Does Shih Tzu Sleep A Lot? Is it even a problem?

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Shih Tzu, one of the perfect lapdogs, does sleep a lot. Shih Tzu love to take comfy naps and are too addicted to sleeping, and because of this, some owners might be concerned about their sleeping habits.

But believe a sleeping Shih Tzu looks more loveable with a happy nature and outgoing personality.

Why does Shih Tzu sleep a lot? Shih Tzu being energetic and playful, sleeps a lot as compared to all other dog breeds but don’t be too worried; it’s normal for them.

Sleep habits depend upon factors like age, metabolism, health, and environmental conditions.

Now the matter of concern here would be if your Shih Tzu’s sleeping patterns are changing dramatically.

If you see any changes associated with your Shih Tzu sleep, then this article would be helpful for you.

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Does Shih Tzu Sleep A Lot?

    Does Shih Tzu Sleep A lot?

    Yes, Shih Tzu does sleep a lot; they require a lot of rest as compared to other dog breeds. Because they spend most of their time playing out, cuddling in, and running around the house, you will always find your Shih Tzu feeding, eating, or sleeping.

    Shih Tzu needs a lot of sleep to grow healthier and recharge from the tiredness of all-day activities.

    And obviously, growth needs energy which won’t be made available if the dog doesn’t fulfill a sufficient amount of rest.

    Most of the dog’s growth occurs when he is a small pup. Puppies grow faster than an average adult, so you would notice that the puppy will fall asleep for an extra couple of hours than an adult.

    And with time, their sleep time would decrease as they age.

    How Many Hours Should A Shih Tzu Sleep?

    The answer to this question would depend upon several factors like the dog’s age, activity level, temperament, health status, and environment.

    All these factors contribute to the appropriate sleeping hours for your Shih Tzu.

    By environment, I’m referring to the surrounding conditions in which your dog sleeps. Whether the conditions are comfortable or they are noisy, both will have a high impact on your dog’s sleep.

    Below are the ages and sleeping hours, so we will discuss the sleeping hours of your Shih Tzu by separating them based on their age.

    New-borns (Under 3 Months):

    Newborns that are just under the period of 3 weeks and haven’t broken out their feet yet would need around 22-23 hours of sleep. It is quite unbelieving, but newborns, as discussed in the above section, would need a lot of sleep for their mental and physical growth. Therefore, they sleep a lot.

    As long as these three weeks’ pups cross the bracket and start about to be weaned, their sleep is reduced to around 18-21 hours a day. Because when a puppy reaches three weeks of age, he starts to notice the things around him and try to hear and differentiate between the sounds.

    Puppies (Above 3 Months):

    According to different dog owner reviews, I had come to it that puppies are hard to be trained as they would need special training for each and everything starting from sleep to obedience. But that is not the case for Shih Tzu’s puppies.

    Puppies are always bursting out from one place to another with energy. As a result, they also get drained out of energy too quickly. And will cause your puppy to fall asleep. A healthy puppy above three months would sleep around 16-20 hours a day.

    People think continuous sleep during the night is healthier than these hourly disrupted naps. In this regard, we will be sharing out some easy hacks to promote good sleeping habits in your pups.

    Adolescents And Adults (1+ years of age):

    Mostly the habits learned in the first two years of age go through the whole life span. In this regard, one must pay a lot of attention to their dog’s training and sleep habits if he wants an unerupted sleeping habit of their dog for the rest of his life.

    A healthy adolescent will sleep around 12-16 hours a day and make sure that most of these sleeping hours are covered at nighttime.

    Aged Seniors (Above ten years):

    With time especially when a dog has crossed 10+ years of life, it’s very effective to split their sleep time into various hours during the day too.

    It is more effective when your dog is working out during the day or goes out for a walk than his tired body would be refreshed just by a 1-hour nap.

    A senior dog’s bed should be comfortable and should be placed in a sunny room. You shouldn’t wake it out of its sleep without any serious need. A senior dog can sleep around 14-19 hours a day, depending upon his health and the environmental conditions.

    Shih Tzu Sleeping Habits

    Shih Tzu Sleeping Habits
    Shih Tzu Sleeping Habits

    Rest is one of the top needs of every being.

    Likewise, humans, Shih Tzu, will also love to sleep in places they consider their own and feel safe.

    A comfortable bed suited to their size can be a perfect place for them to sleep. A place free from draft and noise but with adequate ventilation so that they can fall asleep without any fear.

    Shih Tzu has sleeping habits similar to that of humans, with a few inherited from their ancestors. The sleep phases in Shih Tzu are similar to ours; they also dream and have nightmares during sleep.

    It can be easily observed with the indication of your Shih Tzu moving legs, licking the air, or raising his ears. Excess to everything is bad; no doubt, sufficient sleep is necessary for restoration and better health. But hours and hours of sleep can also negatively impact Shih Tzu’s health.

    Excessive sleep can be a significant health issue due to thyroxine deficiency. So, if you observe the discontinuous sleeping pattern of your Shih Tzu or excessive sleep pattern, then it is recommended to visit a vet at the earliest.

    Can Shih Tzu Sleep Alone At Night?

