What do dogs dream about?
Do Dogs Dream? And What Do Dogs Dream About?
Dogs are known to be very sociable animals. They love human company and enjoy being around humans. However, there are certain things which make them uncomfortable. One such thing is barking at strangers or even other dogs. If you’re like most people, then you probably don’t want your neighbors barking at you all the time. Another reason why many people dislike dogs is because they tend to get into fights with each other. Some dogs just aren’t cut out for companionship and prefer solitary living.
If it’s true that some dogs never learn how to behave themselves, then surely it makes sense that others would be unable to control their aggressive tendencies towards humans too. So if you’ve ever wondered what do dogs dream about, then read on!
Dog Dreams: A Brief History
The first recorded evidence of dreams was found in ancient Egypt. Egyptian priests were using dreams to communicate with their gods. According to the writings of these priests, dreams could predict the future and provide instructions for the priest’s actions during a ritual.
Later, Greek philosophers came up with similar ideas. For example Plato believed that dreams were a form of communication between man and god. He also believed that dreams were a way for the soul to wander, and that the soul could experience things it couldn’t in real life.
In the modern world, it is generally accepted that people dream every night. In fact many cultures have specific rituals and practices designed to control or influence dreams.
But what about dogs? Can they also dream?
What Do Dogs Dream About When They Howl?
Dogs have very active imaginations. They are always thinking about something, which is why they tend to zone out from time to time. Many owners interpret this behavior as daydreaming, and it’s true that dogs do spend a lot of time doing this. However, this isn’t the same as dreaming. Dogs don’t dream in the way that humans do, so you can stop worrying that Rover has been having nightmares about that angry tom cat next door.
Just like humans, dogs’ brains produce a very large amount of electrical energy when they sleep. This is what allows us to have all those vivid dreams that we remember. While it is possible that dogs experience something similar, there’s no evidence to suggest that they do.
They don’t even have the same types of brain activity that humans have when dreaming.
Dogs and Nightmares
Unlike humans, dogs tend to have a much better understanding of what is and isn’t real. When a dog gets scared by something in their surroundings they know that it isn’t going to suddenly attack them. However, sometimes they may have a natural fear of certain sounds and situations that we, as humans, wouldn’t even find threatening.
For example some dogs may be afraid of the sound of fireworks even though they’ve never been hurt by them. This is due to the experiences of their parents and other animals they have lived with in the past.
Do Dogs Have Night Terrors?
Night terrors are different from dreams because they occur during the deepest stages of sleep. During a night terror, the body remains still and the eyes will be open, but the person (or dog in this case) is unable to move or respond to anything around them. It’s almost as if they are paralyzed. Night terrors are most common in children between the ages of 3 and 6, and they affect more boys than girls. The exact cause of night terrors is unknown, but they can be caused or worsened by sleep deprivation, stress and taking certain medications.
Night terrors can last for up to 20 minutes and generally end naturally. Most sufferers don’t remember anything that happened during the night terror. In some cases, a gentle approach may help, but most of the time you just need to wait for the night terror to end.
So, is your dog likely to have a night terror or a dream?
Neither really. Most likely, when your dog is staring blankly into space he’s just thinking about his next meal.
Why Do Dogs Howl?
Dogs may howl for a number of reasons. They may be howling due to a traumatic event, such as the death of another dog or being abandoned by their owner. Most of the time, they are simply responding to a noise that catches their attention. For example, a dog may start howling because they hear another dog howling, even if the sound doesn’t carry over that far. Alternatively, they may hear a siren or some other type of noise and then begin howling in response. It’s not really known why dogs howl when they hear such noises, but it has been proven that some dogs will even howl on a regular basis during the night for no apparent reason.
Dogs have very sensitive ears and a good sense of hearing. They can hear a wider range of sounds and more acutely than the average human. Certain high pitched sounds, such as whistles, may even hurt a dog’s ears.
A dog’s hearing is so good that they may even be able to hear a silent movie!
There are many theories about how dogs communicate with each other using sound alone. It’s possible that dogs are able to communicate across vast distances using high pitched noises that we simply can’t hear.
Why Do Dogs Pant?
Sources & references used in this article:
- How dogs dream: Amazonian natures and the politics of transspecies engagement (E Kohn – American ethnologist, 2007 – Wiley Online Library)
- Wild dog dreaming: Love and extinction (S Coren – 2012 – WW Norton & Company)
- How forests think: Toward an anthropology beyond the human (DB Rose – 2011 – books.google.com)
- Do Dogs Dream? (E Kohn – 2013 – books.google.com)
- Forms of dreaming (JM Masson – 1998 – Broadway Books)
- Dream work (E Colley – braincraftvideo.ruplayers.com)
- Early understanding of mental entities: A reexamination of childhood realism (HT Hunt – Perceptual and Motor Skills, 1982 – journals.sagepub.com)
- Dreams and the Wishes of the Soul: A Type of Psychoanalytic Theory among the Seventeenth Century Iroquois1 (M Oliver – 1986 – books.google.com)