My Hamper

Hyperactive Animal

If you see your cat intensely satisfied as a fluffy roll roar while you go to work early in the rain, it may be difficult to imagine, but animals can also suffer from sleep deprivation.

Dogs, cats and horses cannot get enough rest for various reasons.

Is your animal type giraffe or koala?

Every animal species has its own sleep rhythm. Almost all pets sleep more than people! Puppies take the lead with around 18 hours of sleep a day.


Horses need remarkably little real, deep REM sleep, they are flight animals and their sleeping pattern is fully adapted to this. For the most part horses are standing while standing. They ‘lock’ their legs and almost all of their weight rests on bones, bands and tendons so that the muscles can relax.

A horse must lie for sleep and they only do that if they feel safe. Then there is a difference between sleeping (lying head down, about 2 hours in total) and deep sleep (lying completely flat, less than an hour, spread over 5-10 minutes).

Did you know that horses recognize their multiple nuts in the giraffe? They only sleep 1.9 hours per 24 hours.


Dogs sleep about half the time: around 12 hours a day. However, they sleep much less and are often ready to watch. An unexpected movement, someone walking too close to the window and they are awake again.

Most of the 12 hours dogs sleep at night so they can be active during the day. Nevertheless, people also like to sleep during the day.


Cats rest on average 16 hours a day. Cats sleep more distributed throughout the day in shorter periods. There is also a lot of napping in between. They really sleep on their side, curled up or stretched out. Doing more happens in a sphinx position or as a cat-loaf.

It isn’t absolutely true that cats are most active at night. They prefer to hunt when the sun sets and rises: in the twilight. There are real night owls, but many cats who have a good relationship with their humans also adapt to their human’s schedule.

Animals that have really made sleep are the sloth and the koala: these animals sleep no less than 20 hours a day!

Fascinating sleep

Entire groups of animals always sleep with one half of their brain. Dolphins, whale species and also many bird species. Marine mammals need to be partially awake to breathe and birds use it on long hikes.

How deep an animal sleeps depends on the individual and the animal species. There is an Asian half-monkey that sleeps so deeply that researchers have given up investigating it. The animal simply cannot wake up.

Hysterical Border Collies are not normal

Certainly with some dog breeds, people sometimes seem to admit that they are unrivaled busy. They are described as ADHD people. Think for example of Border Collies, Malinois and German Shepherds, Boxers .. etc.

This is not a normal day.

To have a quiet dog in the house a balance is needed between exercise and relaxation. The breeds that are known as hyper are often originally working dogs. There are of course individual differences, but many dogs also need a certain task in life. In addition, they often have to be consciously taught that they do not always have to be ‘on’. Trying to keep the family together while people want to go to work, school and sports is also tiring.

Animal Rest

Most animals, on the other hand, become over-stimulated and restless if they get too little rest. The animals that become quieter and slow are often careful enough to prevent problems. If your animal suddenly has much less energy, this is of course also a signal to arrange a check-up at the vet. A longer recovery time and the backward running of the condition can also indicate too little rest.

So the most important thing you see is non-sleeping. Are you in doubt? Put a camera down so that you can look back at what your animal is doing.

Underlying causes

There are also physical disorders of which restlessness can be a symptom. Think of dementia, disturbed thyroid gland, pain, cancer and heart diseases. An animal can also become hyperactive with structural overtraining and constant stimuli.

It can also save the other side: if an animal sleeps too much, there may be a medical reason. In addition to a necessary visit to the veterinarian, a shortage of certain nutrients must also be considered.

Immediate consequences for the body

  • risk of high blood pressure
  • more risk of heart and blood vessel disorders
  • greater risk of diabetes
  • immune system can function less well

being overweight; stress hormones that stay high due to lack of sleep make fat easier to store.

Sleep is also necessary for all kinds of recovery. Thus the growth hormone is created in the first part of sleep. If you do not sleep well, optimal recovery is therefore not possible.

Two other important hormones are cortisol and melatonin. Cortisol is a stress hormone and melatonin is needed to get and stay asleep.

Cortisol forms a kind of “seesaw” with melatonin. If the cortisol level is high due to stress, the melatonin level remains low and it will be more difficult to fall asleep.

Too much stress and pressure during the day, therefore, cause poor sleep, in addition to the other adverse effects of a chronically too high cortisol level.