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DDog barking at night

(25 Posts)
TheGirlFromStoryville Fri 06-Dec-19 07:43:46

Hi
DDog is 3. He's started barking at night, we go to bed around 11 - 12, and after about an hour he will let out a single bark. We tried to ignore it but after about 10 minutes he does it again. DH or I will go downstairs, he doesn't need to go out and is lying in his bed.
He sleeps in the dining room which leads on to the kitchen and we have a gate up on the dining room door.
I've started getting up and sleeping downstairs on the sofa with the dog next to me.
DH isn't happy at all with DDog atm.
DDog does suffer separation anxiety, he will follow us from room to room. He's not allowed upstairs as he's very hairy (oes!)

Any ideas? Thank you.

Ihavethefinalsleigh Fri 06-Dec-19 07:50:55

Try putting the radio on quietly, close to his basket. Try giving him a blanket that smells of you. There are toys you can warm in the microwave that we might find comforting. Don’t sleep downstairs, it will only perpetuate the problem! Resist the temptation to go down, as he’s getting what he wants.

During the day make sure he’s well worn out from exercise and before bedtime give him a chew, as they find chewing calming. Take it away though before you leave him.

Ihavethefinalsleigh Fri 06-Dec-19 07:51:25

*He might

BiteyShark Fri 06-Dec-19 07:58:18

As PP said use a radio or white noise machine.

It's hard not to reward the barking but by going to him and sleeping with him each time that is what is going to happen. As you don't want him in your room I would either ignore the barking or if you find you really can't then get up, saying nothing to him or fuss him but take him outside for a toilet break even though he doesn't need one. Straight bank to bed afterwards so he gets the idea that 'nothing' exciting is going to happen if he barks and you won't be sleeping by him either.

lifeisgoodagain Fri 06-Dec-19 07:58:59

Mine is doing that, except he's 8 and never barked before at night, it's not even a proper bark, it's little conversation barks he uses when he's trying to tell me something. I admit I yell down the stairs for him to shut up. No suggestions except earplugs

TheGirlFromStoryville Fri 06-Dec-19 08:00:13

Thanks. Some ideas to try.
He starts jumping round when he sees me so I think its sep anxiety sad
He's a brilliant dog but is highly strung. I'm going to try leaving the radio on and sort out a blanket with smell for him.
Thanks again

userxx Fri 06-Dec-19 08:19:47

Definitely stop going downstairs and sleeping on the sofa, I know it's hard but you need to break the habit.

CherryPavlova Fri 06-Dec-19 08:33:01

We bought a can of something called Pet Corrector spray. Basically it makes a loud hissing noise.
Our dog used to go bananas in the care when he first came to us, making travel unpleasant to say the least. He barked anyone walked passed, at car behind in traffic, sudden movements. Loud continuous barking.
The spray was recommended.We used it about three times with a firm Quiet. He looked terrified when the spray hissed but it didn’t do any harm and didn’t touch him. Then about three times of showing him the can without spraying and he was cured. Unbelievably effective.
He now loves his boot space with bed, dog guard water bowl etc and will curl up happily on a six hour journey across France with just a couple of wee stops.

TheGirlFromStoryville Fri 06-Dec-19 08:37:25

Yep I don't sleep well anyway but this is destroying me plus DH is not happy with the dog.
His bark is loud and deep so may invest in ear plugs. I'll try the radio, blanket, and not going downstairs. Hopefully that works 🤞

adaline Fri 06-Dec-19 08:45:37

Another one saying stop going down to him - he's learning that if he barks, he gets attention and company from you.

Try a blanket, those microwaveable oat bags for comfort, and the radio or a white noise machine. Good luck!

SharkasticBitch Mon 09-Dec-19 01:26:35

When trying to decide the best course of action it is useful to question 'is the behaviour caused by an underlying negative emotion such as fear?'

If the answer is yes then your best 'cure' will involve helping to change the emotion.

If the answer is no then you can instead focus on the behaviour.

Ignoring a distressed dog is unlikely to help.

Ignoring an otherwise ok dog who just is struggling to settle because he would prefer everyone to get up may be the right answer.

If this dog is worried by being alone then work on helping him feel better. He may be helped by something simple such as adaptil, a radio, the Alexa skill capacity my dog' an be very effective because it loops slow tempo classical music. Supplements like skullcap and valarian, zylkene, yucalm may help. I am not convinced a blanket in a house that will smell strongly of you anyway will be of any use but it won't hurt to try.

Moving his bed closer to you - eg the landing may be an option.

Leaving a low light on may help.

Keeping the bedtime routine the same each night may help.

If he's not distressed and instead just learning that barking gets a bit more attention then ignore away - but be prepared for an extinction burst where it gets worse before it gets better.

SilentTights Mon 09-Dec-19 08:59:34

We bought a can of something called Pet Corrector spray

OP, if and before choosing to use an aversive (punishment) then do make sure you are fully aware of the multiple risks with training in that way. For every person who got lucky and whose dog learned the "right" thing, there are many more with increased and varied behavioural problems as a result of aversive training.

It's also worth a moral question to yourself - whether or not it's right to choose an easy-for-the-human aversive which will cause something unpleasant for the dog. Or whether it's not better to choose a training method that is less risky and involves less stress for the dog.

