Teething may cause your pup to sleep more because of the pain and discomfort. However, it shouldn’t cause lethargy or make your puppy too tired to go about his day. In fact, some puppies show more activity during teething to distract themselves from the pain.
Behavioral changes are normal during teething, but it’s essential to know when something is wrong.
There are probably other culprits behind your puppy's drowsiness. Here’s everything you need to know about it.
Teething causes plenty of side effects, including drooling, chewing on anything, and extra whining. Some pups also bark excessively when the teeth are digging out.
However, it shouldn’t stop your pup from doing his day-to-day activities.
If your puppy is lethargic during teething, it can indicate underlying health issues, requiring a visit to a vet. Or, it could be a sign of a growth spurt.
Helpful Dog Training Resource:
Teething During a Growth Spurt Can Make Your Puppy Tired
Usually, teething takes months without causing significant changes in your puppy's behavior. However, it can make your puppy sleep more if associated with a growth spurt.
The first puppy teething stage starts at five to eight weeks of age, revealing the 28 milk teeth. You can expect the 42 adult teeth at the next teething step when the puppies are around seven months old.
Growth spurts occur rapidly between three and five months of age, varying depending on the breed.
For larger breeds, you’ll notice their heightened growth at eight to ten months of age. For most dogs, 11 months of age will mark the closing of their growth plate.
Puppy bodies aren’t a clock, and your puppy might experience an extended teething period or growth spurt. However, when both overlap, they may change your puppy’s sleeping patterns.
For puppies, the younger they are, the more they'll sleep. At three months of age, it's normal to find them sleeping for around 20 hours daily.
Your puppy’s growth spurt can unexpectedly start overnight, which can cause him to log a few more hours of sleep.
It's normal to oversleep during a growth spurt because the pup is trying to overcome the significant changes his body is experiencing.
He should be back in his vibrant mood when awake. However, if the pup is still tired after all the sleeping, you may need to visit a vet.
Does Teething Disturb Your Puppy’s Sleeping Patterns?
Teething isn’t only painful, but it also messes with your pup’s sleeping patterns.
Some puppies sleep more than usual because they want to escape the pain. But, more commonly, they’ll be sleep deprived because the pain will keep them from sleeping.
The front teeth don’t cause much disturbance. However, when the canines hit, they'll start the barking tantrums and sleep deprivation of many puppy parents.
Unfortunately, these tantrums will cause a disturbance in your puppy's sleeping hours. You may find him sleeping during the day to compensate for the lost hours.
Here are some tips for dealing with your pup’s sleepless nights.
An organized bedtime routine will help train your puppy’s biological clock. It’ll teach him to sleep at the same hour every day.
To do so, avoid giving the pup food or water immediately before bedtime.
Try to cuddle with him to help him relax, and don’t forget to take him outside beforehand to let him relieve himself before sleeping.
Research shows that dogs follow a circadian rhythm, mainly sleeping at night. Whenever you want to encourage your pup to sleep, you can change the light settings.
A dim sleeping area will encourage deep sleep, especially during day naps.
In the evening, try to tire your puppy out with light activities, like chasing a flirt pole. Keep things in moderation and slow down the excitement one hour before bedtime to gradually calm down the puppy.
Keep Them Hydrated
After the exercise, replenish your puppy with plenty of water to keep him hydrated. However, try to prevent excessive drinking one hour before sleep to avoid potty accidents.
Dogs don't naturally bark out their pain unless it's severe. If you hear excessive barking during sleeping hours, the pup is likely in pain.
In this case, let the vet check your puppy's teeth to make sure none of them is stuck or infected.
If all's well at the clinic, your puppy might be playing you. Dogs can become very manipulative when they can read human behavior.
Try not to give extra attention or treats during bedtime to avoid continuous barking during the following nights. Additionally, keep your puppy's chewing toys near his crate to help him manage by himself.
Helpful Dog Health Resource:
Why Is Your Puppy Tired During Teething?
If your puppy is just tired because of teething pain, he will quickly recharge after some rest.
On the other hand, if he’s lethargic, he won’t be able to complete his normal day-to-day activities. That’s likely unrelated to teething.
Your puppy is probably lethargic if he’s reluctant to go for a walk, disinterested in his favorite food, or resisting play. Other common lethargy symptoms include:
- Breath shortness
- Slow or no reaction to sensory stimulation
Warm weather is one of the most common reasons for lethargy among dogs. Your puppy’s lethargy should subside once the temperature drops or once he rests.
If it persists, the cause could be more severe. Here are some possible reasons:
- Consuming toxic substances
- Heart disease
- Digestive parasites
If you notice your pup is more tired than usual during teething, cut the long walks and let him rest. If it’s hot at your place, keep the dog in a cool, shaded area and provide plenty of water.
Watch his behavior, appetite, and symptoms closely. If the symptoms persist for more than 24 hours, visit a vet as soon as possible.
Paul has been creating content for the dog niche for many years. The information he shares comes his first hand experience growing up in dog lovers household and then owning multiple dog breeds of his own as an adult. Paul enjoys doing the hard research to collect, analyze and present our dogtemperament.com readers with the best answers to their questions.