Why Do Chihuahuas Sleep So Much?

I Love Chihuahuas
8 min readJul 31, 2023
Why Do Chihuahuas Sleep so Much? — Chihuacorner.com
Why Do Chihuahuas Sleep so Much? — Chihuacorner.com

Have you ever wondered why Chihuahuas sleep so much? These pint-sized pups seem to be experts in the art of snoozing, often dozing off in the most comfortable nooks and crannies they can find. Whether curled up on your lap, nestled in their cozy dog bed, or basking in a sunny spot, Chihuahuas are notorious for their love of sleep.

8 Reasons Why Chihuahuas Sleep So Much

1. Chihuahua Behavior

Some of the most common questions that new owners come up with include: Why do Chihuahuas sleep so much? Is it something that I should be worried about? No, you shouldn’t be worried that your Chi is sleeping so much because lounging and sleeping is typical of Chihuahuas.

A Chihuahua can, by default, sleep for up to 15 or 18 hours. This isn’t necessarily an indication of something being wrong. They are simply different from other breeds, and sleeping for prolonged amounts of time is among the weird things Chihuahuas do.

Just make sure to prepare a cozy place to ensure they are comfortable. If you don’t want them sleeping for long, get them engaged. You can take your Chihuahua on a walk or exercise them by playing a favorite game.

2. Lack of Energy

Your Chihuahua is naturally energetic. Chihuahuas lighten up your home with all their charm. You would hardly see them unhappy unless sick.

Your Chihuahua loves spending time with you, especially if it involves a mind-engaging activity. Chihuahuas prefer to play every little time they get.

So, what happens after a play session? The poor little things get all tuckered out.

Naturally, you should see them resting after each exertion, and as expected, for the level of energy they give off. Just ensure they are well-fed before or after they wake up, which should keep their power refreshed.

3. Lack of Attention

Do you fix play dates with your Chihuahua? Do you two play a few times a day?

These are necessary, as is any other means of giving your Chihuahua attention. They’re little divas, and they need it. You know how much they love to play already. When you don’t give them that attention, they opt to sleep.

Chihuahuas are natural attention cravers and givers, and they would give anything to get themselves within your eyeshot. And, the answer to “do Chihuahuas like to sleep with their owners” is a big YES, so use this time for giving your pup attention as well.

As brilliant dogs, they can tell when you are sad or unwilling. Your Chihuahua would rather sleep than hang around your unwillingness. So, if you think they are oversleeping, give them more attention and see what happens!

Why do Chihuahuas sleep so much? — Illustrated by a pup inside a blanket
Why do Chihuahuas sleep so much? — Illustrated by a pup inside a blanket

5. Lack of Entertainment

When you are away for work, your Chihuahua is often left all alone. Chihuahuas are naturally fun, and they become bored once they aren’t getting the stimulation they need. That’s another cue answering why do Chihuahuas sleep so much.

When Chihuahuas don’t get enough active hours, fatigue sets in, making them sleep even more. That’s when you know that you need to get them pumping.

Try to spend more time at home, and you’ll see that your presence gets them in the mood to play. Then, you might even deal with a bad case of “why do Chihuahuas sleep between your legs”, but we’re sure you’ll enjoy all the love from your furry friend.

4. Old Age

Then, there’s a multitude of people asking “why do Chihuahuas sleep under covers?”. Well, the answer is most likely tied to their age.

In their prime years, Chihuahuas begin to play more often. They take up longer exercise routines, and they even move about a bit more. All of this wears them out, so they need to sleep it off. And, what better way to do that than under the comfy covers?

But a Chihuahua’s sleep patterns get intensified even as these pups begin to age. The answer to “how long do Chihuahuas live” is 12–20 years, so there’s a lot of energy going around for an entire decade. Sleep is required to facilitate growth.

Chihuahuas need regular exercise, so you might have to induce the activity at some point. Your senior Chihuahua will be too lazy, and all they may want to do is sleep all through. They might still play occasionally, but not for too long.

6. Health Issues

As a responsible dog parent, you should know your Chihuahua’s sleeping habits. This will help you notice if your dog is sleeping unusually. That’s important because the dramatic change in their sleeping pattern could indicate an illness.

If you suspect something, it’s best to opt for an emergency vet visit. Upon check-up, it could turn out that your Chi is suffering from breed-specific illnesses, that include patellar luxation, hydrocephalus, or periodontal disease. These could all affect your pup’s sleep pattern, which is typically the main indicator of a condition.

Your pup could also be dealing with more serious issues like cancer, epilepsy, thyroid issues, Legg-Perthes disease, or an undiagnosed heart condition. They may be overwhelming initially, but there are solutions that your vet can guide you in.

Parasite Infections

Your Chihuahua might also have a breed-specific blood condition that makes them grow tired quicker. Blood problems usually result from dog parasites, which can find their way into your dog’s body in several ways.

