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Do dogs dream?

Updated on March 16, 2012

It's a good question - do our dogs dream? Many owners, without ever having to do any research, will tell you that yes, dogs do dream. After all, what else would cause our furry friends to sometimes "talk", growl, move their legs, and quiver in their sleep?

It seems that scientists agree - dogs do most likely dream. In fact, evidence shows that many types of animals, many of them with brains simpler than that of dogs, experience dreams as well. Brain wave studies done on rats has shown that they not only dream, but that they seem to be dreaming about things they did while awake that day, much like what happens to humans.

By analyzing dog's electrical brain sequences while they sleep, scientists have what they believe is proof that dog's do dream. Dogs, like humans, most likely only dream while they are in the deep stage of REM sleep. Signs that your dog is in a REM sleep stage and may be dreaming include irregular breathing, muscle twitches, eye movement, and sometimes "talking" (barking, growling, etc) or movement of the legs or paws that can make it appear as if the dog is trying to walk, run, or preform some other physical activity. Oddly enough, scientists report that their evidence suggests that small dogs seem to dream more often than large dogs, and that puppies dream more than adult dogs.

So what do dogs dream about? Much like humans, scientists believe that dogs probably dream about things that happen in their everyday lives, things such as eating, going for walks, chasing that cat that lives next door, or playing.


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    • Chris Achilleos profile image

      Chris Achilleos 6 years ago

      Interesting hub Dragonrain. Voted up :)

    • profile image

      Ghost32 6 years ago

      Not only do dogs (and other critters) dream, but they Soul travel, too. I've been out flying around in the dream state any number of times when one of our cats had apparently decided to accompany me.

    • Dragonrain profile image

      Dragonrain 6 years ago

      Thanks for reading!

      JayeWisdom, my dog does it too! I always wonder what he's dreaming about. Chasing squirrels sounds likely!

    • viveresperando profile image

      viveresperando 6 years ago from A Place Where Nothing Is Real

      enjoyed reading this.

    • JayeWisdom profile image

      Jaye Denman 6 years ago from Deep South, USA

      Very good hub, and I'm glad to read that research shows dogs do dream. I was already pretty sure that's the case. My mini Schnauzer girl sleeps with me and sometimes if I'm reading in bed I'll notice she's "running" on her side of the mattress (just her back legs moving as she lies on her side)while making little noises. I think she must be chasing the squirrels I won't let her chase for real in our yard!