Why Does My Golden Retriever Sleep So Much?

As a new Golden Retriever owner, you probably notice everything there is to know about your dog. 

Oftentimes a dog that’s sleeping too much will worry the owner because they aren’t sure if it’s normal or if there is a problem with your dog. 

Keeping track of your dog’s sleep habits is important so you can know if they are on the track developmentally and if they are healthy

Why does my Golden Retriver sleep so much?

A Golden Retriever will sleep for about 12 hours a day and puppies will sleep even longer. Many people think this is a long time, but it’s pretty normal for dogs to sleep over half the day. There are many reasons why your dog might be sleeping so much including hot weather, illness, or just boredom. 

If your dog’s sleep habits change rapidly or suddenly, you might be concerned about their overall health. 

We will discuss all the normal reasons your Golden Retriever is sleeping so much as well as discuss when to seek medical care for your dog. 

What Are Some Reasons My Golden Retriever Might Be Sleeping So Much?

Most of the time, your dog will be sleeping due to boredom or just being tired.

There are some serious causes for your dog to be sleeping too much though.

Here are the most common reasons your dog is sleeping so much:


It’s natural for Golden Retrievers to sleep for 12-14 hours a day. This is because they are large dogs, and they want to sleep often. 

When your dog is a puppy, it will sleep even more. Some dogs in the same breed will also sleep more than others. 

If your dog has always been a big sleeper and they want to nap during the day, it shouldn’t be a cause for concern. 

If they tend to be more active though and you suddenly see them sleeping a lot, you might need to get them checked by the vet as a precaution. 

This is especially true if there are other symptoms of illness such as vomiting or diarrhea.

Hot Weather 

If you live in a hot weather environment, your dog might be more likely to sleep as a result of the hot weather and lethargy.

Just like with humans, when they are feeling warm, dogs will be more likely to sleep and want to snooze during the day if they are warm. 

You can always take steps to cool down your pet by making sure they are taking walks in the early evening and morning rather than during the heat of the day in the afternoon.

You might also want to make sure they have a shaded place to rest indoors rather than putting their bed by their window where they might get too much sunlight. 

If the weather gets cooler and your dog is still sleeping too much, you might want to take them to the vet just in case there is something wrong. 

Most dogs will start sleeping less naturally though once the weather becomes cooler. 


Many different types of illnesses can cause fatigue in dogs. It usually isn’t the only sign though. 

You might also notice them vomiting or being tired even when they first wake up. 

You might also see that they have no appetite or that they don’t want to eat the food they normally love. 

If you notice any signs of illness, you need to take the dog to the vet right away.  

They will be able to observe the dog and run some tests to make sure everything is normal. 

They will also be able to give any medication if needed. 

Worms and intestinal parasites can make them feel tired, so make sure to check their stools every once in a while, to make sure there are no worms. 

You should also make sure they are getting treated appropriately and, on a schedule, to avoid worms in the future. 

Anemia is also a big cause of illnesses. This can be caused by flea infestations or other medical problems. 

Make sure you are always treating your dog for fleas and other parasites to avoid this. 


Why Does My Golden Retriever Sleep So Much 1 Why Does My Golden Retriever Sleep So Much?

If your dog is left alone for long periods of time and they do not have enough stimulation, they will start to sleep out of boredom. 

They might also become lazy and be less willing to play and exercise with you because they will be used to sleeping for the majority of the day rather than spending it up and active. 

Golden Retrievers should get at least an hour of activity every day. This can be walking, jogging, or playing with you in the backyard. 

If your backyard is fenced in, you might also be able to let them out unsupervised so they can play when they get bored. 

If you think your dog is sleeping out of boredom, start to make healthier habits by taking them out to exercise every day and spending more time with them. 

If you have to leave them alone for long periods of time, consider hiring a dog walker to take your dog out to help them get some exercise. 


Improper diets can cause a lack of energy. They may also become tired if you are feeding them too much or too little. 

Food with less nutrition can make them feel extra tired. 

Always make sure you are picking dog blends and dog food that are high in vitamins and other nutrients. 

If you aren’t sure which brand to get, ask the vet for advice to make sure you are picking a good one. 

Your Dog Is Very Old or Very Young 

Puppies will sleep up to 15 to 20 hours a day. This is normal. It doesn’t mean there is a problem or medical condition. 

Older dogs will also sleep more as they age because they have less energy and they might have health conditions from old age that make them feel tired. 

Older dogs will also need more sleep after exercise because they take longer to recover from physical activity. 

How Do I Know If My Dog Is Sleeping Too Much? 

Sudden sleeping too much can be because of diet changes, changes in the weather, or changes in activity level. 

If you think there is a cause for them to be sleeping too much suddenly, you can always give them a few days or weeks to adjust to the new schedule. 

If you think it’s not normal behavior though and you can’t think of a reason why they are suddenly sleeping too much, you need to make time in your schedule to take them to see the vet. 

If your dog has slept a lot since they were a puppy, this might just be their lifestyle and personality.

If they are normally energetic and active and now, they are sleeping more than normal, you will need to make sure they see the vet. 

Always observe your dog’s pattern and make sure you can tell when something is wrong so that you know when to take them to the vet. 

What Should I Do If My Golden Retriever is Sleeping Too Much?

In most cases, nothing. Allow them to rest and sleep off any illness they might have. 

If you think the cause is because of boredom though, you can always try taking them out for more activity to see if you can break the bad habit of sleeping too much. 

In most cases though, your dog needs their sleep and they need to recover from activity or stress that is happening around the house. 

Make Sure they Have a Comfortable Place for Sleeping 

Make sure they have a bed or designated place for sleeping so that they can be comfortable and secure. 

It should ideally not be too bright and should be big enough for them to stretch out and relax. 

Make Sure They Have a Balanced Diet 

A Balanced diet is also key. Make sure they have enough nutrients and make sure they are getting enough food, but not too much. 

If you have any concerns about how much they should be eating or being fed, always ask the vet. 

They can advise you on how much food should be given and how often the dog should eat. 

As they grow, they will need more food and more nutrients. 

Make Sure They are Cool 

If the weather is hot, create a colder place for them near a fan or under some shade. Make sure they have a clean bed and keep it out of the sun. 

This will make sure they don’t become lethargic or want to sleep too much. 

Final Thoughts 

If you are concerned your dog is sleeping too much, you can always take him or her to the vet. Otherwise, lifestyle changes might be the best approach. 

Make sure they are getting enough activity and the right amount of food to avoid becoming ill. 

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