How to Train Your Dog to Not Cry at Night

Medium
2-4 Weeks
Behavior

Introduction

Ever looked at a litter of puppies with their mom, sleeping in a giant pile, all together? So cute, right? Now you take your new puppy home and put him a bed or crate by himself, expecting him to sleep alone, through the night, quietly. Not going to happen!  

Sometimes having a puppy is just like bringing home a human baby--a lot of sleepless nights while everyone adjusts to the new environment. Because dogs are pack animals, their natural inclination is to sleep with others, in close contact, for safety and comfort. A young dog or puppy is especially geared to sleep closely in a group for safety, and a rescue dog or an anxious or insecure dog that has come from an abusive situation or a situation where they were deprived, may be nervous and anxious and more apt to cry when separated from their caregivers, such as at night when everyone is sleeping. 

Having a dog cry at night and keep you awake is not going to work in the long term, so owners need to find ways to train their dogs to sleep quietly at night in their own space, and for the dog to be comfortable with the arrangement, allowing dog owners to get a good night sleep.

Defining Tasks

There are several methods you can use to help your dog learn not to cry at night and to be comfortable sleeping by himself, quietly. However, before working on stopping your dog from crying at night you will need to take some basic steps to ensure his needs are met and he is not crying for a genuine reason. 

Make sure your dog is well fed, has water, is well exercised, and has had lots of attention throughout the day, including affection and play. A dog that has had lots of activity and had his needs met is more likely to have a restful night than one that is full of energy or bored. Ensure your dog has had a chance to go outside to do his business before bed. And remember, a puppy may cry in the middle of the night when they wake because they legitimately have to go to the bathroom. Puppies do not have large bladders, and it is not uncommon to have to let a young dog out in the middle of the night for a pee break. You should work this into your plans if necessary.

Getting Started

Most owners that want their dogs to sleep separately from them provide their dogs with a bed or crate to sleep in. The crate should be comfortable, with good, clean bedding, and a favorite blanket or toy for comfort. Your dog's bed/crate should be in a warm location so your dog does not wake up from cold. Crates or beds should be the appropriate size for the dog, too big and the dog will not feel secure, too small and they will not be comfortable. You may need to be prepared for a few sleepless nights at first, as you will need to ignore and not respond to your dog's crying. If you do, you will only reinforce the behavior. This might call for a set of ear plugs! 

There are several methods you can use to help your dog become comfortable and learn to sleep by himself without crying for attention at night. These methods may be used in combination to help your dog assimilate to their nighttime routine quicker.

The Ignore Crying Method

Most Recommended
6 Votes
Step
1
Prepare
If you respond in any way to your dog's crying, even negatively, it will only reinforce his bid for attention. Be prepared to ignore your dog's crying at night. You may need to move your dog and his crate to another part of the house where you cannot hear him or use earplugs.
Step
2
Meet needs
Teach your dog to be comfortable a crate. After letting your dog out for a bathroom break, have him go to his crate for bed. Do not carry him or drag him to his crate, which creates a negative association. Instead, reward him for going to his crate with a treat or a chew toy, and provide him praise and affection in his crate.
Step
3
Ignore crying
Leave your dog in his crate and go to bed. When your dog cries, do not yell at him or respond in any way to his crying. Ensure that the entire household is on board.
Step
4
Respond to quiet
If you need to let a puppy out in the middle of the night for a bathroom break, choose a time when he is quiet, not when he is crying, to let him out for a pee. After he has relieved himself, go back to his crate and provide another reward, attention, and praise. Return to bed.
Step
5
Repeat
In the morning, do not let your dog out of his crate until he is quiet. If he is crying, wait until he stops for a moment before releasing him. Repeat this procedure for several nights. Eventually, your dog will learn that crying does not result in your attention or release from the crate.
Recommend training method?

The Crate Training Method

Effective
7 Votes
Step
1
Set up crate
Set up a crate with comfortable bedding, and a toy or chew bone. You can introduce your dog to the crate at first by feeding him in the crate, to create a positive association.
Step
2
Introduce crate
Put your dog in the crate for a short period of time, 10-15 minutes. Have the dog approach the crate himself to get a reward, do not carry or lead him there. Stay with your dog while he is in the crate, sit outside the crate or remain in the room. If he is quiet, let him out. If he starts crying, wait until there is a pause in crying, then let him out.
Step
3
Practice quiet in crate
Repeat the procedure several times a day, until your dog happily goes into his crate for short periods of time with you present.
Step
4
Increase time and distance
Gradually increase the length of time your dog remains in the crate, and the distance you are from the crate, moving farther away, leaving the room, then leaving the house, for short periods of time. Gradually increase to longer periods of time.
Step
5
Reinforce quiet
Only let your dog out of the crate when he is quiet and calm. If your dog starts crying, sit near the crate and talk to him, but do not let him out until he stops crying. This teaches your dog to gradually become used to being alone, in a safe place, and that calm quiet behavior with no crying will result in the opportunity to be with you.
Recommend training method?

The Alternative Comfort Method

Least Recommended
2 Votes
Step
1
Prepare sleeping place
You can make your dog learn to accept sleeping in his crate or designated sleep area without crying by making it more attractive to him, much like when he was with his mom and litter mates.
Step
2
Provide warmth
You can provide a heat source, like a heated water bottle, but ensure it is not too hot and that it is not something your dog can chew on and puncture.
Step
3
Provide company
You can provide the company of another pet--another older dog or even a cat--or consider adopting two puppies at a time. Letting your dog sleep with the company of another pet may settle him and ease him into sleeping without his caregiver at night. Another option is to provide similar sized stuffed animals that resemble litter mates, but be careful they do not have loose buttons or parts that your young dog can chew off and choke on.
Step
4
Provide sound
Use an old fashioned clock that ticks wrapped in a blanket in your puppy's bed. Some dogs are lulled to sleep by the rhythmic sound of a clock that resembles their mom's heartbeat. Be sure the dog can not chew on the clock and injure himself.
Step
5
Provide activity
Provide a rawhide chew bone, or puzzle feeder with food to keep your dog entertained while he goes off to sleep.
Step
6
Getting comfortable
All of these steps can help your dog to become acclimated to their sleeping place, feel safe, and teach them there is no need to cry at night.
Recommend training method?
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Written by Laurie Haggart

Published: 11/06/2017, edited: 01/08/2021

Success Stories and Training Questions

Training Questions and Answers

Question
Calvin
Labrador Husky
10 Weeks
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Question
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Calvin
Labrador Husky
10 Weeks

We have had Calvin for just over two weeks and just recently found success a few nights ago with his sleep by waking him to pee every four hours and then using elimination (leaving him to whine)for early morning wakings. We were finally getting silent nights and it was wonderful. HOWEVER, two nights ago, he got horrible diarrhea and went all over his crate all night long. We took him to the vet and they found he had a mild bacteria which we are now treating with a bland diet and anti-diarrheals. Last night we wanted to avoid more mess in the crate, so every time we heard him whine we ran him outside to eliminate. Sometimes there was more diarrhea and sometimes nothing. Needless to say, after having finally getting some sleep lately, we are now once again exhausted. And due to an early morning backyard pee this morning that had previously been eliminated, he is now up and at ‘em for the day FAR too early like he was a week ago before all the training. My question is: when can we start training him again and will it take as long the 2nd time? His barks seem more insistent now than I remember them a week ago. Or will we got lucky and after two nights of horror, will he fall back into the old way we had worked so hard to Achieve?

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
841 Dog owners recommended

Hello Tiffany, That can be discouraging when you finally make progress on something and have to go backwards again. As soon as his stools become firmer and more of a normal consistency during the day you can safely resume your prior night schedule and letting him cry it out without fear that you are missing something. Unfortunately the frequent potty breaks might be necessary for a bit longer if the diarrhea is still bad. If the antibiotic does not help quickly, then give your vet another call or visit. Many of those conditions take under a week to improve once antibiotics are started. If you have any questions about it ask you vet though, as I am not a licensed Veterinarian. As far as when you start back how long it will take. Since he is older and has been rewarded with potty outings for crying for the last few days he will likely protest for a long time the first couple of nights to go back to letting him cry. The training will likely involve longer protests than before but less nights doing it. Try not to get discouraged if he pitched a huge fit for the first three to five nights. Once you get over that hump it should start to improve drastically. He might surprise you and go right back to his old ways of sleeping better even sooner than three nights too, but mentally prepare for three to five just in case. Many dogs do go back to old sleeping habits just fine right away. By twelve weeks of age start taking him out less frequently during the night if he is doing well with potty training at night time. Let him sleep through the normal four hour wake ups and see when he wakes up on his own to go potty one night. When you discover how many hours he will go on his own, then let that amount of hours minus thirty minutes be his new potty break time. A couple of weeks after that try the same thing again and he may surprise you and sleep through the whole night by then. He may even surprise you at twelve weeks and sleep through the night then. Some puppies can by twelve weeks of age. Others can closer to four months. For early morning wake ups, if you think he needs to go potty, take him outside but keep him on a leash so that he cannot play, keep the whole experience calm and boring, and after he goes potty take him straight back to the crate. It will equal a lot of crying at first but you want him to learn to only wake up at that time if he needs to go potty and not habitually for the fun of getting out of the crate to play. If the trip is boring and end with going back in crate, then he is less likely to wake up and ask to go out if he does not have to. It sounds like this was your strategy before the sickness, so keep it up when he is feeling better. As hard as it is right now, with the level of consistency that it seems like you are giving him, you should start to see some major improvements in potty training and sleep within a month overall. It will get easier in those areas soon. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

How do I teach a 5 year old dog to not bark all she dose is tell all night long I get no sleep!!! She will bark and yell and cry till the sun comes up and sleep all day!!

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Marley
Doberman/ lab mix
2 Years
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Marley
Doberman/ lab mix
2 Years

My dog likes to cry all night long unless someone literally stares at him and we never get to sleep.. what is the easiest way to get my stubborn brat to relax? I heard cbd oil could help but I’m not sure

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
841 Dog owners recommended

Hello Amanda, First, rule out a few things... Is he able to hold his bladder for at least 5 hours while crated during the day or is he asking to go potty every 1-2 hours during the day? If he is asking to go potty often during the day and actually needing to go, then a trip to your vet is in order because the night wakings could be related to something like a urinary tract infection. (I am not a vet) Is there a new noise at night that might be waking him up, like a baby, beeping sound, or loud neighbor? Does he have enough room to lie down in his crate well? Assuming he can hold his bladder for 8 hours in the crate, nothing is scaring him, his crate isn't super cramped (he doesn't need much extra space but he should be able to lie down comfortable to sleep), and he seems fine once he is given attention, he simply might be going through a phase where he is testing boundaries a bit and asking to be let out simply because he prefers sleeping somewhere else - your bed is softer after all. If the protests are just him acting demanding, you have two options. You can ignore the crying until he gives up and realizes after a few days that it doesn't get him out of the crate - so he stops, OR you can discipline the crying. To discipline the barking, start by teaching the Quiet command using the Quiet method from the article linked below. Quiet method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bark Practice the Quiet command method during the day until he learns the meaning of the word quiet. Since you want him to learn it quickly, I suggest practicing for a few minutes several times per day to speed up learning. Only give treats while practicing this during the day - no treats at night. I would also get him used to being crated alone during the day by practicing the Surprise method: https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate Once he understands Quiet, if he wakes up and it has been less than 8 hours since he last went potty, then when he cries tell him "Quiet". If he gets quiet - great! Go back to bed, nothing else happens. If he doesn't get quiet or starts barking again right away, calmly say "Ah Ah" and use a small canister of pressurized air, called a Pet Convincer, to spray a quick puff of unscented air (do NOT use citronella) at his side through the crate's wires (avoid spraying him in the face). After spraying him, go back to bed. Repeat the corrections each time he barks until he goes back to sleep. When you practice during the day, return and give treats when he stays quiet - for gradually longer and longer periods of time as he improves. Do NOT give food when you do this at night though, or that can lead to waking for food. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Question
Lady
Heeler mix
1 Year
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Question
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Lady
Heeler mix
1 Year

She’s a rescue and seemed to get used to the house fairly quickly but now a couple weeks in she is whining again and forgetting her basic commands she knew when we got her.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
841 Dog owners recommended

Hello Gabby, There is what's referred to in the rescue world as a "honey moon period" that typically lasts a couple of weeks. Many dogs will start to exhibit certain behavior issues after the honeymoon period as they get comfortable enough with you, find out where you are consistent and not, and generally are acting more like themselves as dogs. It's fairly normal, and is a good time to increase consistency with training. Check out the articles linked below, practicing some calm, respect and trust building exercises can help pup settle in more. Consistency and working methods: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-doberman-to-listen-to-you Quiet method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bark Good commands to practice for their own sake, but also to increase respect and trust in your relationship with her in general, and help her feel more secure in your leadership - nervous dogs tend to do better with structure and boundaries. Lead with a calm and confident attitude, not feeling sorry for her or angry toward her. Thresholds: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_-w28C2g68M Out - which means leave the area: https://www.petful.com/behaviors/how-to-teach-a-dog-the-out-command/ Leave It method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bite Place command: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O75dyWITP1s Down-Stay: https://www.thelabradorsite.com/train-your-labrador-to-lie-down-and-stay/ Heel- Turns method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-poodle-to-heel Come - Reel in method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-whippet-to-recall Best of luck training, Caitlni Crittenden

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Question
Alpha
toy poodle
8 Weeks
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Question
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Alpha
toy poodle
8 Weeks

I had this toy poodle puppy for a week. He cries and whines every single second if I’m not holding him in arms or next put him somewhere on my body. I am currently crate training him so he sleeps and pee in the crate. I wonder what I should do to stop him crying and whining cuz my neighbours are complaining this:(

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
841 Dog owners recommended

Hello Annabelle, First, I highly suggest not encouraging peeing in the crate - that can make potty training later extremely difficult. Check out the Exercise Pen method from the article linked below for teaching indoor potty training - that method can be used for pee pads, litter box, or disposable real grass pad indoor potties. https://wagwalking.com/training/litter-box-train-a-chihuahua-puppy Second, check out the Surprise method from the article linked below. Pup needs to be given an opportunity to learn to self-sooth. Each time you return when he cries, you are actually rewarding the crying and teaching him to cry more. Instead, you want to reward the pauses between crying, so pup will be rewarded for being quiet. Giving a food stuffed hollow chew toy, like a Kong can also help. This method mentions using a crate, but the same exercise can be used for an exercise pen also if pup is confined in there, if you switch to also using that for potty training. Surprise method: https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate I do encourage potty training, just not leaving pup in the crate so long that they pee in there, and not putting pee pads in the crate, because then pup will learn to potty in the crate long term an the crate can't be used for boarding, travel, confining for longer, or other important crate uses. If you wish to use the crate to teach pup to go potty outside, check out the Crate Training method from the article linked below - notice the sizing of the crate, how often pup must be taken potty, and not putting anything absorbent in the crate to help pup hold it while in there. Most puppies will need to be taken potty 1-2 times per night still at this age due to a limited bladder capacity. https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-german-shepherd-puppy-to-poop-outside Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Max
Dachshund-Beagle Mix
2 Years
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Question
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Max
Dachshund-Beagle Mix
2 Years

I've decided to crate train my two year old Dachshund-Beagle mix, Max. However, every time I leave his sight for even a few seconds, he begins to cry and tries to escape the crate, then when I come back he slowly calms down. I'm not sure what to do, or how to help him get comfortable with the crate enough to let me leave his vicinity for a minute or two.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
841 Dog owners recommended

Hello Samantha, Check out the article that I have linked below. You can utilize all the methods but pay special attention to the "Surprise" method. https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate Also, make sure you are not rewarding his barking and crying by returning while he is doing it. Give him a food stuffed chew toy in the crate when you put him inside so that he has something to do, and wait until he is quiet before you return to sprinkle treats in - then leave again. If you return or let him out when he cries, he learns to keep doing it to get what he wants, instead of having the opportunity to learn that he can rest and chew on a fun toy in the crate, and you will come back while he is calm. Crying is normal at first...it's new and he needs an opportunity to realize that he is safe in there. Practicing the training from the article I linked above can help him understand how to be in a crate though, so that there is less crying...and crying once he understands that the crate is normal due to practicing the crate beforehand is just protesting being in there and not due to true distress typically, which needs to be ignored until he calms down. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Question
archer
Belgian Malinois
1 Year
0 found helpful
Question
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archer
Belgian Malinois
1 Year

so there are multiple things i really need help with. my dog is ok with the crate however he keeps whining at night, and we ignore. we exercise, makes sure he goes to the bathroom before bed, and give him his favorite toy. but given his past since he was a rescue dog we have tried everything to help him associate the crate as a calm peacful place where he can go. now he goes pee and he chews things all the time. we have tried sprays that prevent him from chewing. any suggestions on how to get him to stop chewing, peeing, crate training, and whining at night?

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
841 Dog owners recommended

Hello Rosalinda, Is he peeing in the crate or when left out of the crate at night? If he is doing it outside the crate, then he needs to be crated at night. To deal with the whining, first I suggest crating him in another room so that he cannot see you while asleep. The whining might be for attention and he may give up and settle down after a week of being crated in a room by himself. Expect it to be worse for the first three days while he is adjusting, then gradually improve as you ignore him and do not go to him. Check out the article that I have linked below and work on those methods, especially the "Surprise" method, to help him like the crate - you may have already done those things and if so great. https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate If doing the above for two weeks doesn't help or the destructive chewing and peeing is happening while in the crate, there is a more intensive separation anxiety protocol you can do. It is more intense and can seem harsh because it confronts the anxiety and interrupts it so that the dog has an opportunity to learn a different way to be in place of the anxiety. I suggest doing it during the day first and after he understands what to do, then implementing it at night. Work on the above. If you are not seeing progress, then the next step is to interrupt his frantic-ness using an electric collar that has a vibration setting also (he may not respond to the vibration so you need both stimulation and vibration - if he does respond to just vibration then you can use that). When you choose a collar, only get one that has at least thirty-levels. Cheap, poorly made collars can be dangerous and collar without enough levels can be too harsh or not effective enough. E-collar Technologies, Garmin, SportDog, and Dogtra all make decent collars. You can also try using a remote controlled unscented air spray collar (AVOID citronella - only use unscented air or you might make your problem worse). Honestly, many dogs will not respond well enough to the air spray collars though. I highly suggest hiring a trainer who is experienced with separation anxiety and using e-collars to help you. You want to find the lowest level that he can feel on the collar. You want to set a good foundation for him by doing the other training that I mentioned above to at the same time to help him learn independence. You also want to reward him when he is calm. To use the electric collar you would: 1. Get him used to wearing the collar around while it is turned off. 2. Find the lowest level that he responds to - called a "working level". 3. Set up your camera to watch him again. 4. Leave the house, drive down the block so he thinks you are gone, then walk back and hide next to the house - so the collar and remote will be in range. 5. Watch him on the camera and listen for howling, scratching or him getting really worked up whining. 6. Stimulate the collar when he howls, scratches, or starts to get worked up whining (a brief whine is okay but not anxious-continuous whining). 7. When he gets quiet for two minutes, go back inside, ignore him for five minutes (he should be in the crate when you first practice this). When he is calm, then open the crate door, but don't let him come out yet - if he tries to rush out, then close the door quickly again and repeat the opening and closing it exercise until he stays in there while the door is open. 8. When he will stay in the crate while the door is open, then ignore him for another five minutes while the door is open. 9. Tell him "Okay" to let him know he can leave the crate at the end of the five minutes, but act really boring and nonchalant with him when he comes out. 10. Practice the training sessions, correcting him from outside with the collar while watching on the camera, coming back in when he is calm, ignoring him for a total of ten minutes, then acting boring when you let him out. This protocol sounds very harsh I know. It is important to practice him being independent of you through things like "Place", "Stay", and being in the crate. He needs to learn how to cope with independence so that he will be able to handle being alone. When you correct him with the collar, you are correcting him at a more reasonable stimulation level that is high enough for him to feel but not so high that it's any harsher than it needs to be. Right now the anxious response is his go to. He needs an opportunity to choose a different response. When you correct him, you are interrupting his anxious state of mind and expression - which will get more and more anxious as it builds if not interrupted. When you remove that option from him, then he has to find another way to react. By coming back inside, you are essentially rewarding him when he is being calm - showing him that you come back and that it's alright for you to leave. Also, showing him that being calm is how he gets you back, not by getting worked up. He has an opportunity to learn in that situation. Being in the crate simply makes it easier for him to learn because his only other option is to chew on a chew toy and rest. He cannot pace, destroy things, pee on rugs, or try another type of behavior when the scratching, whining, and howling are not options anymore. After he has learned calmness in the crate and that has become a new habit, then it will be easier for him to be calm outside of the crate when you are gone too. When you put him into the crate during the day (not at night), be sure to leave a dog food and liver paste or cheese or peanut butter (NO Xylitol sweetener -it's toxic to dogs!) stuffed- safe- hollow-chew-toy for him in the crate, so that when he calms down he will have that to chew on - he probably won't chew it until he is corrected and learns to calm down though. Dogs typically won't eat when they are anxious. When he learns to be calm and is ready to do something other than get worked up, you will want him to have it though, so that he can learn to enjoy himself in the crate or in your home when you are gone. I suggest that you do all of this under the guidance of a qualified trainer though. You have to be careful to use e-collars correctly. They can be very effective tools when used correctly, but they are powerful and can be severely misused if you don't understand how to use them. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Question
Bella
Akita
2 Months
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Question
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Bella
Akita
2 Months

Hi Caitlin. Is it okay to leave her in a secure area (laundry room) that's not too far from us? I understand that she is crying a fair bit as it's her first few nights. We don't have a crate as yet. Is it necessary to buy one to use the methods below?

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
841 Dog owners recommended

Hello Dre, A secure area is the next best thing to a crate because then she should be safe from chewing and swallowing things she shouldn't while you are asleep. It won't help with potty training though so it's not as good as a crate. The crate is needed to teach pup to wake you up when they need to go potty at this age - because they naturally don't want to dirty a small, confined space so will normally cry to get out of the crate and try to hold their bladders until you take them outside - take her immediately though because she won't be able to hold it for long at this age. In a larger space she will probably just wake up, going potty somewhere on the ground in the laundry room, then going back to bed without alerting you that she needs to be taken outside. If a puppy has too many night time potty accidents that can undo day time potty training and make the process a LOT harder. So for one or two nights you can set an alarm to take her potty every 3 hours, but you will need a crate very soon so that she learns to hold it for longer at night and will sleep through the night sooner and potty train sooner (waking her up instead of waiting for her to wake you often means less sleep for you because there will be times when she could have held it for longer but you don't want to chance an accident). Congratulations on the new puppy! Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Question
Charlie
Shih Tzu
2 Months
0 found helpful
Question
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Charlie
Shih Tzu
2 Months

I recently got my two month old puppy on Saturday. His crate was placed in the kitchen but it is on the other side of the room. Should I move the crate at night to the living room where he would be closer to me and during the day when I am working, move the bed to the kitchen? Any advice will be great!!

