8 Week Old New Puppy - Crate training night time question(16 Posts)
We brought our lovely girl home yesterday and she is gorgeous.
On the plus side - she seems to like her crate and is already chosing to go in there and nap (we leave the door open in the day and she can come in and out as she pleases. She was also happy to go in last night at bed time (about 10pm).
As her crate is downstairs in the family room, I decamped to the sofa for the night and am happy to do this for a few more nights.
She slept for a couple of hours, woke up and fussed/whined a bit, i took her into the garden but no pee so I brought her in and she went back to sleep for about an hour. Then more fussing/crying so I took her out again, and still no pee - so again back in the crate and she fell asleep. I then repeated this every 2/3 hours through the night but there was hardly any wee done in the garden. Twice last night she cried for about 20 mins flat and on the advice I have read I tried not to break and take her out (because she had just been out) but then this morning I noticed she had pee'd a couple of times in her crate.
I KNOW it's the first night, and I don't mind at all. I am happy to take her out as much as she needs but I am not sure I am getting it right. I don't know when crying is for comfort attention and when she needs a pee. I realise that this was her first night alone and I want to comfort her as much as she needs, but I don't want to form bad habits - i.e. her crying/me getting up and getting her out of the crate all night long.
So tonight, do I just take her out every few hours when she isn't necessarily fussing and ignore howling, or should I respond to all crying?
Reading my books and googling. So much conflicting advice.
Just really would love a wise MN night time crying/pee-ing/routine suggestion that I can start tonight.
Our puppy didn't come home til a little older so her bladder was bigger but the first week I took her out every 2 hours between 10pm and 6am, and praised effusively when she did wee. I also said "go peepee" as she went and now at 6 months I can say it and she'll go if she needs to. I also waited for a break in the crying/whinging until I let her out so she didn't associate making noise with getting out of the crate. I hope this helps you, 10 days in I was posting on here about it being a terrible mistake but 3 months later puppy is firmly part of the family
I have had a puppy every year for the last three years and all I can say is that they are all different and there is no one way that will guarantee instant success. I would not let a puppy howl in distress but I would not let it out and comfort it every time it made a noise. How was the puppy kept before you had it? If they are on a good routine and used to being let outside regularly then it will not take long before they get themselves sorted. The labrador pup I have now cried all the time at first (even when eating) and was very upset, but he came from a large kennel and found being on his own in a crate very stressful. I would continue as you have started and let it outside during the night at regular intervals and I am sure you will find that things improve rapidly.
We've just been out on the garden and have had a wee and a poo (TMI?) so I am going to go along with the theory that she defo doesn't need to come out for at least another 2 hours.
Crying between now and then will get a 'hush hush' from me so she hears my voice, but no coming out. Does that sound about right?
And if she is asleep in two hours, do I wake her to go out or wait for her to wake me and risk her not being able to hold her pee? Not sure which is best?
What worked for us was me or dh sleeping on the sofa next to dpup's crate for the first 5 nights
The first night we played with him loads and then took him to the garden for a last wee and poo at about midnight. Then popped him into his crate and he was so tired he conked out straight away. I waited until he started getting v restless but before he started whine and whisked him out again at about 2:30 and then again at about 5 (which was when he decided the day had officially begun ). The next night he only needed one trip out, and the third night I just stroked him through the crate bars and made soothing noises and much to my surprise he went back to sleep. Night 4 and dh was on duty - he swore blind that dpup hadn't stirred at all - I checked out his story by being on shift for night 5 and discovered that yes, hurray, dpup was actually sleeping through . And he's done so ever since (phew). As the weeks went by we gradually stretched the night at either end so pretty soon he was going out for his last wee at 10-ish and not stirring until we get up even at weekends when we're a bit (not much) later than in the week.
It was really easy and stress-free for both us and dpup
OK so things have gone downhill a bit
She has been home a week today and although we were struggling a bit with the housebreaking - a few accidents, I felt that we were moving forward. But as of two days ago she has completely switched from LOVING her crate (as in nudging us out of the way to get in there and having to be coaxed out after a nap) to seeming to not like it at all.
