Tuesday, 29 June 2010

dogs are crepuscular

When Penny was at the vet's today to check up on a recent limp, I weighed her and was alarmed to see she has put on a kilo over the last two months. How could that be? Hmm...would it be the constant trickle of treats when she is doing training? Could it be the regular scraps of toast? (It's a strange feature or our household that there seems to always be someone toasting bread - very mysterious.) Or is it the snacks of carrot, ends of beans, offcuts of sweet potato - a favorite of hers?

I wondered whether we are not exercising her enough, because she seems to be lying around most of the day. Why isn't she racing around the backyard, getting fit? That's how I imagined it would be, before she came to live with us. But the problem is that dogs, being pack animals, will wait for the leader to signal that it's time to go out hunting, so having a large backyard doesn't get around the fact that most dogs won't exercise themselves.

And now I've found out that dogs are crepuscular. That's why they are happy to lie around most of the day, which is very handy for humans who go out to work between 9 and 5.

And if you don't already know the meaning of crepuscular, you might just go over to my other blog to check out the meaning, and thus give the site more than its usual average of two visitors a day.

It was in Stanley Coren's book How Dogs Think that I found out when dogs are most likely to be active.


Two Pitties in the City said...

That might explain why our pooches are waking us up at 6am on weekends. I didn't know that about them, but I did know they sleep an average of 19 hours a day!

parlance said...

Two Pitties, that's an amazing amount of sleep! I had heard dogs sleep a lot, but couldn't recall where I read it. Nineteen hours a day! I'm still getting over it. I think we humans have gone wrong somewhere in this sleep business. I'm strongly of the opinion - seriously, not joking - that many of the problems of our world come from the invention of artificial lighting, so that we humans don't sleep enough.

Our Prime Minister was suddenly removed in a political coup recently - amazingly sudden - and one of the factors was the general perception that he doesn't sleep enough and is consequently not able to make good judgements.

parlance said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Kelly said...

If my dog is at the park for most of the day when he is usually sleeping, he will be SO tired the next day! Nineteen hours is a long time! If only my life was as easy as my dog's.

PS: cute banner picture!

parlance said...

Kelly, a friend of mine says she does one really active day with her dog and then only a street-walk on-lead the second day. I guess I should do that too, but our household is rather chaotic, so sometimes it's big walks/park visits for days and then quiet days all in a row.