Ever wondered why your dog makes those funny little noises, twitches their foot or their feet kind of start running – could they be dreaming? Science suggests that yes they are dreaming just like we do.
Monitoring the brain activity of sleeping dogs has shown that there’s activity going on in a similar manner to what goes on in our human brains when we’re sleeping. Like us, they also have a part of the brain called the pons, which keeps us from acting out our dreams (most of the time). It seems to function the same in dogs. Puppies and older dogs seem to dream the most, because the pons isn’t as active in those dogs as it is in adult dogs.
Researchers have found that about 20 minutes into the sleep cycle they enter REM. Next time your dog sleeps try looking for the signs, even if they’re not as obvious as the running feet, you should still be able to see signs that there’s something going on from eye twitches to ear twitches, they’re dreaming.
Researchers also suggest that dogs are dreaming about what’s most important to them. A dog that spends his day hiking is likely dreaming about wandering through the woods, while one that lounges in the kitchen all day is probably dreaming about dinner. One Harvard psychologist suggests that closely bonded dogs are likely dreaming about their favourite person. Awwww, can dogs be any more perfect?