Last night she cried ALL NIGHT and I tried to ignore other than non-communicative pee breaks, and this morning she is super tired but whereas until now she would have voluntarily padded over to the crate, she is resisting and when I coaxed her in for a much needed nap, she started howling.
I don't think we are 'over-crating' in the day - just for naps and the odd ten/twenty minutes here are there to show her that we always come back. But she has really gone backwards in terms of sleep. I don't really want to take her crate to my room (2 floors up) as the pee run is much further for her to travel and she won't make them all, and I also anticipate going back to square one the minute we return the crate downstairs.
I didn't get more than an hours sleep at a time last night, and added to the night time pee runs of the past week, I am feeling slightly deranged with sleep deprivation.
I know it's all par for the course, but I really do want to get this right. At the moment, she has a soft toy, a Kong stuffed with peanut butter, vetbed to sleep on and a cover over the top and sides of the crate but not blocking her vision at the front. We have tried low light on/off, talk radio on/off.
Any other suggestions that have worked for you?
ps. Do I sound grumpy? SHe is lovely and i don't mind I just want her to be able to feel safe and settled
All the best behaviourists now recommend crate by your bed till pup sleeping through the night. When they whine in the night out to garden quick wee back in back to bed, only minimal lights on etc.
Then gradually move crate to where you want it to be long term.
We also tried an Adaptil plug in, on the advice of our vet, that releases lactating mummy dog smells and is supposed to calm puppies down. I did everything you've done, although I have to say Monty hasn't had any problems with his crate and now we've moved it back into the kitchen he still sleeps in it fine. No fuss at bedtime and he goes through till half six or seven the next morning. I couldn't have had the crate upstairs either, it's just too impractical, but it did mean a few nights on the sofa.
I am bracing myself for tonight. I am going to try and ignore and wait for gaps to offer praise and pee breaks.
But oh god, I'd love a few consecutive hours of sleep.
You'll get there, some just take longer than others. Hang in there.
Don't mean to sound harsh but it's a dog not a baby! Sounds like dog is training you. How old is your pup and what breed is it?
Soncey. It's fine - no offence taken AT ALL. I do feel like it's consuming my life but most people I know who have had puppies said it is like having a baby for a few weeks.
She is 9 weeks old and a springer X cocker - so sprocker.
I don't want to pander but equally don't want to be too brutal as she's so little. What worked for you?
Yes it does feel a bit like that's! At her age she should be able to hold her bladder for at least 4 hours. Does she have a comfortable bed in the crate? Is there someone at home all day? Are you taking her out at all? Does she eat well and how many meals a day are you giving her?
Yes to comfy bed in the crate and vetbed as well.
I play in the garden with her for at least 2 hours a day and she potters about our kitchen and hallway whilst I work on laptop. And I chuck the odd ball around whilst working plus give her a Kong with treats to keep her amused. About every two hours she trots over to her crate for a nap of about an hour or so. Then the DC get hone and play with her too.
3 meals a day at about 6.30, midday and 6 pm.
She can't go out for walks yet but I do carry her out round the block if to school pick up occasionally. But she is in the garden lots.
The day is fine, if a bit all consuming (I know this will become more relaxed in time), and by 10pm she is more than ready for bed. Last night, I left her rather than taking her out at regular intervals and she woke at 3.45 and didn't want to go back to sleep. She finally nodded off at 5:30am by which time I couldn't get back to sleep till 6:15 ish -for half an hour.
Is this just my fate for a few weeks? I really feel I've tried to wear her out
Sounds like you are doing all the right things. Assume she has water in the crate so she's not thirsty? If she is going in crate at 10pm then she shouldn't really need a toilet break until at least 4 am. There is a distinct difference between the lonely whining and the need a wee whining. My GSD didn't sleep 10-6 until she was about 4months because of needing a wee. But my collie slept straight through and only whined a tiny bit first night. They are all different but you have to train yourself not to go to them as soon as they start crying or they soon learn its a good way to get your attention! It's also a good idea to get them out as much as you can even if you have to carry them, show her as many things as you can now and she will make a confident dog when she is an adult.
Enjoy! I hope sleep comes soon
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