    Shih Tzu is the friendliest dog and loves to sleep with other dogs and their owner. As they will feel more secure and safer, the better they are at sleep.

    So, it’s better not to leave your Shih Tzu to sleep alone because there is a possibility that your Shih Tzu will develop separation anxiety.

    If Shih Tzu is left alone to sleep independently, then he won’t enjoy that quality sleep as most of his pre-sleep time would be spent making himself comfortable that nothing out of context is going to happen.

    And is continuously alert and avoids dangers from the environment, which could act as a barrier to quality sleep. As a result, we recommend not to leave your Shih Tzu alone at night.

    Shih Tzu Sleeping Positions Meaning

    Dogs can’t talk with humans; you might have heard this a lot. But believe me, dogs do talk; we are just unable to hear. They speak louder with their body language, gestures, facial expressions, tail, and body positioning during their sleep.

    They don’t talk; they have developed ways through which they communicate their emotions, feelings, and whatever is on their mind. Below I will be sharing details regarding some of the most important and concerned body positions of Shih Tzu.

    Crazy Legs Shih Tzu Sleeping Position:

    Sleeping at the back with four legs up is referred to as the crazy leg position in dogs. These legs signify that your dog is submissive and vulnerable. If it sleeps with its legs up, it means that your dog feels comfortable and everything is fine.

    Side Sleep Shih Tzu Sleeping Position:

    Sleeping at one side facing both hands, legs, and face in one direction is a side sleep position. Dogs usually sleep in this position during their naps, but some can also sleep in this position during the night. The side sleep position indicates that the dog is happy and carefree.

    Superman Shih Tzu Sleeping Position:

    As the name signifies, the position is referred to as the superman position, which imitates a superman flying pose. Dog sleeping on his belly with all legs stretched is said to be in a superman position.

    The position signifies that the dog will continue doing the activities again as long as he is done with sleep. That is, the dog will restore himself and become a better, more energetic version of himself, just like superman.

    Belly Curl Shih Tzu Sleeping Position:

    Sleeping on the belly with the whole body curled up signifies the position. This position indicates that your puppy is either not well with tummy health or has been experiencing a destructive sleep cycle. Dogs that sleep with a belly curl position are shyer.

    Can Shih Tzu Sleep Without Light?

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    Can Shih Tzu Sleep Without Light?

    Dogs don’t need darkness to sleep. As you might have noticed, your Shih Tzu even falls asleep in the daytime, and it is proven that dogs can fall asleep even in high light or daylight conditions.

    But the major question that is a bit harder to answer is whether Shih Tzu should sleep without a light in the dark or light.

    According to research and analytics, during nighttime, noise is less, and the brain cells are more relaxed in low light. The darkness can produce a relaxing and calming response, promoting better sleep. So, better sleep is experienced during the nighttime and without light.

    Shih Tzu Sleeping with Eyes Open

    Dog sleeping with eyes open can be a bit unsettling for a larger group of people, but it’s a yes Shih Tzu do sleep with their eyes open. Sleeping with one or two eyes partially or more than partially open is quite common in dogs.

    Sleeping with eyes open is a dog-savvy survival strategy that dogs like Shih Tzu use. They sleep with their eyes open, enabling them to remain vigilant towards any danger.

    In this case, their brain and eye coordinate up while another part of the body is at rest. Some dogs can sleep with their eyes open occasionally in areas where they don’t feel comfortable, while the rest might be dreaming or seizing.

    Why Does Shih Tzu Sleep At Your Feet?

    Have you ever seen your Shih Tzu leaning near and around you when it’s their sleep time? Does your Shih Tzu sleep at your feet? If yes, then it is that your dog has a stronger bond with you; it feels secure when you are around; as a result, they feel more relaxed and sleep better.

    Shih Tzu is a social sleeper; they love to sleep along with other dogs and their owners. They want their owners to be near them when they sleep. If you can’t sleep with them directly, then you can keep them in the same room where you sleep.

    Final Words: Is Your Shih Tzu Sleeping Too Much?

    If your Shih Tzu is sleeping too much, it might not be a problem most of the time. Shih Tzu is always roaming around the house because of their energetic attitude and high activity level. They are always ready to accompany their owner.

    As a result, they get tired and need a lot of sleep. Perfect sleep allows the body to conserve and restore from tiredness. Moreover, it keeps the brain agile and improves Shih Tzu’s learning ability.

    Also, improve the immune system and protect the Shih Tzu against various fatal health issues.

    Sleeping is beneficial not only for humans but also for your dogs. Sleep period will depend upon many parameters like age, activity level, and health status.

    Besides, that excess sleep could also be fatal and can cause serious health problems. That was all from our side on Shih Tzu sleep, and does Shih Tzu sleep a lot? If you still have any queries, you can just drop them down; we would love to hear from you.

    Enjoying your sleeps with your cute Shih Tzu is the best activity you can do. Best of luck cuddling with your Shih Tzu!


    I am the owner of Shihtzuadvice.com and the proud parent of two black and one gold Shih Tzu's. I belive that the Shih Tzu is the best all-around dog for anyone and want to share with you as much valuable knowledge as possible about this great breed!

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