We have seen our dogs and cats twisting, turning, rolling and even pouncing when in deep slumber. What on Earth are they even going through during their sleep cycles?
A research conducted by People magazine last year seems to have the answer to the puzzle. When dogs sleep, there is high possibility that they are dreaming about you – their human masters.
“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. 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,” Dr. Deirdre Barrett, a teacher and a Clinical and Evolutionary Psychologist at Harvard Medical School, told People.
There would have been times when you noticed your dog’s legs frantically moving as if warming up for a brisk sprint when they are fast asleep. This could be because the dream is about running or chasing something. “Common sleep-walking doesn’t occur during dreaming sleep, but a much more vigorous ‘REM (Rapid Eye Movement) behaviour disorder’ – a spontaneous version of what one of the earliest sleep researchers, Michel Jouvet’s experiments did, is accompanied by dreams, so the more pronounced and fast the movements, the more likely they’re acting out a dream,” declared the research study.
Thanks to Jouvet’s pioneering research, there seems to be more clarity on cats’ dreams. According to the research, cats lay quietly through the other stages of sleep, and when REM began, they leapt up, stalked, pounced, arched their backs and hissed. They looked like they were hunting mice in their dreams.