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Why does my dog shake when she sleeps?

asked 2017-03-12 21:57:29 -0500

This is a question that we often get from sitters and owners who work with Rover. Help the community out by answering them in our forum!

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answered 2017-03-13 06:21:38 -0500

Just like us, dogs dream. They go through three sleep stages: NREM, non-rapid eye movement; REM, rapid eye movement; and SWS, short-wave sleep. It is in the SWS stage that a dog breathes heavily while he is sleeping. Animal experts theorize that dogs dream during the REM stage and act on their dreams by twitching or moving all four paws as if they were chasing a rabbit. Dogs who sleep all curled up must keep their muscles tensed and are therefore less relaxed than dogs who stretch out when they sleep and are less likely to twitch in their sleep.

For reasons yet to be explained, young puppies and senior dogs tend to move more in their sleep and to dream more than adult dogs. If you are sleeping close by, these dogs may unintentionally wake you up because of their jerky body movements.

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answered 2017-03-13 02:33:21 -0500

The dog may simply by having a dream, normal sleep cycle, especially if they appear relaxed.

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