Puppies are needy, and they need a lot of attention and care, and the one thing that puppy parents can’t stop is to stop worrying. With as much sleep as you want your puppies to have, wondering if you should wake your puppy up to eat is a question frequently asked among puppy owners.
So, should I wake my puppy up to eat? The answer is no. In this case, we suggest you stick to the golden rule of “let sleeping dogs lie.”If you find your puppy generally healthy, then waking them up from their slumber might not be the best idea.
Puppies, in general, tend to sleep a lot. It is normal to see your puppy sleeping 90 percent of the time and the other 10 percent nursing in most cases. While this is normal, you as a puppy parent worry if your puppies are okay.
Should I Wake My Puppy up to Eat?
Rest assured, a standard puppy will sleep at least, give or take, 20 hours a day which is necessary for its overall growth. The fact is, for all its worth, your puppy is the only thing that matters.
So it is highly applicable to you to know what behavior is normal, what is not, and what you should do as a puppy parent.
Is My Puppy Sleeping Too Much?
Being a puppy parent, first and foremost, you can’t help but stress over the minor details when it comes to your little munchkin. Although it may seem like your puppy is sleeping more than it should, the chances of it being normal are relatively high. The main reason puppies sleep as much as they do regularly is to grow in size.
Moreover, a 2-week old puppy will stay asleep 90 percent of the time because it is in a neonatal phase. While the puppies are in the neonatal phase, they are usually stuck in a stage of sleep known as REM.
During this sleep stage, puppies will most likely twitch or kick, which may call for concern on your end more often than not. But studies have confirmed that puppies usually go into a deep sleep known as “activated sleep,” which continues until the 4th week. Rest assured, the twitching and kicking are signs of being healthy and getting the necessary exercise on its legs for it to stand on.
The famous rule “let sleeping dogs lie” comes in full force here. While being concerned about its sleeping and eating schedule is quite acceptable, waking up a puppy from its necessary sleep isn’t the right move.
You might startle your baby or, in the worst-case scenario, ruin its entire mood and make your puppy aggressive. If it is too young to have a sleep routine, the pro move here would be to follow the rule and let your puppy wake up on its schedule.
Keep in mind that age is also a significant factor here. The older the puppy, the less sleep it will take. Nevertheless, it is still a puppy, and it is still growing, learning, and adapting, so it needs the energy from its slumber.
Taking Care of My Puppy
A newborn puppy will typically latch itself onto its mother’s teat for milk as soon as they are born. Puppies generally are born starving, and they heavily rely on their mother’s milk which has essential support for their immune systems. Hence, to gain anti-bodies and nutrition, puppies will nurse every 2 hours on the first week and so forth.
However, in certain circumstances, the puppies do not get to latch on for several reasons. One of the reasons being the mother is in dire need of a medical emergency and is missing, or sometimes the mother refuses to nurse its puppies for no reason. That’s where you, as parents, come in. If a Puppy is off the teat, it is your responsibility to go and bottle feed it with the desired amount of milk.
Puppies require a lot of attention, and feeding them from a bottle could practically save their lives. Again, in this case, letting your puppy sleep more than what you think they should is the right call.
A standard puppy will ideally gain at least 14 percent of its weight daily. As a responsible puppy parent, you should keep weighing them every day and keep a tight track of their growth. Sleeping helps the puppy gain energy and flawlessly boosts its growth, so it is better not to wake them up to feed.
Running on a Puppy Schedule
While “How to Discipline a Puppy” research might be too much for a less than 8 weeks old puppy. Experienced puppy parents and breeders will both tell you that puppies thrive on an eat and sleep schedule. By making your puppy accustomed to mealtime, playtime, and sleep schedule, you’re on the right track as a great parent.
Usually, a puppy would be hungry after a good healthy walk or a game of fetch; you can start a schedule on this basis. The energy depleted can be regained by feeding it and potty training it after. A mealtime schedule should be at least within a 4-5 hour break while the puppy is young, depending on its sleep schedule.
As you train your puppy to be on a schedule, you’ll notice if anything odd comes up. Then you can contact a vet directly. While skipping meals sometimes may seem problematic, the best approach here would be to let it sleep depending on the activities you did together during the day.
Most of the hours in an 18-20 hours puppy sleep schedule should be at night. So it is a good idea to keep your puppy somewhat lively and active without overtiring it, before bedtime for you both.
When Should I Be Concerned?
Having a puppy is fantastic, but it comes with its share of responsibilities and stressful days and nights. The more you know the better. So while sleeping 20 hours or more a day is typical for a puppy, puppy parents should be concerned if your puppy distances itself from everything.
A newborn puppy usually does not distance itself from its mother or siblings without any problems. In most cases, not nursing itself can be pretty serious, too, depending on if you can help it or not. A trip to the vet should always be protocol if you notice something odd about your puppy.
Again, sleeping 18-20 hours is normal for a puppy, but if you notice your puppy being dull and sluggish while awake, you should visit a vet as soon as possible. In most cases, when a puppy seems lethargic, skipping meals, and showing signs of weakness, it could be due to a loss in glucose levels or has low body temperature. It would be a great help for you and your puppy if you always looked for signs that seem odd on a puppy and immediately called the vet.
The apparent signs and symptoms that you should also watch out for:
- You should visit a vet if your puppy shows signs of fever, which includes panting, shivering, and showing signs of tiredness after its scheduled nap hours.
- You should visit a vet if your puppy has diarrhea and vomiting symptoms.
- After establishing a puppy schedule, if your puppy does not seem to be ecstatic about food or miss a feeding schedule, you should call a vet immediately.
Should I Be This Worried?
As a new puppy parent, or an experienced one, it doesn’t matter. The task of taking care of your puppy can be nerve-racking. As overwhelming as it is, the best thing to do as a parent is to try and reassess certain situations. While a puppy may be sleeping too long, as long as it seems healthy, responds to its surroundings, and plays with you, the puppy should be fine.
Puppies generally are energetic and almost always are mischievous. While the norm for a sleeping puppy is 20 hours, some pups can even sleep more. So rest assured, you shouldn’t have to worry too much about missing meals sometimes because it’s not unheard of. While it is more than okay for a puppy to sleep this much and miss a meal or two, you should immediately call a vet if your puppy won’t eat after waking up.
Puppies generally don’t eat when they feel even the slightest temperature change. Most situations rarely do happen, but if it does, as a puppy parent, you should always be ready with your vet on the other end. Other than that, you have yourself a healthy naughty puppy who loves you, and you shouldn’t worry too much about what standard puppies usually do, which is sleeping a lot, eating a lot, and being bundles of joy.
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