WhatAStupidIdea Fri 13-Dec-19 02:18:08

Loads of good suggestions here. Our older dog was greatly comforted by a heat pad in a dog shaped cover, along with rescue remedy and bedtime biscuits (I started with Lily’s kitchen ones but then decided my own recipe for chicken and lavender biscuits with coconut oil). We don’t have a radio but we did try having ‘relaxing music for dogs’ on YouTube for him, it seemed to just wind him up even more though.

I mainly came to say please, please don’t try sprays or anything of the sort. Teaching through fear is not the way to go, it may not cause physical harm, but it can and does cause further behavioural issues.

Aquamarine1029 Fri 13-Dec-19 03:01:11

Why can't you put his bed in your room?

LakeFlyPie Sun 15-Dec-19 05:12:10

I'm currently sitting downstairs with newly adopted dog (had him 8 weeks) who usually settles and sleeps well on his own but who was scratching the door and barking loudly 😮 I think he's stressed because the Christmas tree moved in today and his bed / night time sofa has moved slightly. Everything told me not to come down and reinforce the barking / scratching gets attention but I was concerned that he'd wake the neighbours (semi detached ) and also that he would get more stressed and destroy my house
I'm stuck here now not knowing whether to go back up and risk more barking / scratching or resign myself to a very early morning wake up and stay put whilst the blessed mutt snores beside me

BitOfFun Sun 15-Dec-19 05:15:39

Ignore it! He's trying it on, and you have buckled.

LakeFlyPie Sun 15-Dec-19 05:22:38

Argh, I know you're right but do I risk going back up and him waking the whole house (and neighbours) up now? DH and DS1 were already woken by his barking an hour ago.
Am thinking start afresh tomorrow night or have I ruined him already 😫
There was an isolated overnight sofa chewing incident a couple of weeks ago which is in the back of my mind.

BitOfFun Sun 15-Dec-19 05:38:31

My dog is in his crate. He occasionally barks, but ignoring him is the best course of action. Rod for your own back otherwise.

Cookiedough123 Sun 15-Dec-19 06:21:29

We rescued a dog who was left on his own on a farm for many hours a day he would bark constantly, so much so the neighbours put in a noise complaint to the owner. The poor thing just wanted some company. He came to live with us 2 years ago now and we crated him straight away. He would go in there at bed time and when we went out and if I hadn't of had the crate he would of been very stressed out and would of chewed through my kitchen. He also attempted the barking with us but we would ignore him and he would settle. We now dont need the crate at all (thankfully!! It was massive!) But I do think when used correctly they allow a safe secure place for the dog and peace of mind that your house is safe.

Booboostwo Sun 15-Dec-19 08:01:03

As this is a new behaviour the first question is always whether the dog is in pain. Dogs are very good at masking their pain but it could be that when he is on his own and his stress levels rise the pain becomes intolerable. If the vet doesn’t find anything it is always worth asking for 2 weeks worth of pain killers to see if this makes a difference.

If the issue is behavioural, has something triggered it? Did something happen one night to scare him or has there been a change in his routine which stressed him?

For general stress it’s worth trying Adaptil or Zylkene. Also try increasing his exercise to see if you can tyre him out more at night. Would you consider allowing to sleep upstairs if he used a crate (read up on crate training before you try this)? It would contain the hairs and reassure him.

LakeFlyPie Sun 15-Dec-19 08:32:06

Thanks all for the replies. Sorry to hijack your thread OP, hope some of the sage advice offered to me is helpful to you too.
He came from the (kennel free) rescue with a crate (hadn't used it there but we thought it might be helpful) which he reluctantly went in at night but never seemed to see it as his safe place and is generally happy in his basket and good overnight so we got rid of the crate.
Other than the single episode of sofa destruction which I've generously attributed to yowling foxes disturbing him (no barking or scratching from him that night) he generally settles and sleeps well.
I think his disturbance last night might be due to arrival of Christmas tree in his 'bedroom' - his basket has moved slightly to accommodate it and also DH fell asleep on the sofa (I presume dog was in the lounge with him) until 4am so the night routine was different to usual. The commotion started when DH put him in his basket and came to bed.
I will make sure he and DH are tired out today and get a normal bedtime routine and will warn the neighbours that if there's barking tonight we'll ignore it. Hope it was a blip and the inevitable change to routine / visitors and overnight guests over Christmas/ NY doesn't reap too much havoc. DC would have him in their room overnight gleefully but we'd like him to be a happy downstairs dog if at all possible

LakeFlyPie Mon 16-Dec-19 07:14:28

He barked at approx 10 min intervals from bedtime for 2 hours until DH went and slept downstairs with him
It's either the Christmas tree or his 8 week post rescue behaviour coming out.
May speak to vet / dog behaviourist today for some advice

LakeFlyPie Mon 16-Dec-19 07:16:30

Hope he's not going to start barking when alone during the day too

adaline Sun 22-Dec-19 10:01:59

Hope he's not going to start barking when alone during the day too

How long are you planning to leave him alone?

LakeFlyPie Mon 23-Dec-19 00:29:08

3 hours is the most he's left, always preceded by a good walk so he's tired. This is 3 days / week when family or dog walker come to him during the day.
He seems to be ok during the day still ATM

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