German Shepherd puppies are cute, cuddly and bursting with energy. As they get their bearings and learn how to walk, talk, eat, and poop, they will also need a lot of sleep for their tiny little bodies and brains to develop. In fact, for the first year, sleeping will be critical and most of their day will be spent “sawing logs.” But how often do they snooze and what is a good German Shepherd puppy sleep schedule? This article will give you a better idea of what to expect when it comes to their Z’s.
On average German Shepherd puppies will sleep between 18 and 20 hours a day. A good sleep schedule will encourage healthy growth and development. Crate them at night time when you go to bed at a consistent time. They may not sleep all the way through the night until they are around 4 months old. Follow up their playtime throughout the day with naps to recoup their energy.
How Much Sleep Do German Shepherd Puppies Need?
GSD puppies need their sleep to develop and function correctly. The amount they need depends on their age. Here is a chart to help you determine their sleep requirement.
|Puppy’s Age||Sleep Time||Percentage of day|
|0-8 weeks old||20-22 hours||90%|
|8-12 weeks old||18-20 hours||80%|
|14-18 weeks||16-18 hours||70%|
These sleep times are estimates and may vary depending on the dog and living situation. Remember German Shepherd puppies are smart and work better with a solid routine with consistency.
Morning German Shepherd Puppy Sleep Schedule
It is time to rise and shine and your puppy is rearing to go! Here is a schedule to help you and your puppy make the best of the morning time.
|8:00AM||First thing in the morning after your puppy wakes up, take him straight from their crate outside to go potty. You may have to carry him quickly to avoid any accidents. Whoops!|
|8:30AM||Now it’s breakfast time! Feed him some healthy food and give him some fresh water to drink.|
|9:00AM||Once he is done munching on his food and lapping up some water, take him outside for another potty break.|
|9:30AM||Since your outside, go ahead and play with your GSD for at least 30 minutes. you can play games, socialize with other animals or go for a short walk.|
|10:00AM||After playtime he should be pooped. Put him down for a nap and let him sleep for up to 2 hours.|
|11:30AM||Follow that up with another potty break outside when he awakes from his slumber.|
Times are approximate and will obviously vary depending on your job and lifestyle. But this should give you a good general idea of how to schedule their sleep throughout the day.
Afternoon German Shepherd Puppy Sleep Schedule
So you made it through the morning! Hopefully your little pup has at least had one solid nap. Now it’s on to the afternoon for some more fun!
|12:00PM||Feed him a healthy lunch with some nice fresh water.|
|12:30PM||After he finishes his food, take him outside for a potty break.|
|1:00PM||While you are outside, train him for 30 minutes to an hour with some basic commands in obedience. Reward him with praise and a treat when he obeys.|
|2:00PM||Take him inside for a nap and let him sleep for up to an hour.|
|3:00PM||When he awakes from his sleep, take him outside for a quick potty break.|
|3:30PM||Now it’s playtime! Let him runaround and maybe socialize with any pets nearby or neighbors to get him used to other people. Spend maybe 30 minutes.|
|4:00PM||After expending his energy, he should settle down for another nap. Let him sleep for 30 minutes to an hour and a half.|
|5:30PM||Take him outside for one more potty break before dinner time.|
Keep in mind, your German Shepherd puppy will have a mind of its own and sleep when it feels necessary. He may have sudden outbursts of energy followed by a quick nap.
Evening German Shepherd Puppy Sleep Schedule
By this time, your GSD should have had at least 2 or 3 naps and slept for up to 4.5 hours. Now it’s on to dinner time and then to bed.
|6:00PM||Feed your GSD puppy a nice healthy dinner along with some fresh water to drink.|
|6:30PM||Take him out to go potty following his meal and maybe walk around the yard for a bit.|
|7:00PM||Back inside let him socialize with the family and spend time with any other pets in the house.|
|7:30PM||Take him out for one more potty break before bed time to hopefully avoid any accidents in the house or his crate during the night.|
|8:00PM||Put him in his crate to go to sleep for the night. Make him comfortable with a nice warm blanket and a chew toy.|
I know it seems like a lot and you may not have time every day to follow this type of sleep schedule. This is best case scenario. Adjust accordingly based on your lifestyle.
Daytime Sleep Tips For Your Puppy
- Be consistent with nap time and get him used to catching some Z’s after playtime, training or walks.
- Don’t overdo it and learn to recognize when he is worn out. Make sure he isn’t getting too much exercise or stimulation. Encourage him to rest if he seems tired.
- If you notice him waking up from a nap, take him outside immediately to go potty.
- Make sure he has a quiet place to sleep undisturbed and away from the action, especially if you have children.
- Teach him to sleep in his crate when you can. You can also put a little dog bed in another room for peace and refuge.
Nighttime Sleep Tips For Your Puppy
- Be consistent and put him to bed at the same time each night. Routine is key for creating sleep patterns. Your puppy will learn to go to bed when you do.
- Crate your puppy preferably using an adjustable partition leaving him just enough room to stand up and turn around. This will help him sleep and lessen the chance of him going potty at night.
- Keep him crated in your room if need be. Being close to you may help him sleep at night.
- Make his crate nice and cozy with a warm blanket or two on the bottom. Forget the bed as he will probably destroy it. Instead give him a couple of his favorite chew toys.
- Prepare for your puppy to wake up sometimes throughout the night. Puppies usually won’t sleep all the way through the night until they are 16 weeks old.
Why Is Sleep So Important For Puppies?
There is a reason puppies sleep most of the day away. The body and brain use this downtime to develop and grow. This includes their central nervous system and immune system which they need to fight off sickness and disease.
Similar to humans, a lack of sleep can lead to a weakened immune system which means they are more prone to sickness or disease.
German Shepherds grow at a rapid pace for the first year of their life. This means that sleep is even more crucial during this time period.
Fun Fact: Dogs dream just like humans. Just like us, they experience (REM) sleep which stands for “rapid eye movement.” This is a period of deep sleep when the mind has increased activity. It benefits your dog’s learning and organizes their memories.
Sleep is vital for your German Shepherd puppy so make sure they are getting enough. There may be some sleepless nights ahead of you, especially if the crate is in your bedroom. But things will get easier the more they mature. Remember as they grow and get older, the amount of sleep they require will decline. Once they are a full-grown adult, they will sleep for about 12 to 14 hours. Stick to a consistent schedule and make sure they have a quiet place to retreat.
Please leave a comment below and let us know what you think!
Do you own a German Shepherd puppy? If so, what is their sleep schedule? Do you have any tips for potential owners that may help? Let us know! We would love to hear about your personal story!