Do Dogs Dream? What I Imagine Penny Dreams About – Dogster

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Hi, I’m Savanna! Read my introduction to learn more about me and my spunky Chihuahua mix, Penny.

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The first time I saw Penny kicking her feet and making bark-like sounds in her sleep, I thought something was really wrong with her. After all, she is my first real experience with owning a dog. As you can imagine, I was a little concerned about this behavior. But she seemed otherwise fine, and after the wiggling and the noises stopped, she went right back into seemingly deep sleep.

I thought to myself, “Maybe she’s just dreaming. Wait, do dogs dream?” So after I took to Google, I learned that this seems to be a common question among dog owners and many dog owners have seen and heard their dogs do the same thing in their sleep.

As it turns out, dogs do dream, but it’s pretty much up to speculation what they dream about. Even though we’ll likely never know what dogs dream about, it’s still fun to imagine the possibilities. Here’s what I think Penny dreams about.

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Her Kitty Friends

Penny and Friend Kitty
Penny and her “friend kitty,” Thunder

This is what I think Penny dreams about most often. We have three cats that we either adopted or took in from friends and family. We had all of three of them before we got Penny, but luckily, she gets along with them pretty well. There’s one cat named Thunder that she particularly loves that we call her “friend kitty,” and he loves her back. The other two cats are mere acquaintances with Penny and don’t put up with her shenanigans as much as “friend kitty” does. One cat she’s pretty indifferent to, unless he’s getting pets from us and she isn’t.

Then there’s the last cat that Penny loves to occasionally chase around playfully. She never catches her of course. But this cat merely tolerates Penny and is constantly giving her the “Go to heck” stare. I like to think that when Penny is rapidly kicking her feet in her sleep, that she’s dreaming about chasing this kitty around the house, and maybe actually catching her in her alternate reality. Interestingly, this type of movement in her sleep usually happens on nights that she’s chased the kitty around during the day, so who knows? This one may actually check out.

Dream Visitors or “Intruders”

Small dogs are notoriously “barky,” and my little Pekachoo Penny is no exception. Sometimes she “barks” in her sleep, a kind of muffled closed-mouth barking. I’m sure you’ve heard your dog do the same. But Penny tends to bark at the weirdest things when she’s awake during the day, so there’s honestly no telling what she’s barking at in her sleep.

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Of course, she barks to alert us when she hears a car door close or when she hears someone outside. But otherwise, she doesn’t bark at squirrels and birds and things of that sort. Instead, she barks at things like my garden gnome (this one is understandable, he does look like a small person) and the large flower pot that got moved somewhere else in the yard, so it is now surely an “intruder.”

For all I know, she dreams about that flower pot growing legs and attacking her entire family, and she has to bark at it to save the day. But I think it’s more likely that she has visitors in her dream, such as a family member coming over, and she’s barking to let us know they’re here.

Penny drifting off to sleepPenny drifting off to sleep
Penny drifting off to sleep

Dogs Dream About Lived Experiences

Although our dogs will never be able to tell us exactly what goes on in their dreams, scientists think that dogs do dream about lived experiences. What two dogs dream about may be totally different in actual context, but center around the same experience of chasing something or playing, for example.

I wish Penny could tell me what she’s dreaming about. But I hope that if I can give her positive real-life experiences, then hopefully, her dreams will be happy dreams, full of things she loves doing.

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