How to Get Your Puppy to Sleep Through the Night. Getting a small puppy as a new pet is always a wondrous feeling. When you own a puppy, you own a little bundle of joy filled with energy, which you will find roaming around your house. This loyal little friend that you have invited into your home will always be happier and excited to see you.
Puppies are very common as pets because of their friendly and affectionate behavior and their overloaded cuteness. Besides all these puppy perks, keeping a pup as a pet can be demanding and can take its toll on you. Caring for a puppy requires good parenting skills. You are in for some tiring and sleepless nights if you do not take charge of the situation appropriately.
As dogs grow older, they will eventually prefer to sleep at night like humans, before that a puppy’s sleep schedule is very similar to that of a baby. They like to sleep a lot during the day. If you do not fix these habits, it will start clashing with your sleeping schedule, which is not something that you would want to have. Like a lot of people, you will also start wondering how to get your puppy to sleep during the night. Luckily, you are in the right place. This article will help you find the answer to the question, how to get your dog to sleep through the night.
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The First Encounter
When you bring home a puppy for the very first time, there are not a lot of different reactions that you can expect. Puppies are seldom aggressive. Usually, when you first bring a pup home, it will most likely be all exciting and will play with you and try to explore around its new home. All this excitement and exploring will cause it to get tired pretty early, and the puppy will most likely want to sleep.
Other than that, sometimes, it can be difficult for some puppies to settle in a new environment. The experience of moving into a new place can be stressful for a lot of pups. In such cases, you can contact the people from where you adopted your dog, either the breeder, a rescue, or a foster family, ask them for the dog’s preferred toy or a blanket that smells like the pup’s previous home, siblings, or its mother. Place this object in the dog’s cradle when you think it’s time for it to sleep. It will help the dog feel more at home and will help it sleep by reducing the pup’s stress level.
Even if you have put your little puppy to sleep just at the right time, do not expect it to sleep all through the night. Young puppies are fussy and will wake up in the middle of the night if they have to go poop. Dogs do not prefer to contaminate the place where they usually sleep and will call out to you wanting to go outside. If your puppy cries to call you, take it for a walk for 10 to 15 minutes and then leave it back in the crate afterward.
How to get your puppy to sleep through the night
There are methodologies and tips provided to you by expert dog behaviorists. These tricks will help you train and control your pup when your puppy won’t settle at night. We will discuss them in detail in the further subsections below.
Play with your puppy and help them exercise during the day
Puppies love to play. Play with your puppy as much as you can with the games which are suitable for a young, small doggie. You can help your puppies and get them to exercise with different kinds of games. Young dogs love to play tug, play fetch, chase, wrestle, etc. Use these games as an advantage for yourself. Not only will these games help your puppy exercise but will also strengthen the bond between you and your puppy. Do not stick to only certain types of games. Mix it up a little and play different games now and then. The variety will keep your puppy indulged with full excitement and avoid boredom.
Although you playing with your pet is better for your bonding, you don’t need to play all the time. You can also use other puppies to fulfill the purpose. Other than that, keep notice which exercises to perform on which day. Avoid excessive running and over the top activities on a hot day. On days like these, you can take your doggie for a swim. It will be the same as all the other exercises that you do on a typical day.
All this playing and exercising will tire your pet at the end of the day. As these activities will suck up the energy of your pup during the day, it will prefer to wear it off by sleeping at night. Be sure to select games and exercises that are for young puppies. As your puppy will grow older, the intensity of these exercises should also go up. It is better to start slow for you and your puppy so that everybody can get used to it.
Avoid activity just before bedtime
Dogs at a young age are very active and are always ready to play. You do not need this hyperactivity to come in between the sleep schedule that you need to plan. All the exercises and games that you do with your puppy should be before bedtime by a considerable amount of time. These exercises need to be engaging and just enough to tire your puppy at the end of the day, not to get your puppy hyper-excited and not willing to sleep when the time arrives.