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
841 Dog owners recommended

Hello Karla, Having your puppy sleep in another room can take longer for your puppy to settle in but actually be better for them in the long run because then they learn how to sleep without you there - which is great for traveling, boarding, being vetted, and generally preventing separation anxiety. The important thing to do is make sure you can hear them if they wake up needing to go potty at this age. If you decide to keep him in thr kitchen where you can't hear him, I suggest using an audio baby monitor to listen for him at night until he can sleep through the night without needing to go potty consistently. During the day crating him away from you for at least two hours total is also important for preventing separation anxiety - by teaching independence; however, you do not want him to be away from you all day. If he has frequent breaks outside the crate when you are home to play with you, train, and exercise after going potty, then him being crated away from you at other times is not an issue. If he spends most of his time in the crate while you are home, I suggest moving the crate closer for the majority of the time and just making sure he practices being alone for 1-2 hours a day and is close at other times. Dogs are social so they need to have interaction or be near people, as long as they get some practice being alone to prepare them for being alone when they have to be later. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Question
Spotacus
Pit bull
7 Months
0 found helpful
Question
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Spotacus
Pit bull
7 Months

I am wanting to get him trained on everything and get him certified what do I need to do to get that done

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
841 Dog owners recommended

Hello Kimberly, What type of certification were you wanting? Service Dog, Therapy Dog, Canine Good Citizen, or something else? A good place to start with all dogs is basic obedience and socialization. Once he understands basic commands well and is confident and relaxed around all types of people, animals - including other dogs, new environments, and sights and sounds, then work on obedience around distractions, called Intermediate Obedience. An intermediate or advanced obedience class is a great way to do this if you can find one with very knowledgeable trainers who are also experienced with behavioral issues and off leash training - which shows a better general understanding of training. Ask questions and look for reviews and client referrals. Once he can obey commands in the presence of distractions, then a Canine Good Citizen class is a good way to practice manners for future Therapy work and Service Dog work. Finally, if you intend to do Service Dog work, the final step is teaching the specific tasks you want to train for that. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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molly
Jack Russell
8 Weeks
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molly
Jack Russell
8 Weeks

crying at night

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
841 Dog owners recommended

Hello Michaela, Even though it can be hard you actually need to intentionally give her safe times of being alone without you, either in a crate (what I recommend because it also helps with potty training), or an exercise pen for her to practice being alone during the day for about an hour also. Follow the surprise method from the article linked below during the day to help her learn to cope with being alone at night. Work on her being by herself for about an hour each day (it can be longer if you need to leave her, but at least an hour for training purposes). Surprise method: https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate Most young puppies will cry in a crate or when left alone for up to 2 weeks (some adjust within just three days). Most grow out of this if you give them the opportunity to learn to self-sooth and self-entertain by not rescuing them while they are crying when you know that they are safe. If you go to her whenever she cries the training will take much longer though, so try to stay firm and use the Surprise method from the article linked above to help the process go more smoothly. Wait until she is quiet for at least a couple of seconds before you go back to her during the day, so that she associates your return with her being quiet and not crying. At night, if you know that she doesn't have to go potty and is safe, then let her cry. She might pitch quiet a fit the first few nights, but if you remain firm she should learn to settle down at night, especially if you also practice the surprise method during the day to help her learn to self-sooth. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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The colonel
Sprocker Spaniel
5 Months
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The colonel
Sprocker Spaniel
5 Months

Hi we are having problems with our puppy waking up at 5 in the morning and whining constantly until we give in and get up too him. He sleeps downstairs in his cage which he likes and we do not lock him in he is comfortable in there and when I go too bed I say bedtime and off he goes happily into it.
He is still going too toilet on puppy pads so I know he does not need the toilet so why is he doing it? He also has an issue with whining if I leave to go into another room to do anything. Is it just that he gets separation anxiety?

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
841 Dog owners recommended

Hello David, Puppies have to learn how to be alone by practicing how to handle being by themselves. Check out the Surprise method from the article linked below. If he will not stay inside the crate when you leave the room, then you will need to close the crate door and practice this for an hour each day. You can practice for longer, but he will need to be let out while he is being quiet to go potty after an hour, so spacing out when you practice this, with some free time in between crating time since you are pee pad training. You can also practice this in an exercise pen, with the crate with the door open on one end for him to rest in and the pee pad on the opposite end to go potty on as needed. Surprise method for crate training: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bark Do not go to him when he cries, wait until he is quiet for at least a few seconds. If you go to him when he cries he learns that crying is the way to get you back and it becomes a habit. If you wait until he is quiet he learns how to sooth himself and stay quiet for longer. As he improves, wait until he remains quiet for longer before you go to him. In the morning, the same thing applies. Since he has access to the pee pad so you know that he doesn't need to go potty, use an exercise pen with the crate on one end and the pee pad in the opposite end for him to sleep in at night, so that he cannot leave that area and will go back to sleep. Ignore the crying. If he won't settle back down within an hour of crying, then when he wakes up in the morning the next day, go to him, calmly encourage him to pee on the pee pad, then put him back in the crate and close the door so that he will stay in the crate. He is going back to bed after a potty trip essentially - you want to remove other fun activities that will keep him awake if he is free, with the exception of possibly a plain chew toy in his crate, so that he will calm back down and go back to sleep. Once he is in the habit of going back to sleep at that time his body is more likely to sleep through that time also. It is a bit like asking young kids to stay in their beds - you cannot force them to fall asleep but you can facilitate it happening by making the environment calm enough. If he stays awake but stays quiet and doesn't wake you, that is fine also. Also, pay attention to his schedule. When is he going to sleep for the night? Is he napping for most of the evening? If he sleeps for most of the evening then that sleep is going to count as part of his night sleep and he will be fully rested and ready to go by 5 a.m.. Most puppies will sleep 10 hours at night at this age, plus take several naps during the day. Keep evening naps to one hour instead of all evening, and make sure that his bedtime is ten hours before when you want him to wake up the next morning. Also, make sure that the environment is quiet in the morning. If other people or animals are moving around and making noise at 5 a.m. that will wake him up. If you can make the area dark too that should help his body adjust to the new sleep cycle - this will be less important as he gets older but making the area darker by blocking out window sunlight can help his body adjust to sleeping. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Daisy
Labradoodle
19 Weeks
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Daisy
Labradoodle
19 Weeks

Daisy has been doing really well in her crate at night until recently. She has started not wanting to go in & crying loudly. I will go & take her outside without talking just to see if she needs to pee. I then put her back. Last night she cried & yelled so much my husband couldn’t leave her like it so went down even though I felt we should try to ignore. He wanted to let her on our bed. No ! Can’t start that. She carried on v loudly so I then went down. I decided to check nothing wrong. It ended up that she just wanted to be with my husband & so they spent the night in the spare room with her on the bed with him. No crying once she was with him !! I’m feeling so upset & frustrated as I do everything for her including going to an extremely good puppy training class. I take her on fun walks & play time with other dogs. Bath her groom her & play. She is fixated with my husband & cry’s if he leaves the room. I can’t have her starting to sleep on the bed with him & he can’t stand to hear her cry - I dont like it either ! Husband is out more than me. I really don’t know what to do & am sad , tired & frustrated. Help !

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
841 Dog owners recommended

Hello Christine, You are correct that the crying should be ignored. Unless something traumatic happened this is likely just related to her entering adolescence and pushing boundaries more at this age. She is actually more likely to protest your husband leaving if she respects him less. Since he is not willing to let her cry it out and you are not comfortable having her sleep in your room, I suggest taking a firmer approach and correcting the crying. Teach her the Quiet command using the Quiet command from the article linked below. Work on this command during the day so that she will understand what Quiet means: Quiet method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bark Next, purchase a Pet Convincer, which is a small canister of pressurized air. When she barks at night and you feel confident that she does not need to go potty, tell her Quiet then leave again - If it has been less than 5.5 hours since she last peed, she should be able to hold it. If she stays asleep she will be able to hold it for longer, once awake her bladder control will decrease. If you think she might really need to pee, then take her outside and then put her back in the crate. When she cries after being taken outside, then you will know that needing to go potty is not the reason and can proceed with what I am about to tell you to do. After telling her Quiet, if she stays quiet, great!! Celebrate and continue practicing quiet during the day too to reinforce that lesson. If she continues barking (which she probably will at first), then tell her "Ah Ah" in a calm tone of voice, and spray a spray of unscented air from the Pet Convincer at her side through the crate wires (Do NOT spray her in the face - just the side near her shoulder or ribs). After spraying her, leave again. Repeat your Quiet command, followed by a correction for barking if she doesn't get quiet, whenever she barks. During the day when you practice this also return after 5-10 minutes of her staying quiet and sprinkle treats into the crate to reward her quietness - only give treats during the day though. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Pork butt
Boston Terrier
12 Weeks
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Pork butt
Boston Terrier
12 Weeks

I am struggling to get my puppy to not wake up and continuesly cry at night. We moved into a complex with upstairs and downstairs. We sleep up stairs an I provide him with the freedom of the entire living room down stairs. I have a soft crate that he goes himself to sleep in, a doggy bed, 4 chew toys and water if he gets thirsty at night. Iv left a pee mat, newspaper down on the floor in certain areas and a sand box recently which I see he peed in once! The problem I am having is that he is going to the loo most times everywhere else but the places allocated. Please give me some guidance

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
841 Dog owners recommended

Hello Lisa, It sounds like he is being given too much freedom. Puppies do not instinctively know to pee on pads or in boxes - it looks no different to them than your rug or floor. They need to be carefully confined and taught when you are awake to show them how before being given freedom at night - I actually recommend confining a pup at night for the entire first year because there are several destructive chewing phases they will go through at late as 9 months of age, that can be very dangerous if they swallow something they chewed once their jaws get stronger or they find something small now. If you don't plan to use a litter box or pee pads long term, I highly suggest getting rid of them and using a crate at night instead, and just waking up with your pup to take them outside when they cry at night for a little while. Use an audio baby monitor by their crate downstairs so that you will hear him when he wakes up and cries to go potty. The loss of sleep can be tiring but if potty training is done right, night wakings pass quickly and potty training is so much easier in the long run if you start with the method you intend to use long term - otherwise you may spend months trying to change your puppies peeing habits once they are set. Outside Potty training - the Crate Training method and the Tethering method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-german-shepherd-puppy-to-poop-outside If you plan to use a litter box or pads inside for the rest of your puppies life since they are small enough that is an option, then check out the article linked below. Follow the Exercise Pen method during the day. At first, follow the Crate Training method found in the same article below, at night and use an audio baby monitor to listen out for when your puppy needs to go potty to prevent accidents from happening at night while he is learning - frequent accidents can really slow down potty training. Once he will consistently use the litter box in the exercise pen during the day, then you can put your puppy's crate inside the exercise pen, leave the door open, and have the litter box on the opposite end of the exercise pen for pup to use during the night so you can sleep. Doing the training this way helps pup learn to use the litter box faster by minimizing accidents that inhibit his potty training progress, but it also allows you to get more sleep because pup should start to understand to go in the litter box during the day within a few days if it is close by while he is in the exercise pen, at which point you will no longer have to wake up with him at night. With indoor potty training it is just as important to prevent accidents during the learning process as it is with outside pottying training. Exercise Pen method and Crate Training method for indoor potty training: https://wagwalking.com/training/litter-box-train-a-chihuahua-puppy Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Rebelle
Pomeranian
1 Year
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Rebelle
Pomeranian
1 Year

Every night my dog cries and it really annoys my family. I go down and let her out to go potty,i give her water and I comfort her but she still cries when I leave. She also scratches at the door. And when we bring her up to sleep in my room,in the middle of the morning she scratches at the door again and wants to go down. Please help.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
841 Dog owners recommended

Hello Beibhinn, Have her sleep in a crate at night. During the day practice leaving her in the crate while you are home for at least an hour. Leave the room. If she cries, return to her, tell her "Ah Ah" and spray a small puff of unscented air from a pet convincer at her side through the crate wires (A Pet Convincer is a small canister of pressurized unscented air - Don't use Citronella spray). Do NOT spray her in the face, just on the side near her ribs. After you spray her briefly with the air, leave again. If she stays quiet for five minutes, return and sprinkle a few treats into the crate without letting her out, then leave again. Return and correct her with the Pet Convincer whenever she cries, and return and sprinkle treats whenever she stays quiet for a few minutes. As she improves, wait until she stays quiet a few minutes longer before you sprinkle the treats. Gradually space your treats further and further apart until she doesn't need the treats to stay calm. You can also give her a safe chew toy stuffed with dog food during the day, and a safe chew toy without food in it at night. Practice this during the day with the Pet Convincer and treats. At night, correct the crying with the pet convincer but don't give food because you don't want her to have to go to the bathroom or to stay awake waiting for food - that is why you need to practice this during the day too, because the food helps her learn what to do when in a crate - which is be calm and quiet. Practice the crate manners exercise from the video linked below to increase calmness in the crate even more. https://thegooddog.net/training-videos/free-how-to-training-videos/learn-to-train-the-good-dog-way-the-crate/ Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Chloe
Shih Tzu
11 Years
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Chloe
Shih Tzu
11 Years

We just moved into a new house & want to keep our dog, Chloe down stairs. Our 11 year old shih tzu is very accident prone if allowed on carpet. You can take her out, come in leave the room & she will use the bathroom. She has pretty bad anxiety as well. So far I have came down & slept on the couch every night at some point to stop her whining & even barking. {She never barks ... like maybe once a month literally.}
We also tried crating her in our room at night but she would not stop crying. I know it is a lot of change for her. I started introducing the crate about a month before we moved, I worked up to her being ok in it while I ran to the store. But since the move she is hesitant to even get a treat out of it.
It just breaks my heart for her to feel abandoned & confused being left downstairs at night in the dark after 11 years. Any advice? I eventually need to be able to sleep in my bed again.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
841 Dog owners recommended

Hello Jennifer, The solution to this is going to feel hard but she needs to sleep at much as you do, and the sooner its dealt with the sooner her anxiety will decrease. The anxious state of mind actually needs to be corrected. This can be done with a Pet Convincer or a remote collar on a working level (which is the lowest level a dog will respond to). I suggest confining her down stairs for a couple of hours during the day and practicing this during the daytime first. First, purchase a high quality e-collar with at least thirty stimulation levels and vibration. Look for a high quality brand such as E-collar technologies (mini educator), Dogtra, Garmin, or Sportdog. Pay attention to weight ranges on these when choosing one. High quality e-collars can give much smaller/gentler corrections and are far safer than random unknown brands bought overseas. A good collar has 60-125 simulation levels, letting you find the gentlest level your dog responds to just well enough to "snap" them out of being so worked up, to help them learn to calm themselves back down after. Have her wear the collar around for a bit to get used to the feel of it. Next, find the correct level of stimulation to use for her training, called her working level. To find this level, wait until she is simply standing around acting boring and not distracted. Without saying anything, push the stimulation button for a second. Watch her to see if she responds. This response might be subtle like scratching, acting like a bug is on her, shaking her head, looking around, moving away from where she is, or something else. She might yelp out of surprise, but if you are using the lowest level she responds to and a high quality e-collar a yelp is typically due to surprise. If she seems overly sensitive to the collar you can use the vibration setting instead but vibration tends to be harsher than low stimulation for many dogs. Repeat pushing the button three times at the lowest level and watching for a response. If she does not respond, increase the level by one and watch for a response again while you test that level out three times. Continue increasing the level by one and watching for a response, until you reach a level that she responds too - If the collar you are using has a lot of levels, like the Mini Educators' one hundred levels, then many dogs won't even feel it until around level ten. It all depends on their own sensitivity level, which is why you find each dog's individual level. Check out the video linked below, demonstrating finding the correct level for a dog: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1cl3V8vYobM Next, set up a camera to spy on her while she is in her crate. You could use a GoPro with the Live app on your phone, two smart phones or tablets with Skype or Facetime with her end on mute so she won't hear you but you can hear her, a video baby monitor, security camera, or any other camera you have that you could watch her from outside on. Once you have the correct collar stimulation level and she is calm and relaxed again, start your leaving routine, put her into the crate, and go outside. Drive down the block and walk back if she isn't convinced you really left. From outside, watch her on the camera. When she barks or tries to escape from the crate, push the stimulation button on the remote for one second. Repeat the correction every time she barks. This will probably take a few repetitions before she starts to connect the stimulation on the collar with her barking. If it doesn't improve after seven corrections, increase the collar level by one, and again by one if she still doesn't respond. When she pauses barking for four seconds, while she is quiet, go back inside, sprinkle a few tiny treats into her crate without letting her out or talking to her, then leave again. Repeat correcting her when she barks from outside, going inside and sprinkling treats when she is quiet then leaving again; do this for 30 to 45 minutes each session. After about 45 minutes, while she is quiet, go back inside for good. Leave her in the crate and ignore her for ten minutes. Correcting with the e-collar without acknowledging her if she barks at you from the crate. After ten minutes, while she is calm, go to her and let her out of the crate using the method from the article linked below: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mn5HTiryZN8 You generally want to encourage calmness around the crate - being overly excited, anxious, or worked up can make separation anxiety worse because of the chemicals released into the body. Expect to need to repeat the crate collar training several times for 45 minute sessions for her to realize that the results are always the same and she needs to be calm and quiet in the crate. You can do this more than one time each day to speed up the process, just make sure she has breaks in between each session to unwind. When she is quieter in the crate, then when you leave, give her a food stuffed chew toy, like a Kong, to help with boredom and to automatically reward her for staying quiet. You can also go to her and spray a small puff of air at her side while saying "Ah Ah", then leave again right after, returning to her and sprinkling treats near her if she stays quiet for five minutes. A remote collar tends to work better though because you don't have to give any form of attention with it - the correction is just associated with what she is doing and not you. The correct working level also shouldn't be more adverse than the puff of air if done correctly. You can either do this protocol with her in the crate in your room or with her in the pen area or crate downstairs where you want her to sleep at night - as long as she is alone while you practice this so the whining is the same. A crate will be quicker to learn usually - at least at first. Choose where you want her to learn to sleep long-term either way, so that you don't have to do this twice though. While still anxious and learning this, she likely will not take food during training. That's alright. Once she is calmer after training she should take food better again while in the crate or pen. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Ruby
Maltipoo
18 Months
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Ruby
Maltipoo
18 Months

Ruby used to sleep on my bed but is getting very territorial about my room and my space. She will bark and snarl at my daughters if they attempted to take her to their room for the night. I decided that upstairs should be out of bounds for her. We have never crated her and I wasn’t keen to do this option after 18 months. We made her bed up on the settee after 3 nights whining she slept. She has done this for 3 weeks. For some reason she has reverted back to the crying and now it’s worse than ever. She’s scratching at the door and floors. Barking whining, I’m shattered. I’ve had intermittent sleep for 5 days and working it’s taking a toll on me. I tried locking her in the kitchen but this was worse. She settles the minute she sees me. Help ... I need to sleep and so does she. We had 3 blissful weeks before and now we have a dog who is a nightmare at nighttime.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
841 Dog owners recommended

Hello Karen, First, you will need to crate train. The issue you have described is not an anxiety issue but a respect issue. Pup is resource guarding you, the room, and the bed. Pup's crying and scratching behavior is probably more a result of a demanding, pushy attitude than anxiety. As such a lot more boundaries and structure are needed to address the root cause. First, I suggest crate training and crating pup at night so that they cannot scratch the door and destroy things as protest - this will actually make the night time transition go faster in most cases. During the day crate pup to help her adjust. When she cries, use a Pet Convincer to spray a small puff of unscented air through the wires of the crate, aimed at her side (not face and use unscented air canisters NOT citonella - it's too harsh). Calmly tell her "Ah ah" while you spray a brief puff of air, then leave again. If she stays quiet for a few minutes, return and sprinkle a few treats through the wires of the crate without letting her out, while calmly telling her she did good, then leave again. Practice these two things when she cries or tries to get out and when she is quiet and calm. Practice crating her for 1-3 hours during the day, starting with less time at first. At night crate her downstairs. Go to bed an hour before you need to go to sleep so that the house is quiet but you won't be exhausted doing the following. When she cries, return, tell her "Ah Ah" and correct with a puff of air, then leave again. Do not give treats at night - only correct at night. You have hopefully practiced this during the day first with the corrections and treats so that pup will understand that quiet is what she is supposed to be doing instead of crying. Repeat the corrections whenever she cries until she goes to sleep. To reestablish respect in general you can also work on the following methods and commands in life: Place: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=omg5DVPWIWo Crate manners: https://thegooddog.net/training-videos/free-how-to-training-videos/learn-to-train-the-good-dog-way-the-crate/ Thresholds: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_-w28C2g68M Heel article - The turns method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-poodle-to-heel Consistency method - and Working method for more extreme issues; https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-doberman-to-listen-to-you Out command - which means leave the area. There is a section on using Out to deal with pushiness: https://www.petful.com/behaviors/how-to-teach-a-dog-the-out-command/ Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Winston
Dachshund
13 Weeks
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Winston
Dachshund
13 Weeks

I have been keeping Winston in the laundry with a puppy pad and his bed along with a few of his favourite toys at night for the past week. He usually cries for about an hour and it quiets down, but he wakes us up with more crying and banging through out the night. I’ve woken up to check on him and take him out for a bathroom break just in case and found the door chewed etc. it sometimes sounds as though he is trying to burrow himself out. I want him to get used to sleeping in there, am I right to ignore him and let him adjust to being in there alone at night?

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
841 Dog owners recommended

Hello Kristian, First, teaching a pup how to sleep by themselves is a great thing. It can actually prevent severe separation anxiety later. I strongly encourage you to continue teaching pup how to adjust to being alone, and know that the crying is normal at this point and should improve with time. With that said, you may need to crate him at first and take him potty during the night when he wakes up crying to go. This accomplishes a few things. 1. It prevents him from learning a bad and dangerous destructive chewing habit that is hard to unlearn later on. 2. It helps him learn to settle down sooner and go to sleep. 3. It helps with potty training. If your end goal is to teach him to pee on pee pads, then you can also use an exercise pen with a pee pad instead of a crate - removing access to walls and everything besides the floor and metal pen walls to prevent chewing. You can also work on pee pad training during the day and teaching him to sleep alone at night - taking him potty during the night for a bit, until he has adjusted to the crate and isn't destructive chewing and knows how to pee on the provided pads - at which point you can leave the crate door open in the laundry room so that he has access to the pee pad to use (it may seem obvious but you do have to teach pup's to use pee pads just like training a dog to go potty outside. Many people assume they will just use the pads if you provide them). If your end goal is training pup to go potty outside and your schedule allows you to take him potty frequently enough to start that process, I suggest getting rid of the pee pad, crating at night, using an inexpensive audio baby monitor to listen for him crying when he needs to pee at night, and taking him potty outside on a leash as needed. At this age he should only need to go potty outside once halfway into the night most nights if you crate him and remove all food and water two hours before bed. Wait until he wakes up asking to go if you can - opposed to waking him. He will learn to sleep through the night sooner if you wait until he wakes up. Within another month or two most puppies can hold it throughout the entire night if crated and being properly potty trained during the day. Pee Pad/indoor potty training - check out the exercise pen method and crate training method from this article. This article mentions litter box training - which you can try, but you can also use these methods with pee pads and real grass pads. Real grass pads are my favorite thing to train on because they tend to lead to less confusion with carpeting and rugs and if you need to teach pup to use a pad now but your goal later is outdoor potty training, they transition the easiest to outdoor training. https://wagwalking.com/training/litter-box-train-a-chihuahua-puppy Outside potty training - Tethering method and crate training methods are what I recommend for your pup from this article if your end goal is outside potty training. As pup gets older and learns the times in the schedule will also increase, making it easier. At night a puppy's capacity is different during the day while asleep. During the day most pups can hold it for the number they are in age plus one if crated. Meaning your pup cannot hold it for longer than 4 hours in the crate during the day. Ideally he would be taken out every 1.5 hours when first learning though. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Luna
Havanese
8 Weeks
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Luna
Havanese
8 Weeks

I recently just got my dog about 3 days ago. I know that she is still a baby but she cries a lot when it’s time to go to bed. I haven’t bought her a cage because i feel bad putting her in there. Is putting her in a crate effective? like will she stop crying at night? and how long will it take for her to get used to it?

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
841 Dog owners recommended

Hello Nina, A crate keeps a puppy safe during chewing phases - when pup spends a lot of time unsupervised while people sleep or leave during the day. A crate helps a puppy learn to self-sooth and self-entertain, which can prevent separation anxiety. It allows pup to get used to things like being kennels - which is important for travel, injury, illness, surgery, and other times pup needs to be calm. It can be used to teach pup to chew on their own chew toys - by crating pup during the day with a dog food stuffed chew toy. A crate makes potty training far easier and more effective. Many people feel bad about crate training, but the truth is that if used correctly a crate could prevent a lot of the bad behaviors that puppies are given up for each year. Once year or crating can mean 10+ years of more freedom because pup learns important things that make them more trustworthy as an adult. There will be crying with crate training, but the crying as a puppy typically only lasts a couple of weeks, with the majority of it lasting the first three days. This is a LOT easier than not crate training as a pup and discovering you need to later, and then trying to crate train an older dog. Pup is safe in the crate and the crying will not hurt her. Check out the Surprise method from the article linked below. https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate Be firm and don't give into the crying when you know it's just puppy adjusting to the crate, and they don't need to go potty. Pup needs to learn to self-sooth. If you let puppy out when she cries, it will just take her longer to adjust. Some puppies cry VERY loudly - louder isn't unusual, stay strong. Pup can do this. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Whistle
Beagle mix
5 Years
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Whistle
Beagle mix
5 Years

Whistle has recently started crying and whining at night to come in the house. He has a very comfortable recliner chair in the garage. He has a doggie heating pad under a blanket in his chair and it is quite comfortable there. He now wants to sleep in the bed at night with my husband. My husband gives in to him and brings him in the house. He has always slept in his own recliner in the garage. We found him when he was about a year old. What can we do to train him to sleep in his chair again?