If your Chihuahua has recently played in infected soil or consumed any fleas, the parasites would have attached themselves to their body and started sucking. The parasites can also attach themselves through the puppy’s mother, finding their way in through her milk.

Examples of such parasites include:

  • Tapeworms
  • Whipworms
  • Hookworms
  • Roundworms

Viral Infections

Besides parasites, your Chihuahua is also susceptible to two major viral infections, the Parvovirus and Kennel Cough. They might show themselves in various ways, but they are equally dangerous.

The Parvovirus is typically received from other puppies, and you would notice its effect just before your pup’s adolescence (6 weeks to 6 months old). The virus originates from Parvoviridae.

Typically, the parvovirus can cause fever in your Chihuahua, making them lethargic, easily dehydrated, nauseous, and weak. It can cause weight loss and bloody diarrhea, so it is exceptionally dangerous.

Remember to call your vet immediately if you suspect your Chi has the virus. Reacting on time could prevent your Chihuahua from infecting others and ending in fatality.

Kennel Cough is another virtual infection that affects Chihuahuas. Your Chihuahua can get the kennel cough when you place them out, and the virus attacks their respiratory system. The virus is more intense in younger dogs within six months of age, but it can affect all stages.

If your Chihuahua contracts kennel cough, they will vomit frequently, become nauseous, have nasal congestion, develop a severe cough, and exhibit shortness of breath.

Both infections come with a strong case of fatigue, which makes your Chi quickly tired and sleepy. But, if you take your pup for vaccination from a very young age, you can prevent both of these illnesses and make sure your Chihuahua enjoys full health.

Bacterial Infections

Your Chihuahua may also be sleepier than usual if they are suffering from a bacterial infection. One of the most common bacterial infections that Chihuahuas deal with is leptospirosis. And, just like viruses, leptospirosis is highly contagious.

Leptospirosis comes from infected food, infected water, and soil contaminated with leptospirosis urine. Chihuahuas can also get such an infection from humans, especially if they’re puppies.

The most common symptoms of a bacterial infection in Chihuahuas are vomiting, lack of appetite, excessive thirst, eye inflammations, frequent urination, shivering, mucous membranes, yellowing, and frequent temperature changes.

Why do Chihuahuas sleep so much? — Illustrated by a sleeping pup
Why do Chihuahuas sleep so much? — Illustrated by a sleeping pup

7. Psychological Issues

Even though Chihuauha’s typical issues arise from physical conditions, the psychological aspect is important as well. Pay closer attention to your dog. Your Chihuahua may have been going through anxiety or stress, causing them to oversleep.

Your Chihuahua can get anxious if you stay away for too long, they sense an approaching storm of extreme weather conditions, or a change in their environment makes them nervous.

You can easily detect anxiety in your Chihuahua when they shake and shiver, barely eat, often lick their lips, can’t hold eye contact, urinate more frequently, show more whites in their eyes, and lift a paw higher than the other in their sleep.

Is your Chihuahua exhibiting any of these signs? They might be mildly anxious and opt to sleep it off. You can help the dog by engaging it in a routine. Make the practice quite stimulating. That should enhance their mental and physical condition.

8. Wrong Diet

Picture this: you’ve pampered your pet with enough food for a week. So, what happens next? Your Chihuahua would gain more weight because of the extra food in its system.

This will cause your Chihuahua to put in more weight than they can carry. This would make them stay put more often, making them want to sleep more.

If your Chi starts putting on excessive weight, start taking them out on more strolls. You can also make them exercise more, helping them lose the accumulated weight.

Another way to solve this is to put your Chihuahua on a lighter diet. Once they don’t eat as much as they usually do, their body will regulate. A little fast here and there should work the magic, but knowing how much should a Chihuahua eat is ideal.

Lack of Nutrients

Due to an overweight Chihuahua condition, you might opt for less food. If you don’t go about this carefully, you could deprive your pup of essential nutrients. Being deprived of sufficient food for too long can make your dog tired, making them sleep more.

If your Chihuahua sleep as a result of hunger, you may notice the following:

  • Your Chihuahua may begin to lose interest in things. You can hardly get them to play or exercise.
  • Your dog may experience signs of extreme fatigue. Your dog would hardly have enough strength even to engage you.
  • Your dog is experiencing loss of bladder and bowel control. Without the required nutrients, they lose themselves and any sense of control.
  • Your Chihuahua would barely want to eat the available food, and your dog gets used to hunger and stops eating.

To revive your Chi’s eating habits, the best thing you can do is see a professional vet. Bear in mind that the loss of appetite might not be because of food, since some illnesses might cause it.

Diseases like cancer and kidney and liver problems could make them refuse food, so don’t go about beating yourself down the first chance you get. In conclusion, as long as your pup is taken care of, you won’t have to worry about excessive sleep.

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