A fascinating article on the website Live Science sheds light on a topic that has intrigued dog owners for years. What exactly is your dog dreaming about when she moves her paws or whimpers while sleeping? Experts have long been studying the sleep patterns of animals. Recent research provides interesting insight into the dream life of our four legged friends.
Scientists are confident that dogs dream about things they do while they are awake, just like people. Dogs go through similar sleep cycles as humans, including REM sleep, a time when our dreams are most vivid. In fact, researchers think all mammals (and even most non-mammal vertebrates) dream during sleep.
What’s with that twitching while dogs sleep? Experts say it’s more common for puppies and older dogs to move while dreaming, as the part of the brain that paralyzes major muscles during sleep doesn’t work as well in very old or very young dogs.
A dog will dream about things he does during the day, just like us. Chances are, their dreams might get a bit weird like ours do, too. Also like us, dogs can get nightmares and suffer from narcolepsy, a disorder in which they can suddenly fall asleep during waking hours.
Interested in learning more about the inner life of your dog? Check out the book Do Dogs Dream? by Dr. Stanley Coren.
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