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
841 Dog owners recommended

Hello Peggy, First, I suggest buying an inexpensive indoor/outdoor thermometer and putting the outdoor end in the garage somewhere near the chair to keep track of how cold the garage gets at night. The chair, blanket, and heating pad will certainly help with that but if the space is still really open around the chair then part of pup will still be cold. Imagine sitting on top of a blanket on a heating pad at a football game at night in 20-30 degree weather with only a long sleeve shirt on. You bottom half would be warm but if the blanket wasn't wrapped around you and you didn't have insulation in your upper half, you would still be very uncomfortable. Dog houses aren't usually very soft and ideal, but because they are small and normally made out of something insulating, pup's body heat can warm the room up all around like an igloo. If pup is getting cold at night, then finding a way to keep pup warm at night better should help him be more willing to sleep out there. Also, keep in mind that like people, dogs can feel more sensitive to the cold as they age if their bodies struggle to regulate temperature as well as it used to or they acquire something like arthritis that's aggravated by the cold. I am not a vet though so consult your vet about anything medical. Once you know or feel confident pup isn't cold, it's not surprising pup would rather be in your bed. It's where you are, it's warm, it's soft, and most dogs prefer to be there. Pup may have started the crying for a legitimate reason at first (which needs to be addressed if it's still an issue - like temperament), but when you husband let pup sleep in the room, pup will cry even while comfortable outside just because he prefers your room. I suggest dealing with this in three combined ways: 1. Address and temperature issues if they exist. 2. Practice pup staying in the garage for a bit during the day. Sprinkle treats onto the chair, and whenever you see pup get onto his chair, stop crying and stay quiet for at least five minutes, or generally relax while out there, go place a few treats by his paws, then leave again. Let pup out of the garage while he is being quiet at the end of the training session. 3. Having done the above things, teach pup the Quiet command. When pup cries, tell him Quiet. During the day when he gets quiet and stays quiet for at least five minutes, toss a few treats to him, then leave again (NO treats at night though - so practice during the day also). Quiet method for teaching the Quiet command: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bark When pup doesn't get quiet when you say quiet, and you know that he understands the command at that point, calmly tell him "Ah Ah" and spray a small puff of air at his side with a pet convincer, then leave again. During the day, each time he stays quiet, return and give treats. Each time he cries and doesn't stop when you say "Quiet", tell him "Ah Ah" calmly and correct with the spray. Do NOT spray him in the face and do NOT use citronella - only unscented air that won't linger. Citronella will be confusing and too harsh because it lingers too long, especially in the garage. At night, you will have already practiced some during the day, so pup should understand the new rules, so when he barks, if he doesn't stop when you tell him "Quiet", correct with the air at his side gently, then leave again after doing so. Repeat this each time he cries. Another option is to ignore the crying, and do the treats during the day, but that method only works if everyone in the house is willing to ignore the barking as long as needed and potentially loose a bit of sleep for a few days. Typically about three days of being consistent for most dogs, but it can be more or less. If pup has a history of aggression, I don't recommend using the pet convincer or any form of correction without the help of a professional. You could go the ignoring route though. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Ruckus
French Bulldog
6 Months
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Ruckus
French Bulldog
6 Months

Since we brought him home at 6 weeks old, he’s slept in a kennel by our bed. A month ago we went out of town and he stayed with friends and they let him sleep in the bed with them. He started crying in his kennel every night once we got back home. He cannot sleep in our bed or bedroom without his kennel bc of my 18 yr old cat who lives in my bedroom (she’s an unsociable weirdo). I’ve had to move him out of our room bc it’s been a month and we need sleep. I’ve since tried letting him sleep out of his kennel (on the couch) but still out of our bedroom. He sleeps for a few hours and then scratches and cries at our door. He doesn’t stop. I’ve tried waiting it out, but after about an hour, I get up and go to the couch with him so my boyfriend can get some sleep. This can’t continue. Please give me some advice. My pup is extremely spoiled and is always with me. I know he just wants to be with me and it’s breaking my heart.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
841 Dog owners recommended

Hello Amy, This will require a bit of firmness on your part, but you are right to continue crating him. Around 7-9 months he may hit another destructive chewing phase as his jaws develop and letting him sleep out of the crate this soon could be dangerous for him and your house. Practice crating him during the day. When he stays quiet, return, sprinkle a few treats into the crate, then leave again. When he cries, use a Pet Convincer, which is a small canister of unscented, pressurized air. Command quiet, and if he continues crying or stops but starts crying again, spray a small puff of air at his side, rib area (NOT face) through the crate wires while calmly saying "Ah Ah", then leave again. Repeat correcting whenever he cries and rewarding if he stays quiet for a few minutes each time. Gradually spread out the treats so that he has to stay quiet for longer and longer before receiving a reward - the goal is for him to be rewarded for staying quiet not just getting quiet in the long run. Practice this during the day, even during the evening for an hour is good, if you aren't home during the rest of the day. You can practice this several times during the day with breaks between if you are home all day to speed up the learning process. Only give treats while practicing during the day. No food at night. When he cries at night, tell pup Quiet. If pup gets quiet, great - no correction. If pup continues crying or starts crying soon again, correct with a puff of air through the crate, each time he cries. To teach pup what the Quiet command means, also practice the Quiet method from the article linked below. https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bark This is going to take some resolve on your part. Know that teaching independence and helping pup learn to cope with being alone can actually prevent strong separation anxiety issues later in life. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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bear
Labrador
1 Month
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bear
Labrador
1 Month

he’s not a very active dog, his mother (maltese) wasn’t feeding him so he looks a little malnourished. he sleeps all day and shows no interest in playing. some nights he can sleep by himself but he gets really loud when i leave him alone. he is also very sneaky and likes to bite a lot.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
841 Dog owners recommended

Hello Mariah, It sounds like he needs to be seen by a vet immediately. Sleeping too often and not drinking enough milk could mean he is either starving or dehydrated. A vet needs to be involved to find a suitable way to get nourishment into him immediately. I wouldn't worry about behavior issues until physical health is addressed. A pup will get very lethargic and eat even less and sleep even more as they decline - creating a vicious cycle that might need syringe feeding, iv fluids, or some other intervention. I am not a vet, so consult your vet right away. The biting is normal at this age - I wouldn't worry about that until health is addressed. Check back here later when he is healthier. The crying may also be hunger related right now - he very likely needs to be fed at some point during the night at this age if he isn't getting enough during the day. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Buddy
Pug
9 Months
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Question
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Buddy
Pug
9 Months

I want to crate train my puppy at night because he has started stratching door at night and he is staying with friends soon and I dont want him to damage their house in the night. I am working up time during the day (10-15mins and I sit outside it) Hes cries a bit but isnt too bad. But can I crate him overnight now? I keep reading that I should crate him at night and ignore crying until he is used to it. At the same time, I read that you have to work up the time and not leave him longer than he can cope?! Which is it?? Please help.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
841 Dog owners recommended

Hello Gill, How long have you been practicing crate training during the day for? If you have been practicing the crate with Buddy for five to seven days at least, then you should be fine crating him overnight. If he cries, ignore it unless you believe something is truly wrong with him. All the different advice can be confusing. Essentially, you want to avoid crating your puppy for long periods of time during the day before he is used to it because he will be awake most of the time during the day and has not yet learned how to cope with being in the crate by settling down, chewing on chew toys, and relaxing. You are helping him learn those things during the day by practicing. The daytime is a great time to practice because during the day you are awake to give him feedback when he is doing well, so that he will learn what he is supposed to do in the crate. At night he should go to sleep most of the time. The only time that he will have to self-sooth and self-entertain is when you first put him in the crate and if he wakes up at night and needs to put himself back to sleep. This drastically reduces the amount of time he needs to be used to being in the crate for. If he can be calm in the crate for thirty-minutes during the day, then he will probably do well overnight in it too. Continue working up to longer periods of time in the crate during the day to develop his skills there, but you should be fine crating him overnight in the meantime. When you crate him, put a chew toy in there with him so that he can self-sooth with that if he wakes up. Reward him initially for going into the crate without getting him too excited and give him a chew toy that will not keep him up all night but will give him something to do for a few minutes while he gets settled. After he is in, then turn off lights and make sure it is quiet and stays dark where he is so that his body will feel like going to sleep and staying asleep. Either work on getting him used to you walking out of the room while he is crated during the day or put the crate into your room at first to minimize his crying. This is because he is currently used to you being next to the crate and not leaving him. You can crate him in a different room at night right from the start too but that will be a more abrupt approach, and you can expect a few days of crying that way since he will have to learn to be alone suddenly instead of gradually. In the end it should work just fine but it can be hard to stay firm when he cries, and you need to stay firm and not let him out if you choose to crate him overnight. Crate training allows you to travel with your dog, for others to keep him, for you to keep him safe, to prevent destructive chewing habits, to speed up potty training, and when used properly, to prevent many cases of separation anxiety be teaching independence, self-soothing, and self-entertaining. Try to remember the benefits when it is hard to be consistent at times. Even though many puppies protest at some point, if you persist, then he will have more freedom due to his good habits later on. The crate is to keep him safe and eventually give him more freedom and trust. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Darcie
Beagle
8 Months
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Darcie
Beagle
8 Months

Our Beagle Darcie struggles to sleep at night unless she can see and get to us, she’s very good and will sleep in her own bed but unless it’s in the corridor close by to us she will pine and bark until she gets to us. She is quite the escape artist, will climb, jump over safety gates and dig her way out so we don’t know what to do any longer. We’ve tried soothing her, waiting until she falls asleep downstairs and then leaving her but she wakes on the hour. We have tried ignoring the pining and just watching her for safety via cameras and then she finds a way to jump over everything. She jumped out of a pen when she was 12 weeks old and gets worked up at the idea of a door being closed or crates since then. We also have trouble leaving her, she howls and sits at the window until we come back. This is becoming a problem as she’s destroying our dog walkers van when transported in the back and we worry about her emotional health as she’s getting so worked up.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
841 Dog owners recommended

Hello Georgia, First, work on teaching the Quiet command during the day using the Quiet method from the article linked below. https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bark Second, I definitely recommend crate training. During the day practice the Surprise method from the article linked below. Whenever pup stays quiet in the crate for 5 minutes, sprinkle some treats into the crate without opening it, then leave the room again. As she improves, only give the treats every 10 minutes, then 15 minutes, 20 minutes, 30 minutes, 45 minutes, 1 hour, 1.5 hour, 2, hour, 3 hour. Practice crating her during the day for 1-3 hours each day that you can. Whenever she cries in the crate, tell him "Quiet". If she gets quiet - Great! Sprinkle treats in after five minutes if she stays quiet. If she continues barking or stops and starts again, spray a quick puff of air from a pet convincer at her side through the crate while calmly saying "Ah Ah", then leave again. Only use unscented air canisters, DON'T use citronella! And avoid spraying in the face. surprise method: https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate Repeat the rewards when quiet and the corrections whenever she cries. Practice for a few days until she is doing well during the day. You can either continue what you are currently doing at night during this process. Once she is doing well during the day, crate her at night too. Or start crating at night right away while also working on the other training during the day. When she cries at night before it has been 8 hours, tell her Quiet, and correct with the pet convincer if she doesn't become quiet and stay quiet. Don't give treats at night though - proactively practice with treats during the day to help nights improve faster. Also, work on building her independence and her confidence in general by adding a lot of structure and predictability into her routine. Things such as making her work for rewards like meals, walks, and pets. Working on "Stay" and "Place," commands while you move away or leave the room, and teaching her to remain inside a crate when the door is open. Change your routine surrounding leaving so that she does not anticipate alone time and build up her anxiety before you leave - which is hard for her to deescalate from, and be sure to continue to give her something to do in the crate during the day (such as a dog food stuffed Kong to chew on). It an seem counter-intuitive, but anxious dogs often need more structure, not less. Place: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=omg5DVPWIWo Crate manners: https://thegooddog.net/training-videos/free-how-to-training-videos/learn-to-train-the-good-dog-way-the-crate/ Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Teddy
Pomeranian
4 Years
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Teddy
Pomeranian
4 Years

I have been letting Teddy sleep in my bed on and off for the past year. I can no longer have him in my room due to some medical issues that I am facing. However, now at night he just cries when I don't let him in my room. He cries on and off all night. I have tried the ignore the crying method but it does not work. I am not sure what to do at this point.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
841 Dog owners recommended

Hello Emerald, I suggest crate training pup and crating him in another room at night. First, work on teaching the Quiet command during the day using the Quiet method from the article linked below. https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bark Second, during the day practice the Surprise method from the article linked below. Whenever pup stays quiet in the crate for 5 minutes, sprinkle some treats into the crate without opening it, then leave the room again. As he improves, only give the treats every 10 minutes, then 15 minutes, 20 minutes, 30 minutes, 45 minutes, 1 hour, 1.5 hour, 2, hour, 3 hour. Practice crating him during the day for 1-3 hours each day that you can. Whenever he cries in the crate, tell him "Quiet". If he gets quiet - Great! Sprinkle treats in after five minutes if he stays quiet. If he continues barking or stops and starts again, spray a quick puff of air from a pet convincer at his side through the crate while calmly saying "Ah Ah", then leave again. Only use unscented air canisters, DON'T use citronella! And avoid spraying in the face. Surprise method: https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate Repeat the rewards when quiet and the corrections whenever he cries. Practice for a few days until he is doing well during the day. Crate him at night too. When he cries at night before it has been 8 hours, tell him Quiet, and correct with the pet convincer if he doesn't become quiet and stay quiet, but don't give treats during the day. It's important to practice this during the day with the treats also to help the nighttime training go faster, but you don't want to give the food during the night or be may wake in hopes of food at night. Another option is to teach him Quiet, and when he scratches on the door or barks at night, tell him Quiet or Leave It, then if he continues, open the door, spray a puff of air from the pet convincer at his side, then close the door again and go back to bed. This option risks him resorting to destructive chewing so starting with crate training may be easier - it will depend a lot on his temperament and your preference which method to use first. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Archie
Norfolk Terrier
8 Years
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Archie
Norfolk Terrier
8 Years

We are at our wits end!
Our dogs (Archie is the larger in the pic, Gwen is the smaller and is 6), sleep in our kitchen diner at night and when we are out during the day. Its a tiled floor so easy to clean if they are poorly (which has happened!)
Archie was crated until he was two, but when Gwen came along, they both went into beds in the kitchen. They have been going to bed no problem, until a few months ago.
On and off, Archie has started whining and scratching and rattling the doors after we have gone to bed, and throughout the night. We thought he had stopped, but a few weeks ago he started again and it has become unbearable.
The first time we stopped it by putting his harness and lead on him and tying it to the heavy table leg - you will probably say this was wrong but it was the only thing that stopped him pounding at the doors! And after a couple of nights he stopped so we let him off the lead.
We tried it again for the past couple of weeks but last night he chewed through his lead and has spent most of the night pounding at the doors again!
The vet has said its behavioural. We exercise him regularly and he toilets before bed.
Strangely when we stayed at my parents for 2 nights over xmas he didn’t do it and was fine for two nights when we got back but now its started again!
I tried them both in their travel crate the night before last but its got a mesh front and he was scratching at it like crazy so i had to let them out in case he got his claws stuck in it.
Last night was the final straw! I am back at work on monday and will need my sleep!
Any advice at all please, i am desperate!

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
841 Dog owners recommended

Hello Karen, Check out the Surprise method from the article I have linked below. Practice crating pups for 1-2 hours during the day while you are home but in a different area of the house. Spy on pup using a camera such as a smartphone or tablet with skype or video baby monitor or security camera. When pup is calm in the crate, return and sprinkle a few treats in the crate of the calm dog(s) then leave again. When pup cries or scratches on the crate, return and spray a small puff of air from a Pet Convincer at his side through the crate wires while calmly saying "Ah Ah", then leave again. Repeat rewards for calmness and corrections for noise and scratching. Surprise method: https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate Once pup understands the method a bit, crate at night and correct for noise and scratching - no treats at night. Only use unscented air canisters, NOT citronella, and don't spray in the face or open the crate to reward or correct if you can avoid it. If the pet convincer doesn't work for pup, I suggest hiring a trainer who is very familiar with stimulation based e-collars, who can help you find pup's "Working level" - which is the lowest level that a dog indicates they can feel a high quality e-collar at, and practicing the above training using an e-collar instead of the pet convincer so that you don't have to enter the room and give attention during the correction. Only use a high quality e-collar - which should have at least 60 different levels. Some brands such as e-collar technologies, Sportdog, Dogtra, and Garmin have safer collars. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Toby
Jack Russell Terrier
9 Months
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Toby
Jack Russell Terrier
9 Months

For the last 3 weeks Toby cries and whines when put in his pen at bed time. He usually stops after half to 3/4hr.
Any suggestions as to how to stop him crying. He sounds so pitiful.
Please help. Thankyou.

Darlene Stott
Darlene Stott
Dog Trainer and Groomer
104 Dog owners recommended

Very cute picture of Toby! It is hard to listen to them cry, I know. What you can do is to put Toby in the pen doing the day for short intervals. Give him a kong toy stuffed with softened kibble and a smear of peanut butter (read the label to ensure there is no xylitol - it's highly toxic to dogs!). Freeze the kong so it takes Toby longer to get through it. Each day when you put Toby in the pen with the kong, stretch the time a little longer. He should get accustomed to being there and may stop the crying at night. You can also try dog appeasing pheromones. This is a scent emitted by a diffuser and has a calming effect (find it at the pet supply store). He is doing well, I know it is hard to hear him cry. He should get over it soon! All the best!

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Apolo
French Bulldog
2 Years
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Question
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Apolo
French Bulldog
2 Years

Hello there!I'm having a issue with my 2 year old french bulldog,when he gre older,he never cried when going to bed,but suddenly,he recently started crying after midnight and we don't know what to do.If we go see him to make him stop,he does a huge party,happy to see us,but if we leave he crys again.He's well feed,has water next to him,he's bed is comfortable,we live in a Brazil but it's not hot for him because his area is ventilated,we walk him twice a day and give him attention.Right now it's holidays for my family,but the issue will be when school starts,he left us completely exhausted and at this point we need some advice.If someone responds i say thank you in advance

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
841 Dog owners recommended

Hello Anna, First, is there something that's waking him at that time or woke him up for a couple of nights at that time before - and now he has gotten into the habit of waking. First, make sure there isn't a noise happening at that time that you may not notice that is waking him. If the waking seems to be habit now, I suggest either ignoring it for a week - knowing he doesn't need anything but just has gotten into the habit of wanting attention then (which is more tiring but gentler). OR during the day, work on teaching pup the Quiet command: Quiet method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bark At night when he cries, without going into the room - tell him Quiet calmly where he can hear you. If he gets quiet - great! Go back to bed. Don't reward or give extra attention for it at night. If he continues or stops but starts again (which he probably will at first), go to him, calmly tell him "Ah Ah" and spray a small, unscented puff of air from a Pet Convincer at his side (NOT face), then go back to bed. Repeat the corrections each time he starts barking, so long as it has been less than 8 hours since he last went potty so you know that's not the issue. Before you do any of this, do make sure there isn't an alarm, garbage truck, odd beeping sound, or something else going off at midnight where he is though. Be sure to only use unscented air with the Pet convincer. Don't use citronella - it lingers too long and is too harsh. Example of Pet Convincer: https://www.amazon.com/PRO-EQUIPMENT-Pet-Convincer-Training/dp/B00JL16HSS/ref=pd_sbs_199_t_0/135-5642797-2749624?_encoding=UTF8&pd_rd_i=B00JL16HSS&pd_rd_r=96218f98-555f-425e-8916-2be960470821&pd_rd_w=f8BOP&pd_rd_wg=7yQTe&pf_rd_p=5cfcfe89-300f-47d2-b1ad-a4e27203a02a&pf_rd_r=W4WJGFDX59BXZGMAT7YN&psc=1&refRID=W4WJGFDX59BXZGMAT7YN Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Max
Whippet
24 Months
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Max
Whippet
24 Months

Started cry at night we have full time jobs and he keeps kids awake too

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
841 Dog owners recommended

Hello Tam, First, work on teaching the Quiet command during the day using the Quiet method from the article linked below. https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bark Second, during the day practice the Surprise method from the article linked below. Whenever pup stays quiet in the crate for 5 minutes, sprinkle some treats into the crate without opening it, then leave the room again. As he improves, only give the treats every 10 minutes, then 15 minutes, 20 minutes, 30 minutes, 45 minutes, 1 hour, 1.5 hour, 2, hour, 3 hour. Practice crating him during the day for 1-3 hours each day that you can. If you are home during the day, have lots of 30 minute - 1 hour long sessions with breaks between to practice this, to help pup learn sooner. Whenever he cries in the crate, tell him "Quiet". If he gets quiet - Great! Sprinkle treats in after five minutes if he stays quiet. If he continues barking or stops and starts again, spray a quick puff of air from a pet convincer at his side through the crate while calmly saying "Ah Ah", then leave again. Only use unscented air canisters, DON'T use citronella! And avoid spraying in the face. Surprise method: https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate Repeat the rewards when quiet and the corrections whenever he cries. Practice for a few days until he is doing well during the day. You can either continue what you are currently doing at night during this process or go ahead and jump into what I explain below for night time training - waiting until the day is good before starting the night or starting the night and day both at the same time. When he cries at night (in the crate - where he needs to be sleeping for now) before it has been 8 hours (so you know it's not a potty issue), tell him Quiet, and correct with the pet convincer if he doesn't become quiet and stay quiet. If you go straight to nights and days like this you will probably have about 3 rough nights, with lots of correcting before he gets quiet - don't give in and let him out or this will take much longer! But the overall process will go faster starting nights at the same time if you can stay strong. If you practice the daytime routine first, the nighttime routine once pup understands the new rules, the night should go easier when you do make the transition. Either way you need to stay very consistent for this to work - expect pup to protest and for you to have to correct a lot. You may want to pretend like you are all going to bed two hours early and read in bed with the lights off - anticipating having to get up a lot the first couple of hours to correct - so that you don't loose as much sleep. Choose whichever option seems less stressful for you ultimately and is something you can stick to. Sleep for both you and pup are important. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Leo
Cockalier
3 Months
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Leo
Cockalier
3 Months

Our dog is great throughout the day! But at night he turns into a demon dog! Racing around chewing up things and refusing to get into his crate - once in his crate he chews the bars and cries / barks constantly! We can’t just ignore him as we live in a flat and will get noise complaints - help!

