Why Do Pugs Sleep So Much? Is It Normal? When to Worry

why do pugs sleep so much

Why do pugs sleep so much? Your pug is probably just… being a pug. These dogs require up to 14 hours of sleep daily, even as adults.

But it’s important to know when enough’s enough. In this article we will discuss:

  • How much sleep your pug really needs
  • Why pugs are such a sleepy breed
  • When to worry about your pug

So, let’s get started!

How Many Hours of Sleep Do Pugs Need?

The amount of sleep your pug needs will depend on his or her age. Whilst newborns seem to do nothing else, even adult pugs can often be seen to spend a lot of time snoozing.

Let’s take a look at how much sleep your pug really needs, at every stage in life.

1. Newborns (up to 3 weeks)

Sleeping hours: up to 22 hours per day

Newborn Pugs sleep: What is normal?

  • Sleep most of the day near mother and littermates
  • Awake just for eating

2. Younger puppies (3 to 8 weeks)

Sleeping hours: 20-21 hours per day

Younger puppies sleep: What is normal?

  • Will spend more time exploring
  • Will stay awake a bit longer

3. Older puppies (2 to 5 months)

Sleeping hours: 18-20 hours per day

Older puppies sleep: What is normal?

  • Sleep time split between nighttime and daytime naps
  • Active puppies wear themselves out and sometimes fall asleep anywhere and everywhere

4. Adult Pugs (6 months to 9 years old)

Sleeping hours: 14 hours per day (approximately)

Adult Pugs sleep: What is normal?

  • By 6 months most pups transition to adult sleeping hours
  • Depending on how much your pug sleeps during the night, they might take multiple naps throughout the day
  • Pugs shadow their owners so will try to stay up with you (but might not quite make it)

5. Senior Pugs (9 years old plus)

Sleeping hours: 20 minutes to 1 hour more sleep than adults

Senior Pugs sleep: What is normal?

  • Decreased metabolism and reduced activity levels means your senior pug might need an extra hour of sleep
  • This change with happen gradually

Why Do Pugs Sleep So Much?

Pugs sleep a lot. If your pug is sleeping between 10 and 14 hours per day, this is completely normal and need not cause any concern. Young pugs and senior pugs often sleep even more than this.

However, once your pug’s daytime napping starts to exceed 5 hours per day you might want to think about changing things up a bit at home.

Owners are constantly baffled by their pug’s sleeping habits, so let’s get to the bottom of this once and for all. Why is it that pugs sleep oh-so-much?

1. They are boring

Your pug might just be plain-old bored. This is a very common cause of oversleeping amongst pugs.

When your pooch has nothing better to do they are more likely to snooze away the hours until something fun comes along to catch their interest.

Think of your pug a bit like a teenager. Boredom equals laziness. They need constant distraction.

This can be a tricky one to solve if you’re working long hours in the office every day. But there are things you can do to keep your pug occupied and stimulated throughout the day.

What can I do about it?

First off, don’t panic. Boredom is a very common problem that most owners struggle with from time to time. With a little bit of creativity, there are lots of ways to keep your pug active and entertained both with you and when they’re home alone.

Try preparing some fun activities ahead of time. Here are a few ideas to get you started.

  • Treat-dispensing toys: These toys are a great way to keep your pooch occupied when they’re on their own. They usually consist of a ball that gradually releases treats as the dog plays with it. These are a great option for keeping your pug stimulated when you’re not around.
  • Interactive toys: These days there are even interactive toys that let owners schedule playtime throughout the day. These toys are great for keeping your pug fit and on their feet. They can be synced to a mobile phone, letting you schedule regular play throughout the day remotely.
  • Ask for help from friends and family: If you know you will have to spend long periods of time away from your pug, it’s a good idea to enlist the help of friends, family, and neighbors. Even if it’s just once a week, scheduling some playtime for your pug with a real person will do wonders for their activity levels and overall happiness.
  • Invest in Doggy Daycare: Doggy Daycare is another great option. Most towns or cities will have a local pet sitter or day care center. If you can afford it, this is a super way to avoid your pug falling into sedentary habits at home alone.

2. Lack of exercise

This is another big problem amongst pugs and their owners. Pugs will not develop good habits by themselves. If owners don’t encourage their pugs to play and take daily exercise, their pooch will become a little bit, dare I say it, lazy.

Pugs need motivation to get moving. What’s more, spending time outdoors will dramatically improve their wellbeing and happiness.

What can I do about it?

  • Establish a daily exercise routine: Head outside daily with your pooch. Walk them 40 minutes a day, you can break down the routine into 2 sessions to avoid any heat problems in Pugs.
  • Hide-and-Seek: Did you know that pugs are great at hide-and-seek? It’s time to get creative but remember not to overexert your pug.
  • Try playing fetch: Pugs may not be known for their fetching prowess but try getting creative and see what happens. Encourage your pug to run uphill and retrieve their favorite toy or ball. Mix things up with different games, locations, and toys, to keep your pug engaged and on the move.


As brachycephalic dogs, they will need time to rest between bursts of activity. A couple of short walks each day, when it’s not too hot out is plenty.

3. Obesity

Another reason to exercise your pug is to keep them at healthy body weight. Pugs are prone to becoming overweight easily. If your pug is already on the heavier side, they will find exercise difficult.

This could be why they are sleeping more or spending most of the day sedentary. Unfortunately, this will only make the problem worse.

