Man’s best friend can look adorable when asleep in their bed, but when your dog starts twitching, you might be wondering if it's dreaming.
Dogs dream too, and it’s just one of the many qualities they share with their human masters. Dogs also love companionship, and as we enter a time when human owners begin to return to work after lockdown, another very real experience that dogs must endure is separation anxiety.
We love our pet dogs, so in this article, we're going to take a look at what dogs dream about when they twitch as well as separation anxiety.
What Do Dogs Dream About When They Twitch?
Dogs dream, just like people do. This isn’t just urban legend, there’s science behind it too.
Just as their human masters go through different stages of sleep, including REM cycles and other sleep patterns, so do dogs. It’s thought that dogs will dream during their REM (Rapid Eye Movement) period of sleep as well.
While dogs are sleeping and dreaming, they often start to twitch. Their legs might move, their paws might twitch, or they might even start to bark out in their sleep. Dogs are most likely processing information while they sleep, and that comes out during their dreams.
If you had a play session with your dog earlier in the day, they might be dreaming about running through the fields and catching a ball. Equally, dog dreaming can be unpleasant too. Dogs can have nightmares if they’ve had a bad experience.
Separation Anxiety & Dogs
Unfortunately, separation anxiety can show itself during your dog’s sleeping patterns. Dogs become very attached to their human owners – that’s why they are man’s best friend, after all! – and if they are suddenly separated, their mood and behaviour can be affected severely.
This can give your dog nightmares and unpleasant dreams, as they try to understand what’s happening while they are asleep. It commonly occurs when owners go on holiday for a few weeks and leave their dogs with family or friends.
With people spending more time than ever with their dogs during lockdown, it’s also thought that separation anxiety will become an issue when owners start to return to their normal work routines, away from the house.
What Will Happen After Lockdown?
Lockdown has proven to be a wonderful time for dogs! With their human masters being stuck in the house, they get to spend all day in their company. They are also getting to spend more time outside, on longer walks, as people make the most of their exercise time.
But for dogs, that blissful period will come to a sudden end when their master goes back to the office. Overnight, they’ll be wondering why their owner isn’t spending as much time with them.
This will manifest itself during their sleeping patterns, and dogs will have more unpleasant dreams. They will, of course, adjust to the new normal, but it will take some time.
Dog owners can help to ease their pet into this new normal again before they go back to work, and when they do return to work, they can try to keep up the extra exercise regime, at least for a little time. They should keep an eye on their dog’s sleeping patterns for signs of separation anxiety, keeping them well fed and constantly reminding them that their owner adores them, even if they aren’t there so often anymore!