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
841 Dog owners recommended

Hello Rossie, What you are describing is often referred to as the puppy zommies. They are completely normal. It tends to happen most when pups are either overtired or haven't been mentally stimulated enough during the day. Practicing commands that require a bit of concentration, like Place, Down, Sit Stay, Heel, ect...Can help stimulate pup mentally. For the biting, check out the Leave It method from the article linked below. Work on teaching Leave It while pup is calm during another part of the day, so that you can use Leave It as needed later once pup has worked up to being able to do it even when excited. https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bite Use things like dog food stuffed Kongs and puzzle toys to let pup work for their dinner at night too - or have pup work for the kibble as training treats in an early evening training session some times also. For the barking, work on teaching the Quiet command during the day using the Quiet method from the article linked below. https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bark Second, during the day practice the Surprise method from the article linked below. Whenever pup stays quiet in the crate for 5 minutes, sprinkle some treats into the crate without opening it, then leave the room again. As he improves, only give the treats every 10 minutes, then 15 minutes, 20 minutes, 30 minutes, 45 minutes, 1 hour, 1.5 hour, and 2 hours. Practice crating him during the day for up to an hour, 1-3 hours each day that you can. If you are home during the day, have lots of 30 minute - 1 hour long sessions with breaks between to practice this, to help pup learn sooner. Whenever he cries in the crate, tell him "Quiet". If he gets quiet - Great! Sprinkle treats in after five minutes if he stays quiet. If he continues barking or stops and starts again, spray a quick puff of air from a pet convincer at his side through the crate while calmly saying "Ah Ah", then leave again. Only use unscented air canisters, DON'T use citronella! And avoid spraying in the face. Surprise method: https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate Repeat the rewards when quiet and the corrections whenever he cries. When he cries at night (in the crate - where he needs to be sleeping for now) before it has been 2 hours (so you know it's not a potty issue), tell him Quiet, and correct with the pet convincer if he doesn't become quiet and stay quiet. Don't give treats after bed, but do be sure to practice crating with treats during the day to help nights go smoother. Do be sure to stimulate pup mentally in the early evening to help him calm down for sleep later also. Be ready to spot over-tiredness and encourage quiet space chewing on a dog food stuffed chew toy when that begins, before pup is too overtired and wound up, if under-stimulation isn't the issue. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Nellie
Pomsky
10 Weeks
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Nellie
Pomsky
10 Weeks

Hi there ! So we’ve had Nellie, our Pomsky for just over two weeks now. Originally we were doing crate training, making sure she went to the toilet before bed and had water, toys etc - everything by the book. However, she got so distressed and cried so much, I went to just peek in and check and she had soiled all over - and I mean ALL over her crate . I cleaned it up, calmed her down and put her back in. The exact same thing happened an Hour later . This carried on for 4 nights before we decided it was too much stress for both her and us. We gave Nellie a smaller space with the crate in our kitchen, which worked for a few nights however 2 weeks in and she’s now freaking out and poo’ing in her defined space . She’s potty trained in the day, really settled and a happy pup. I don’t know if it’s because she’s rarely left on her own throughout the day that this is a sign or separation anxiety , I can’t think of anything else it would be !
Thanks in advance
Charlotte

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
841 Dog owners recommended

Hello Charlotte, First, I would make sure that there isn't something medical going on - such as needing to be de-wormed again, causing diarrhea. Second, make sure she is being taken potty often enough - since this is happening after only an hour, that's likely not the issue with the crate, but could contribute to the accidents in the kitchen. At this age, she might be fearful in the crate but it's likely not true separation anxiety yet - puppies aren't used to being in a confined space and the first couple of weeks many of them are convinced they will never get out of the crate, so they may panic. Time in the crate and seeing that you do in fact always return, nothing traumatic happens to them while they are in there, and it's only temporary usually result in puppies adjusting and learning to be calmer in the crate and rest there after a couple of weeks. I wouldn't give up on crate training just yet. Crate Training can actually prevent true separation anxiety later in life if done well. Instead, to make this process easier for her if it is fear, I suggest following the Surprise method from the article linked below to help her learn how to cope with being in the crate more calmly. Be sure to rule out any medical conditions that would cause diarrhea too though - or this won't be effective no matter how you train. If it is a medical condition, it would likely result in her pooping often during the day frequently too - such as more than 4 times a day, but I am not a Vet and not qualified to give medical advice so I suggest consulting your Veterinarian. Surprise method: https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate Since you are home often during the day, once she is crate trained, I suggest having intentional times where she practices being in the crate for a bit away from you during the day, to teach her how to handle independence now in order to prevent adult separation anxiety later. A frozen dog food stuffed Kong is a great thing to give a puppy in a crate or exercise pen to help them pass the time. If you absolutely cannot use the crate, you will need to have her sleep in an exercise pen and teach her to use a disposable real grass pad to go potty on during the night. If you plan to teach her to go potty only outside, this is less ideal for potty training than crate training, but there are ways to decrease the amount of confusion an indoor potty can create. First, set up the exercise pen in a room that can be closed off later - since she will essentially be learning that it is okay to go potty in that room. When she is old enough to hold it through the night, you will remove the exercise pen, have her sleep elsewhere, and close off entrance into that room so that she doesn't continue going there to go potty. Second, use a disposable real grass pad and not a pee pad. A pee pad is made out of fabric and dogs are far more likely to confuse them with carpet, rugs, shirts, and other household items - especially when you try to remove pee pads later. A real grass pad is also disposable, although used for several days instead of one time, but is more consistent with pottying outside and less similar to other things found in your home. Real Grass Pad brands - also found on Amazon: www.freshpatch.com www.doggielawn.com www.porchpotty.com Third, to teach her to use the grass pad inside the exercise pen follow the Exercise Pen method from the article linked below. The difference in what you will do and the article's instructions is that you will use a grass pad instead of a litter box like the method describes, and if your goal is outside potty training in the long run, you will set up the exercise pen in the room that can be closed off and you won't phase out the exercise pen - like the method describes. Instead, it will only be used for times when you cannot supervise pup, like nights or when you leave your house, ect...Eventually, when pup is fully potty trained and not chewing anymore while in the rest of the house, you will just close off that room and stop using the exercise pen and grass pads altogether. Exercise Pen method: https://wagwalking.com/training/litter-box-train-a-chihuahua-puppy Finally, if you do end up needing to use the exercise pen instead of crate training, check out the Tethering and Timing methods from the article linked below for how to potty train during the day. It sounds like what you are doing during the day is working now - which is likely similar to the Timing method, if so, feel free to continue that. If you are struggling or things get harder, the Tethering method from the article below is what I suggest. https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-german-shepherd-puppy-to-poop-outside Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Willow
Whippet Staffy Cross
18 Months
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Willow
Whippet Staffy Cross
18 Months

She is a rescue with no previous training. She is doing great with house training and sit stay etc. However, she keep jumping on the table and her crate. We say off and usher her down but it is not improving. Any tips?

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
841 Dog owners recommended

Hello Teresa, If pup knows off well and that is not working, I suggest setting up something that pup will associate with those surfaces instead of with you - that will surprise pup and teach them not to jump up, even if you are not there. A Scat Mat is one such device designed to make jumping unpleasant for pup. When pup jumps up and touches the mat, they feel static electricity and it's unpleasant. Another option is to set up "Snap Traps" (which looks like mouse traps but they don't close on the dog, just make noise and jump up to startle). Set up some Snap Traps carefully under a lightweight table cloth, set something interesting on the table out of pup's reach that they will want to jump up to investigate, and pretend to leave the room. Peak at pup from behind a corner. As soon as pup jumps up, gets surprised by the devices and gets down when surprised, walk back in and remove the temptation on the table so that pup doesn't get rewarded by finally accessing the thing they were curious about. Set up this booby trap in different ways, at different times often, until pup has been corrected enough times that they decide on their own that jumping up isn't worth it to them anymore. Change out the type of temptation on the table - such as papers, socks, toys, people food, ect.. To show pup they they are corrected each time they jump up no matter what's on the table. It's very important during this process to also prevent pup from jumping up and not being corrected when the device isn't set up. That means that right now while in this training process, while free, pup should be attached to you with a leash, so that you can enforce Off consistently, teach manners, and enforce boundaries. When you can't tether pup to yourself - crate pup with a dog food stuffed durable chew toy. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Madonna
Olde Engligh Bulldog
3 Years
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Madonna
Olde Engligh Bulldog
3 Years

Madonna came to us about 9 months ago via my adult daughter. We primarily took care of her since she got her at 8 weeks old anyway, our home and we are very familiar to her. After some urinary issues we found out she has underdeveloped kidneys. We learned all about CKF and manage this very well,we see the vet regularly. Madonna has no signs of any CKF at this time. She is very strong, active an healthy. However, my daughter and Madonna always slept together; specifically Madonna insists on being between your legs with her head at your ankles and body between your legs. If she is not in this space she will paw at the covers and me until she gets there. We have another dog who is crate trained and does very well.The dogs love each other and play and frequently lay together during family time. Problem: we do not want to sleep with Madonna. I have tried to put her at the end of the bed or the side of the bed. Even then she will not stay there longer than 1 minute. She is also big: 55 pounds of love. She insists on being between legs, then if I move at night, she will paw and nudge my body back into the back sleeping position until she can get her preferred position again.There is no way any place on the bed will work. She keeps us up all night, she also stretches herself off the bottom of the bed and comes back around from the side by head about 4 times a night. We tried to crate her at night. She does goes in her crate to nap on her own sometimes. We have an electric blanket for her, and pillows on the sides to simulate her preferred position. We have tried the crate at night in our room next to us and she cried all nights and then in 2 other rooms. She cried and barked all night. This went on for 3 weeks and we gave up, we are so tired! We did wear earplugs but she is a loud barker and the crying is loud too. Our other dog is in a crate in our room and sleeps all night and loves her crate. We thought Madonna would see this as a good example but she does not. What do we do??

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
841 Dog owners recommended

Hello, First, work on teaching the Quiet command during the day using the Quiet method from the article linked below. https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bark Second, during the day practice the Surprise method from the article linked below. Whenever pup stays quiet in the crate for 5 minutes, sprinkle some treats into the crate without opening it, then leave the room again. As she improves, only give the treats every 10 minutes, then 15 minutes, 20 minutes, 30 minutes, 45 minutes, 1 hour, 1.5 hour, 2, hour, 3 hour. Practice crating her during the day for 1-3 hours each day that you can. Whenever she cries in the crate, tell him "Quiet". If she gets quiet - Great! Sprinkle treats in after five minutes if she stays quiet. If she continues barking or stops and starts again, spray a quick puff of air from a pet convincer at her side through the crate while calmly saying "Ah Ah", then leave again. Only use unscented air canisters, DON'T use citronella! And avoid spraying in the face. surprise method: https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate Repeat the rewards when quiet and the corrections whenever she cries. Practice for a few days until she is doing well during the day. Continue what you are currently doing at night during this process. Once she is doing well during the day, crate her at night too. When she cries at night before it has been 8 hours, tell her Quiet, and correct with the pet convincer if she doesn't become quiet and stay quiet. I also want to encourage you not to feel bad about being a bit firm with this area of training. Sleep is crucial to health and she shouldn't be allowed to keep you up all night. Some temporary firmness can offer years of better sleep for all involved. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Nala
French Bulldog
12 Weeks
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Nala
French Bulldog
12 Weeks

Hi
We have had nala for 4 weeks. We started with a crate in lounge and slept on sofa, we then moved crate to dining room. We would be up about every 3 hrs as bladder small, after about 2 weeks we decided we would sleep upstairs but since doing this we have had constant barking. We know it’s only for attention so we do leave but Things are not improving. What can we do to stop this ??

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
841 Dog owners recommended

Hello Linzi, First, if pup is barking before it's been 3 hours and is otherwise healthy, then you can feel confident that it's likely not a potty need. If pup is waking up after sleeping well for 3-4 hours and barking - pup probably really does need to be taken potty. If this has been going on for less than 2 weeks, pup may just need time - with you consistently ignoring the barking at non-potty times all the time, for them to learn how to be by themselves. If this has been going on for longer than 2 weeks or you cannot allow pup to time to adjust due to neighbor complaints, young kids, ect...I suggest the following. First, work on teaching the Quiet command during the day using the Quiet method from the article linked below. https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bark Second, during the day practice the Surprise method from the article linked below. Whenever pup stays quiet in the crate for 5 minutes, sprinkle some treats into the crate without opening it, then leave the room again. As she improves, only give the treats every 10 minutes, then 15 minutes, 20 minutes, 30 minutes, 45 minutes, 1 hour, 1.5 hour, 2, hour, 3 hour. Practice crating her during the day for 1-3 hours each day that you can. Whenever she cries in the crate, tell him "Quiet". If she gets quiet - Great! Sprinkle treats in after five minutes if she stays quiet. If she continues barking or stops and starts again, spray a quick puff of air from a pet convincer at her side through the crate while calmly saying "Ah Ah", then leave again. Only use unscented air canisters, DON'T use citronella! And avoid spraying in the face. Surprise method: https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate Repeat the rewards when quiet and the corrections whenever she cries. Practice for a few days until she is doing well during the day. Continue what you are currently doing at night during this process. Once she is doing well during the day, crate her at night too. When she cries at night before it has been 8 hours, tell her Quiet, and correct with the pet convincer if she doesn't become quiet and stay quiet. Whether you end up needing to use the Pet Convincer or not, you can go ahead and teach the Quiet method and work on the Surprise method on it's own during the day - those things even without the corrections can help. If pup is barking for more than 2 weeks, you will likely need corrections also. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Kumo
Japanese Spitz
8 Weeks
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Kumo
Japanese Spitz
8 Weeks

Hello! My puppy is newly separated from the litter. How do I stop him from releasing waste in the bedroom at night? How do I stop him from whining and crying at night as well?

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Alma
Romanian Mioritic Sheep Dog
4 Months
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Alma
Romanian Mioritic Sheep Dog
4 Months

I've got my lovely dog 3 days ago and as she used to sleep outdoors before, I tried to let her sleep outdoors, in her kennel. She sleeps for a few hours and around 2,3AM she starts whining. I know it's a new environment and she needs maybe a week or two to settle, but my neighbours were disturbed by the noise as they sleep with the window open. It seems like she gets scared of different noises out there and she wants to get inside. I tried to take her out for exercise so she can sleep well at night, however, she is not used to the lead and again she gets scared very easily. She used to be in a yard with various animals around.
Any tips for me? I want to have my dog comfortable, especially because she is an outdoors dog, but at the same time I don't want to disturb my neighbours 😥
Thank you in advance for your help!

Darlene Stott
Darlene Stott
Dog Trainer and Groomer
104 Dog owners recommended

Alma is still young and no doubt she is afraid outside at night. Can you get a dog crate for her to sleep inside at night? I am an advocate for having dogs inside where they feel safe and comfortable to sleep no matter what the age. I don't see a problem with allowing it and I think that this will help her to have a nice bond with you. If you still decide you want her outside I think you (and the neighbors) will have to work through the next few weeks and see how it goes. There are a few tips to try to help Alma like the kennel here: https://wagwalking.com/training/accept-a-kennel, but I am not convinced they will help with the night time fears. As for the leash: https://wagwalking.com/training/leash-train-a-german-shepherd-puppy and https://wagwalking.com/training/leash-train-a-great-pyrenees. As well, https://wagwalking.com/training/accept-a-leash Good luck!

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Petey
American Staffordshire Terrier
7 Years
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Petey
American Staffordshire Terrier
7 Years

I adopted Petey almost 3 months ago. I started crate training from the first day - he seemed to do okay. At night, he did not ever cry. Last weekend, he was not feeling well (an infection, we've seen the vet and he is on antibiotics). That first night, he cried and banged on the door of the crate. I got up and let him out (he doesn't normally have to go out at night) and continued to do every time. But by the 5th time, I caved and slept on the couch with him. Now, every night, he cries in his crate and bangs on the door. I know, I created this, but how do I stop it now? Just ignoring it does not seem to help. He did not show any signs of separation anxiety before getting sick, he is now acting like he feels better - except at night.

Darlene Stott
Darlene Stott
Dog Trainer and Groomer
104 Dog owners recommended

Hello, has Petey had a follow-up appointment to the infection yet? That would be my first step. Yes, this may be a hard habit to break and ignoring it may be the only choice - for a few weeks. Is his crate in your room? Is the crate a welcoming space? You may need to crate train him all over again. This guide has great suggestions: https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate (Surprise Method may help) and as well, https://wagwalking.com/training/stop-barking-in-his-crate. You can try dog appeasing pheromones which work well to calm an anxious dog. It's like a diffuser that emits a scent near the crate. Good luck!

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Tiggy
Shih Tzu
6 Years
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Tiggy
Shih Tzu
6 Years

We used to let her sleep with us. My husband did not want to do that anymore because she scratches his back..
We set up a dog bed under our bed on my side for her. Shes good till about 2 hours before i wake up ( i wake up at 2am). She starts whining and ive tried with (stop it) and hit side of bed and of course that does not work but for maybe 5-10 minutes. I end up sleeping alot in the living room because my husband also gets up early for work. Im so frustrated and sleepy i dont know what to do..PLEASE HELP ME!!

Darlene Stott
Darlene Stott
Dog Trainer and Groomer
104 Dog owners recommended

Hello, if Tiggy has been sleeping with you since you got her, it will take time to change this. The fact that she is doing well for part of the night means that she should learn eventually. Maybe she would prefer to be in her dog bed beside the bed where she can see you, as opposed to under the bed. Another option is to get her a crate that you can put a blanket over (two sides only - NOT all 4 sides). Have some white noise in the room, too, like a fan. She does not have to be crated with the door shut but she can have the crate as a "den" area - many dogs feel safe and content when in a crate. Here is a guide on introducing the crate: https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate, Make sure that Tiggy is well-exercised before bed and has a potty break last thing before sleep time. Good luck!

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Miller
Basset Hound
8 Weeks
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Miller
Basset Hound
8 Weeks

Hi, my little boy miller is 8weeks and I can’t tell if he’s doing okay with crate training but then again I feel like he is, he will nap periodically a all day, but when it gets close to his bed time and he falls asleep like for example in the living room I pick him up and put him in his kennel but at night he When he cries I take him for his potty break and then I praise him and put him back in his kennel and he cries for about 10 min at most and then understands that it’s not play time and falls asleep the rest of the night, I’m just wondering if that’s normal for a puppy that’s 8 weeks old?

Darlene Stott
Darlene Stott
Dog Trainer and Groomer
104 Dog owners recommended

Adorable picture! Miller is doing amazing - I am sure every pet parent wishes their pup was so good. The fact that after a nighttime potty break he settles in just 10 minutes is wonderful. You are doing everything right and Miller is doing a super job for his age. Enjoy!

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Bertie
Springer spaniel
8 Years
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Bertie
Springer spaniel
8 Years

Bertie is scared of bad weather, wind, thunder and cries and barks at night when he experiences it. Neighbours had a new baby and we didn’t want Berties crying to disturb the little sleep they were getting so brought him and his. bed upstairs to sleep in our room. This became a habit and now he cries if he can’t come up day or night if someone is upstairs. How do we break this habit with a rather naturally anxious dog.
Thanks

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
841 Dog owners recommended

Hello Sarah, First, work on teaching the Quiet command during the day using the Quiet method from the article linked below. https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bark Second, during the day practice the Surprise method from the article linked below. Whenever pup stays quiet in the crate for 5 minutes, sprinkle some treats into the crate without opening it, then leave the room again. As he improves, only give the treats every 10 minutes, then 15 minutes, 20 minutes, 30 minutes, 45 minutes, 1 hour, 1.5 hour, 2, hour, 3 hour. Practice crating him during the day for 1-3 hours each day that you can. If you are home during the day, have lots of 30 minute - 1 hour long sessions with breaks between to practice this, to help pup learn sooner. Whenever he cries in the crate, tell him "Quiet". If he gets quiet - Great! Sprinkle treats in after five minutes if he stays quiet. If he continues barking or stops and starts again, spray a quick puff of air from a pet convincer at his side through the crate while calmly saying "Ah Ah", then leave again. Only use unscented air canisters, DON'T use citronella! And avoid spraying in the face. Surprise method: https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate Repeat the rewards when quiet and the corrections whenever he cries. Practice for a few days until he is doing well during the day. You can either continue what you are currently doing at night during this process or go ahead and jump into what I explain below for night time training - waiting until the day is good before starting the night or starting the night and day both at the same time. When he cries at night (in the crate - where he needs to be sleeping for now) before it has been 8 hours (so you know it's not a potty issue), tell him Quiet, and correct with the pet convincer if he doesn't become quiet and stay quiet. If you go straight to nights and days like this you will probably have about 3 rough nights, with lots of correcting before he gets quiet - don't give in and let him out or this will take much longer! But the overall process will go faster if you can stay strong. If you practice the daytime routine first while pup sleeps in your room for a few more days, then start the nighttime routine once pup understands the new rules, the night should go easier when you do make the transition. Either way you need to stay very consistent for this to work - expect pup to protest and for you to have to correct a lot at first. You may want to pretend like you are all going to bed two hours early and read in bed with the lights off - anticipating having to get up a lot the first couple of hours to correct - so that you don't loose as much sleep. Choose whichever option seems less stressful for you ultimately and is something you can stick to. Anxious dogs do benefit from structure and consistency, especially if you remain calm and consistent while doing the above. Follow the steps so that pup will understand what's expected clearly and be able to make choices. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Sky
Half Chow Chow Half aspin with Japanese spit
1 Month
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Sky
Half Chow Chow Half aspin with Japanese spit
1 Month

My puppy keeps on crying and barking because he smell his mom. His mom is near to us, his mother’s house is like 5 blocks/house away I don’t really know what to do.I want to know how to unrecognized his mother’s smell, please! help me.

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Wolfie
Jack Russell
11 Years
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Wolfie
Jack Russell
11 Years

My dog is quite old and has some health problems; he has bad skin that is being treated and problems with his joints. The joint problems make it hard for him to walk so he can’t always get exercise but he does get small walks daily. He has always had a problems with sleeping and has always barked or whined once or twice throughout the night. However now it has gotten worse, now he won’t got to sleep some nights unless someone is with him and other times he barks or cry’s continually at early hours in the morning which stops the moments of the house and neighbours up at night.
How do i stop him from crying and barking at night? and what is making him bark and cry?

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Lewis
German Shepherd
8 Weeks
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Lewis
German Shepherd
8 Weeks

Hi, I’ve now had my puppy for 2 nights and I am struggling with him at night times. I looked into everything I needed to know before getting a puppy and was aware this was going to happen. The first night I sleep downstairs on the sofa and let him outside every couple of hours and there was continuous crying. However, the next night I wore him out before bed and from 9-12 he appeared to be fine. The following 12-4am was a lot worse however I did not respond to him until 4:30am where I let him out for the toilet and went back to bed. Is this the right thing to do? If you could let me know that would be great, Thankyou

Darlene Stott
Darlene Stott
Dog Trainer and Groomer
104 Dog owners recommended

Hello, yes, it is perfectly fine - and essential to let Lewis out for a pee break or two in the middle of the night. His bladder is pretty small! Take him out, no talking, no treats, just a pee break, and straight back to bed. If you want to sleep in your room as opposed to on the sofa, you can begin your crate training with Lewis in your room (this may help him to be calmer and cry less at night). Then, once he is used to his new home and not crying, you can gradually inch the crate out of the room - just a little bit per night until his crate is in the old location. There are great tips in the Alternative Comfort Method here: https://wagwalking.com/training/not-cry-at-night Good luck!

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Liska
Beaglemix
7 Years
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Liska
Beaglemix
7 Years

What can we do. We adopted Liska when she was two years old she was a rescue. For the last five years we have tried everything to stop her from constantly moaning. She will wake us up at multiple times at night to go out just to walk around aimlessly. She will walk to the door and just stand there and not do anything. She has food and water and a very comfy bed. During the day she will follow you around moaning if you try have a conversation with someone in the house she will moaning until we just give up and stop talking. You can't talk on the phone without having to leave the room she is in. Taking her for walks is horrible, she will moans all the way. It is just constant The vet gave her different sedatives and anxiety medication, nothing works. This is leading to tremendous stress in the house.

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Gus
French Bulldog
9 Weeks
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Gus
French Bulldog
9 Weeks

Im currently crate training my dog to sleep in his crate at night. I have his crate next to my bed and if he whines I put my hand next to the crate so he can have my scent, and he usually falls asleep. If I ignore him, he will eventually stop whining, but I have people in the rooms next to me, and the walls are very thin. If they hear him, they may be angered (I live with these people this is not an apartment.) he will usually wake up in the middle
If the night whining, and I usually take him out to pee but sometimes he doesn’t have to, it’s just to let him out. I come back to the room and set him down in front of his crate but he won’t go in. These are just a few of the problems

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Fenti
Morkie
7 Months
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Fenti
Morkie
7 Months

She naps in her crate sometimes during the day or when she doesn’t want to be around our other pet. She has slept in the crate all night a few times but it seems to be only when she wants to do it. Any other night she whines, so we fault in to letting her out. This always end up with her using the bathroom in the kitchen when we’re asleep.

Alisha Smith
Alisha S., Dog Trainer
227 Dog owners recommended

Hi there! This is likely due to her age and it will subside with a little more time. Usually by this age, they become much more secure with their surroundings and schedule. She is also a toy breed and their bladders aren't as large as other breeds. So in the mean time, I will give you some tips about crate training. Some of it, you may know already, and some of it may sound remedial. But the key with crate training at a young age, is patience. First off, the crate should be large enough that your pup can stand up, turn around, and lie down comfortably. You don’t want one that’s too big, however, because the cozy size helps create a safe feeling for your dog as they are natural den animals. Also remember that until she is about a year old, she may only be able to hold her bladder for 6 hours. That is after the last potty break, and no new intake of water. Also, dogs usually have to eliminate their bowels about 20 minutes after eating solid food. Those tips will help you figure out a schedule to begin the crate training. Below are some tips to get started: Step 1: Introduce your dog to the crate Place the crate in an area of your house where the family spends a lot of time, such as the family room. Put a soft blanket or towel in the crate. Take the door off and let the dog explore the crate at their leisure. Some dogs will be naturally curious and start sleeping in the crate right away. If yours isn't one of them: Bring them over to the crate and talk to them in a happy tone of voice. Make sure the crate door is open and secured so that it won't hit your dog and frighten them. Encourage your dog to enter the crate by dropping some small food treats nearby, then just inside the door, and finally, all the way inside the crate. If they refuse to go all the way in at first, that's OK; don't force them to enter. Continue tossing treats into the crate until your dog will walk calmly all the way into the crate to get the food. If they aren’t interested in treats, try tossing a favorite toy in the crate. This step may take a few minutes or as long as several days. Step 2: Feed your dog meals in the crate After introducing your dog to the crate, begin feeding them their regular meals near the crate. This will create a pleasant association with the crate. If your dog is readily entering the crate when you begin Step 2, place the food dish all the way at the back of the crate. If they remain reluctant to enter, put the dish only as far inside as they will readily go without becoming fearful or anxious. Each time you feed them, place the dish a little further back in the crate. Once your dog is standing comfortably in the crate to eat their meal, you can close the door while they’re eating. The first time you do this, open the door as soon as they finish their meal. With each successive feeding, leave the door closed a few minutes longer, until they’re staying in the crate for 10 minutes or so after eating. If they begin to whine to be let out, you may have increased the length of time too quickly. Next time, try leaving them in the crate for a shorter time period. If they do whine or cry in the crate, don’t let them out until they stop. Otherwise, they'll learn that the way to get out of the crate is to whine, so they'll keep doing it. Step 3: Practice with longer crating periods After your dog is eating their regular meals in the crate with no sign of fear or anxiety, you can confine them there for short time periods while you're home. Call them over to the crate and give them a treat. Give them a command to enter, such as "crate." Encourage them by pointing to the inside of the crate with a treat in your hand. After your dog enters the crate, praise them, give them the treat and close the door. Sit quietly near the crate for five to 10 minutes and then go into another room for a few minutes. Return, sit quietly again for a short time and then let them out. Repeat this process several times a day, gradually increasing the length of time you leave them in the crate and the length of time you're out of sight. Once your dog will stay quietly in the crate for about 30 minutes with you mostly out of sight, you can begin leaving them crated when you're gone for short time periods and/or letting them sleep there at night. This may take several days or weeks. Step 4, Part A: Crate your dog when you leave After your dog can spend about 30 minutes in the crate without becoming anxious or afraid, you can begin leaving them crated for short periods when you leave the house. Put them in the crate using your regular command and a treat. You might also want to leave them with a few safe toys in the crate. Vary the moment during your "getting ready to leave" routine that you put your dog in the crate. Although they shouldn't be crated for a long time before you leave, you can crate them anywhere from five to 20 minutes prior to leaving. Don't make your departures emotional and prolonged—they should be matter-of-fact. Praise your dog briefly, give them a treat for entering the crate and then leave quietly. When you return home, don't reward your dog for excited behavior by responding to them in an enthusiastic way. Keep arrivals low-key to avoid increasing their anxiety over when you will return. Continue to crate your dog for short periods from time to time when you're home so they doesn't associate crating with being left alone. All of these tips can be modified to fit your dynamic. Please let me know if you have additional questions. Thanks for writing in!

