Pitbulls are among the main culprits when it comes to lazy afternoon snoozes on the couch and cheeky mid-morning shut eye.
Yes, this medium-sized, bulky breed likes to get as much sleep as possible during the day and night. They have a robust, muscular build and a playful nature, which means that they expend a lot of energy throughout the day.
On average, Pit bulls sleep around 14 hours in total during the day.
But their sleeping patterns might surprise you. Those 14 hours of downtime are divided up between multiple short naps during daylight hours and some solid shut eye after sunset.
So let’s have a closer look at what affects a Pit bull's sleeping patterns and give you some insight into what to expect from your pup during each stage of its life.
Factors That Affect the Sleep Patterns of a Pit Bull
Like most domestic dogs, the average pit bull has distinctive sleeping patterns that significantly affect its behavior, mental state and overall health.
Consider the following factors that might influence how much your pit bull sleeps:
The age of your pit bull will effect not just how much sleep it gets but how much it actually needs to stay healthy.
Puppies simply require more sleep and downtime than adult dogs - as we’ll discuss a bit later. This is largely due to their development and growth.
Pit bulls stop growing when they’re about 12 months old. But they will only fully develop into their adult phase at about 18 months. So during this adult phase, their all-day snoozing habits will slowly begin to phase out.
They’ll become more alert and fully active and simply want to be awake more often during the day. But that’s not to say they won’t take the opportunity to bask in the warm afternoon sun for a nap when they can.
Medium-sized dog breeds, which pit bulls are, become senior citizens at about 9 - 10 years of age. Unfortunately, that doesn’t mean any free bus rides for these four-legged legends. But it does mean that they need to slow down just a tad.
Senior dogs often prefer the couch for a nap rather than the mid-morning jog they might have been up for as adolescents. So if you notice your older dog sleeping more often, that’s ok - and to be expected!
The health of a pit bull directly impacts its sleep.
Dogs with health issues may experience discomfort, pain, or lethargy, affecting their sleeping patterns.
Pit bulls are sensitive animals, so just like humans will lose sleep over something that’s ‘just not right,’ these dogs will stay awake and alert you to something that’s affecting their overall health.
Monitoring your pit bull's sleep habits can help identify any potential health concerns, and seeking veterinary advice is crucial in such cases.
Exercise and Mental Stimulation
Pit bulls' high energy levels necessitate regular exercise to keep them physically and mentally fit.
Engaging in play, walks, and training sessions helps them expend energy and promotes better sleep. After active play, pit bulls often take naps to restore and recuperate.
Mental stimulation is also essential for a pit bull's well-being.
Training courses and interactive toys keep their minds engaged, leading to more peaceful slumbers. Lack of exercise and mental stimulation can result in restlessness and disruptive behavior during the night.
So if you’re a pit bull owner, make sure you set up a regular exercise and training schedule. Your dogs’ routine should include longer, calming walks. This will help them to cultivate a calm demeanor while still burning a lot of energy.
Also, schedule time for mentally stimulating games where you challenge and develop their brain power. This will help your pit bull sleep much better at night.
Pit Bull Sleep Requirements
As mentioned in the outset, Pit bulls will generally sleep about 14 hours each day. This includes daytime naps and nighttime shut eye.
Although the biggest contributors to a pit bull’s sleeping patterns are their age and their health condition, but the exact sleeping pattern of each dog will vary.
As intelligent, active dogs, pit bulls need to sleep a lot each day, and a lack of sleep will cause them to act out and could even make them more aggressive.
But just how many hours are needed will vary from dog to dog.
The short answer to this conundrum is that each dog will ultimately listen to its body and sleep when needed. Responsible dog owners simply have to provide the best lifestyle and home for their dogs and let nature take its course.
Pit Bull Puppies Sleeping Habits
Newborn pit bull puppies love their nap time. New born puppies tend to sleep for the majority of the day.
During the first few weeks of life, pit bull puppies grow at an astonishing rate. They typically double their birth weight within the first week or two.
By the time they reach the age of 8 weeks, which is when they are often ready to go to their new homes, they can weigh anywhere between 10 to 15 pounds or more, depending on their specific breed lines and genetics.
