Having a new lovely puppy in your home ought to be a happy and pleasant occasion. But when your puppy keeps crying during the night, it will turn out to be your nightmare.
In this post, I will cover some secret tips that you used to get your puppy some sweet sleep through the night. So let’s dive right in:
How To Stop Puppy Crying At Night?
You can stop your puppy from crying at night by making sure that he has adequate exercise during the day, clear his bladder before sleep and make his sleeping area cozy and comfortable. If he is sleeping in a crate, you can place it near to your bed so that he can see your presence and ease his anxiety.
Plan adequate exercise for him during the day so that when the night comes, he will be exhausted and get to sleep easily.
As the saying goes, “A tired dog is a GOOD dog”. You should go for both physical and mental exercise to fully develop his body and thought while he is enjoying his games.
Go for interactive games such as Tug of War or Frisbee. You can also create your own agility course to teach your puppy new tricks. The idea is to get your puppy physically tired after playing these games during the day.
As for the mental games, you can go for Kong stuffing toys. This toy will train your puppy to use his thoughts on how to get his treats out of the toy.
You should also include obedience training as part of the mental exercise. As your puppy learns to understand and follow your commands, that will keep his brain tired, and he will easily doze into sleep during the night.
A long evening stroll with him after his dinner will certainly help to get off any energy left in his body and ensure that he is going to be tired right before his sleep.
Have You “Settle” His Needs?
Just like your new baby who will keep crying in the night whenever he is feeling uncomfortable, (hungry, diaper getting wet), this could also happen to your puppy.
So make sure that you have fulfilled his needs (meal and potty break) before getting him to his crate for his night sleep.
Young puppy has a small bladder and is not fully developed, so he could not really hold his bladder for too long.
Generally, for a month old puppy he can hold his bladder up to an hour. So if your puppy is 2 months old, you would need to let him out of the crate for his potty after 2 hours.
What you can do is to ensure that your puppy has his dinner at least 2 hours before his bedtime, take him out for his potty and refrain from giving him any more water thereafter.
This will reduce the likelihood of him whining out to you for potty.
Keep His Sleeping Area Cozy
Just like you wouldn’t be able to sleep on a floor that is cold and hard, make sure that you have a warm blanket placed on the floor of the crate to make the sleeping area warm and cozy for him. This will help him to get into sleep much easier.
Also make sure that the crate is suspicious enough for him to turn around and lay down comfortably.
Your new puppy is away from his mother and sibling, and he is alone in an unfamiliar place with unseen faces and scent and will need time to settle down.
Try to make sure that he can sense your presence, and he would not be crying out in the silent lonely night.
One option is to place the crate in one corner of your bedroom so that he can still see you from his crate during the night and this will ease his anxiety.
Give Him A Good Time Out
Let your puppy get used to being alone during the day so that he would not get nervous and anxious when he finds himself alone in the crate.
To make him feel more at ease, you can make his stay in the crate more comfortable such as placing some of his favorite toys in it to keep him company.
He will start to focus his attention and play with the toys if he gets lonely during the night and will not start his whining.
You could also leave some of your old clothing in the crate as that clothing comes with your scent and that would make your puppy think that you are somewhere nearby and will ease his anxiety.
Do Not Positively Reinforce Puppy Crying
By coming to your puppy when he cries, you are in fact reinforcing him with this undesirable behavior., You are telling him that when he starts crying, he will get his reward (which is your attention) and he will attempt to practice this behavior whenever he feels lonely.
So keep cool and wait till your puppy has stopped whining and reach out to him to give him a treat. This will teach him that by remaining calm and quiet, he will get your reward. (treat and your attention). This positively reinforces his good calm behavior.
Do Not Punish Your Puppy
Just like human babies, your puppy will also wake up at odd hours, such as in the middle of the night. If your puppy cries at around that time, do not shout or yell at him.
Remember, it is totally normal for a puppy to cry for a short period of time when he wakes up as he finds himself alone in the crate.
Your young puppy is still in the learning phase and it doesn’t help the situation when you start yelling at him when he cries in the night. In fact, this might make him get even more nervous and make the situation out of control.
You should step away from his sight and wait till he has calmed down before approaching him and use a positive reinforcement approach to reward him for being calm and quiet.
Make Use Of Aromatherapy
Essential oil such as lavender is well known for relieving stress, anxiety and providing a calming effect. You can use this on your puppy to ensure that he had a good peaceful night sleep.
Start with one to two drops of lavender oil in the water based diffuser and keep the session to only 10 minutes. Dogs have a very high sensitive sense of smell, so do not make the diffusion too strong or long.
Alternative, you can apply a few drops of the oil on your palm and gently rub it on your dog’s ear and fur right before you put him back to his crate for sleep.
Adding a few drops of lavender oil to his blanket could be another option. But remember not to over do it, just go for one of the above options.
Play Some Soothing Music
Music has a calming effect and will help to make your puppy feel at ease. Play some light classical music so that your puppy will not feel the sudden quietness around him and this will prevent him from getting nervous and start crying.
He Is Crying Because He Is Unwell
It could be the case that your puppy gets hurt during the play, and he is feeling really uncomfortable and is “calling” you for help.
Give him the old rubdown (check his limbs. joints, paws) and if he gives you a “yelp”, you know it’s time to get him to see a vet for further checkup and treatment.
Your Puppy Just Wants Attention
When your puppy is 8 to 12 weeks old, this is the time when he is going through what is known as “bonding” state and if he finds he is not getting enough attention, he will cry just to “call” for attention.
The solution to this is to have more frequent playtime and give him more attention and love during the playtime.
Get Your Puppy Used To His Sleeping Area
If you are keeping your puppy in the crate during the night, you should make it a habit to have him periodically in his crate during the day when he needs to take a nap or when you need to do some house work.
This is to prevent him from learning that the only time to be in his crate is the bedtime and keep him from throwing his tantrum.
So plan for a schedule where he would be out of his crate for playtime, be in his crate for nap time and stick to it.
It’s time to put to use what you have learned from this post if your puppy is still crying for no reason during the night. Let us know which approaches work best for your crying puppy.