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Obi
Belgian Malinois
2 Months
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Obi
Belgian Malinois
2 Months

I leave him in he’s crate at night, and he will cry all night long; he does not let me sleep. I can completely “ignore him” for the entire night and he’ll still be crying

Alisha Smith
Alisha S., Dog Trainer
227 Dog owners recommended

With young puppies, crate training generally takes several weeks. Most puppies under the age of about 16 or 20 weeks (4-5 months) won’t be able to stand being in the crate for more than a few hours. Really young puppies just don’t have the bladder control to be in the crate very long, and they instinctively cry when they’re left alone. It’s pretty normal for dogs to cry when they’re first put in a crate – but the “cry it out” method of crate training is pretty outdated. We’ll discuss below what you can do to help your dog quiet down, rather than simply let them cry it out. It’s important for you to have realistic expectations as you’re crate training a dog. Just like with a new baby, expect there to be some long nights. Most dogs eventually settle down in the crate, but what can we do to help them learn to be quiet in the crate? Crying in the crate can be a very real issue, especially if you live in an apartment or are a light sleeper. Why Do Dogs Cry In Their Crate? The good news is, your dog is not actively trying to make you lose sleep or get you evicted! That said, there are a variety of reasons that dogs bark or cry in the crate. Luckily, the treatment for most of these underlying reasons is the same. Reasons why your dog might be crying in the crate include: Your dog is lonely. If your dog is at your side whenever you’re home, then gets locked in a crate whenever you leave the house or go to bed, there’s a good chance he’s crying because your dog misses you. These dogs usually will settle eventually, but may start crying again whenever you move around. Your dog is bored. Crates can be a pretty boring place. Dogs that give steady barks throughout the day are likely bored. Your dog is scared. Some dogs are ok being away from you, but are scared of the crate. They might not like being confined. Your dog needs to get out of the crate. Almost all dogs that cry in the crate want to get out of the crate. But sometimes, dogs need to get out of the crate. If a crate-trained dog that’s normally quiet starts whining, he may be sick to his stomach or might need to pee – he’s trying to tell you that he needs out. If your dog is normally quiet in the crate but suddenly starts to cry, look for a reason why. All of the reasons above are perfectly normal crate-training problems that can be fairly easily overturned with a bit of training and management. This is very different from true separation anxiety. Dogs with separation anxiety are thrown into a full-on panic when left alone. These dogs will need long-term management, training, and even medication to help with their condition. Dogs with severe separation anxiety often will dig at the crate, bite the crate, and otherwise take great measures to escape the crate. You may want to consider an especially durable, strong dog crate to deal with your dog’s separation anxiety in order to keep them safe – but this alone is not a cure for a dog that is panicking. Dogs with separation anxiety need training. Dogs with separation anxiety generally don’t feel better outside of the crate, and often will have a hard time being left behind no matter where they’re left. They won’t eat, drink, or relax and may even hurt themselves trying to back to you. Why You Shouldn’t Punish a Crying Crated Dog It’s tempting to scold your dog when he whines, barks, or howls in the crate. It’s best not to punish the dog for a few reasons: Your dog may already be anxious. If your dog is crying because he’s scared, yelling at him won’t help. You are your dog’s guardian, and he trusts you with his life. Yelling at him when he’s scared might hurt that trust. He might stop crying simply because he’s even more scared now – but you haven’t really fixed the problem. Punishment gives a bored dog attention. If your dog is barking because he’s bored, you might be entertaining him by scolding him! He might temporarily quiet down because he’s interested in the ruckus going on. Even negative attention could be a reward for the dog. Many dogs cry in the crate for attention, just like kids do. If you come over to the crate and scold them, you’ve just given them the attention they crave. They’ll stop barking in the moment, but this is a surefire way to guarantee that the dog will continue barking in the future. Even though it’s hard, try not to get frustrated with a dog that’s crying in the crate. There are some better options for teaching your dog not to cry in the crate. How to Teach a Dog Not to Cry in the Crate Luckily, there are lots of things to work on to help stop your dog from crying in the crate. Many of these fixes are small things to change that can make a big difference for your crying crated fur-baby. Step One: Make the Crate a Great Place to Be Crate training works best when you set up the crate properly. Before trying to convince your dog to sleep in the crate, you’ve got to make sure it’s actually a decent place to hang out. Leave treats in the crate. You can distract your dog by giving stuffed, frozen Kongs in the crate. This easy fix will really help! I have four or five stuffed Kongs in my freezer at all times. That way I can just chuck a Kong in the crate with Barley whenever I run out for errands! Freezing them makes them last a lot longer. Feed dinner in the crate. I like to feed dogs dinner in the crate. Instead of putting their bowl on the kitchen floor, I just feed dinner in the crate. You can either feed the dogs their dinner when you leave in the crate, or you can let the dog out after dinner. Either way, this is an easy way to start building a good association between your dog and the crate! Put toys in the crate. My dog is a total squeaky toy nut, so at first, I kept his toys in the crate. He was rewarded for going into the crate by a quick bout of play. It was great to see him start to actually want to go into the crate on his own! Make the crate comfy. Make sure the crate is comfy with a comfortable crate mat, a safe chew toy, and something that smells like you! Ensure the crate is the right size. The crate has to fit the dog correctly. Your dog should have room to turn around and stand up comfortably, but not much more than that! Place the crate in a common area. Many dogs cry in the crate because they’re lonely. A simple fix for these dogs is to put the crate in your bedroom at night, near the bed. If the crate doesn’t fit in your bedroom, you can sleep on the floor or the couch near the crate and gradually move towards your final sleeping arrangement. This is similar to what many parents do with young babies – they don’t start with the baby sleeping in his own room upstairs and across the house! They build up to that level of independence. Step Two: Exercise Your Pup Before Crate Time The next step to successful crate training is exercise. If your dog is still full of energy when you put him in the crate, he’s going to have a very hard time settling down. This is especially true for teenage dogs (around 6 to 18 months old). Be sure to give your dog an age- and breed-appropriate amount of exercise before even attempting to put him in the crate. For a young puppy, this might just mean running around the backyard for a few minutes. But for an adolescent Labrador retriever (or other working breeds), you might need to spend an hour or more exercising your pup before it’s time for the crate. Step Three: Teach Your Dog That Crying Gets them Potty Breaks Conventional wisdom in dog training is changing regarding whether or not to let your dog “cry it out.” The fact is, this method does not work for some dogs. If we can’t punish them, and ignoring them doesn’t work, what can we do? We can teach our dogs that crying in the crate gets them a potty break – and nothing else. But wait, you might be saying – doesn’t that reward my dog for crying in the crate? In a way, yes. And that’s not the end of the world. Ultimately, I’d rather have a dog that whines in the crate when he truly needs to go to the bathroom than have a dog that knows that crying doesn’t get him anything. That’s called learned helplessness, and it’s no good! So rather than attempting to ignore your crying puppy for five hours, I want you to take your puppy out when he cries in the crate. Here’s how it goes: Carry him outside or put him on leash. Stand outside in one place for two minutes, tops. Don’t talk to him, play with him or look at him. Just wait. If he potties, give him a treat and go inside and put him back in the crate. If he doesn’t potty, put him back in the crate. No talking, no playing. Just a quiet, quick potty break. Repeat. Your dog will quickly learn that crying in the crate doesn’t get affection, comfort, playtime, or anything except for an ultra-boring potty break. This will teach your puppy how to ask for a potty break when he needs one, but not to carry on for hours just because he’s bored. This method generally only requires a couple of repetitions for your dog to “get it.” You don’t have to wait for your dog to be quiet before you let him out – just take him out if he fusses. This method has several major benefits for teaching dogs not to cry in the crate: It teaches your dog what to do and how to get what he needs. It teaches your dog that you can provide potty access, and you won’t ignore his needs. Your dog doesn’t practice crying for hours in the crate, effectively strengthening the behavior. You avoid the stress of trying to ignore a crying dog, and your dog avoids the stress of not knowing why you’re ignoring him. You avoid the risk of breaking down and letting your dog out after hours of crying (which teaches your dog to cry for hours). You’re doing something to help your dog, rather than trying to just ignore a dog that’s upset and crying for help. It can take several repetitions to teach your dog that crying in the crate doesn’t get them anything but a super-boring potty break. But if your dog keeps on crying the second you close him in the crate, don’t keep repeating something that’s not working! He needs something you’re not providing. When working with dogs that have a really bad time in the crate, you may have a long road ahead of you. Go back to the basics of step one and two. If you’re really stuck, try changing to a different crate, using an ex-pen, or hiring a trainer to troubleshoot your crate training. Step Four: Avoid These Crate Training Mistakes With so much conflicting information out there, it’s easy to get tripped up when working on crate training. Should you squirt your dog with water when he cries? Should you ignore him? Or should you take him out on a potty break? It’s confusing – but it’s easier if you focus on following the instructions in step three and avoid these common crate training mistakes: Being inconsistent. Whatever method you choose, stick with it. I recommend teaching your puppy that crying gets him a boring potty break. That said, if the cry-it-out method is working for you, be consistent with it. If you mix the cry-it-out method with the boring-potty method, you’re going to confuse your dog and slow progress. Please avoid using punishment regardless – we’ve already covered why that’s not the best approach for this problem. Leaving your pup for longer than he can handle. If your Chihuahua or Australian Cattle Dog puppy can only hold his bladder for four hours, don’t try to leave him in the crate for a full eight-hour workday. This means that you might need to get help with crate training at first to let your puppy out often enough. If you can’t get help with crate training, leave your puppy in an ex-pen with potty pads while you’re gone for longer than his training and bladder can withstand. Teaching your puppy that crying gets attention. If you skip the “boring” part of the boring-potty method, you can create a huge problem. Ensure that you stick to the plan of taking your puppy directly outside, totally ignoring him for two minutes, and taking him directly back to the crate. Anything extra might teach your puppy that crying in the crate gets him playtime, affection, or attention! We don’t want that. Please let me know if you have any additional questions. Thanks for writing in!

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lola
Jack Russell Terrier
1 Year
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lola
Jack Russell Terrier
1 Year

we started putting her in her own bed at night and she cried but then stopped and slept lovley. Now she was let out one night over 4 days ago and every night she cries. im getting the blame for it but shes been let out before. i deal with it every night and ignore th crying and let her in at a normal time.

Darlene Stott
Darlene Stott
Dog Trainer and Groomer
104 Dog owners recommended

Hello, it's important to make sure that Lola does not need the potty. If you are sure, you can ignore the crying. If you think she may need to go, then take her out on a leash, no talking, pee only, no treat, and back to bed. Work on helping Lola to like her crate. The methods here are all good: https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate. If you place surprises inside during the day when she is not aware, she may start to associate the crate with good things. Other things to try at night are a fan for white noise (not pointed at her), dog appeasing pheromones (emitted in a diffuser - calming scents), and room darkening curtains. You may have to listen to her cry for a few nights, but she should adjust back to her previous sleeping habits. Good luck!

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Cooper
Mini Goldendoodle
2 Months
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Cooper
Mini Goldendoodle
2 Months

Hello, my 2 month old puppy is growling and soft biting when he wants to get down or wants something. Is this behavior normal or is this aggressive? I don’t put him down when he does that because I don’t want to reinforce the behavior. Any suggestions? I’ve just been giving him a chew toy when he try’s to bite my arms, legs etc...

Alisha Smith
Alisha S., Dog Trainer
227 Dog owners recommended

Hi! Yes unfortunately that is "normal" for puppies his age. You are doing exactly what you should as far as handling the behavior. I am going to send you some information on nipping and how to curb that behavior. Nipping: Puppies may nip for a number of reasons. Nipping can be a means of energy release, getting attention, interacting and exploring their environment or it could be a habit that helps with teething. Whatever the cause, nipping can still be painful for the receiver, and it’s an action that pet parents want to curb. Some ways to stop biting before it becomes a real problem include: Using teething toys. Distracting with and redirecting your dog’s biting to safe and durable chew toys is one way to keep them from focusing their mouthy energies to an approved location and teach them what biting habits are acceptable. Making sure your dog is getting the proper amount of exercise. Exercise is huge. Different dogs have different exercise needs based on their breed and size, so check with your veterinarian to make sure that yours is getting the exercise they need. Dogs—and especially puppies—use their playtime to get out extra energy. With too much pent-up energy, your pup may resort to play biting. Having them expel their energy in positive ways - including both physical and mental exercise - will help mitigate extra nips. Being consistent. Training your dog takes patience, practice and consistency. With the right training techniques and commitment, your dog will learn what is preferred behavior. While sometimes it may be easier to let a little nipping activity go, be sure to remain consistent in your cues and redirection. That way, boundaries are clear to your dog. Using positive reinforcement. To establish preferred behaviors, use positive reinforcement when your dog exhibits the correct behavior. For instance, praise and treat your puppy when they listen to your cue to stop unwanted biting as well as when they choose an appropriate teething toy on their own. Saying “Ouch!” The next time your puppy becomes too exuberant and nips you, say “OUCH!” in a very shocked tone and immediately stop playing with them. Your puppy should learn - just as they did with their littermates - that their form of play has become unwanted. When they stop, ensure that you follow up with positive reinforcement by offering praise, treat and/or resuming play. Letting every interaction with your puppy be a learning opportunity. While there are moments of dedicated training time, every interaction with your dog can be used as a potential teaching moment.

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cloud
Retriever
3 Months
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cloud
Retriever
3 Months

how can i teach him to stop playing and biting

Alisha Smith
Alisha S., Dog Trainer
227 Dog owners recommended

Hello! Here is information on nipping/biting. Nipping: Puppies may nip for a number of reasons. Nipping can be a means of energy release, getting attention, interacting and exploring their environment or it could be a habit that helps with teething. Whatever the cause, nipping can still be painful for the receiver, and it’s an action that pet parents want to curb. Some ways to stop biting before it becomes a real problem include: Using teething toys. Distracting with and redirecting your dog’s biting to safe and durable chew toys is one way to keep them from focusing their mouthy energies to an approved location and teach them what biting habits are acceptable. Making sure your dog is getting the proper amount of exercise. Exercise is huge. Different dogs have different exercise needs based on their breed and size, so check with your veterinarian to make sure that yours is getting the exercise they need. Dogs—and especially puppies—use their playtime to get out extra energy. With too much pent-up energy, your pup may resort to play biting. Having them expel their energy in positive ways - including both physical and mental exercise - will help mitigate extra nips. Being consistent. Training your dog takes patience, practice and consistency. With the right training techniques and commitment, your dog will learn what is preferred behavior. While sometimes it may be easier to let a little nipping activity go, be sure to remain consistent in your cues and redirection. That way, boundaries are clear to your dog. Using positive reinforcement. To establish preferred behaviors, use positive reinforcement when your dog exhibits the correct behavior. For instance, praise and treat your puppy when they listen to your cue to stop unwanted biting as well as when they choose an appropriate teething toy on their own. Saying “Ouch!” The next time your puppy becomes too exuberant and nips you, say “OUCH!” in a very shocked tone and immediately stop playing with them. Your puppy should learn - just as they did with their littermates - that their form of play has become unwanted. When they stop, ensure that you follow up with positive reinforcement by offering praise, treat and/or resuming play. Letting every interaction with your puppy be a learning opportunity. While there are moments of dedicated training time, every interaction with your dog can be used as a potential teaching moment.

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Diesel
Dachshund
9 Weeks
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Diesel
Dachshund
9 Weeks

I have had my pup for a week now and have been trying to crate train him. I have read your methods as well as many others about crate training and how to ignore the whining and crying but still haven’t had any luck or improvement. When i do hear the whining I assume that he needs to go to the toilet but doesn’t need to go and will start to cry again. Ive tried covering the crate and playing slow wolf music throughout the night but still no luck. Are their any other tips or tricks that help with the crying.

Alisha Smith
Alisha S., Dog Trainer
227 Dog owners recommended

Hi there! So the only other thing I can suggest is white noise. A fan or white noise next to the kennel can help with this. But he is still really young. It is likely he will be awake every two hours over the next few weeks until he is about 3 months old.

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Bella
Speagle (sprocker x beagle)
5 Years
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Bella
Speagle (sprocker x beagle)
5 Years

Both our dogs normally sleep with us in our bedroom, however I am now 37 weeks pregnant and have decided that it is probably best that they don’t sleep
With us especially when baby will be sleeping in the room with us when she arrives. Both dogs have a spare room they can sleep in and also dog beds n the landing. Our sprocker spaniel (5 years old and we have had him since he was a pup) is absolutely fine with the new sleeping arrangements but the speagle (rescued 2 1/2 years ago) just whines all night. There is a stair gate on our bedroom door to stop them from coming in the bedroom so they can still see us, we thought this would help but it doesn’t. We have tried shutting the bedroom door but she just pounds the door handle. we have tried a firm no! And redirected her to her bed. And we have tried ignoring her but she can go on and on for hours and it becomes unbearable. Please help 😞

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
841 Dog owners recommended

Hello Kelly, First I suggest teaching the Quiet command during the day. Quiet method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bark I also suggest spending practicing the following during the day (when its easier to train and less exhausting, in preparation for pup learning this for night). Go into the bedroom and confine the dogs where they will be sleeping at night. When pup cries, command quiet. If they get quiet, great. Toss them a treat after two minutes of staying quiet. If the whining continues or starts up again, calmly go to pup and spray a small puff of air from an unscented air canister, called a pet convincer, at pup's side (don't use citronella, only unscented air canisters - which can be switched out with citronella if yours came with citronella, and don't spray in the face). Tell pup "Ah Ah" calmly but firmly when you correct with the air, then return to your room. If pup stays quiet for two minutes, return and give a treat. Repeat the corrections whenever pup whines, and rewards for staying quiet. As pup improves over the week, wait until pup has stayed quiet for longer and not whined to begin with, before giving the treat. Practice the above during the day to help pup learn faster. At night, simply correct but do not reward. Keep all interactions calm but consistent while training - yelling doesn't tend to work as well. Also, congratulations on your baby! I hope you have a safe and wonderful delivery and postpartum season. I am a month postpartum actually. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Sadie
Bluetick Coonhound
8 Years
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Sadie
Bluetick Coonhound
8 Years

We've had Sadie for two years and she's always been very independent. She sleeps in her own space and cries in the morning when she needs to go out.

Last week we went on an overnight trip without her for the first time since quarantine started and when we got home she has been awful! Cries all night long, tries to climb the pet gate, shakes and pants. By all night I mean every 5 minutes from 11pm to 5am, scratching the floors, and just being generally stressed. We've tried to just ignore it but we're on night 6 and have no end in sight. We also took her to the vet and she has a clean bill of health, so nothing there.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
841 Dog owners recommended

Hello Mariela, The first step is to work on building his independence and his confidence by adding a lot of structure and predictability into his routine. Things such as making him work for rewards like meals, walks, and pets. Working on "Stay" and "Place," commands while you move away or leave the room, and teaching him to remain inside a crate when the door is open. Change your routine surrounding leaving so that he does not anticipate alone time and build up his anxiety before you leave - which is hard for him to deescalate from, and be sure to continue to give him something to do in the crate during the day (such as a dog food stuffed Kong to chew on); this is the general protocol for separation anxiety. It is gentle but can take a very long time on its own for some dogs. Place: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=omg5DVPWIWo Crate manners: https://thegooddog.net/training-videos/free-how-to-training-videos/learn-to-train-the-good-dog-way-the-crate/ Another protocol involves teaching the dog to cope with their own anxiety by making their current anxious go-to behaviors unpleasant, giving them an opportunity to stop those behaviors long enough to learn something new, then rewarding the correct, calmer behavior instead. Work on teaching the Quiet command during the day using the Quiet method from the article linked below. https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bark Second, during the day practice the Surprise method from the article linked below. Practice leaving pup alone like you do at night in a crate or the room where they normally sleep. Whenever pup stays quiet in the crate/room for 5 minutes, sprinkle some treats into the crate without opening it, then leave the room again. As he improves, only give the treats every 10 minutes, then 15 minutes, 20 minutes, 30 minutes, 45 minutes, 1 hour, 1.5 hour, 2, hour, 3 hour. Practice crating/confining him during the day for 1-3 hours each day that you can. When pup is handling you being out of the room without him well, go on short walks without pup to further practice. You can set up a camera to spy on pup while you are gone - such as Skype on mute from a tablet or phone. While you are home during the day, have lots of 30 minute - 1 hour long sessions with breaks between to practice this, to help pup learn sooner. Whenever he cries in the while you are away, tell him "Quiet". If he gets quiet - Great! Sprinkle treats in after five minutes if he stays quiet. If he continues barking or stops and starts again, spray a quick puff of air from a pet convincer at his side through the crate (or slightly opened door to the room where he is) while calmly saying "Ah Ah", then leave again. Correct for the scratching at the door too. Only use unscented air canisters, DON'T use citronella! And avoid spraying in the face. Surprise method: https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate Repeat the rewards when quiet and the corrections whenever he cries during the day. When he cries at night before it has been 8 hours (so you know it's not a potty issue), tell him Quiet, and correct with the pet convincer if he doesn't become quiet and stay quiet. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Odie
unknown mix
12 Weeks
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Odie
unknown mix
12 Weeks

My puppy is having issues when I leave the room or try to keep him contained to his exercise pen and crate area while I’m at home. I work 12 hour shifts, so my parents have him from about 9am until 8pm when I’m out of work and can pick him up. They stay outside with him a lot, and he pretty much runs free in the back yard supervised. Then he comes inside and pees. He did this at my house last night and this morning. I feel like his good habits are gone. It’s so frustrating!

Alisha Smith
Alisha S., Dog Trainer
227 Dog owners recommended

Hi there. It sounds like he needs a little refresher with potty training. I am going to send you some information on potty training. Some of it you may know already, but there should be a solution in this information that you can use. If he is running freely, he may not understand that he needs to go outside only. This info will talk about how to relay that message to him. Potty training: Know Your Pup. As you spend time with your puppy, learn your puppy’s love language. Just as some people prefer gifts, touch, or time spent together, puppies can be the same way. Some puppies love praise or pets, while others prefer treats. As you get to know your puppy, consider what reward your puppy loves the most. Create a Daily Schedule. It is best to have a routine for your puppy. A schedule helps them understand when to eat, play, and “go to the bathroom.” Your puppy should go out frequently and the routine should be the same every time. When? Start the day by taking your puppy outside, and repeating based on age and ability. They should also go out after napping, chewing, playing, and within 10 to 15 minutes of eating. Although some puppies can sleep for seven hours, it is important to set an alarm and take your pup out during the night. When you do, don’t make a fuss about it. Quietly take them outside with minimal stimulation and light. Praise them if they go to the bathroom and gently return them to their bed or crate. You don’t want them to get stimulated and ready to play in the middle of the night! As you get to know your puppy, you will become aware of their individual habits. Click here to learn more about house training schedules for puppies. Where? Take your puppy to a specific area to urinate or defecate. Be consistent. You can create an area by using urine-soaked paper or bowel movements to help create an aroma to stimulate your puppy. How? Take your puppy out on a leash so they can focus on the desired activity. This will help prevent them from wandering off to play. Once your puppy is in the selected area, use your verbal cue, such as “Hurry Up,” “Poopies,” “Go tinkle,” or any phrase your puppy responds to. What? Know the signs that your puppy has to go to the bathroom. Every animal may have a different “I gotta go” gesture, which often include restlessness, sniffing around, circling, scratching at the door, barking, and, eventually, squatting. At the first sign that your pup has to go, calmly and quickly take them outside to their bathroom spot. Deal with Accidents. Accidents are a normal part of house training a puppy. What to Do If you see your puppy in the process of urinating or defecating inappropriately, calmly and quickly interrupt them in the act. Tell them to stop (either by a jarring sound or command), and immediately take them to an appropriate location for elimination. After your puppy goes to the bathroom, lavishly praise them and offer a treat. Thoroughly clean up accidents, so your puppy is not attracted to this area again. Create a consistent feeding and watering schedule. Depending on the age of your puppy, they will eat three to four times a day. A consistent feeding routine can create a regular bathroom schedule. Take away water about 2 hours before bedtime. Learn more about ideal dog schedules here. What NOT to Do Don’t punish your puppy when they have an accident. At that point, it is too late. When a puppy has an accident in the house and they walk away, within seconds they have already forgotten about what they did. Taking them to the scene of the crime and yelling and/or rubbing their nose in it does not help and, in fact, can harm your puppy! Supervise. The best thing you can do is to prevent accidents and the best way to do this is to supervise your puppy at all times. You can tether your puppy to your waist with a five or six-foot leash and carefully observe them for signs that they need to go to the bathroom. If you can’t supervise, then crate or confine your puppy. The more accidents your puppy has in the house, the more confusing it will be for them and this can delay house training. Reward, Reward, Reward. It is important to give your puppy a reward for their good behavior. This can be for commands such as sitting and coming to you, or for appropriately eliminating outside. In a puppy, a reward can be a couple kibbles of puppy food or a treat, such as a small piece of meat. The treat should be exciting for them and only available as a result of good behavior.

