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11 Little-Known Reasons Why Your Dog Sleeps When You’re Gone

Why Does My Dog Sleep When I'm Gone

Your pooch is the dog’s version of Sleeping Beauty. 

They just doze off all day until you come back and kiss them.


Is it normal for dogs to sleep like this?

Don’t fret. In this article you’ll discover:

  • 5 things to do when your dog just sleeps all day. 
  • The most independent and the laziest dog breeds.
  • 11 little-known reasons why your dog sleeps when you’re gone.
  • And much much more…

Why does my dog sleep when I’m gone?

Your dog sleeps when you’re gone for reasons such as their breed personality, age, natural behavior, daily routine, boredom, lack of companion, exhaustion, they’re sick/senile, or they have too much sugar in their diet.

11 little-known reasons why your dog sleeps when you’re gone

#1: Dogs really sleep a lot

Isn’t it nice to just sleep in?

I mean, now that we’re adults, we dream of lazy days where we can just snuggle up in our beds and not be awakened by our alarm clocks.

“Mom, I do that all day! 

Does that mean I’m living the dream?”, your dog would say if they could speak.

Well, that’s kinda correct. 

But sometimes you can’t help and wonder. 

“Is it normal for them to just sleep in all day and every day – especially when I’m gone for work?”

For some dogs, it is. They’re suckers for sleeping after all.

They can doze off for 12-14 hours. Which basically means they’re asleep half of their day or even more than that.  

According to PetMD, 50% of their day is spent sleeping. 30% is for rest time (Somehow, they need some more rest time aside from all that dozing off).

And the other 20% is for their activities like eating and playing.

Some dogs are really more sleepyheads than others. 

And their sleeping pattern depends on certain factors. Like their age, breed, weight, and size. 

#2: They’re still puppies

Your Puppy Sleeps Whenever You're Gone

If you think that sleeping for 12-14 hours is already shocking, then you haven’t heard the last of it yet.

Puppies. They sleep for 18-20 hours a day.

“Oh. Wow!”

I know, right.

So if your pup sleeps whenever you’re gone, don’t worry too much. They just need a really good rest to strengthen their immune system.

They’ll sleep like this until they’re 12 weeks of age. But after that period, they’d start sleeping like a regular adult pooch. 

Just a friendly reminder, by the way. 

If you’re leaving your pup at home inside a crate, make sure you let them out every 3-4 hours. 

This is the longest time they can hold their pee since they still have small bladders. 

You might also like: Why does my dog suddenly hate his crate?

#3: Boredom

Another reason why your dog sleeps when you’re gone is that they’re bored.

They’ve got nothing else to do but sleep. 

I mean, look at it this way:

Remember when you were in high school? And there was this absolutely boring subject you so dreaded. 

Partially because the teacher talked in a monotonous tone. But also because you asked yourself, “When the heck am I gonna use this in real life?!” 

To sum it up in one word, it all seemed pointless. 

So you needed an escape. But ditching class wasn’t (always) the answer. Not if you wanted to finish high school on time at least.

That’s when you discovered that you’d rather sleep than have to endure this torture (subject). 

One of the easiest ways to cope with boredom. Provided you’re not sitting at a front desk. And the teacher’s so disengaged that they’d rather be done with telling the lesson than stop to tell you off.

This could be precisely how your dog’s feeling when being alone.

“I’m just gonna numb the feeling of being alone by setting off to dreamland!”, they’d say.

Now, back to your doggo.

Maybe it’s because they don’t have a window with a view where they can watch their neighbors fight. Or they’re not left with toys to play with. 

Their minds don’t get stimulated while you’re away. 

So they just sleep out of boredom.

#4: Lack of companion

Your dog sleeps when you’re gone because they lack a companion.

Dogs are social animals. 

They thrive in an environment with other dogs and humans. So if they’re constantly alone, they can get sad and depressed.

“But why? I leave them with lots of toys to play with.”

Let me ask you this. 

Have you ever been stuck in your house alone? With absolutely no one to talk with – not even on social media?

Maybe at first, you get to enjoy it. Being alone really relaxes the mind sometimes. 

It’s just you and your thoughts alone.

But you’ll soon realize that after a while, it can really get lonely. 

