Ever wonder what your furkid is dreaming about when she makes soft yelps or her limbs twitch while she’s curled up in bed next to you? According to one Harvard psychologist, your best friend could be dreaming about you.
While we are aware of the fact that dogs do dream, have you ever wondered what exactly they’re dreaming about? Clinical and evolutionary psychologist at Harvard Medical School, Dr Deirdre Barrett, told People that even though there’s no way to know what our pooches are seeing when they dream, it’s safe to assume that their dreams have a relation to their everyday experiences, just like us.
“Humans dream about the same things they’re interested in by day, though more visually and less logically. There’s no reason to think animals are any different,” explains Dr Barrett. “Since dogs are generally extremely attached to their human owners, it’s likely your dog is dreaming of your face, your smell, and of pleasing or annoying you.”
Unfortunately, the same cannot be said for felines. Dr Barrett says that one of the earliest sleep researchers, Michel Jouvet, found that although kitties lay quietly throughout their sleep, once they’ve entered into a state of deep sleep, they leap up, stalk, pounce, arch their backs and hiss. They look as if they’re hunting mice in their dreams.
When asked if there was any way that paw-rents can help to give their furkids better dreams, Dr Barrett says, “The best way to give ourselves or our children better dreams is to provide happy daytime experiences, and allow them to get plenty of sleep in a safe and comfortable environment. It’s a good bet this is also best for pets’ dreams.”
*This article was updated on 29 Jul 2020. It first appeared in PetsMagazine.com on 24 Oct 2016.