When people sleep, they do the same thing. I often twitch in my sleep a lot, especially if I’m having a dream where I’m walking up stairs and then “trip” or “miss” a step. I also twitch a lot right when I’m falling asleep; sometimes violently. In the beginning of my relationship with my boyfriend, he was extremely concerned because of how rapidly I twitched. After awhile, he got use to it.
My boyfriend also talks in his sleep, which would be akin to your dog growling/yelping.
All of those things are normal behaviors for animals and people alike. A seizure is something you cannot wake a person or animal out of. A seizure also doesn’t happen in “spurts” like a twitch will (you twitch and then you’re still for a moment or two, twitch again, etc). A seizure is a continuous involuntary movement where the patient is often (or always, I think) unconscious.
If you want to get technical…
Myoclonus (pronounced /maɪˈɒklənəs/) is brief, involuntary twitching of a muscle or a group of muscles. The most common time for people to encounter them is while falling asleep, which is called a hypnic jerk. A hypnic jerk, hypnagogic jerk, sleep start, night start, is an involuntary myoclonic twitch which occurs during hypnagogia, just as the subject is beginning to fall asleep. Physically, hypnic jerks resemble the “jump” made when a person is startled, often accompanied by a falling sensation. It is commonly caused by irregular sleep schedules.
Sleep myoclonus occurs during the initial phases of sleep, especially at the moment of dropping off to sleep.
It’s completely normal 🙂 Just let your puppy sleep, no need to continually wake them.