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Buddie
Dalmatian
3 Months
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Buddie
Dalmatian
3 Months

I just adopted Buddie from his brothers and parents. He cries at night and scratches our backyard door when he’s in need of us. I was just needing some helpful tips along the way to do on a daily to improve his night and allow him to feel more comfortable when heading to bed without me.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
841 Dog owners recommended

Hello Sabrin, First, know that this is normal. Almost all puppies have to learn how to be more alone - its an adjustment after being used to siblings being around all the time. Check out the Surprise method from the article linked below and practice crating pup like the method mentions. The same principles of that method can be used for time outside the door or in an exercise pen too. https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate/ At night, there will unfortunately be crying. I recommend crating pup at night to keep them safe and help with potty training at this age. You can use a non-absorbent bed in the crate to help with potty training and chewing - such as www.primopads.com or k9ballistics.com. Pup will need to go potty every 3-4 hours at night if they don't stay asleep - once awake pup's bladder wakes up too. When they wake to go potty after its been at least that long, take them potty on leash and keep the trip as boring as possible - no treats or play at night. Return pup to the crate after and ignore any crying at night outside of illness or potty needs. This can be hard to do but tends to help pup improve the fastest in most cases. The first 3 nights are generally the worst, with some crying up to 2 weeks for most pups. Practicing the Surprise method during the day can help pup adjust the soonest, but only give treats during the day and not at night or that can cause other wakeup issues. At this age, I recommend getting a door protector, ignoring the scratching and crying at the door, then when pup gets quiet, and especially if they sit or lie down calmly, either let pup in if it's time to let them in, or open the door briefly and toss a few treats on a dog bed or cot placed out there with pup - to help pup learn that being calm at the door gets attention and rewards, rather than barking, and to help them learn to spend time on their dog bed or cot while out there. Also, check out the free PDF e-book downloads AFTER You Get Your Puppy from the link below for some general advice for pups this age. www.lifedogtraining.com/freedownloads Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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louie
hound mixed with a lab
4 Months
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louie
hound mixed with a lab
4 Months

louie cries during the night and even when he is outside in the backyard. he does not sleep in a cage because he's such a good doggy and when I out him on his bed and I turn off the lights he knows its bed time.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
841 Dog owners recommended

Hello Emily, Check out the Surprise method from the article linked below. I recommend practicing during the day with pup in a confined area away from you - either a crate, outside, in another room, or exercise pen. The goal is just for pup to get used to being alone more, to help them feel more confident while alone in the future. Surprise method: https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate/ At this age pup will likely need to go potty at least once at night. When they do, take them outside on a leash and keep the trip super boring without play or treats. When pup wakes up and doesn't need to go potty because they have already gone recently, ignore them so they learn that nighttime is not time to play. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Ollie
Siberian Husky
2 Years
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Ollie
Siberian Husky
2 Years

How can i help ollie with his separation anxiety, he doesnt cope well at all when we are not in the room he starts to pant, pace, have accidents and cry, we had a break through a week ago where he would sleep through the night but he started to cry and bark through the night again this week, we only had him for just over a month now but we want to sort the problem straight away so it wont get any worse than it is now

Alisha Smith
Alisha S., Dog Trainer
227 Dog owners recommended

Hi there. Although you are concerned about night time separation anxiety, I am sending you information on general separation anxiety. Separation anxiety is a multi system issue, meaning there are multiple things that trigger it. An overall change to his general routine is what will benefit him. I have a lot of information to send you, but with practice and some time, you will start to see a turnaround with his behavior. The first step in treating separation anxiety is to break the cycle of anxiety. Every time a dog with separation anxiety becomes anxious when their owner leaves, the distress they feel is reinforced until they become absolutely frantic any time they are left alone. Owners should give the dog an acceptable item to chew, such as a long lasting food treat when they go out. The goal is to have the dog associate this special treat with the owner’s departure. Treats might include hollow bones stuffed with peanut butter or soft cheese, drilled out nylon bones, or hollow rubber chew toys such as Kong toys with similar enhancements (place these in the freezer before giving them to your dog to make them last longer). Give the bone to your dog about 15 minutes before preparing to depart. The chew toy should be used only as a reward to offset the anxiety triggered by your departure. Hiding a variety of these delectable food treats throughout the house may occupy the dog so that the owner’s departure is less stressful. In an effort to prevent destructive behavior, many owners confine their dog in a crate or behind a gate. For dogs that display “barrier frustration,” the use of a crate in this way is counterproductive. Many dogs will physically injure themselves while attempting to escape such confinement. Careful efforts to desensitize and counter condition the dog to crate confinement before leaving them alone may be helpful in some cases. However, some dogs rebel against any form of restraint, including restricting barriers and, for them, crate training may never be a positive experience. Crate training and utilizing the crate while people are home can be a positive way to make the crate a safe place. If you utilize it when people are around, your dog won’t necessarily associate the crate with departure and being left alone. Creating nap time in the crate throughout the day can also be helpful. Building Independence Independence training can help fight separation anxiety and loneliness. Independence training can help build confidence and instill obedience. Independence training is one of the more important aspects of the program. It involves teaching your dog to “stand on their own four feet” when you are present, with the express intention that their newfound confidence will spill over into times when you are away. You need to make your dog more independent by reducing the bond between both of you to a more healthy level of involvement. Decreasing the bond is the hardest thing for owners to accept. Most people acquire dogs because they want a strong relationship with them. However, you have to accept that the anxiety your dog experiences in your absence is destructive. Essential components of the independence training program are as follows: Your dog can be with you, but the amount of interaction time should be reduced, especially where attention-seeking behaviors are concerned. You should initiate all interactions with your dog, and they shouldn’t be permitted to demand attention. If you give your dog attention every time they whine, it helps to foster the dog’s dependence on you and increases its anxiety in your absence. You should ignore your dog completely when they engage in attention-seeking behavior, and avoid catering to them when they appear to feel anxious. This means no eye contact, no pushing away, and no soothing talk or body language, all of which will reward their attention-seeking mission. Attention is encouraged only when your dog is sitting or lying calmly. The goal is not to ignore your dog, but to stop reinforcing attention-seeking behaviors so that your dog develops a sense of independence. Minimize the extent to which your dog follows you by teaching them to remain relaxed in one spot, such as their bed. To accomplish this, it is helpful if you train them to perform a sit-stay or down-stay while gradually increasing the time that they hold the command and remain at a distance from you. Providing a treat or toy and encouraging individual play time can be helpful. Once your dog has learned basic obedience commands, you can train them to hold long down-stays while you move progressively farther away. First, your dog should be trained to perform a “down-stay” on a mat or dog bed using a specific command, such as “lie down.” Your dog may have to be gently escorted to the designated spot the first few times. Initially, they should be rewarded every 10 seconds for remaining there, then every 20 seconds, 30 seconds, and so on. Once they have figured out what is wanted, you should switch to an intermittent schedule of reinforcement [reward], as this will strengthen the learned response. Each time your dog breaks their “stay,” issue a verbal correction, indicating that there will be no reward, and then escort them back to their bed. First, your dog can be made to “down-stay” while you are in the room. Next, they can be asked to stay when you are outside of the room, but nearby. The distance and time you are away from your dog can be increased progressively until your dog can remain in a down-stay for 20 to 30 minutes in your absence. Your dog should be warmly praised for compliance. Of course, they need to accept the praise without breaking the stay. Your dog should become accustomed to being separated from you when you are home for varying lengths of time and at different times of day. You can set up child gates to deny your dog access into the room you’re occupying (i.e. reading, watching television, or cooking). Instruct your dog to lie down and stay on a dog bed outside the room. As previously mentioned, you can provide an extended-release food treat or toy to keep your dog calm and distracted. Once they are able to tolerate being separated from you by a child gate, you can graduate to shutting the door to the room so your dog cannot see you. Allowing a dog to sleep in bed with the family can increase dependence. If you decide to prevent your dog from sleeping in your bed, there are some steps to take to establish this routine. First, you need to train your dog to sleep in their own bed on the floor in your bedroom. They may have to be taken to their bed several times before they get the message that you really want them to sleep in their own bed. Alternatively, you can train your dog to enjoy sleeping in a crate to prevent unwanted excursions. Do not use a crate if it causes more anxiety and distress for your dog. Once they tolerate sleeping in their own bed in your bedroom, you can move their bed outside of the bedroom and use a child gate or barrier to keep them out. Always remember to reward your dog with praise or a food treat for remaining in their bed. Develop Departure Techniques Many owners erroneously feel that if separation is so stressful, then they should spend more time with their dog before leaving. Unfortunately, this only exacerbates the condition. Everyone in the family should ignore your dog for 15 to 20 minutes before leaving the house and for at least 10 to 20 minutes after returning home. Alternatively, your leaving can be made a highlight of your dog’s day by making it a “happy time” and the time at which they are fed. Departures should be quick and quiet. When departures (and returns) generate less anxiety (and excitement), your dog will begin to feel less tension in your absence. Remember to reward calm behavior. Teach your dog that your departure and return are just normal parts of the day and are not times to be stressed. You should attempt to randomize the cues indicating that you are preparing to leave. Changing the cues may take some trial and error. Some cues mean nothing to a dog, while others trigger anxiety. Make a list of the things you normally do before leaving for the day (and anxiety occurs) and the things done before a short time out (and no anxiety occurs).Then mix up the cues. For example, if your dog is fine when you go downstairs to do the laundry, you can try taking the laundry basket with you when you leave for work. If your dog becomes anxious when you pick up your keys or put on a coat, you should practice these things when you are not really leaving. You can, for example, stand up, put on a coat or pick up your car keys during television commercials, and then sit down again. You can also open and shut doors while you are home when you do not intend to leave. Entering and exiting through various doors when leaving and returning can also mix up cues for your dog. When you are actually leaving, you should try not to give any cues to this effect. Leave your coat in the car and put your keys in the ignition well before leaving. It is important to randomize all the cues indicating departure (clothing, physical and vocal signals, interactions with family members, other pets, and so on). The planned departure technique can be very effective for some dogs. This program is recommended only under special circumstances because it requires that you never leave your dog alone during the entire retraining period, which can be weeks or months. Timing is everything when implementing this program. If your dog shows signs of anxiety (pacing, panting, barking excessively) the instant you walk out of the door, you should stand outside the door and wait until your dog is quiet for three seconds. Then go back inside quickly and reward your dog for being calm. If you return WHEN your dog is anxious, this reinforces your dog’s tendency to display the behavior, because it has the desired effect of reuniting the “pack” members. The goal is for your dog to connect being calm and relaxed with your return. Gradually work up to slightly longer departures 5 to 10 minutes as long as your dog remains quiet, and continue in this fashion. Eventually, you should be able to leave for the day without your dog becoming anxious when you depart. When performed correctly, this program can be very helpful in resolving separation anxiety. Other Treatment Options Obedience Training Obedience training helps to instill confidence and independence in your dog. You should spend 5 to 10 minutes daily training your dog to obey one-word commands. It may be helpful to have training sessions occur in the room where your dog will be left when you are gone. All positive experiences (food, toys, sleep, training, and attention) should be associated with this area of the home. Exercise Your dog should receive 15 to 20 minutes of sustained aerobic exercise once, preferably twice, per day. It is often helpful to exercise your dog before you leave for the day. Exercise helps to dissipate anxiety and provides constructive interaction between you and your dog. It is best to allow your dog 15 to 20 minutes to calm down before you depart. Fetching a ball is good exercise, as is going for a brisk walk or run with your dog on a leash. Even if your dog has a large yard to run in all day, the aerobic exercise will be beneficial since most dogs will not tire themselves if left to their own devices. This is incredibly helpful in dogs that are working breeds that need a job to expend energy and work their brains. Supplements Recently, supplements have been released to the public that can help dogs with anxiety. Purina created a probiotic that has been shown to reduce anxiety and provide a calming effect on some dogs. Your veterinarian may recommend this product for treating anxiety, or other products that contain L-Theanine or L-tryptophan.

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Daisy
pitbull
4 Weeks
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Daisy
pitbull
4 Weeks

What should I do when it cries near my bedroom door in the middle of the night

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
841 Dog owners recommended

Hello, If pup is really 4 weeks old, then pup will have to go to the bathroom very often and even possibly eat during the night. I recommend checking with your vet about feeding for this age. Some puppies are not even weaned from their mother yet at 4 weeks. As far as the bathroom, at 4 weeks I would set up an exercise pen with several disposable real grass pads and a non-absorbent dog bed like www.primopads.com or k9ballistics.com. I would work on rewarding pup for going potty on the grass during the day, visit pup at night when they need to eat (depending on your vet's recommendation), and ignore attention seeking crying. Once pup is 8 weeks old, I would crate train pup using the Surprise method from the article linked below, getting rid of the grass pad setup and taking them potty outside to avoid confusion later. When pup cries at night, ignore the crying unless it has been at least 2 hours since pup last went potty. When pup wakes and cries after at least 2 hours, take pup outside to go potty on a leash, don't give treats at night, and keep the trip super boring and on leash to help pup focus and watch them go potty. After they go, return them to the crate and ignore any crying until they go back to sleep. At 8 weeks of age pup will still need to go potty at least 1-2 times even after they adjust to the crate. Pup should be able to hold it for closer to 4 hours once they adjust to the crate and stay asleep better though. As they get older, their bladder capacity will naturally increase, allowing them to sleep through the night if you have followed the above, to encourage only waking when they need to go potty and not for attention or food. surprise method - practice this during the day, so pup will adjust to the crate sooner, and cry less overall at night. https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate/ Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Luna
pitbull
1 Month
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Luna
pitbull
1 Month

Challenges I get from training my dog is when he got potty and when he sleep at night he likes to cry and whine a lot

Alisha Smith
Alisha S., Dog Trainer
227 Dog owners recommended

Hi there. Your puppy is similar to a human baby right now. He will cry and whine a lot, especially at night until he's a closer to 12 weeks old. I will give you information on potty training, and crate training just in case you decide to use a crate to help with potty training. Potty training: Know Your Pup. As you spend time with your puppy, learn your puppy’s love language. Just as some people prefer gifts, touch, or time spent together, puppies can be the same way. Some puppies love praise or pets, while others prefer treats. As you get to know your puppy, consider what reward your puppy loves the most. Create a Daily Schedule. It is best to have a routine for your puppy. A schedule helps them understand when to eat, play, and “go to the bathroom.” Your puppy should go out frequently and the routine should be the same every time. When? Start the day by taking your puppy outside, and repeating based on age and ability. They should also go out after napping, chewing, playing, and within 10 to 15 minutes of eating. Although some puppies can sleep for seven hours, it is important to set an alarm and take your pup out during the night. When you do, don’t make a fuss about it. Quietly take them outside with minimal stimulation and light. Praise them if they go to the bathroom and gently return them to their bed or crate. You don’t want them to get stimulated and ready to play in the middle of the night! As you get to know your puppy, you will become aware of their individual habits. Click here to learn more about house training schedules for puppies. Where? Take your puppy to a specific area to urinate or defecate. Be consistent. You can create an area by using urine-soaked paper or bowel movements to help create an aroma to stimulate your puppy. How? Take your puppy out on a leash so they can focus on the desired activity. This will help prevent them from wandering off to play. Once your puppy is in the selected area, use your verbal cue, such as “Hurry Up,” “Poopies,” “Go tinkle,” or any phrase your puppy responds to. What? Know the signs that your puppy has to go to the bathroom. Every animal may have a different “I gotta go” gesture, which often include restlessness, sniffing around, circling, scratching at the door, barking, and, eventually, squatting. At the first sign that your pup has to go, calmly and quickly take them outside to their bathroom spot. Deal with Accidents. Accidents are a normal part of house training a puppy. What to Do If you see your puppy in the process of urinating or defecating inappropriately, calmly and quickly interrupt them in the act. Tell them to stop (either by a jarring sound or command), and immediately take them to an appropriate location for elimination. After your puppy goes to the bathroom, lavishly praise them and offer a treat. Thoroughly clean up accidents, so your puppy is not attracted to this area again. Create a consistent feeding and watering schedule. Depending on the age of your puppy, they will eat three to four times a day. A consistent feeding routine can create a regular bathroom schedule. Take away water about 2 hours before bedtime. Learn more about ideal dog schedules here. What NOT to Do Don’t punish your puppy when they have an accident. At that point, it is too late. When a puppy has an accident in the house and they walk away, within seconds they have already forgotten about what they did. Taking them to the scene of the crime and yelling and/or rubbing their nose in it does not help and, in fact, can harm your puppy! Supervise. The best thing you can do is to prevent accidents and the best way to do this is to supervise your puppy at all times. You can tether your puppy to your waist with a five or six-foot leash and carefully observe them for signs that they need to go to the bathroom. If you can’t supervise, then crate or confine your puppy. The more accidents your puppy has in the house, the more confusing it will be for them and this can delay house training. Reward, Reward, Reward. It is important to give your puppy a reward for their good behavior. This can be for commands such as sitting and coming to you, or for appropriately eliminating outside. In a puppy, a reward can be a couple kibbles of puppy food or a treat, such as a small piece of meat. The treat should be exciting for them and only available as a result of good behavior. Crate training can take days or weeks, depending on your dog's age, temperament and past experiences. It's important to keep two things in mind while crate training: The crate should always be associated with something pleasant and training should take place in a series of small steps. Don't go too fast. Step 1: Introduce your dog to the crate Place the crate in an area of your house where the family spends a lot of time, such as the family room. Put a soft blanket or towel in the crate. Take the door off and let the dog explore the crate at their leisure. Some dogs will be naturally curious and start sleeping in the crate right away. If yours isn't one of them: Bring them over to the crate and talk to them in a happy tone of voice. Make sure the crate door is open and secured so that it won't hit your dog and frighten them. Encourage your dog to enter the crate by dropping some small food treats nearby, then just inside the door, and finally, all the way inside the crate. If they refuse to go all the way in at first, that's OK; don't force them to enter. Continue tossing treats into the crate until your dog will walk calmly all the way into the crate to get the food. If they aren’t interested in treats, try tossing a favorite toy in the crate. This step may take a few minutes or as long as several days. Step 2: Feed your dog meals in the crate After introducing your dog to the crate, begin feeding them their regular meals near the crate. This will create a pleasant association with the crate. If your dog is readily entering the crate when you begin Step 2, place the food dish all the way at the back of the crate. If they remain reluctant to enter, put the dish only as far inside as they will readily go without becoming fearful or anxious. Each time you feed them, place the dish a little further back in the crate. Once your dog is standing comfortably in the crate to eat their meal, you can close the door while they’re eating. The first time you do this, open the door as soon as they finish their meal. With each successive feeding, leave the door closed a few minutes longer, until they’re staying in the crate for 10 minutes or so after eating. If they begin to whine to be let out, you may have increased the length of time too quickly. Next time, try leaving them in the crate for a shorter time period. If they do whine or cry in the crate, don’t let them out until they stop. Otherwise, they'll learn that the way to get out of the crate is to whine, so they'll keep doing it. Step 3: Practice with longer crating periods After your dog is eating their regular meals in the crate with no sign of fear or anxiety, you can confine them there for short time periods while you're home. Call them over to the crate and give them a treat. Give them a command to enter, such as "crate." Encourage them by pointing to the inside of the crate with a treat in your hand. After your dog enters the crate, praise them, give them the treat and close the door. Sit quietly near the crate for five to 10 minutes and then go into another room for a few minutes. Return, sit quietly again for a short time and then let them out. Repeat this process several times a day, gradually increasing the length of time you leave them in the crate and the length of time you're out of sight. Once your dog will stay quietly in the crate for about 30 minutes with you mostly out of sight, you can begin leaving them crated when you're gone for short time periods and/or letting them sleep there at night. This may take several days or weeks. Step 4, Part A: Crate your dog when you leave After your dog can spend about 30 minutes in the crate without becoming anxious or afraid, you can begin leaving them crated for short periods when you leave the house. Put them in the crate using your regular command and a treat. You might also want to leave them with a few safe toys in the crate. Vary the moment during your "getting ready to leave" routine that you put your dog in the crate. Although they shouldn't be crated for a long time before you leave, you can crate them anywhere from five to 20 minutes prior to leaving. Don't make your departures emotional and prolonged—they should be matter-of-fact. Praise your dog briefly, give them a treat for entering the crate and then leave quietly. When you return home, don't reward your dog for excited behavior by responding to them in an enthusiastic way. Keep arrivals low-key to avoid increasing their anxiety over when you will return. Continue to crate your dog for short periods from time to time when you're home so they don't associate crating with being left alone. Step 4, Part B: Crate your dog at night Put your dog in the crate using your regular command and a treat. Initially, it may be a good idea to put the crate in your bedroom or nearby in a hallway, especially if you have a puppy. Puppies often need to go outside to eliminate during the night and you'll want to be able to hear your puppy when they whine to be let outside. Older dogs should also initially be kept nearby so they don't associate the crate with social isolation. Once your dog is sleeping comfortably through the night with the crate near you, you can begin to gradually move it to the location you prefer, although time spent with your dog—even sleep time—is a chance to strengthen the bond between you and your pet. Potential problems Whining: If your dog whines or cries while in the crate at night, it may be difficult to decide whether they’re whining to be let out of the crate, or whether they need to be let outside to eliminate. If you've followed the training procedures outlined above, then your dog hasn't been rewarded for whining in the past by being released from their crate. If that is the case, try to ignore the whining. If your dog is just testing you, they'll probably stop whining soon. Yelling at them or pounding on the crate will only make things worse. If the whining continues after you've ignored them for several minutes, use the phrase they associate with going outside to eliminate. If they respond and become excited, take them outside. This should be a trip with a purpose, not play time. If you're convinced that your dog doesn't need to eliminate, the best response is to ignore them until they stop whining. Don't give in; if you do, you'll teach your dog to whine loud and long to get what they want. If you've progressed gradually through the training steps and haven't done too much too fast, you'll be less likely to encounter this problem. If the problem becomes unmanageable, you may need to start the crate training process over again. Separation anxiety: Attempting to use the crate as a remedy for separation anxiety won't solve the problem. A crate may prevent your dog from being destructive, but they may get injured in an attempt to escape. Separation anxiety problems can only be resolved with counterconditioning and desensitization procedures.

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George
Shih Tzu
1 Month
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George
Shih Tzu
1 Month

He cries and whines a lot at night
We seeks to see us all the time
I don’t know when he is cold, need to go potty, hungry.
He is just a month old away from his mom. I want to train him to be well-mannered and to be happy

Alisha Smith
Alisha S., Dog Trainer
227 Dog owners recommended

Hi there. He will likely cry at night over the next few weeks until he learns to be more independent. Puppies under 3 months are much like human babies. They will wake up because they are lonely, hungry, and have to go potty. I always suggest keeping the night time wake up calls non stimulating. Don't feed him, and try not to engage in any play time or anything like that with him. Just potty and that is it.

