have embraced. You can try taking different routes every day so that they stay engaged and interested in the activity.
Now, pugs don’t like to play fetch all that much, so try games like ‘hide and seek’. You will have to get creative and find the right kind of games to get them motivated enough to want to do it with you.
Pugs also should not be doing too much physical work. So, find the right balance.
Reason #3: Bad Diet
If you are giving them low-quality food or too many treats and maybe even sharing your snacks with them, you might make them lazy and add to their weight gain problems. This not only keeps your pug full but also does not give them the nutrition they need to stay active and alert.
And it finally concludes in the dog sleeping more than they should because they are just lethargic all the time. You can start fixing this problem by getting them high-quality kibble.
This will keep them full and provide the right balance of nutrients. The food will give them the energy they need from each meal, which will, in turn, motivate them to walk around and play with you or even by themselves.
You can give them treats every now and then, obviously. But be sure to keep an eye on snacks that do not contain too much sugar, fat or calories.
Reason #4: Obesity
This is a breed that is both not inclined towards physical activity and not meant to do too much of it. So, obviously, obesity is a real possibility.
It is also one of the reasons they don’t like to move around too much and hence resort to sleeping excessively. While you might think they are not bothering you, they might be getting unhealthily fat and it’s your responsibility to save them from themselves.
You should also remember that once they gain those extra pounds, it is hard to get rid of them because typically, the weight is just going to keep increasing steadily.
What you can do is ask your vet to check if their health is all right and see if they have any problems like hypothyroidism, which is a possibility, and makes them prone to gaining weight.
Get a plan for their diet and make one for exercise too. Mobility is a great way to get rid of excess weight if you see that they are gaining some.
Reason #5: Illness
Finally, it is common for anyone to sleep a little extra when they are ill or have been injured. This is because they are unable to move or don’t have enough energy to move around as usual.
The solution for this one should be obvious. Inspect your pug to see if there is any injury on their body.
If you think your dog might be unwell, take them to the vet and make sure they do some tests to see if something is wrong with your pup. And in this case, rest is a good thing.
Also Read: Do Pugs Like to Cuddle?
Your pug might be sleeping more than usual for a variety of reasons. As a pet parent, you should know all the possibilities so that you can take good care of them.
A little laziness is fine and resting while ill or injured is also okay. Sleeping too much due to boredom is not the worst-case scenario but you must do something about it because, in the long run, that might turn into obesity.
And keep an eye on their diet just to be sure.