Make sure your dog empties the tank before sleeping
Considering that you have put your puppy to bed for good and right on time, there still are chances that everything will not go entirely to plan. It is better to play it safe and take your puppy out for a walk so that it feels the need to poop or pee, that business is settled right there for the time being. If your dog does not seem to do that, extend the walk time because sometimes little pups forget about the restroom business with all the excitement they feel outside. Once your dog pees or poops before sleeping, it becomes less likely for it to wake up in the middle of the night.
It is better to consider this possibility because if the dog feels the need to take a dump, it will try to wake you up, making you lose your sleep. Other than that, it is also very plausible for it to spoil your furniture, carpet, or any other area in your house.
Provide a comfy, cozy place for the puppy to sleep
Make sure to make the crate as comfortable as possible so that the puppy is not bothered during its sleep. Dogs and little puppies sometimes sleep in the most awkward of positions. If the place where the puppy sleeps is not comfortable enough for your pet to sleep as it likes, it might make your pup all fussy and discourage it from sleeping. Eventually, the little one will sleep after being too tired, but you are never sure how much time it will take. Some dogs like to sleep in tunnel-like places that surround them, that is why a lot of the dogs snuggle up behind you inside your blanket. You can take up the example of how puppies sleep with each other. Try to replicate that feeling in them by providing soft material on each side of the crate. One of the most viable options would be to present them with a bed that is soft and resembles a donut shape.
Make them used to the crate
First of all, you need a crate that is not too big and not too small for your puppy. It needs to be just of the right size. Just enough that your pup can sit, stand, and stretch comfortably inside of it. You may need to upgrade it from time to time as your dog grows. When your puppy comes home for the first time, do not expect it to be in the crate and recognize this place as the one where it will sleep. It is very plausible that the puppy might not be too excited about it. Do not rush it. Try to introduce it to your pup gradually. When playing with your puppy, encourage it to go near the crate by itself through playing or providing it treats in there.
Convince the puppy that it is a safe place to be and the place solely belongs to it. As mentioned above, make it as comfortable as possible according to a dog. Whenever you notice that your puppy might be tired and is about to sleep, put it inside the crate. Avoid bothering your puppy when it is in its bed. Not disturbing your dog when it is inside of that crate builds up a sense of security in the dog that it is a relaxing place to be, and it can lie there to rest and be as far as possible from all the other excitement of the world.
As leaving your puppy to the crate and the crate to the puppy has its benefits, still, keeping them far away from you is not also a good option. Be close enough to the puppy’s bedside so that it does not feel pushed-away or abandoned in any sense when it is inside of its crate. This process is usually not very long, but when working with pups, it is best to deal with situations like these with patience.
Also Read: How to Stop a Dog from Chewing Everything
Your pup should have a chewie toy
Providing your dog with a toy to chew on can help you in a lot of ways. Chewing on something is not just another habit that a doggie picks. There are different reasons behind it, especially when a dog is young. One of those reasons is that chewing on a toy helps the dog to get rid of mild anxiety. It calms them in a way and is also a fun activity for them.
Chewing is even better for younger dogs who are teething as chewing helps them in coping with the pain caused by teething. Chewing is an activity so enjoyable for the dog that they are at it for long periods. It is not a very demanding activity which might require physical strength or anything else of that sort. Besides, it also helps relieve stress, ultimately assisting the pup to have a sound sleep. There are different objects utilized as a chewable. It can be a specified bone or a toy. If it is a toy, then a squeaky one is highly not preferred because it can be very annoying to you. Put your dog’s favorite, non-noisy chewy in your dog’s crate. Doing this might buy you some sleep time because if your pup wakes up in the middle of the night for any reason, the chewy toy might keep it busy for a while.
Keep the crate close by
When a puppy is new in your home, it might not adapt to the surroundings, and that can have two different meanings. Either the pup is feeling stressed and will try to hide because of being scared, or it will get excited with its new owner and would not stay away from you. You will start to think about where should my puppy sleep at night time. If your pup is not leaving your side, you need to keep its sleeping space very near you. If the puppy is still not sleeping or waking up in the middle of the night, provide it something that has your odor. It will help the pup sleep. Do not be tempted to leave your own bedside and cater to the puppy. If you let the puppy’s behavior dominate you, it will be hard to make the pup get used to the crate. If you have to, stretch your hand out and maybe keep it on the puppy’s bed to comfort your little companion. If you are worrying that your puppy will get used to you and your puppy won’t sleep unless next to you, gradually pull your hand back after some time. When you notice that your dog is getting used to the crate, you may as well shift it further and further away day by day.
