Objectives To characterize sleep and circadian rhythms of a sample population of healthy, dog-owning adults from North Carolina, USA.
Methods Actigraphy was used to analyze sleep-wake patterns in forty-two dog owners from the Raleigh area in North Carolina. Sleep quotas, including sleep duration, efficiency, and fragmentation were measured alongside a Non-parametric Circadian Rhythms Analysis (NPCRA) to quantify strength, consistency, and fragmentation of rhythms.
Results Compared to females, males demonstrated later sleep onset and sleep end (p<0.01), greater wake after sleep onset and sleep fragmentation (P<0.001), and lower sleep efficiency (p<0.001). The NPCRA revealed comparable relative amplitude (strength) and interdaily stability (consistency), yet less intra-daily variability (fragmentation), than previously reported post-industrial samples.
Conclusions This study adds to the current data available on sleep and circadian rhythms in discrete human populations and highlights the need for more research characterizing cross-cultural sleep and circadian rhythmicity.