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Winston
English Springer Spaniel
9 Weeks
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Winston
English Springer Spaniel
9 Weeks

We’ve had our puppy 4 nights and the crying at night is getting worse. He seems settled at home in the day. We aren’t using a crate but he has a bed and toys in the kitchen, we shut the door at night so it is his space. He seems very attached to us and cries when we both go upstairs, we are trying to leave him for a few minutes at a time so he gets used to us going upstairs and coming back down but he’s cries most of the time. I know it is early days and a lot has happened to him in the last 4/5 days but I’m worried he is developing separation anxiety already. Thanks

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
841 Dog owners recommended

Hello Laura, First, at this age, learning independence is what tends to prevent future separation anxiety - a puppy crying the first month of adjusting to time alone is different than true separation anxiety, so I recommend continuing to work pup through their anxieties at this age. Tackling this now with a puppy tends to prevent true separation anxiety later, and it's normal for there to be lots of crying for 2-4 weeks, with the first week being hardest. Check out the Surprise method from the article linked below. Practice that with pup alone like they will be at night in the exercise pen. You may end up needing to introduce the crate to give pup a little more structure, but you can try the pen first if you don't otherwise need to crate for potty training or chewing reasons. At night, unless pup needs to be taken potty, ignore the crying. Wait until pup is quiet for at least a second to check on them - each time you return while pup is still crying, pup learns to cry more because they see that crying = you coming back. You want pup to learn that quiet = you returning or pup falling asleep. Surprise method: https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate/ I know its hard, but do know that what you are experiencing is still normal this soon. Congratulations on your new puppy! Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Tiger
German Shepard Lab
1 Year
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Tiger
German Shepard Lab
1 Year

My dog all of a sudden started whining and crying at night and he scratches the door for no reason. He also doesn’t want to come inside. Please help I can’t get any sleep.

Darlene Stott
Darlene Stott
Dog Trainer and Groomer
104 Dog owners recommended

Hello, I think you mean Tiger is whining and crying to go outside? Then, does not want to come inside? There are a few things to do. Firstly, your dog is a mix of two breeds that have lots of energy and are very intelligent. This means Tiger needs LOTS of exercise and mental stimulation as well. In the evening, take him on a long walk and make it a brisk one. Give him toys in the evening that work his brain, such as a puzzle toy that gives him a treat as a reward. But don't give him a lot of food or water right before bed - that may make him need a potty break. Take him for a pee last thing before bed. Enroll Tiger in a dog training class to give him the mental workout that he needs and to help expend energy. Lastly, what type of environment does he sleep in? Make sure that Tiger has a place that he adores - crate training him may be the answer. Most dogs love a space to call their own and when crated at night, feel safer, less restless, and more likely to sleep. Take a look here and use the method that you think will work best for Tiger: https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate. You can also use an exercise pen area, which will keep Tiger confined but in a bigger space, still allowing for a sense of comfort. Try using dog appeasing pheromones as a scent in the room to calm Tiger (you can ask the vet or pet supply store). Use a fan for white noise (not pointed at Tiger). As well, if you feel Tiger really needs to go out in the night, accompany him on the leash, no talking, no playing, no treat when he comes back in. Just a quick pee with you there to bring him back inside. Good luck!

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Midnight
German shepherd and terrier
6 Weeks
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Midnight
German shepherd and terrier
6 Weeks

How do I get midnight to be quiet at night while putting her in another dogs kennel because she does not have one and I dont want her making messes in my bf room at his house?

Alisha Smith
Alisha S., Dog Trainer
227 Dog owners recommended

Hello! Just like other behaviors, you often have to work with and train a dog to be comfortable in a crate. Here is information on crate training. Crate training can take days or weeks, depending on your dog's age, temperament and past experiences. It's important to keep two things in mind while crate training: The crate should always be associated with something pleasant and training should take place in a series of small steps. Don't go too fast. Step 1: Introduce your dog to the crate Place the crate in an area of your house where the family spends a lot of time, such as the family room. Put a soft blanket or towel in the crate. Take the door off and let the dog explore the crate at their leisure. Some dogs will be naturally curious and start sleeping in the crate right away. If yours isn't one of them: Bring them over to the crate and talk to them in a happy tone of voice. Make sure the crate door is open and secured so that it won't hit your dog and frighten them. Encourage your dog to enter the crate by dropping some small food treats nearby, then just inside the door, and finally, all the way inside the crate. If they refuse to go all the way in at first, that's OK; don't force them to enter. Continue tossing treats into the crate until your dog will walk calmly all the way into the crate to get the food. If they aren’t interested in treats, try tossing a favorite toy in the crate. This step may take a few minutes or as long as several days. Step 2: Feed your dog meals in the crate After introducing your dog to the crate, begin feeding them their regular meals near the crate. This will create a pleasant association with the crate. If your dog is readily entering the crate when you begin Step 2, place the food dish all the way at the back of the crate. If they remain reluctant to enter, put the dish only as far inside as they will readily go without becoming fearful or anxious. Each time you feed them, place the dish a little further back in the crate. Once your dog is standing comfortably in the crate to eat their meal, you can close the door while they’re eating. The first time you do this, open the door as soon as they finish their meal. With each successive feeding, leave the door closed a few minutes longer, until they’re staying in the crate for 10 minutes or so after eating. If they begin to whine to be let out, you may have increased the length of time too quickly. Next time, try leaving them in the crate for a shorter time period. If they do whine or cry in the crate, don’t let them out until they stop. Otherwise, they'll learn that the way to get out of the crate is to whine, so they'll keep doing it. Step 3: Practice with longer crating periods After your dog is eating their regular meals in the crate with no sign of fear or anxiety, you can confine them there for short time periods while you're home. Call them over to the crate and give them a treat. Give them a command to enter, such as "crate." Encourage them by pointing to the inside of the crate with a treat in your hand. After your dog enters the crate, praise them, give them the treat and close the door. Sit quietly near the crate for five to 10 minutes and then go into another room for a few minutes. Return, sit quietly again for a short time and then let them out. Repeat this process several times a day, gradually increasing the length of time you leave them in the crate and the length of time you're out of sight. Once your dog will stay quietly in the crate for about 30 minutes with you mostly out of sight, you can begin leaving them crated when you're gone for short time periods and/or letting them sleep there at night. This may take several days or weeks. Step 4, Part A: Crate your dog when you leave After your dog can spend about 30 minutes in the crate without becoming anxious or afraid, you can begin leaving them crated for short periods when you leave the house. Put them in the crate using your regular command and a treat. You might also want to leave them with a few safe toys in the crate. Vary the moment during your "getting ready to leave" routine that you put your dog in the crate. Although they shouldn't be crated for a long time before you leave, you can crate them anywhere from five to 20 minutes prior to leaving. Don't make your departures emotional and prolonged—they should be matter-of-fact. Praise your dog briefly, give them a treat for entering the crate and then leave quietly. When you return home, don't reward your dog for excited behavior by responding to them in an enthusiastic way. Keep arrivals low-key to avoid increasing their anxiety over when you will return. Continue to crate your dog for short periods from time to time when you're home so they don't associate crating with being left alone. Step 4, Part B: Crate your dog at night Put your dog in the crate using your regular command and a treat. Initially, it may be a good idea to put the crate in your bedroom or nearby in a hallway, especially if you have a puppy. Puppies often need to go outside to eliminate during the night and you'll want to be able to hear your puppy when they whine to be let outside. Older dogs should also initially be kept nearby so they don't associate the crate with social isolation. Once your dog is sleeping comfortably through the night with the crate near you, you can begin to gradually move it to the location you prefer, although time spent with your dog—even sleep time—is a chance to strengthen the bond between you and your pet. Potential problems Whining: If your dog whines or cries while in the crate at night, it may be difficult to decide whether they’re whining to be let out of the crate, or whether they need to be let outside to eliminate. If you've followed the training procedures outlined above, then your dog hasn't been rewarded for whining in the past by being released from their crate. If that is the case, try to ignore the whining. If your dog is just testing you, they'll probably stop whining soon. Yelling at them or pounding on the crate will only make things worse. If the whining continues after you've ignored them for several minutes, use the phrase they associate with going outside to eliminate. If they respond and become excited, take them outside. This should be a trip with a purpose, not play time. If you're convinced that your dog doesn't need to eliminate, the best response is to ignore them until they stop whining. Don't give in; if you do, you'll teach your dog to whine loud and long to get what they want. If you've progressed gradually through the training steps and haven't done too much too fast, you'll be less likely to encounter this problem. If the problem becomes unmanageable, you may need to start the crate training process over again. Separation anxiety: Attempting to use the crate as a remedy for separation anxiety won't solve the problem. A crate may prevent your dog from being destructive, but they may get injured in an attempt to escape. Separation anxiety problems can only be resolved with counterconditioning and desensitization procedures.

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Rosie
Shih Tzu
6 Years
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Rosie
Shih Tzu
6 Years

My dog has slept well for the past five years. She has recently started whining, howling and barking at night. It’s becoming unbearable. She has always been very clingy but has not whined or howled at night until now. We are frustrated and exhausted and don’t know what to do for the best.

Darlene Stott
Darlene Stott
Dog Trainer and Groomer
104 Dog owners recommended

Hello, I apologize for the delay in reply. My advice would be to take Rosie for a veterinarian appointment. There could be a medical reason since this behavior is new and out of character. Have medical reasons ruled out first. She could have a developing eye problem for instance, that makes her nervous because she no longer sees well at night. I think it is important to check that out. A bladder issue could be a reason as well. Does she sleep in the same room as you? Make sure her bed is super comfy and inviting. You can try white noise, such as a fan (not pointed at her) for a background sound that calms her and helps her sleep. Is she getting lots of exercise? Take Rosie on a long walk at night to tire her out and help her get her sleep cycle back on track. Keep her well stimulated throughout the day with interactive toys and feeders that are fun and give her tasty rewards. Play games of fetch, too. You can also try dog appeasing pheromones that often work well to calm a dog (you can ask your vet when there). You can get a diffuser that is simply plugged into the wall beside her bed when she sleeps. All the best to you and Rosie!

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vader
Australian Shepherd
7 Weeks
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vader
Australian Shepherd
7 Weeks

Crate training when door is shut.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
841 Dog owners recommended

Hello Lyssa, Check out the article I have linked below and follow the Surprise method. Practice during the day proactively, even if that looks like an hour in the evening after work if you are not at home with pup, and on weekends. Surprise method: https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate/ At night, before it has been 2 hours (after 2 hours pup will likely need a potty trip if they wake up crying), when pup cries when you first put them into the crate, you will need to ignore the crying. It can be hard to do, but practicing the Surprise method during the day can help pup adjust sooner. 2 weeks of crying unfortunately is normal. The first three days tend to be the worst. The more consistent you are, and proactive during the day with training , the sooner puppy is likely to adjust. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Belle
Collie cross kelpie
8 Months
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Belle
Collie cross kelpie
8 Months

My dog was perfectly settled in her cage since 9 weeks old but she started her period three days ago and is just not settling on a night.
She is barking, howling, crying, digging at her cage and bed and eating her blankets. I am exhausted and tried everything! Any advice is much appreciated x

Alisha Smith
Alisha S., Dog Trainer
227 Dog owners recommended

Hi there. Unfortunately this is normal. She is in mild pain, irritable, and uncomfortable/anxious. More walks and physical exercise help with keeping dogs in heat more calm. You might also want to consider getting her a Kong or some sort of toy you can stuff with treats and give her that at night before bed. Something to keep her mind busy and active. As she approaches the end of her cycle, she will go back to normal.

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Milo
Labrador Retriever
5 Weeks
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Milo
Labrador Retriever
5 Weeks

We aren’t crate training yet to see if we can get him used to a bed, but he screams and scratches at the door all night. Is ignoring him really beneficial at his age? Or is he just genuinely too afraid to be without us?

Darlene Stott
Darlene Stott
Dog Trainer and Groomer
104 Dog owners recommended

Hello, my apologies for the delay. Not all trainers feel the same but I do not see a problem with Milo learning to sleep on a bed in your room (my dogs do the same and they sleep well all night long). If it means peace for everyone, it's all good. And yes, Milo may be missing his mom and siblings - he is pretty young to be away from them. That's another reason why letting him get used to your room is fine. Milo may like a crate; many dogs do, or at least an exercise pen area to call their own as described here: https://www.preventivevet.com/dogs/how-to-set-up-puppy-long-term-confinement-area. Great info on a crate is provided here: https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate. Good luck and all the best to Milo!

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Barry
Pug
11 Months
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Barry
Pug
11 Months

Hi, I have 2 questions if that’s okay, firstly How do I get him to stop relentlessly clawing at his crate on a morning, when I first wake up he is let out for a pee and poop then goes back in but will only sleep for another 30 minutes or so, it can be as early as 5am, he is exercised sufficiently and had plenty of toys and distractions around him! I would love a lie in!
My second is on an evening he attacks my hands, it’s not biting but it is uncomfortable I try and distract him with toys he is told firmly no but nothing works so I end up just taking him outside to try and defuse the situation!

Thank you for any help you can give me

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
841 Dog owners recommended

Hello Hazel, For the early morning barking, once you have taken pup potty and returned them to the crate, I recommend correcting the crying, since at that point its probably attention seeking. To correct pup, first, work on teaching the Quiet command during the day using the Quiet method from the article linked below. https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bark Second, during the day practice the Surprise method from the article linked below. Whenever pup stays quiet in the crate for 5 minutes, sprinkle some treats into the crate without opening it, then leave the room again. As he improves, only give the treats every 10 minutes, then 15 minutes, 20 minutes, 30 minutes, 45 minutes, 1 hour, 1.5 hour, 2, hour, 3 hour. Practice crating him during the day for 1-3 hours each day that you can. If you are home during the day, have lots of 30 minute - 1 hour long sessions with breaks between to practice this, to help pup learn sooner. Whenever he cries in the crate, tell him "Quiet". If he gets quiet - Great! Sprinkle treats in after five minutes if he stays quiet. If he continues barking or stops and starts again, spray a quick puff of air from a pet convincer at his side through the crate while calmly saying "Ah Ah", then leave again. Only use unscented air canisters, DON'T use citronella! And avoid spraying in the face. Surprise method: https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate Repeat the rewards when quiet and the corrections whenever he cries. When he cries at night or early morning, after you take pup potty and return them to the crate, or pup cries before 8 hours (so you know it's not a potty issue), tell him Quiet, and correct with the pet convincer if he doesn't become quiet and stay quiet. Don't give treats at night/morning though - practice during the day proactively to help pup learn that quiet is good, since you don't want to encourage pup to stay awake in the early morning, but to go back to sleep instead. For the biting, I recommend working on the Leave It command from the article I have linked below. Leave It: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bite Practice leave it, working up to the final steps in the article. If pup still continues to bite even after you have gotten to that point, I teach pup Out (which means leave the area) and use the section on How to Use Out to Deal with Pushy Behavior found in that article to enforce pup leaving the area. I would also give pup some entertainment in the evenings in general, either exercise that also stimulates pup mentally - agility obstacles, heeling walk with training commands practiced during the walk, a training session, ect... Or try giving pup their dinner in the form of dog food stuffed hollow chew toys, like Kongs, to keep pup entertained. Out: https://www.petful.com/behaviors/how-to-teach-a-dog-the-out-command/ Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Cooper
French Bulldog
8 Months
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Cooper
French Bulldog
8 Months

I have recently rehomef him but he cries at night. I come down when he’s quiet and sit with him til he sleeps , then couple hours later same thing and at some point he usually has widdled. Unsure how to progress. I don’t know when he cries if it is because he needs out or lonely. Please can you help

Alisha Smith
Alisha S., Dog Trainer
227 Dog owners recommended

Hello there. At this age, he should be able to hold his bladder for a full 8 hours. So he is likely crying because he wants attention. The best thing you can do is start ignoring the cries at night. He has become used to being checked on at night, so it can take about a week or longer to break this habit.

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Potter
Mixed
2 Months
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Potter
Mixed
2 Months

Newly adopted puppy from a shelter. Bought him a pen (placed near the door) so that he can sleep there at nights while the family sleeps upstairs. But the puppy whines every night, noise starting from slow whimpers to high pitched screams. I'm worried my neighbors will be unhappy about this.

My question is, do I continue to let him sleep in his pen and not go to him when he is crying out or do I bring him to sleep near my bed?

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
841 Dog owners recommended

Hello Padma, I recommend not letting pup out of the crate unless they truly need to go potty, staying consistent with that will ultimately help crate training go a lot faster, but a two week adjustment period is common. You can either keep pup's crate where it is now or move it near your bed, as long as pup stays inside. Many dogs will still cry in your room also, but for some that can make the transition easier. I would ultimately choose whichever you want long term. Are you okay with pup sleeping in the crate or on a dog bed in your room as an adult? Or do you want pup to get used to sleeping in another room without you as an adult? To help pup adjust sooner, I recommend practicing crate training during the day too some, using the Surprise method to reward pup with treats for being quiet. Only give treats during daytime practice though, and not at night. Surprise method: https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate/ Finally, at this age pup really will need to go potty at least 1-2 times during the night. When pup cries after it has been at least 2-3 hours since they last went potty, take them potty outside on a leash, without giving any food, play, or much attention - keep things as boring as possible, then return pup to the crate right after they go potty to go back to sleep. When you return them to the crate after pottying or they cry before it's been 2 hours, ignore the crying. Once pup adjusts to the crate and learns to only wake for potty needs, they should be able to hold it a bit longer (the bladder sort of goes to sleep too allowing them to hold it for longer asleep than they can once they are awake). At that point, many puppies can go as long as 5-6 hours at this age, but even then will need at least one potty trip most likely until they are a bit older. A general rule is that a puppy can often hold their bladder for the number of months they are in age plus one. That number is when they are awake and a maximum amount of time they can hold it. During the day, you want to take them potty twice that often while training. At this age that would be 2-3 hours for your 2 month old puppy. At three months it would be 3-4 hours for example. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Pumpkin
Yorkipoo
8 Weeks
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Pumpkin
Yorkipoo
8 Weeks

We just had her 4 days she won’t sleep eat drink and just cries ! Heeeeelp

Alisha Smith
Alisha S., Dog Trainer
227 Dog owners recommended

Hello. If your puppy isn't eating, this could be due to a variety of reasons but the most concerning is common puppyhood illnesses that should be evaluated by a veterinarian. Dogs of any age are resource driven, meaning they WILL EAT! I would set up an appointment with a clinic or veterinarian to rule out any medical causes of this.

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oggy
Bichon Frise
6 Weeks
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oggy
Bichon Frise
6 Weeks

even tho oggy is still pretty young to be separated from his mother but we had to take him away... tho we had him for almost a week now but he wont sleep throughout the whole night as well as whining during the day because he doesnt want to be in his corner playing , what should we do ? we want to encourage him that it is okay to play alone or be alone at night

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
841 Dog owners recommended

Hello Reine, I recommend practicing the Surprise method from the article linked below during the day. You can use that method for crate training but it can also be used to help pup learn to cope with alone time in an exercise pen or small dog-proofed room. Surprise method: https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate/ At night, you will have to ignore the crying until it is time to take pup potty outside. At this age, pup won't be able to make it through the night bladder-wise. You will either need to get up to take pup potty after it has been at least 2 hours since they last went, when they wake up crying needing to go, or confine pup in an exercise pen with a disposable real grass pad or similar indoor toilet (I recommend a grass pad if you plan to teach pup to potty outside long term), and a non-absorbent bed. I would cover the floor of the pen with the pads at first, so that their sleeping/playing area is the only area not covered. You can use something like www.primopads.com or k9ballistics.com for non-absorbent bed options. If you plan to train pup to go potty inside long term, you can follow the Exercise Pen method or one of the other methods from the article I have linked below. https://wagwalking.com/training/litter-box-train-a-chihuahua-puppy If you are taking pup outside at night to potty, ignore the crying when its not time for a potty break. Have them sleep either where you can hear them at night, or use a audio baby monitor to listen out for when they wake needing to be taken potty. Take them potty on leash and keep it as boring as possible - take pup on leash, no play, no treats, and little talk, then right back to bed after with them returning to the crate. Ignore any crying when you know their bladder is empty. It usually takes pups about two weeks to adjust if you are consistent. Practice the Surprise method during the day to help pup adjust, only giving treats during daytime practice, not at time. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Remi
Rottweiler
9 Weeks
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Remi
Rottweiler
9 Weeks

My puppy keeps whining at night and we have a crate of the right size and everything. We cover the crate with a black cover. But she whines for about an hour to and hour and 30 minutes. How can I get my dog to stop whining.

Alisha Smith
Alisha S., Dog Trainer
227 Dog owners recommended

Hello! What a cute puppy! One thing to keep in mind is that puppies are similar to human babies in the sense that they will whine and cry when they are feeling lonely. Or have any other need. This will continue until about 12-14 weeks of age. But if you keep doing what you are doing with your routine, your puppy will start to adjust quickly over the next few weeks and the crying will stop.

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Roxy
Pit bull
7 Weeks
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Roxy
Pit bull
7 Weeks

She is not food motivated nor is she treat motivated. She likes toys a lot but other then that It only has been 2 days with her

Alisha Smith
Alisha S., Dog Trainer
227 Dog owners recommended

Hello! It can take puppies about 30 days to settle into their new home. During this time you will see lots of changes. And one day she may like something, the next, not so much. Puppies this age are also very much like human babies. They will cry when they are lonely, have to go to the bathroom, are hungry, etc. This can continue until 12-14 weeks of age. The best thing you can do for that is to get them on a routine. That way they know what to expect and aren't feeling so insecure.

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Milo
Goldendoodle
8 Weeks
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Milo
Goldendoodle
8 Weeks

Breeder told us to have a playpen attached to the crate and to place pee pads in it. This way, Milo can continue what he did in the breeder's care and leave the crate to pee on the pads and then return to his crate. He starts out in the crate but soon moves to the pen and sleeps on the floor next to the pee pads. He has cried a lot at night every few hours for at least an hour, but we didn't go downstairs to him. How can we improve this scenario as his howling is so hard to take..

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
841 Dog owners recommended

Hello Susan, Check out the article I have linked below and follow the Surprise method. Practice during the day proactively, even if that looks like an hour in the evening after work if you are not at home with pup, and on weekends. If you are home during the day, practice often with supervised free time out of the pen between the sessions. This method can be used in the exercise pen as well as a closed crate (the point is to reward pup for quietness in a confined space while they are alone). Surprise method: https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate/ At night, when pup cries you will need to ignore the crying. It can be hard to do, but practicing the Surprise method during the day can help pup adjust sooner. 2 weeks of crying unfortunately is normal. The first three days tend to be the worst. The more consistent you are, and proactive during the day with training , the sooner puppy is likely to adjust. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Wyatt
Springerdoodle
1 Year
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Wyatt
Springerdoodle
1 Year

My adopted dog has slept successfully alone in our family room in his crate for 5 months. The last few nights he's been up in the middle of the night every few hours -- with a single bark and then whining. He's kept us awake for hours. Because this was new behavior, I did take him out to pee and made sure there was nothing wrong. I can't see that it's anything with his health as he hikes and runs and plays with us all day. We cuddle with him. He gets lots of love.

My only thought is that with Covid, he's rarely alone. Should we ignore his barks and whining all night long? Do we get up and tell him to go back to his bed? (We never locked his crate before. He's always been able to get in and out. Maybe that was a mistake, but it wasn't a problem until now.) When we go to bed, we tell him to go "night, night" and he always goes to his crate. He did so tonight, but after an hour he is up again with a bark and whining. I'd love some advice. This is becoming a huge problem. He's actually a 28 pound springerdoodle/rat terrier mix. 18 months old

Alisha Smith
Alisha S., Dog Trainer
227 Dog owners recommended

Hello! Yes it seems the moment they wake up once, it becomes a strange habit that is difficult to get rid of. Never mind the hundreds of nights they slept alone without making a sound. The best thing you can do is to power through and ignore it. Because you responding to it will start to become habitual as well. So for the next week, I would lock him in his crate at night. And cover 3 sides of it with a blanket to make it extra sleep inducing. Some people experiment with a fan or white noise machine and have success with that as well. Dogs, like human children, go through strange phases and this is just one of them. But hopefully after a few weeks, he will go back to his normal self.