That’s how your pooch feels. 

Whenever you’re gone, their happiness also disappears. 

So even if you leave them with their favorite toys, it’ll all mean nothing to them after some time. Because they’ve got no one to enjoy them with anyways.

#5: They’re independent

You Have An Independent Dog

Your pooch might as well play ‘Kevin’ if there was a dog version of ‘Home Alone’.

They sleep so much better when you’re not around because it’s much quieter in the mornings. 

There’s no noise from the TV.  And no tossing and turning in the bed.

You’re sure that your dog misses you. But there’s no way they’re lonely. 

They’re a strong pooch who doesn’t really give a heck. 

Congrats on having a well-adjusted doggo!

Some dog breeds are much more independent than others. They’re comfortable sleeping with or without their dog parents.

Check out the list below if your pooch belongs to the most independent dog breeds.

  • Maltese.
  • Shiba Inu.
  • Greyhound.
  • Basset Hound.
  • Chinese Shar-Pei.
  • Alaskan Malamutes.

Interested to know more about this topic? Check out this cool article here.

#6: Too much sugar in their diet

“Wake up, doggo.

I’ve been home for an hour and you’re still snoring.”

You’re wondering why your dog’s always sleeping. Whether you’re at home or not, they just prefer dozing off. 

They also lack energy and interest in doing things. 

Why’s that?

Check their food.

A possible reason why your pooch’s always sluggish and sleeping is because there’s too much sugar in their diet.

And what happens when you eat sugar?

You feel like a nap would do you good soon after. Because you’re experiencing a sugar crash. 

I remember when I used to work in the corporate world. I and my colleagues would get back from lunch and have a brief convo. And it’d begin with my colleagues saying something like:

“Oh, I had such a nice lunch. And suddenly I felt so sleepy…

But back to your dog…

Aside from feeling slow, having empty-calorie sugars in their food can also cause them to become overweight and have diabetes.

#7: They’re sick

You have a dilemma.

There has been a major change in your dog’s behavior. A few days ago they were very energetic. But now they’d rather sleep instead.

Whenever you’re gone, they’re always resting. And when you come home, it’s hard for you to wake them up.

They’re also lethargic all of a sudden.

“What’s happening with my dog?”

Your dog’s unusual sleeping habit can be caused by a disease or medical condition that causes them to become sleepy. 

Here are some of them according to Vetstreet:

  • Cancer.
  • Anemia.
  • Parvovirus.
  • Heart disease.
  • Hypothyroidism.
  • Hormonal imbalance.

Warning: If your dog is showing serious symptoms such as difficulty in breathing and vomiting, have them checked in an animal clinic.

#8: Tired from exercise

Every morning you go out for a morning jog with your dog. You make sure that they get their daily dose of activities for the day. 

And once you leave them to go to work, they just immediately doze off. 

The only time you think they wake up is when they drink their water.

Because of being tired from their exercise, your dog recharges their energy by sleeping when you’re gone. 

Nice job, dog parent! 

Give yourself a pat on the back.

Even if you’re busy, you make sure your furbaby gets their exercise. 🙂

#9: Doggy dementia

Your old dog often sleeps when you’re gone.

Not only that. 

You’ve also noticed that they doze off in the mornings and become more active at night.


“What’s the reason behind this, Petya?”

As your dog ages, they’ll start to have certain illnesses and medical conditions. Their brain will start to degenerate and the mind becomes less sharp. 

One disorder they could have is Canine Cognitive Dysfunction. It’s a dementia-like condition for dogs. 

This makes your dog disoriented and confused. So their routine gets messed up. 

Their nights become days. And their days are turned into nights. 

“So how common is this condition, really?”

A news article shows that 40% of dogs who are aged 14 and above are more likely to have CCD. 

That’s quite a number, isn’t it?

So if you’re wondering if your dog has dementia, look out for these signs:

  • Losing recognition.
  • Repetitive behaviors.
  • Forgetting learned behaviors.
  • Whining and barking more than usual.

#10: Sleeping is a part of their day

It’s no secret that dogs love having a routine. 

Even if they can’t tell time, they know when it’s time for them to eat. 

Or when you’re about to leave and what time you’ll return home.

