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How to stop puppy barking at night

(32 Posts)
Perpetuallyperplexed27 Tue 15-Oct-19 06:57:12

I'm sat here after being up again since 3am and am mentally and physically drained. We have had our Yorkie puppy for 2 and a half months. He's a lovely little thing and is settling in well but the barking in the night is really getting me down.

In his defence he usually goes quiet after a few minutes once the lights go out. But last night for example my daughter got up to use the loo in the middle of the night, he heard movement and was barking until I got up and removed him from his crate. I didn't want to do this but believe me not the sort of barking you can ignore. It's loud continuous yapping that would wake up both our neighbours as well as us. I know it's to be expected in some ways but I've never had this issue with any of my other dogs and am really struggling. Dh is also pissed off because he is up early for work.

Short of telling everyone in the house that they are confined to their bedrooms after 10pm I'm not sure how we can resolve this. Can anyone offer any tips?

OP’s posts: |
ChilledBee Tue 15-Oct-19 07:05:20

Do you praise him for barking at potential intruders during the day?

Perpetuallyperplexed27 Tue 15-Oct-19 07:08:41

No. I don't praise him for barking at all lol. He doesn't bark too much during the day really and if he does it's not so much of an issue as in the middle of the night when he is waking up the whole street. I feel I can't ignore it.

OP’s posts: |
missbattenburg Tue 15-Oct-19 07:10:23

You ignore it. Sorry.

If you go to him after he barks, especially if he has to bark for different amounts of time before you do, you are training him to bark forever until you get up and you are doing it it a way that reduces the chances and/or speed he will give up trying to bark when you do try to ignore it.

Essentially you've put him on a variable reward schedule. This is the stuff gambling is made of and is why gamblers find it so hard to quit. He will just keep doing one more bark in case that's the one that works. You're training perseverance.

I would explain to your neighbours that it's going to be noisy for a few nights, buy them wine and perhaps see if they would prefer training to start at the weekend.

Then get yourself some earphones and resolve to ignore him. He is likely to get worse before he gets better but if barking never gets him what he wants they he will give up barking.

dudsville Tue 15-Oct-19 07:15:22

I agree with pp re how you're training him, however I disagree with crates. He's a pack creature being taught that he is not a part of your pack at night. That's a tough lesson.

ChilledBee Tue 15-Oct-19 07:15:42

I think whatever you do to counteract the barking at night, you need to also do in the day.

We're currently dealing with this with our NDN. Their dog barks on and off all day and night because it wants constant attention apparently. They've tried walking it more as the trainer said and some other measures but ultimately, it looks like they're going to have to give it up because it just doesn't work for anyone when 2 houses either side are kept awake all night.

Perpetuallyperplexed27 Tue 15-Oct-19 07:17:30

@missbattenburg I know you're right and I did resolve to do this but it's so difficult when it's deadly quiet in the middle of the night! I would put up with it but it's my neighbours I worry about. Maybe I will pop and have a word as you suggest. I've wondered about moving his crate somewhere where he's less likely to be disturbed but the layout of our house (it's a bungalow) means that you have to pass through most rooms to get where you need to be! No good if someone needs a midnight wee....

OP’s posts: |
Perpetuallyperplexed27 Tue 15-Oct-19 07:18:49

@dudsville The crate is mostly for his own safety. I wouldn't want him roaming and getting into things he shouldn't. He can't sleep in our room - it wouldn't work. I've never allowed that with any of my dogs as much as I love them!

OP’s posts: |
missbattenburg Tue 15-Oct-19 07:24:22

Ignoring a noisy puppy really does test your metal. Especially when worrying about others waking up.

Good luck!

PookieDo Tue 15-Oct-19 09:05:07

Hi, I have a yorkie X and he is a bad barker. His previous owner couldn’t take it! The layout of my house seems to be in part a cure for a lot of the barking. He is very barky when he has any access to windows. I mean any. My lounge is at the back of the house not overlooked no one goes past and therefore he may only ever bark at a random cat. You may have to make sure he can’t get up and look out of windows because this seems to set them off

Mine also barks at night and it is NOT for attention. Attention barking is not the same as ‘anxious alert barking’ therefore IME ignoring it means you give no reassurance to an anxious dog.

He will also bark if people move in the night and this is alert barking not ‘bad behaviour’

I have a plug in nightlight on, so it isn’t pitch black. If someone makes noise and disturbs him (it’s making him jump isn’t it?) we usually do call to him ‘it’s ok’ in a soft voice, so he knows who it is. Being away from you all may be making him anxious at night, not that it’s a bad thing but you need him to feel reassured and safe perhaps leaving a radio on low so it isn’t totally silent

I probably do all the wrong things with barking in the day but it works for us - I will acknowledge him, go with him to see what’s causing the bark and he always looks to me for reassurance so I give it to him and say ‘no barking’. He now often just growls first instead of barking, looks at me first. I found ignoring it just meant he carried on and on and on. He isn’t on his own for long periods and I leave a radio on low.

When he first came to live with me in the night barking was every night, sometimes just one bark but now it’s maybe once every 2 weeks

PookieDo Tue 15-Oct-19 09:10:01

Edited to add: I wouldn’t go to him in the night like that for barking, but then he is allowed upstairs with us so he isn’t away and anxious. He just barks when he is startled by noise. Some dogs will improve once they become used to the noises of every day life and the house, they become desensitised to some noises when they know what they are. Some stay very anxious and bark a lot unfortunately

thebakerwithboobs Tue 15-Oct-19 09:14:33

We always crate our pups at night for safety and they invariably still sleep in them through choice without the doors on later on. It's their own safe space. I crate them for the same reasons as you, just to stop them harming themselves.

