Do dogs dream? And what do they dream about? We’ve got the science for you. But first, and most importantly, we’ve gathered up some adorable visual evidence. Let’s take a look.
It usually starts with some twitching.
There might also be some quivering.
And things can quickly progress to murmuring, barking, or even howling.
Soon, you’re probably poised, camera in hand, hoping to capture some air-running action.
Or maybe a comically uncomfortable snoozing position.
And you’re probably wondering: Is my dog dreaming? Short answer: Yes, he is.
According to Stanley Coren, psychologist and author of several books on dog behavior, sleeping canines show similar brain wave patterns to humans. Because of this, they, too, experience multiple sleep stages, including dream-rich REM sleep.
The key difference is that dogs enter the REM stage more quickly, typically after 20 minutes (for humans, it’s about 90 minutes).
Size also matters. Coren says small dogs (and puppies) dream fast and often, with perhaps 60-second dreams every 10 minutes or so.
Larger dogs, meanwhile, dream longer and have approximately an hour of non-dream time between five-minute dreaming sessions.
So, what are our furry companions dreaming about?
Short of an Inception-like scientific breakthrough, it’s anyone’s guess, although the experts believe dogs dream about doggie things—chasing squirrels, rolling in the grass, or perhaps letting the UPS guy know who’s boss.
Either way, we suggest you let your sleeping dog lie. And maybe film his sweet dreams for posterity …