Understand the true meaning behind ‘sleeping through the night’
If you are thinking that a pup sleeping through the night will wake up late in the morning or midday, then you are in for a big surprise. On a good night, on which a puppy slept all the way through, expect your little companion to be up and running as early as 6 in the morning. As soon as the puppy wakes up, care for its needs as a good owner, try to pay as much attention as you can, and as it is required.
If you do not want to be disturbed, provide your puppy with a space in which it can move around. Train it to go potty without your assistance. This should buy you some extra sleeping time. If your puppy is not yet trained, try and take care of its puppy business. Once your puppy business is done, convince the puppy to cuddle next to you as you sleep for a little more time.
Set up a sleeping environment
When putting your puppy to sleep, create an environment that encourages sleep. Turn off lights close to the dog’s bedside. Try to keep it quiet, so the puppy does not get riled up with all the excitement in the air. Make your puppy believe that now is the time to sleep, and this will be the case regularly. Slowly the pup will get used to the environment and whenever the same atmosphere is set, it will prompt the little dog to sleep.
Puppies are cute, smart, and very friendly animals. Everybody likes to be around them and consider owning them. Adopting a puppy as a pet is very kind, but people should also know that it can be a very challenging task to do. Other than the overloaded cuteness, lovely bonds, and memories, there is a lot more when owning small pups. It requires a lot of hard work, resources, and attention. Puppies demand a lot of catering. They need to be in constant supervision and provided with the most suitable environment. Caring for a pup can be considerably time-consuming and requires a lot of commitment. There are different feeding schedules, sleeping schedules you need to work with if you own a puppy. Moreover, if you want these schedules sorted out according to your convenience, you need another extra level of commitment and train your pups accordingly. We hope that this article has helped you in tackling such a situation when you are new in the puppy business.
Frequently asked questions
1: The puppy won’t sleep unless next to me, what should I do?
Several people do not have a problem with their puppy or a full-grown dog sleeping next to them. Sometimes the dog does not like it if someone sleeps next to them. If you do not want your pup to sleep next to you, then you need to take charge and set up some rules. When you spend time with your puppy, encourage it to get close to its crate. Make the puppy realize that it is a safe and suitable place to be. When it is sleep time, keep that crate close to you, it will convince the puppy that you are present right there and not going anywhere.
The pup might not be ready to settle instantly. Give it time, and deal with the situation with patience. Do not let the puppy’s behavior dominate you. If the puppy is persistent in staying with you, provide it something with your smell that will keep reminding the puppy of you and help keep the little buddy at bay. Gradually, the puppy should start getting used to the crate. Once the puppy seems to be getting the hang of it, slowly move the puppy’s bed away with time.
2: My puppy does not like the crate?
If your puppy does not want to agree with the crate, you might need to go back to the training phase and apply the rules even more strictly. Keep note of every little aspect to make sure that your puppy gets used to its sleeping space. It is better to train your pup as soon as possible because it can help you with not dealing with other hassles. If your puppy is not house-trained, it is more likely that it will soil places like your carpet, furniture, or even the crate in which your puppy is to sleep inside. If you train your puppy in time, it will avoid dirtying its own space and with it, your house. The pup might not be ready to settle instantly. Give it time, and deal with the situation with patience. Do not let the puppy’s behavior dominate you. If the puppy is persistent in staying with you, provide it something with your smell that will keep reminding the puppy of you and help keep the little buddy at bay. Gradually, the puppy should start getting used to the crate. Once the puppy seems to be getting the hang of it, slowly move the puppy’s bed away with time.
3: My puppy used to sleep but now wakes me up in the middle of the night?