Agree that ignoring is best but also think it will calm down as pup gets used to things going bump in the night. He's still only a baby. Bottle of wine to both neighbours with advance apologies and ignore.

adaline Tue 15-Oct-19 09:41:50

You need to totally ignore him. By getting up in the night you're teaching him that if he barks, he'll get your attention.

I get it's hard - mine was a whiner and I wanted to go to him just to shut him up as the noise was dreadful blush

Perpetuallyperplexed27 Tue 15-Oct-19 10:22:43

I'm not sure this is alert barking. I think it's more because he sees or hears someone and wants to be out of his crate so he barks to be let out. It's the same in the day if he's in his crate but a lot easier to ignore then! I have started putting a dark sheet over the crate which helps to settle him down initially. It's just the fear of someone getting up in the night and setting him off.

OP’s posts: |
Perpetuallyperplexed27 Tue 15-Oct-19 10:23:03

I'm not sure this is alert barking. I think it's more because he sees or hears someone and wants to be out of his crate so he barks to be let out. It's the same in the day if he's in his crate but a lot easier to ignore then! I have started putting a dark sheet over the crate which helps to settle him down initially. It's just the fear of someone getting up in the night and setting him off.

OP’s posts: |
PookieDo Tue 15-Oct-19 11:04:44

I really hate crates (for this reason) so I really don’t know if it’s the same he’s your dog so only you know if he’s doing it to be let out or doing it because noise makes him anxious and alert barks. If mine is barking to be annoying for attention it’s a really different bark and his body language is different

My dog was crated (he’s 6 now) and it wasn’t done correctly in my opinion (not saying you are) it was because he was being annoying not to keep him safe, and it made him really anxious and got separation anxiety although his owners were convinced he loved having his own little bed and ‘safe space’ to go in he wasn’t given much choice really! Dog has never chewed anything and isn’t destructive and settles fine without being confined but he’s a lot older

PookieDo Tue 15-Oct-19 11:07:13

I don’t have anything against crates exactly but if your dog is in the crate while you are at home and all night is there any way he could start having some more space in a suitable room that is safer? A baby gate on the kitchen and made sure he can’t hurt himself might help. Or like others said just leave him in the cage and ignore him

Perpetuallyperplexed27 Tue 15-Oct-19 12:33:33

He's not in it a lot during the day when we are home but we do have other dogs and kids and sometimes I feel it's absolute chaos! He only goes in the crate while we are occupied as in having a shower or something. And this is for the same reasons as when he's crated at night - to keep him safe and stop anything happening while we can't supervise.

He stops barking as soon as you let him out of the crate so I feel it's definitely to do with wanting to be out rather than alerting us. I'm starting to wonder if I've taken too much on with him.

OP’s posts: |
adaline Tue 15-Oct-19 12:53:28

Do you have to crate him? He clearly doesn't like it!

What training did you do to get him used to being in a crate?

BeerandBiscuits Tue 15-Oct-19 12:57:05

He can't sleep in our room - it wouldn't work. I've never allowed that with any of my dogs as much as I love them!

I felt like this about dogs sleeping in bedroom until I got my rescue GSD.
He initially slept downstairs with other dog. Would bark at the slightest sound outside and I was up and down every few hours. Neighbours on both sides so it couldn't carry on.
Was desperate so put his bed in our room. Not a peep out of him all night.
5 years later he's still there. I've never heard him bark in the night.
I'm still working on the daytime barking.

Branleuse Tue 15-Oct-19 13:01:19

take him out of the crate and let him sleep with you. He will probably sleep better and settle faster, because they are pack animals

Booboostwo Tue 15-Oct-19 13:35:00

This is how I train mine not to bark:
During the day I teach a stop barking command and reward as soon as they stop barking. Personally I have a different one for when they have reason to bark, e.g. doorbell goes off, and when it's a 'false alarm', but it's up to you.

As soon as one barks at night, I get out of bed, run downstairs give the command and reward the silence. And repeat until you run out of patience.

If you can keep this up every single time he barks, eventually you will be able to use just the command from the top of the stairs without the reward.

PookieDo Tue 15-Oct-19 14:35:01


I feel like I have made some headway with doing this kind of thing myself, but it depends on why they are barking in the first place. I do silence mine in the night by saying ‘no’ and he has given up doing it pretty much now.
Some people love the concept of crate training and some people just see it that you are putting them in a cage. Some dogs like it, some dogs never will. They aren’t all the same so you might have to consider something else. Is he only 12 weeks old or older? Is he too young to be alone all night? Can he not be with the other dogs?

Overthegardenfence Wed 16-Oct-19 00:39:00

Have you tried leaving a radio on so he’s less likely to hear you and maybe don’t flush the toilet at night, leave a dim light on all night so you don’t need to turn one on, good luck

Namechangeforthiscancershit Wed 16-Oct-19 00:56:47

My dog sleeps in my room blush so not an issue, but people make crates work with the right training. It's just not for me.
Where do the other dogs sleep. Would the puppy be better with them,

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