Their bones, muscles, and organs develop, and they gain weight at a steady pace. It is not uncommon for them to experience a growth spurt during this period, which will naturally make them sleep more regularly.
Between 4 to 6 months of age, the growth rate of puppies begins to slow down. They are still growing, but not as rapidly as in their early weeks.
By the age of 1 year, they have typically reached their adult height, although they may continue to fill out and gain muscle mass until they are around 2 years old.
All this growth and development can be extremely exhausting. So don’t worry if your puppy seems to be sleeping more than expected.
Make sure your puppy has a comfortable bed or crate to sleep. Providing a safe, comfortable space for them to grow into will help them feel safe and secure and make them even more endearing during adulthood.
Factors Affecting Pit Bull Puppies' Sleep
Although they like to sleep a lot, some puppies might not get all the shut-eye they crave.
Between the age of 3 and 7 months, all puppies go through a teething phase. It’s during this time period that they lose their puppy teeth and develop their adult canines.
Teething causes discomfort, so give your puppy chew toys to make the transition smooth.
Another issue that your pit bull puppy might face is separation anxiety.
This is especially true if it’s been taken away from its mother at a young age. That’s because puppies form a strong bond with their caregivers at a very young age.
You’ll notice your puppy moan and grunt when left on its own. These are outward expressions of separation anxiety.
If you’re not in the position to spend a lot of your time with your young puppy, provide it with a toy or a blanket, perhaps an old t-shirt that carries your scent. This will help them cope when you’re away and get some needed rest.
Promoting Healthy Sleep Habits in Pit Bull Puppies
Some parents have noticed that their (human) children sleep better at night when they restrict screen time, set their bedroom heating to a comfortable temp and minimize noise after a certain hour.
In a way, their children's minds are prepared for sleep as they’re calmed down from the excitement of the day before they’re expected to fall asleep.
Applying the same method will help your puppies sleep better at night.
So make sure they go for a potty break in the early evenings, allowing them to walk around just enough to sniff the explore their immediate surroundings. Make sure their bedding is clean, warm and comfortable.
It’s a good idea to provide a crate from a young age as your puppy will associate their crate with a safe space to rest and ensure there are little to no outside noises and sounds.
All these factors will help your dogs sleep well, day and night.
Sleep Disorders in Pit Bulls
If you have an adult pit bull that seems to struggle to sleep, you might want to take it for a vet check-up.
Grown pit bulls, like many other breeds, suffer from various sleep disorders. Here are two of the most common disorders that might keep your dog awake at night:
Sleep apnea is characterized by pauses in breathing during sleep.
It can lead to disrupted sleep, snoring, and excessive daytime sleepiness. Certain anatomical features, such as a short snout or narrow airways, can make some pit bulls more prone to sleep apnea.
Insomnia refers to the difficulty in falling asleep or staying asleep.
It can be caused by various factors, including anxiety, discomfort, or underlying medical conditions. Stressful or unfamiliar environments, changes in routine, or pain can contribute to insomnia in pit bulls.
In conclusion, understanding the sleeping habits of pit bulls, whether they are adorable puppies or adult dogs, is crucial for their overall well-being and happiness.
As with all dog breeds, pit bulls have distinct sleep patterns that vary based on their age and individual characteristics. While the average adult pit bull tends to sleep more than some other dog breeds, each pup may have its unique preferences and needs when it comes to rest.
For pit bull owners, ensuring your pittie gets quality sleep allows them to recharge their energy, grow, and maintain optimal physical and mental health. Regular exercise, mental stimulation, and monitoring of their health play crucial roles in promoting better sleep quality for pit bulls.
Frequently asked questions
How many hours of sleep do pit bulls need on average?
Pit bulls, like most dogs, require approximately 12 to 14 hours of sleep per day.
Do pit bulls sleep more than other breeds?
No, their sleeping patterns are generally typical for canines.
Why does my dog sleep so much?
Dogs sleep a lot due to their dog breed, age, and hours sleeping. On average, a dog sleeps approximately 12 to 14 hours a day. Factors like activity level and day sleeping can also influence their sleep patterns. If you have concerns about your dog's sleep habits, consult with a veterinarian.