If you could ask your pooch what their routine is like, what do you think is their answer?

“I wake up. 

Then I lick my hooman’s face to greet them:

Good morning, mama/papa! 

When my hooman leaves me at home, I sleep until they come back.”

Your dog sleeps when you’re gone because it’s part of their day-to-day life.

It’s imprinted on their body schedule or to-do list. 

They’re wired to think that once they wake up, it’s only a matter of time until you’re coming back home.

#11: Breed personality

“Is my dog lazy?”

You can’t remember exactly how many times you’ve asked this yourself.

You’ve installed a CCTV at home to check out what your sweet pooch is doing whenever you’re gone. Worry is taking over your mind.

“Are they causing trouble?”

“Do they cry because they miss me?”

But nope. Every friggin’ time you watch their live stream, they’re asleep. 

Breaking news!

Your pooch may be one of the lazy dog breeds. They’re one the nappers and the lovers of siestas.

Here’s a list of some members in their league:

  • Pug.
  • Greyhound.
  • Chihuahua.
  • Saint Bernard.
  • French Bulldog.
  • Bernese Mountain Dog.
  • Cavalier King Charles Spaniel.

Learn more about why your dog is lazy by reading this article.

5 tips on what to do if your dog sleeps when you’re gone

#1: Use a dog camera

It’s astonishing how technology helps us to take care of our fur babies better.

For instance, if you’re worried that your pooch is just sleeping all day when you’re gone, you can consider using a dog camera. 

Well, not just any dog camera that only allows you to view your pooch.

It has to be something that dispenses treats when you wish to. And it should allow you to talk to them as well. 

(Some even have a screen so your pooch can see you as well, but they’re a bit more expensive).

So for example, your dog’s looking bored and lonely. With the dog camera, you can talk to them and make them do simple tricks they enjoy.

Rewards? No problem. 

Those dog cameras can toss them little kibbles when they do a good job.

It’s useful in keeping your dog active. 

And it’ll also help you to calm them down when they’re anxious about being alone. 

Check out the video below to see how a dog camera like the ‘Furbo’ works. 

#2: Let them enjoy being alone

You may not be with your dog at home. But that doesn’t mean you can’t show your love for them.

Since your independent pooch loves sleeping when you’re gone, make sure they have a comfortable bed. 

Leave them with puzzles and toys. So whenever they’re awake, they can have something to do. 

Oh, and don’t forget their water!

They might want to take a sip after all that snoring and drooling. 

And lastly, give them something to look at. 

Kinda like in a hotel, where everybody loves a good view.

Open the curtains if your pooch loves gawking outside. Watching the neighbors and cars passing by could be relaxing and entertaining for them at the same time. 

Make sure to keep the windows locked, though. You don’t want your dog sneaking out of the house 🙂

#3: Keep them active once you return

Since your pooch always sleeps when you’re gone, keep them active every time they wake up. 

Remember that your dog’s only active 20% of their day. The other percentages are spent sleeping and resting.

So make their active time worth it. Tire them out, make them run the whole neighborhood (if you can do it as well).

This way they’ll still be healthy and be in good shape. 

However, be careful of the ‘zoomies’. Once you open the door to go outside, your dog will surely start acting loco.

“Zoomies, what?”

These are bursts of energy that are caused by having too much pent-up energy in your dog’s body. 

Your pooch will run in circles and jump up and down until they’ve eventually calmed down.

#4: Have them checked at a vet

If you’re worried that your pooch sleeping habit is caused by something more serious, it’s best to get a professional’s help.

Look out for signs or symptoms. 

Once your pooch is showing unusual things like shaking, take videos of them. 

This may help the vet in diagnosing your concern.

#5: Give your pooch a companion

When dogs have companions that they get along with, they become happy. 

They’d be more active when you’re gone as well because they finally have someone to play with.

“But Petya, I only have space for 1 dog.”

I know… 2 dogs can really be a handful.

But giving your pooch a friend doesn’t necessarily mean you need another dog. 

They can also have a dogsitter. Someone that can stay with them while you’re away. 

Or if it’s too expensive, try looking at your trusted neighbors or friends.

Maybe they also have dogs. 

Or maybe you can ask them if they would like to watch your pooch while you’re away for a small fee.