How To Stop Your Puppy Crying At Night.

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Useful items to stop your puppy crying at night

Wrap a hot water bottle in a towel or thick blanket and put it at one end of the bed to simulate the warmth of another dog.

Put a ticking clock in the room with your puppy to simulate the heart beat of another dog; your puppy is used to sleeping with its brothers and sisters.

A stuffed animal can be of great comfort to your puppy; a little larger than them is usually a good fit (make sure it does not have any plastic parts for your puppy to chew on).




Adaptil (Dog Appeasing Pheremone)

Dog appeasing pheromone can be purchased from your vet and comes in three forms. A plug in (in the same way an air freshener works), a collar or a spray that can be applied to bedding.

It releases a synthetic analogue of a pheromone that is secreted by bitches during whelping. It has been proven to relax dogs and puppies and should allow for a more peaceful night sleep. It has also been demonstrated that it can reduce fear and even improve house training acquisition

A sleep routine: Exercise / Toilet / Chill out time / Comfort

Make sure your puppy is actually tired before you leave it for the night.  A short walk before bed or some training/play time are essential.  Once you have tired your puppy out the best thing to do is to take him or her out to the bathroom, see our house training guide for tips.

This way you know if they cry it is not because they need to be let out. After they have peed and pooped, take your puppy to its bed and say ‘bed’, gently stroke and relax your puppy until he/she falls asleep.  Make sure your puppy has water available, some paper down in case they need to go and a nice comfortable bed.  Also be aware of the temperature; too hot or too cold and your puppy won’t sleep well.

What to do when your puppy cries at night

When you leave your puppy for the night try not to make too much of a fuss.  After the relaxation session your puppy should be settled and you can simply leave the room without encouraging your puppy to come to the door.

This is the trickiest part for any new puppy owner:  When the puppy cries or barks throughout the night you must not go down to the puppy. Given you have followed the previous advice you can rest assured you have covered all of your puppies needs.  It can be a difficult first few nights but by going down to check on the puppy you can accidentally reinforce the barking.  This can mean your puppy learns I bark and Mum or Dad come running down i.e. I get attention.

It makes little difference if you go down to comfort or chastise the puppy as at this stage, as any attention is good attention.  If you have already been going to your puppy when it cries, then the same rules apply but the results will take slightly longer to see.  Fear not, young puppies are extremely quick learners.

This puppy training method will pay you back ten fold and being consistent will enable your puppy to cope with being left alone during the day and help prevent other attention seeking behaviours whilst you are busy around the house.




TOP TIP – tell your neighbours you are expecting to get a puppy but you have a training schedule already worked out to minimize any noise during the night.  You can even organise when you pick your puppy up so that it is at a weekend in order to ensure you are not disturbing any neighbours that are due to have an early start.

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133 Comments

  • Trina says:

    Hi,

    I have a 4 month old lab x we have had her for almost a week now. The first few days she has been fine at night and hasn’t cried, she had gone to the toilet a few times the first night but has been good ever since. We confine her in the bathroom at night, turn the light off and don’t leave the radio or anything on (as the vet told us this is better for them) we have a crate but she doesn’t like it. Last night she was whining and howling for about half an hour before she actually settled then she woke at 1am and howled and was scratching at the door so I got up to check on her and she had pooped and walked in it so it has spread everywhere (this is the first) so I cleaned up the mess and her and moved her to the crate left the light on in the other room and turned the radio on because she whined and howled for another half an hour before going to sleep. She woke at 6am crying and howling and had pooped again in the crate. Am I supposed to be getting up every time she cries to take her outside to do her business overnight? She is good at telling you she needs to go during the day but what do I do at night. Is this why she was crying or was is separation anxiety? Help!

    • Linda Jensen says:

      Hi, I’m no expert but I do believe these little pups are a lot like babies. It’s our job to go through a check list of things they might need to have a good night. Feed at an early enough hour such as 6, potty break, played with and walked to get out any energy, potty again and bed. Routines are perfect because the pup will learn to feel the comfort of knowing what comes next. If your puppy is 4 months old then she should be able to hold her bladder for up to 5 hours. If you worked her tired before bed and got her to poop then you shouldn’t need to worry about poop. You should only need to worry about letting her out to potty every 4-5 hours. Hope this helps. Good luck!

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