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Fazer
Staffordshire Bull Terrier
8 Years
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Fazer
Staffordshire Bull Terrier
8 Years

My daughter has left home we’re he stay in her room now he can’t stay in any other due to health reasons an now he is crying right through the night day 6

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
841 Dog owners recommended

Hello Elaine, First, work on teaching the Quiet command during the day using the Quiet method from the article linked below. https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bark Second, choose where you want pup to sleep at night now and either close off that room with doors, baby gates, or have pup sleep in a crate there. During the day practice the Surprise method from the article linked below with pup in that room or crate and everyone else out of the area. Whenever pup stays quiet in the crate/area for 5 minutes, return briefly and sprinkle some treats into the crate/area without opening it, then leave the room again. As he improves, only give the treats every 10 minutes, then 15 minutes, 20 minutes, 30 minutes, 45 minutes, 1 hour, 1.5 hour, 2, hour, 3 hour. Practice crating/confining him there during the day for 1-3 hours each day that you can. If you are home during the day, have lots of 30 minute - 1 hour long sessions with breaks between to practice this, to help pup learn sooner. Whenever he cries in the crate/area, tell him "Quiet". If he gets quiet - Great! Sprinkle treats in after five minutes if he stays quiet. If he continues barking or stops and starts again, spray a quick puff of air from a pet convincer at his side through the crate/going into the area while calmly saying "Ah Ah", then leave again. Only use unscented air canisters, DON'T use citronella! And avoid spraying in the face. Surprise method: https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate Repeat the rewards when quiet and the corrections whenever he cries. Practice for a few days until he is doing well during the day. You can either continue what you are currently doing at night during this process or go ahead and jump into what I explain below for night time training - waiting until the day is good before starting the night or starting the night and day both at the same time. When he cries at night (in the crate/confined area - where he needs to be sleeping for now) before it has been 8 (or less if pup's bladder function is decreased with age) hours (so you know it's not a potty issue), tell him Quiet, and correct with the pet convincer if he doesn't become quiet and stay quiet. If you go straight to nights and days like this you will probably have about 3 rough nights, with lots of correcting before he gets quiet - don't give in and let him out or this will take much longer, but the overall process will go faster if you can stay strong. You may want to pretend like you are all going to bed two hours early and read in bed with the lights off - anticipating having to get up a lot the first couple of hours to correct - so that you don't loose as much sleep. Don't skip the daytime practice with rewards, that will ultimately help pup learn not only to be quiet but how to calm themselves and relax in that area also. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Mandy
Beagle
12 Years
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Mandy
Beagle
12 Years

OMG, i can’t sleep in my bed because of the crying at night. As soon as she sees me hit the steps it starts and I end up giving in and sleeping in another bedroom. But she wants on and off bed. I just want to sleep with my husband again. We have been married 4 years. I’ve had her sleeping with me for years. Help.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
841 Dog owners recommended

Hello Cherie, First, work on teaching the Quiet command during the day using the Quiet method from the article linked below. https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bark Second, during the day practice the Surprise method from the article linked below. Either crate pup or set up a gate or other way of confining pup to the area where you want her to sleep at night. Whenever pup stays quiet in the crate/area for 5 minutes, sprinkle some treats into the crate without opening it, then leave the room again. As she improves, only give the treats every 10 minutes, then 15 minutes, 20 minutes, 30 minutes, 45 minutes, 1 hour, 1.5 hour, 2, hour, 3 hour. Practice crating/confining her away from you during the day for 1-3 hours each day that you can. Whenever she cries in the crate/area, tell her "Quiet". If she gets quiet - Great! Sprinkle treats in after five minutes if she stays quiet. If she continues barking or stops and starts again, spray a quick puff of air from a pet convincer at her side through the crate while calmly saying "Ah Ah", then leave again. Only use unscented air canisters, DON'T use citronella! And avoid spraying in the face. surprise method: https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate Repeat the rewards when quiet and the corrections whenever she cries. Practice for a few days until she is doing well being alone during the day. Continue what you are currently doing at night during this process. Once she is doing well during the day, crate/confine her alone there at night too. When she cries at night before it has been 8 hours (or whatever amount of time you know she can hold it until at this age reasonably based on her history), tell her Quiet, and correct with the pet convincer if she doesn't become quiet and stay quiet. At night only correct or ignore the crying. Don't give treats during nighttime practice, only during daytime practice. Stay strong and consistent. Know that you're marriage and emotional health is more important than her being able to sleep with you. She can adjust if you are consistent. You being happy and well rested in your own bed is ultimately better for your relationship with her also. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Mollie
Jackahuahua
3 Years
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Mollie
Jackahuahua
3 Years

Hi. I have recently rescued Mollie. She was completely Unsocialised and is highly anxious. Her previous owner let her sleep with her every night but I need to train her to spend the night alone. I have managed to get her to go to sleep in her own bed but she wakes at 4am, cries relentlessly and scratches at the door. She also pees or poops. We are only four days in and the length of time she sleeps is increasing. I wait as long as I can to go to her this morning she woke at 4am and I went to her at 5am to start the day, but I would like it to be 6am. Can you offer any advice.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
841 Dog owners recommended

Hello Yvonne, I recommend crate training her to help with the potty training and so that you can practice her having some gradual alone time during the day, where you work her through her anxiety about being alone. If you are opposed to the crate training, you can also block off the area where you want her to sleep, using something like a baby gate or exercise pen, and practice this method during the day that way also. The crate will also help with the potty training though. Once pup is fully potty trained, used to sleeping alone, and more confident you can transition back to her sleeping in the room where the crate was by herself again with the crate door open. Surprise method: https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate At night, if you don't crate train you may need to take her when she wakes, due to the accidents, but if you do, keep the trip super boring and don't feed her. After she goes potty, return inside, place her back into the crate, pen or gated area, and return to bed, ignoring any protests until its the time you want her to learn to sleep until, so that she will learn to go back to sleep. Once she has learned to go back to sleep after several days, she will likely sleep through that 4/5 time also if she isn't being fed that early. If barking continues to be an issue after several days of doing the above, you can correct the barking calmly with something like a puff of air blown at her side briefly (not citronella and not in the face), but I only recommend that if things don't continue improving, and it sounds like pup is still adjusting and will improve without the need for corrections given more time. Expect it to take a couple weeks for pup to adjust. The more consistent you are the sooner she should adjust (and it sounds like you are likely already being pretty consistent with this, which is good). Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Coco
Russian
1 Month
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Coco
Russian
1 Month

My dog was active but 2 weeks ago I gave him a warm bath, because coco got fleas.
Its 15 degrees here. I dried her with hair dryer to make sure she doesn’t get cold. But the day after she got motions and lazy. She recovered but she is not active before. coco is too lazy. she just sits all the day and doesn’t bark. She cries at night.
I’m so upset why coco is not active, doesn't respond to me even, doesn’t bark. Cries at night.

Alisha Smith
Alisha S., Dog Trainer
227 Dog owners recommended

Hi. This sounds like something you may want to discuss with your veterinarian. Your dog is still very young and could have some health issues going on. That is what it sounds like to me.

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Anna and Elsa
Mixed
10 Weeks
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Anna and Elsa
Mixed
10 Weeks

I am fostering them and I am trying to get them to stop crying all night while in there cage. They are sisters and sleep together but one of them whines all night

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
841 Dog owners recommended

Hello Colby, Check out the Surprise method from the article linked below and practice crate training with that method often for 30 minute -1 hour periods during the day to help pup adjust to being alone more quickly. https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate At night, ignore any crying unless it has been at least 2 hours since pup last went potty. When it has been at least 2 hours and pup wakes up crying, take pup potty on a leash and keep the trip super boring - no treats, talking, or play, and return them immediately to the crate after they go, ignoring any crying that happens when you return them. Keeping trips boring helps pup learn to only wake at night for potty needs and not play or food, to begin sleeping longer sooner. Pups will need to go potty 1-2 times at night right now at this age, even when fully crate trained, but being consistent, practicing crating during the day, and keeping trips outside boring, can help pups wake less at night, cry less when first crated, and start sleeping through the night sooner as their bladder capacity increases with age. Know that its normal for puppies to cry in the first two weeks. The first three to five nights tend to be the worse, with most puppies gradually getting better and better after that. how long has that puppy been crying?/How long have you been fostering them? Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Mollie
Cocker Spaniel
13 Weeks
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Mollie
Cocker Spaniel
13 Weeks

Barking to be let out of her crate in the morning. Mollie goes to bed well and can sleep through to 7am but she has started barking loudly from 6.15am. It's persistent loud barking, not whining. Usually it is a noise from outside or our cats who disturb her and there is nothing we can do about that. I have used an alarm, set for 7am to teach her that we will give her attention when the alarm goes off and this has worked sometimes.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
841 Dog owners recommended

Hello Helen, How long has it been since she last went party when the 6am wake up happens? If it's been more than 4 hours, pup will genuinely need to go potty when she is awake (even though she might be able to hold it longer if nothing woke her up to begin with). I recommend either crating her somewhere that stays quieter until you come get her at 7am, and listening out with an audio baby monitor for the occasional potty wake up that can still happen at this age, or taking her potty when she wakes and barks at 6am, keeping the potty trip super boring - on leash, no treats or play, and returning her to the crate right after without feeding her yet, until the time when you want her to learn to sleep until (or a bit after if she barks that whole time). You want her to learn to settle back down after she empties her bladder outside, so that she is less motivated to want out of the crate for any reason other than a potty need, and for her internal clock to reset to eating at the time you want her to normally have breakfast at, so her body isn't waking her up from hunger - if she is being fed a bit early right now due to persistence once awake. I recommend practicing the Surprise method from the article I have linked below during the day to refresh quietness in the crate also. Only give treats during daytime crating practice, not in the early morning or night wake ups. You can also skip to the part where pup's crate door is closed and the treat rewards are a bit more spread out if she is at the point where she is normally calm and quiet in the crate during the day - you simply want to build a stronger habit of being quiet in the crate in general by rewarding the quietness in the daytime, and ignore the barking whenever pup doesn't have to go potty, keeping any attention you have to give in early morning or night super boring, only addressing the actual need - like going potty. Surprise method: https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Muffin
Golden Retriever
2 Months
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Muffin
Golden Retriever
2 Months

1. He barks and trues to bite sometimes when I say no to him. How do i stop that?
2. He wakes up in the middle of the night and starts whining to open the door of the room even after potty/piss break. What do I do?
How do i train him to stop doing this or how do i train him to stop when i command

Alisha Smith
Alisha S., Dog Trainer
227 Dog owners recommended

Hello! I am sending you quite a bit of information on potty and crate training just in case you want to use the crate to help with potty training. Potty training: Know Your Pup. As you spend time with your puppy, learn your puppy’s love language. Just as some people prefer gifts, touch, or time spent together, puppies can be the same way. Some puppies love praise or pets, while others prefer treats. As you get to know your puppy, consider what reward your puppy loves the most. Create a Daily Schedule. It is best to have a routine for your puppy. A schedule helps them understand when to eat, play, and “go to the bathroom.” Your puppy should go out frequently and the routine should be the same every time. When? Start the day by taking your puppy outside, and repeating based on age and ability. They should also go out after napping, chewing, playing, and within 10 to 15 minutes of eating. Although some puppies can sleep for seven hours, it is important to set an alarm and take your pup out during the night. When you do, don’t make a fuss about it. Quietly take them outside with minimal stimulation and light. Praise them if they go to the bathroom and gently return them to their bed or crate. You don’t want them to get stimulated and ready to play in the middle of the night! As you get to know your puppy, you will become aware of their individual habits. Click here to learn more about house training schedules for puppies. Where? Take your puppy to a specific area to urinate or defecate. Be consistent. You can create an area by using urine-soaked paper or bowel movements to help create an aroma to stimulate your puppy. How? Take your puppy out on a leash so they can focus on the desired activity. This will help prevent them from wandering off to play. Once your puppy is in the selected area, use your verbal cue, such as “Hurry Up,” “Poopies,” “Go tinkle,” or any phrase your puppy responds to. What? Know the signs that your puppy has to go to the bathroom. Every animal may have a different “I gotta go” gesture, which often include restlessness, sniffing around, circling, scratching at the door, barking, and, eventually, squatting. At the first sign that your pup has to go, calmly and quickly take them outside to their bathroom spot. Deal with Accidents. Accidents are a normal part of house training a puppy. What to Do If you see your puppy in the process of urinating or defecating inappropriately, calmly and quickly interrupt them in the act. Tell them to stop (either by a jarring sound or command), and immediately take them to an appropriate location for elimination. After your puppy goes to the bathroom, lavishly praise them and offer a treat. Thoroughly clean up accidents, so your puppy is not attracted to this area again. Create a consistent feeding and watering schedule. Depending on the age of your puppy, they will eat three to four times a day. A consistent feeding routine can create a regular bathroom schedule. Take away water about 2 hours before bedtime. Learn more about ideal dog schedules here. What NOT to Do Don’t punish your puppy when they have an accident. At that point, it is too late. When a puppy has an accident in the house and they walk away, within seconds they have already forgotten about what they did. Taking them to the scene of the crime and yelling and/or rubbing their nose in it does not help and, in fact, can harm your puppy! Supervise. The best thing you can do is to prevent accidents and the best way to do this is to supervise your puppy at all times. You can tether your puppy to your waist with a five or six-foot leash and carefully observe them for signs that they need to go to the bathroom. If you can’t supervise, then crate or confine your puppy. The more accidents your puppy has in the house, the more confusing it will be for them and this can delay house training. Reward, Reward, Reward. It is important to give your puppy a reward for their good behavior. This can be for commands such as sitting and coming to you, or for appropriately eliminating outside. In a puppy, a reward can be a couple kibbles of puppy food or a treat, such as a small piece of meat. The treat should be exciting for them and only available as a result of good behavior. Crate training can take days or weeks, depending on your dog's age, temperament and past experiences. It's important to keep two things in mind while crate training: The crate should always be associated with something pleasant and training should take place in a series of small steps. Don't go too fast. Step 1: Introduce your dog to the crate Place the crate in an area of your house where the family spends a lot of time, such as the family room. Put a soft blanket or towel in the crate. Take the door off and let the dog explore the crate at their leisure. Some dogs will be naturally curious and start sleeping in the crate right away. If yours isn't one of them: Bring them over to the crate and talk to them in a happy tone of voice. Make sure the crate door is open and secured so that it won't hit your dog and frighten them. Encourage your dog to enter the crate by dropping some small food treats nearby, then just inside the door, and finally, all the way inside the crate. If they refuse to go all the way in at first, that's OK; don't force them to enter. Continue tossing treats into the crate until your dog will walk calmly all the way into the crate to get the food. If they aren’t interested in treats, try tossing a favorite toy in the crate. This step may take a few minutes or as long as several days. Step 2: Feed your dog meals in the crate After introducing your dog to the crate, begin feeding them their regular meals near the crate. This will create a pleasant association with the crate. If your dog is readily entering the crate when you begin Step 2, place the food dish all the way at the back of the crate. If they remain reluctant to enter, put the dish only as far inside as they will readily go without becoming fearful or anxious. Each time you feed them, place the dish a little further back in the crate. Once your dog is standing comfortably in the crate to eat their meal, you can close the door while they’re eating. The first time you do this, open the door as soon as they finish their meal. With each successive feeding, leave the door closed a few minutes longer, until they’re staying in the crate for 10 minutes or so after eating. If they begin to whine to be let out, you may have increased the length of time too quickly. Next time, try leaving them in the crate for a shorter time period. If they do whine or cry in the crate, don’t let them out until they stop. Otherwise, they'll learn that the way to get out of the crate is to whine, so they'll keep doing it. Step 3: Practice with longer crating periods After your dog is eating their regular meals in the crate with no sign of fear or anxiety, you can confine them there for short time periods while you're home. Call them over to the crate and give them a treat. Give them a command to enter, such as "crate." Encourage them by pointing to the inside of the crate with a treat in your hand. After your dog enters the crate, praise them, give them the treat and close the door. Sit quietly near the crate for five to 10 minutes and then go into another room for a few minutes. Return, sit quietly again for a short time and then let them out. Repeat this process several times a day, gradually increasing the length of time you leave them in the crate and the length of time you're out of sight. Once your dog will stay quietly in the crate for about 30 minutes with you mostly out of sight, you can begin leaving them crated when you're gone for short time periods and/or letting them sleep there at night. This may take several days or weeks. Step 4, Part A: Crate your dog when you leave After your dog can spend about 30 minutes in the crate without becoming anxious or afraid, you can begin leaving them crated for short periods when you leave the house. Put them in the crate using your regular command and a treat. You might also want to leave them with a few safe toys in the crate. Vary the moment during your "getting ready to leave" routine that you put your dog in the crate. Although they shouldn't be crated for a long time before you leave, you can crate them anywhere from five to 20 minutes prior to leaving. Don't make your departures emotional and prolonged—they should be matter-of-fact. Praise your dog briefly, give them a treat for entering the crate and then leave quietly. When you return home, don't reward your dog for excited behavior by responding to them in an enthusiastic way. Keep arrivals low-key to avoid increasing their anxiety over when you will return. Continue to crate your dog for short periods from time to time when you're home so they don't associate crating with being left alone. Step 4, Part B: Crate your dog at night Put your dog in the crate using your regular command and a treat. Initially, it may be a good idea to put the crate in your bedroom or nearby in a hallway, especially if you have a puppy. Puppies often need to go outside to eliminate during the night and you'll want to be able to hear your puppy when they whine to be let outside. Older dogs should also initially be kept nearby so they don't associate the crate with social isolation. Once your dog is sleeping comfortably through the night with the crate near you, you can begin to gradually move it to the location you prefer, although time spent with your dog—even sleep time—is a chance to strengthen the bond between you and your pet. Potential problems Whining: If your dog whines or cries while in the crate at night, it may be difficult to decide whether they’re whining to be let out of the crate, or whether they need to be let outside to eliminate. If you've followed the training procedures outlined above, then your dog hasn't been rewarded for whining in the past by being released from their crate. If that is the case, try to ignore the whining. If your dog is just testing you, they'll probably stop whining soon. Yelling at them or pounding on the crate will only make things worse. If the whining continues after you've ignored them for several minutes, use the phrase they associate with going outside to eliminate. If they respond and become excited, take them outside. This should be a trip with a purpose, not play time. If you're convinced that your dog doesn't need to eliminate, the best response is to ignore them until they stop whining. Don't give in; if you do, you'll teach your dog to whine loud and long to get what they want. If you've progressed gradually through the training steps and haven't done too much too fast, you'll be less likely to encounter this problem. If the problem becomes unmanageable, you may need to start the crate training process over again. Separation anxiety: Attempting to use the crate as a remedy for separation anxiety won't solve the problem. A crate may prevent your dog from being destructive, but they may get injured in an attempt to escape. Separation anxiety problems can only be resolved with counterconditioning and desensitization procedures. Here is information on nipping/biting. Nipping: Puppies may nip for a number of reasons. Nipping can be a means of energy release, getting attention, interacting and exploring their environment or it could be a habit that helps with teething. Whatever the cause, nipping can still be painful for the receiver, and it’s an action that pet parents want to curb. Some ways to stop biting before it becomes a real problem include: Using teething toys. Distracting with and redirecting your dog’s biting to safe and durable chew toys is one way to keep them from focusing their mouthy energies to an approved location and teach them what biting habits are acceptable. Making sure your dog is getting the proper amount of exercise. Exercise is huge. Different dogs have different exercise needs based on their breed and size, so check with your veterinarian to make sure that yours is getting the exercise they need. Dogs—and especially puppies—use their playtime to get out extra energy. With too much pent-up energy, your pup may resort to play biting. Having them expel their energy in positive ways - including both physical and mental exercise - will help mitigate extra nips. Being consistent. Training your dog takes patience, practice and consistency. With the right training techniques and commitment, your dog will learn what is preferred behavior. While sometimes it may be easier to let a little nipping activity go, be sure to remain consistent in your cues and redirection. That way, boundaries are clear to your dog. Using positive reinforcement. To establish preferred behaviors, use positive reinforcement when your dog exhibits the correct behavior. For instance, praise and treat your puppy when they listen to your cue to stop unwanted biting as well as when they choose an appropriate teething toy on their own. Saying “Ouch!” The next time your puppy becomes too exuberant and nips you, say “OUCH!” in a very shocked tone and immediately stop playing with them. Your puppy should learn - just as they did with their littermates - that their form of play has become unwanted. When they stop, ensure that you follow up with positive reinforcement by offering praise, treat and/or resuming play. Letting every interaction with your puppy be a learning opportunity. While there are moments of dedicated training time, every interaction with your dog can be used as a potential teaching moment.

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Apollo
Chiweenie
7 Weeks
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Apollo
Chiweenie
7 Weeks

my puppy constantly whines .. if i put him in the bed with me, he whines, if i put him on the floor, he whines. it’s constant and all throughout the night keeping me awake a lot. how can i help him at night or soothe his whining. ?

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
841 Dog owners recommended

Hello Taylor, At this age pup is adjusting to a world without his siblings constantly around. As hard as it can be, this usually just takes time. Check out the article linked below and the Surprise method. During times when pup needs to be alone, you can practice rewarding pup when they get quiet for even a second, to help pup make the connection between self-soothing and rewards, to learn a bit more independence. Also, know that the first two weeks tend to simply be an adjustment period. Surprise method: https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Duchess
Maltese
5 Years
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Duchess
Maltese
5 Years

She all of a sudden wakes up extremely early, wants fed, and won’t stop barking. She usually gets up around 6, but lately it’s been 4, which is way too early for us. I was recently remotely learning for 4 month and just went back to in person school. I was home every day until Monday and would only leave the house for 1-3 hours. This behavior just started on Thursday. I want to stop with attention-seeking behavior and hope this isn’t the beginning stages of separation anxiety.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
841 Dog owners recommended

Hello Leah, There are a couple of option to try. You can either ignore pup barking until 6 (when you normally want to get up) - which will probably mean an hour or two of barking for a few days until pup learns to just go back to sleep until breakfast. If pup isn't crate trained, I also recommend crate training because it will be very hard to ignore pup and not risk them having a pee accident if they are not crated at night, or can't be placed in the crate when they begin barking, so they can't get to you. If not crate trained, check out the Surprise method from the article linked below. This can be a good exercise for building a bit of independence while you are home and out of the room also. Surprise method: https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate Another option is to correct the crying once you return pup to the crate after a potty trip (it's been more than 8 hours since they last went potty), or to correct pup initially for barking without the potty trip if they don't need a potty trip (it's been less than 8 hours since they last went potty). To correct pup, first, work on teaching the Quiet command during the day using the Quiet method from the article linked below. This is important because you want pup to understand that quietness is the expectation and for them to know how to quiet themselves before correcting them if they choose not to. https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bark Second, during the day I still recommend practicing the Surprise method from the article linked below. Whenever pup stays quiet in the crate for 5 minutes, sprinkle some treats into the crate without opening it, then leave the room again. As she improves, only give the treats every 10 minutes, then 15 minutes, 20 minutes, 30 minutes, 45 minutes, 1 hour, 1.5 hour, 2, hour, 3 hour. Practice crating her during the day for 1-3 hours each day that you can while you are home also. If you are home during the day, have lots of 30 minute - 1 hour long sessions with breaks between to practice this, to help pup learn sooner. Whenever she cries in the crate, tell her "Quiet". If she gets quiet - Great! Sprinkle treats in after five minutes if she stays quiet. If she continues barking or stops and starts again, spray a quick puff of air from a pet convincer at her side through the crate while calmly saying "Ah Ah", then leave again. Only use unscented air canisters, DON'T use citronella! And avoid spraying in the face. Surprise method: https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate Repeat the rewards when quiet and the corrections whenever she cries. When she cries at night or early morning, after you take pup potty and return them to the crate, or pup cries before 7/8 hours (so you know it's not a potty issue), tell her Quiet, and correct with the pet convincer if she doesn't become quiet and stay quiet. Don't give treats at night/morning though - practice during the day proactively to help pup learn that quiet is good, since you don't want to encourage pup to stay awake in the early morning, but to go back to sleep instead. When pup is awake she will generally need to go potty if its been 8 hours. Once pup learns to go right back to sleep instead of waking all the way because they have learned not to bark, then they can likely hold it for up to 10 hours at night. Being awake makes them have to pee sooner though, so they will need a potty trip before sending them back to bed if they wake and its been a while. Keep that potty trip as completely boring as possible - take pup on leash, keep your tone monotone and mostly quiet, no treats, no play, no breakfast yet, then straight back to bed after. You don't want pup to find that trip to be a reason to wake up unless they truly need to go potty. If pup is unable to hold their bladder for at least 8 hours overnight, I recommend speaking with your vet since something medical leading to more frequent peeing or pooping could be to blame for the wakeups, and I am not a vet. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Snowball
Shiatzu-poodle
9 Years
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Snowball
Shiatzu-poodle
9 Years

He used to go in crate and night willingly and sleep. He now pulls back and cries throughout the night

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
841 Dog owners recommended

Hello Karen, Because of his age and how recent the behavior is, I would actually start with a trip to your vet to see if pup is having any issues with holding their bladder or bowels at night, their vision is diminishing, hearing diminishing, mental decline happening, or some type of pain that's making the crate set up uncomfortable for pup. If there is a medical issue going on, then the crate set up may need to be addressed, or the medical issue managed when possible, to help pup feel less fearful or uncomfortable in the crate. You may even need to change the space into something like an exercise pen with a firm bed to allow pup to feel more at ease, depending on the specific issue - like joint pain and the need to spread out more. I would also think about whether anything has happened while pup was in the crate or similar, crate like environment. to your knowledge to make the crate scary. If so, I would go back to some basics of helping the crate be pleasant again, by practicing the methods from the article I have linked below. https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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