A new Basset Hound owner recently asked me why his Basset seemed to sleep so much and whether that was normal. I told him it was but it also got me thinking as there are a number of factors as to why they do this.
So the simple answer to how much do Basset Hounds sleep is..
Basset Hounds do tend to sleep longer hours often up to 20 hours per day or more. They will often only get up for peeing and eating and then go back to sleep. The exception to this is if there is activity around the house in which case they will want to investigate and be a part of the action due to their inquisitive nature.
There are other factors that can influence how much your Basset sleeps. It’s also important to realize that not every Basset Hound is the same.
Many will sleep for long periods of the day but some will be more active depending on the dogs individual personality.
Many Basset puppies will have boundless energy and will force you to try to keep up with them. Others couldn’t be bothered with all of that running around and will just want to sleep.
So How Many Hours a Day Does a Typical Basset Hound Puppy Sleep?
Basset hounds tend to sleep a lot more than other dog breeds. Basset Puppies can be a little more energetic and have a little more enthusiasm for activity than adult Bassets, as you might expect. It can be as low as 10 hours a day for active puppies right up to 20+ hours a day for non-active Bassets.
You’ll find a higher percentage of Bassets will be in the range between 18 to 20+ hours a day
Are Basset Hounds Lazy?
Bassets are not the most athletic breed of dog. Their body shape and size means they are built for comfort and not for speed. While some may call them lazy its more that they were bred to be tracking dogs that will chase after their prey but cant be bothered retrieving them once they are caught.
This is why they’re not great at playing fetch – they’ll chase after the object but once its caught they lose interest.
Having short legs and a long, heavy body to carry around can drain the energy from even the most active Basset. As a result they are happy just to laze around the house with you and (unless you regularly exercise them) they tend to put on weight.
The more weight they put on the less energetic they will be. Its really important for owners to make sure their Bassets get enough stimulation and exercise to help keep their weight down.
Do Basset Hounds Snore?
Its completely normal for Bassets to snore. Its just one of many other noises they make when they’re asleep to the amusement (or annoyance) of their owners. If you’re looking for a quiet dog during the night then you’ve bought the wrong breed.
Its always a good idea to check that the dogs airways are not blocked though, especially if the dog also has a cough as well as the snoring.
In most cases though, excessive snoring is typical for a Basset Hound.
Why Do Basset Hounds Sleep On Their Back?
Sleeping on their back is a common position for Bassets. It’s a great way for them to cool their body as they tend to be warmer than other dogs.
In fact many Bassets are sometimes described as portable heaters by owners such is the radiant heat they give off so exposing their belly to the cool air is commonplace.
It is a funny site though so get the camera ready!
How To Get Basset Hounds To Sleep Through The Night?
It can take many months before a Basset Hound puppy will sleep through the night. Often if they do wake up in the middle of the night its usually because they either want to pee or they hear activity &/or noises coming from another part of the house that wakes them.
Some owners reduce the amount of water they make available to their Bassets at night. In our experience though, denying water at any time to a dog who’s thirsty is something you want to avoid.
If they are waking up during the night to pee then it’s a good idea to make sure their last meal is around 5-6pm. Then, if possible, try to get some exercise (a walk or something) and then go potty just before bedtime.
A tired dog is a sleepy dog and this should at least help them have the best chance of getting through the night without having to get up.
Where is The Best Place For Basset Hounds To Sleep?
This one is about personal preference more than anything. There are positives and negatives if you decide to let your Basset sleep on your bed.
The positive is that they are close to you and it will feel like you are bonding with them especially if you are away from home often. Spending that quality time together can almost be therapeutic in a way.
The negative of course is that they can feel like it is their bed and not yours and take up the space where you would be sleeping instead of staying at the foot of the bed – not to mention the constant shifting.
Another concern with Bassets is that the act of jumping up and down from the bed can injure them especially if it’s a young pup that isn’t fully developed. Puppy stairs can be the answer to making it much safer for your Basset puppy to climb up onto a bed.
Then there is the hair that will inevitably accumulate in the sheets, blankets and pillows which you’ll have to clean up every day.
Many people do decide that it’s a far better long term option to create their own space for their Basset to sleep in.
Some options here include buying a crib mattress and cover pad. You can slide it under your bed when it’s not in use. The other option is a crate which, apart from being the right size for a Basset Hound, needs to have a lock, preferably 2 doors and a divider (if your Basset is still a puppy) so they can grow into it.
So we know that Bassets love to sleep long hours each day and we also talked about where and how Bassets like to sleep. The most important point to remember though is this..
Even though your Basset may want to sleep all day you really need to make sure that they have adequate exercise on a daily basis – even if they don’t feel like it.
This will not only make your dog more tired (and sleep through the night so they don’t wake you up to go pee) but it will also ensure your Basset doesn’t put on excess weight which can potentially cause other health problems.