One month ago we had to say good-bye to our beautiful ten year old Shetland Sheepdog (Sheltie), named Katie. It was so hard for our family and we miss her terribly. But just the other day we brought home a new Sheltie, and our hearts are beginning to heal as we fall in love with Rylee.
I had forgotten what it is like to have a puppy. It’s almost like a baby; my house is a mess all the time with toys and puppy equipment everywhere. I cannot take my eyes off him for a second when he’s not in his crate, and when I’m away from him, he’s constantly on my mind. But there’s one good thing-I’m not an exhausted new mother.
Rylee is a good little puppy; he has a wonderful temperament and is very playful and affectionate. What I have learned as a baby and child sleep consultant is: even though he is a dog, he is still a baby, and therefore he needs to be on a schedule and get a lot of sleep to grow strong and healthy (just like a baby.)
It’s tempting to think that if a baby or puppy sleeps less during the day, they will sleep more at night. Certainly for babies and children this is not true. In fact the opposite is true. When they don’t get the proper amount of sleep during the day they become overtired, which leads to trouble falling asleep at night and waking frequently throughout the night.
I am letting my little Rylee sleep as much as he likes and needs, during the day. This keeps him happy and healthy. He gets a lot of attention from my kids when they come home, and from visitors who pop over. If he wasn’t well rested, he wouldn’t be able to handle all the handling and attention and he would get very overwhelmed. And so far, all this sleep during the day has not at all interfered with his sleep at night. We’re both well-rested.
Babies are not puppies, but they do share some things in common. They are cute. They depend on us. They bring us joy and love. They need our love and care to grow strong, healthy and happy- and they need their sleep!
Thankfully, I am not an exhausted new mother; those days are behind me. But I know so many of you are in the thick of it. In order to get the sleep you need, make sure your baby gets the sleep he/she needs.
What about you? Have you ever tried keeping your little one up thinking he/she will sleep better at night? Let me know how it turned out?