Some of the most asked questions are:
Do dogs have nightmares? or Do dogs dream? What do dogs dream when they cry?
Here's the short answer: Dogs do dream, and dogs do have "nightmares" that are actually bad situations that they were in, like: dog fights, or maybe the owner that hit them or someone that assaulted them.
So, most of the dreams are actually the dog's memories with its owner or other people and dogs and past traumatic experiences.
Can dogs have nightmares?
So, now we know that dogs can have nightmares and dogs do actually dream. But there is much to explain how it actually works.
From the research I've made during the years I had my best friend, Coco, with me, I've learned that when it's about dreams, dogs are similar to humans. As we have nightmares that include a particularly negative experience, so do dogs dream about a trauma they had in the past. Of course, we can go a lot more in the nightmares because of the movies we saw or a SF book we've read. But dogs have simple nightmares of a reality that already happened.
You know when a dog's dream becomes a nightmare when he loudly barks, shakes, becomes aggressive, or growls.
Important to know: Abandoned and abused dogs are more likely to have nightmares than dogs that always have a safe and loving home.
What do dogs dream about?
Generally, dogs dream about their owners, about the emotions they've experienced that day, or strong emotions that can be positive, such: cuddling with owners, swimming, running, chasing cats, and negative strong emotions like people yelling, aggressive dogs, dogs fighting, dog persecution, etc.
If your pup has a nice dream, he can also behave through the nose, eyes, or paws twitching. When it turns to a nightmare you will immediately realize, because everything will be amplified.
What to do if your dog is having a nightmare
If your dog gives you signs of nightmare it is better to wait some seconds to see if he calms down. If he continues to growls and shake, then you can slowly and gently start to wake him up.
Firstly, you can try to call its name to be safe for everyone. If this method doesn't work you can try to play some calm music on the background and follow the "let sleeping dogs lie" popular advice. If nightmares are a frequent occurrence, contact your veterinarian. Your vet will be able to diagnose any medical reasons behind the nightmares, and help you both get a good night’s sleep.
So, the conclusion is that dogs do have nightmares and dogs do dream about a reality they have been through. If your dog suffers from nightmares I advise you to visit your vet for some medical advice.
Until the next article! Paws & love!🐾