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 Retriever Sleep So Much 2 Why Does My Golden Retriever Sleep So Much?

Why does my Golden Retriever 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:

Normal behavior

Why does my Golden Retriver sleep so much Why Does My Golden Retriever Sleep So Much?

Is your adult Golden Retriever always lying on the couch or their bed deep asleep? It’s common for them to sleep up to 14 hours daily, especially if they engage in minimal activities.

Golden Retrievers are a large breed, and they need their rest. So, there’s no need for concern when you find them sleeping multiple times a day. The only time to worry is if they become less active and tend to sleep more than usual.

Otherwise, let them be, and even make the house more comfortable for them to nap.

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. 

Also, adjust the thermostat settings, so the house is cooler.

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. 


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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. 

Poor Diet 

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.

Large Meals

Imagine how sleepy you feel after having a large meal. The same happens to your Golden Retriever after scoffing down a large meal.

They tend to feel stuffed like a Turkey and want to take a long nap. It’s important to manage their diet if you don’t want your Golden Retriever to sleep all day.

Ensure they eat enough food, but not too much, so they remain inactive for hours.


Do you happen to have Golden Retriever puppies at home? One of the main reasons they sleep so much is their young age. It’s common behavior for puppies to spend 18 to 20 hours sleeping in one day.

Just like human babies, puppies need lots of sleep, and it’s easy to see this as excessive sleep. However, if there’s no illness, it’s simply normal behavior for their age.

Sleeping is vital for your Golden Retriever puppies because this is when they grow and develop. However, if you find them sleeping too much, you can create a schedule that includes sleep and other activities.

Apart from being too young, your Golden Retriever can also be old. Aging dogs aren’t as active and will spend most of their time in deep slumber. Just like humans, an old dog can sleep up to 20 hours daily, which is normal behavior.

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7. Stress

Stress and anxiety can also be reasons why your fur baby wants to spend hours sleeping. This is a coping mechanism, especially when dealing with separation anxiety.

Stress can often lead dogs to have behavioral issues, one being excessive sleep. You start to notice them being less active, and they want to nap.

If you see this, it’s better to find ways to make them feel better. For example, if your dog is lonely, which leads to stress, adding another pet to the house can help. Or, you can take them to doggy daycare when you go to work.

8. Excess Activities

Golden Retrievers tend to have lots of energy as a large dog breed. The best way to dispense this energy is to let them be active. This can include running around in the backyard, taking long walks, or hiking.

However, too many activities can lead to excessive sleeping. This is the same way you want to lie down and rest after a highly active day. Your dog will feel the same way because they don’t have any more energy left to remain active.So, plan your activities, and leave ample time for your Golden Retriever to rest. Sleeping will help them have more energy for when it’s time to head outside again.

How Many Hours Can a Golden Retriever Sleep?

Golden Retrievers can sleep for 12 to 14 hours. This is normal behavior and doesn’t mean they’re ill or stressed. 

You should be worried if your dog is restless and tends to sleep less in a day. Sleep is crucial for them as a large dog breed, and lack of sleep can lead to health and behavioral issues.

So, let your Golden Retriever sleep. It’s good to make sure they have somewhere comfortable to lie down and rest. And check that no one disturbs them when it’s time for some shut-eye.

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. 

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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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