What can I do about it?

  • Book a health check: If you think your pug is overweight visit your local veterinarian for an overall doggy health check. They will check for hypothyroidism – a condition that leads to weight gain.
  • Start a diet: Once any health problems have been ruled out by your vet they will recommend an appropriate dietary plan to get your pug back in tip-top shape.
  • Prioritize exercise: To get your pug fit and healthy again, you’ll need to prioritize daily exercise. Once your pug has lost that bit of weight, they’ll be happier, healthier, and have more energy.

4. Diet

Your pup’s weight gain might also have something to do with their diet. Take a step back and monitor what you’re feeding them. Avoid low-quality dog food, and try to limit treats.

You might think that you’re being loving to your pet, but in reality, overindulging a pug just makes them tired, lethargic, and unhealthy. This will only make them unmotivated, and prone to sleeping far too much.

What can I do about it?

  • Change their food: It’s time to get your pug on a health kick. Switch to high-quality kibble with natural ingredients and fewer additives. This isn’t just about spoiling your pooch. High-quality food will improve their health and offer them the nutrients they need to turn calories into useful energy.
  • Limit treats: Try not to give in to those pleading eyes. Some treats are fine but keep them to a minimum. A treat doesn’t have to be naughty. Make sure treats are healthy and nutritious as well as tasty. It’s important to set your pug up with good habits and healthy tastes.

5. They’re copying you!

Brace yourself. We’re not trying to play the blame game here, but your pug might be sleeping because of you.

In other words, pugs like to mimic their human family. If you’re spending a lot of time relaxing in the lounge or sitting about, they’re likely to make themselves comfy too.

What can I do about it?

  • Lead by example: Make an effort to engage with your pug every time you get up off the couch. Pugs mimic their humans. If you’re sedentary, chances are they will be too.
  • Move frequently throughout the day: Have a play, shower your pooch with attention, and engage them in an activity you know they’ll love. Just a few minutes of interaction here and there is enough to give your pug that much-needed energy boost and get them moving those paws.

6. Illness

Why do pugs sleep so much? Well, if your pup has been unwell or recently injured, it is entirely normal that they will need extra sleep to recoup and recover.

If you’re unaware of any illness but think they might not be in top health, it’s important to consult your veterinarian.

What can I do about it?

  • Monitor your pet: Observe your pug’s behavior? Is there a change from normal? If you think your pug might not be feeling their best, the best thing you can do is book an appointment with your veterinarian.
  • Talk to your vet: Talk to your vet about the changes you’ve noticed, and ask lots of questions. Your vet will probably run tests to rule out any more serious illnesses.
  • Let your pug rest: If your pug is experiencing an illness of some kind or recovering from an injury, it’s more than okay to let them have some extra rest. Do as your vet instructs and let your pug rehabilitate with plenty of care and time to sleep.

When to Worry About Your Pug’s Sleep Habits

Pugs sleep a lot naturally, so it’s important to know what warning signs to look out for when monitoring their sleeping patterns. When does a lot of sleep go from normal to excessive? We’ve put together a list of key signs to look out for in your pug.

1.  Changing sleep habits

Look out for change. If a behavior is not consistent with your pug’s normal behavior, it’s time to take note. This is especially important when it comes to sleep, and is often one of the first things a vet will ask when concerned owners bring in their pug for a check-up.

Try to monitor your pug’s routine daily as part of their general care. This will help you know when something is not quite right and support their health and wellbeing. Though a sleepy pug is probably not caused for concern, it’s important to call your vet if you notice a sudden or dramatic change in sleeping habits.

If your pug is suddenly sleeping hours more than usual, it’s time to call your vet. This is a symptom of some medical conditions like diabetes and kidney disease so it’s important to get the necessary tests done early.

For example, a pug that usually takes a 2-hour nap each morning is no cause for concern. But if a pug that usually takes a 2-hour nap, starts taking 4 or 5-hour naps on a regular basis, you will want to think about visiting your vet for a check-up.

2. Waking up slowly

Another warning sign to look out for is how your pug wakes up after sleeping. Dogs naturally wake up quickly, stretch, and get on with their day.

If your pooch is finding it difficult to get up, seems unmotivated, or lethargic, it’s best to visit your veterinarian.

3. Exercise intolerance

Exercise intolerance is not simply laziness. Some diseases tire dogs out. As a result, they will appear to have much less energy than they normally would.

It is sometimes difficult to notice any obvious sign of distress when your pup just seems to be resting. But they might be resting because of illness. Warning signs include resting in strange or unusual places, increased resting, and heavy panting.

Common Questions About Sleepy Pugs

Do pugs sleep with their owners?

Yes, pugs will enjoy snoozing alongside their owners. Pugs display mimicking behaviors. If you’re resting on the couch, there’s a good chance your pug will want to join you. This breed loves to keep close to their owners as much as possible.

Is it normal for a pug puppy to sleep a lot?

Yes. Pug adults sleep a lot, but pug puppies are on a whole other level.

Newborns can sleep up to 22 hours per day and puppies will continue sleeping between 18 and 20 hours until approximately 5  months old.

What to Do About A Sleepy Pug

If your pug is sleeping a lot, chances are it’s perfectly normal.

Why do pugs sleep so much?

As a breed, they just need those extra hours of zees.

But it’s important to know when enough is enough and what to do when your pup shows signs of excessive sleep.