If your fur baby is showing changes in its behavior and waking up in the middle of the night, first make sure that it has pooped, peed, and eaten well before sleeping. If you are keeping tabs of all these things and still find no progress, consider the possibility that your dog might have certain medical conditions. Your dog might be agitated because of it. For example, it can have a bladder infection. Take your pup to the vet for a check-up and further treatment if required. If you train your puppy in time, it will avoid dirtying its own space and with it, your house. The pup might not be ready to settle instantly. Give it time, and deal with the situation with patience. Do not let the puppy’s behavior dominate you. If the puppy is persistent in staying with you, provide it something with your smell that will keep reminding the puppy of you and help keep the little buddy at bay. Gradually, the puppy should start getting used to the crate. Once the puppy seems to be getting the hang of it, slowly move the puppy’s bed away with time.
4: My pup seems to be cranky in the middle of the night?
It is very plausible for a new dog to be a little stressed in a new environment. This stress can cause your dog to wake up in the middle of the night. The best way for a dog to relieve stress is by chewing. Leave something on your pup’s bed to chew. Dogs get tired and sleep after an intense chewing session. This chewing help a dog get relief from mild anxiety. There is also a possibility that your dog may want to use the restroom.
Some puppies can also create a fuss if they want to play more, that is why it is better to avoid playtime just before bedtime to prevent such behavior. Puppies, like babies, are sometimes smart enough to know that crying and whining for something will get them what they want. If the fuss that your puppy creates is not lasting for long, try to wait it out. Being dominated by this behavior will only cause it to grow even more. The pup might not be ready to settle instantly. Give it time, and deal with the situation with patience. Do not let the puppy’s behavior dominate you. If the puppy is persistent in staying with you, provide it something with your smell that will keep reminding the puppy of you and help keep the little buddy at bay. Gradually, the puppy should start getting used to the crate. Once the puppy seems to be getting the hang of it, slowly move the puppy’s bed away with time.
5: When do I take my puppy outside?
There are different signs that might let you know that your puppy wants to go outside to play, for a walk, or to explore. Occasionally, they also feel the need to pee or poop. Different dogs may use altered gestures to convey to you that they want to go outside. There is no guarantee that you will read those gestures correctly a hundred percent of the time, but once you really start to notice your pup’s actions and gain a little experience with dogs, you will eventually get the hang of it.
The most common way in pups in trying to communicate and letting their owner know that they want to go outside is by being fussy about it. They will cry and whine until you open the door that leads to the outside world. Instead of making a fuss about it, your puppy might feel agitated and pace back and forth in its crate or a small space. Some puppies will stand right next to the door that you use to leave the house and look at you, wanting you to open it.
A puppy or a dog does not always want to go outside to play. It can also be something urgent such as wanting to go to take care of the natural business. So it is better not to take a lot of chances and take them outside. To keep the situation in your control, take your dog outside on a leash. Try to keep it as less exciting as it can be and short. Once they realize that these walks are not very fun to take and not very long in time, they might stop making a fuss out of it and prefer staying inside relaxing. Some puppies can also create a fuss if they want to play more, that is why it is better to avoid playtime just before bedtime to prevent such behavior. Puppies, like babies, are sometimes smart enough to know that crying and whining for something will get them what they want. If the fuss that your puppy creates is not lasting for long, try to wait it out. Being dominated by this behavior will only cause it to grow even more. The pup might not be ready to settle instantly. Give it time, and deal with the situation with patience. Do not let the puppy’s behavior dominate you. If the puppy is persistent in staying with you, provide it something with your smell that will keep reminding the puppy of you and help keep the little buddy at bay. Gradually, the puppy should start getting used to the crate. Once the puppy seems to be getting the hang of it, slowly move the puppy’s bed away with time.
6: My puppy sleeps all through the day and does not sleep at night?
The best and most effective way to make your puppy sleep through the night is to play and exercise with it during the daytime. Puppies love to play. They seldom ignore an opportunity that includes fun outdoor activities and playing. When a puppy will be playing and exercising all through the day, it will be tired enough to be sleeping all through the night.