Do you ever wonder what your pet’s dreaming of? You probably imagine things like endless belly scratches, or pawing the world’s biggest ball of yarn. The truth, however, might be a bit more touching. According to a new article in People, Dr. Deirdre Barrett, a teacher and a Clinical and Evolutionary Psychologist at Harvard Medical School, says that dogs likely dream of their owners.
Animals Have Similar REM Sleep Cycles To Humans.
While we can only guess as to what is actually going on in their brains, we do know that most mammals have sleep patterns and cycles that are similar to humans. Humans dream when they are in the REM state, alternating between light sleep, deep sleep and REM throughout the night.
Based on what we know about humans and our own sleep patterns; we can guess that animals have similar experiences.
Dogs Likely Dream About Their Owners Faces (Aww!)
“Humans dream about the same things they’re interested in by day, though more visually and less logically,” Barrett told People. “There’s no reason to think animals are any different. 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.”
Also on Z Living: 15 Instagram-Famous Dogs Guaranteed To Make Your Day
Cats Likely Dream Of Their Owners, Too.
More is known about cat dreams, actually. Michael Jovet, an established sleep researcher, destroyed the area in cats’ brains that slow movements while they are experiencing REM sleep. The cats would sleep quietly through other sleep stages, but when they went into REM sleep they would begin hissing, stalkingm and pouncing, much like if they were chasing mice. Considering this connection to real-world experiences, it’s also safe to say that cats dream of their owners as well.
Also on Z Living: Why Adopting An Adult Dog Might Be Right For You
Good Dreams Come From Good Experiences
For a better night’s sleep for pets and humans alike, having positive daytime experiences — plus getting enough sleep in a comfortable place — helps in a big way.
Consider brightening the dreams of an animal without a home this winter, and know that his or her love for you will shine around the clock.
Watch on Z Living: Finding Fido, where photographer and animal behaviorist Seth Casteel hosts plays matchmaker each week between a person and a pooch. Finding Fido will premiere on Z Living in January 2017.
Tell us YOUR heartwarming dog story! We're starting a new series called How I Found My Fido and would love to hear how you found your dog. Click here to submit your story. You could be featured on Z Living!
Tell us in the comments: What do you think your pets dream of?