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How do I get my puppy to chill out late at night?!(9 Posts)
I thought puppies were supposed to sleep a lot!
Orla is 17 weeks old now, utterly adorable...but she is awake and bouncing a lot more than I expected.
Some of it is understandable.. several of my household are nurses and support workers and so some days go out at 6am and others come back after late shifts at 10.30pm.. whatever the time she is wildly happy to see them and wakes up..and is then bouncing for ages.
Her normal pattern is up at 6am, walk 6.30.. back, breakfast, quick play with dS2 who looks after her when I go to work, then she snoozes for a couple of hours..., kibble for lunch, another play in the house/garden, then I'm back at 4pm..
We have a nice off lead romp through the fields early evening (it was later but now early to be in the light), dinner, a bit of training with treats, tons of excitement when various family members come home.
Some evenings we do a very quick third pee walk, but she won't go out if it rains and just dashes into the garden instead. She will snooze for an hour or so, but then at 10pm she comes back to life...she is currently bashing her kong round the living room and bouncing off the furniture! I go to bed at midnight and I assume she finally flops asleep then as she has to stay downstairs (cats have the upstairs)...she is happy with this and never whines.
I just can't seem to tire her out! She does nap on and off throughout the day but late evenings she is either zoomie-ing for ages or just wide awake ! She isn't crated (absolutely hated it despite following the FB group guidelines) and prefers to flop on the floor rather than her bed.
I worry she is not getting enough sleep, although she is happy and growing fine.
I was worried about our pup too. He didn't sleep any where near the amount quoted on the internet. He was far too concerned with following me about and seeing what is going on! The only times I saw him really flop out was after he'd been to puppy class. Maybe up the brain games? I wouldn't worry tbh, our pup is 15 months now and perfect, despite not sleeping much!
She seems quite over stimulated. That's a lot of outside/play/garden time on top all of the excitement of people coming and going too.
Puppies are like toddlers and need enforced downtime! If you crate, pop her in there with a chew and she'll soon settle down. We didn't use a crate we got a lead (that was only ever used indoors) and put him on that so he couldn't run and be silly. Within minutes he'd settle down and start snoring!
I agree that it doesn't sound like she is awake in the evening because she's not tired. She sounds like she is awake because exciting things happen.
I think I would be tempted to play a long game here and enforce a household ban on exciting puppy things after a set time (8pm?). What I mean by that is for everyone to agree that no one does anything fun with the puppy after that time, except maybe cuddle if she's settled and quiet and remains that way.
- people coming into the house after 8pm should ignore her (maybe a very brief and unexciting hello).
- stop walking her after that time - it's likely to wake her up rather than tire her out.
- any attempts to play nicely by herself (e.g. with a kong) are allowed; any running about is stopped (I like the indoor lead idea)
- any attempts to engage humans in play are ignored
She won't 'get it' at first and is likely to get worse before she gets better but it seems like a good lesson for her to learn that evenings are always boring and may as well be spent snoozing
I agree with missbattenburg , concentrate on keeping things calm and she will get it eventually .
Just to reassure you OP mine was similar as a puppy but is much more chilled out now at 19 months.
Like PP said it gets worse before it gets better!
It definitely sounds like she needs to get to know the evening is a calm time. Just like getting a baby to understand night and day. Calming bed time routine. Sit with her and cuddle stroke her when she's settled. Ignore her getting excited. Use things to stimulate her mentally. Kong balls, lick mats and chews. Maybe after that let her for a wee and then calm her down and let her settle for sleep.
The evenings were the worst! Battendog used to literally jump all over the humans and older dogs on the sofa - I think because he was rather entertained by seeing us all leap up and focus on him.
He went behind the baby gate so many times in those days.
He grew out of it too and nowadays the struggle is to rouse him for a final wee before bed. He's just sooo sleeepy
You are giving me hope
Unfortunately I can't do much about the late evening coming in of various (adult) children..the joys of being nurses, and she is just so excited to see them, but I will ask them to be low key and boring when the come in..more a case of training them than her I suspect...it's hard to be boring when your puppy is so thrilled to see you!
I might cut out the last pee walk too, she can go in the garden. She is currently snoring as I don't work Mondays so we had a nice off lead mooch down by the river, but DS1 is due home from work any moment...