How to Train a Puppy to Stop Barking at Night

Medium
2-6 Weeks
Behavior

Introduction

You’re curled up in your bed, peacefully dreaming of the great times you’ll have with your puppy, when suddenly she starts barking her head off. You hurry to her side, thinking she must be hurt or sick. As soon as you get near her, she stops barking and wags happily at you. Your puppy got exactly what she wanted: your attention. Many puppies bark at night because they feel scared or lonely in their crate. By training your puppy to stop barking during the night, you can get a good night’s sleep and stop the worry.

Defining Tasks

It’s important to remember that very young puppies are rarely able to sleep through the night. They have little bladders and are used to having their mother and litter mates nearby for company. It can take several weeks for your puppy to become accustomed to the new environment and secure enough to sleep through the night. Keep in mind that a new puppy is just like a new baby. You’ll need to be patient with her and expect a few sleepless nights.

Getting Started

Be prepared to ignore some of your puppy’s barking. Get used to her noises and learn to recognize when she is distressed and when she just wants some attention. Invest in a crate that suits your puppy’s size so she can stretch and turn around, but still be comforted by a space her size. Keeping the crate in your bedroom is a good way to provide your puppy with a comforting environment as well.

The Alarm Clock Method

Most Recommended
2 Votes
Step
1
Early morning is still night
Some puppies are able to sleep through most of the night, until the first rays of sun hit their crate. If your puppy is an early riser, you can teach her that early morning is still technically nighttime with the use of an alarm clock.
Step
2
Wake up before your puppy
Set an alarm clock to go off about half an hour before your puppy typically wakes up. It should be loud enough so it wakes both you and your pup.
Step
3
Keep things calm
Stay very quiet as you greet your puppy. Reward her for staying quiet, if she does, and calmly go through your morning routine with her. Let her outside to do her business, get her breakfast, follow a typical routine, just without any excitement.
Step
4
Make her wait
Set the alarm for the same time the next day, but wait for a few seconds before greeting your puppy and letting her out of the crate. Reward her if she stays quiet until you let her out.
Step
5
Sleep in a little longer
On the third day, bring the alarm forward a couple of minutes and make your puppy sleep a little bit longer before waking her up and calmly going about the morning routine.
Step
6
Alternate the changes
Repeat the process every day, either bringing the time forward or making your puppy wait a few additional seconds before letting her out, until you reach an acceptable wake-up time. Through this process, you are teaching your puppy that she doesn't need to make noise to wake you up and that mornings aren't all that exciting anyway. The combination should train her to sleep nicely into the morning.
Recommend training method?

The Crate Training Method

Effective
3 Votes
Step
1
Make her crate a soothing environment
You want your puppy to feel comfortable and calm when she is in her crate. Put soft, cozy bedding on the bottom of the crate. You can also use scents, like pheromones or objects from her previous home to make her feel more content.
Step
2
Pick a cozy spot
The location of your puppy's crate will have a lot to do with how comfortable she feels in it. Place her crate in your bedroom. If your nighttime movements disturb her, you can try draping a thin blanket over the top of the crate.
Step
3
Get your puppy used to the crate
In the beginning, your puppy may react to the crate like you are putting her in puppy jail and abandoning her to sleep or leave the house. Choose small portions of the day to put your puppy into the crate while you are still in the house, so she doesn't associate the crate with being abandoned.
Step
4
Make the crate a place where good things happen
Supply your puppy with things she likes while she is in the crate. Give her attention, treats, or toys to play with. You can even make the crate part of her routine by feeding her meals while she is inside.
Step
5
Reinforce the crate as the sleeping spot
If your puppy falls asleep somewhere, gently carry her to her crate and shut the door with her inside. This process will make her associate the crate with sleeping.
Step
6
Reward your puppy for using the crate
If your puppy goes into the crate on her own, give her big rewards, such as extra special training treats or gentle affection. You want to stay calm though, so she doesn't connect her crate to play time.
Step
7
Be patient
Over time, crate training will make your puppy feel comforted by her crate, rather than punished. After a couple of weeks, she will associate the crate with pleasant feelings and stop crying for your attention during the night.
Recommend training method?

The Schedule Method

Least Recommended
1 Vote
Step
1
Set up a schedule for your pup
If your puppy gets used to doing certain things at certain times, she will be expecting bedtime and be less likely to fuss. In the beginning, try to keep the schedule as consistent as possible for your puppy until she becomes familiar with the routine.
Step
2
Keep your puppy busy in the evening
Puppies love to sleep, but if you let your little one nap the evening away, she'll be awake and ready to play at bedtime. Play with your puppy in the evening, take her for a walk, or give her a stimulating toy to tire her out before bed.
Step
3
Choose designated dinner and bed times
Decide what time you want your puppy to go to bed and then select a dinner time that is a few hours before bedtime. You should also pick up her water after she finishes eating. The last thing before bed should be a trip outside so she can relieve herself.
Step
4
Bed means bed
At bedtime, confine your puppy to her crate. She will likely be most comfortable in your bedroom. However, if you don't want your puppy in the room with you, crate her elsewhere but provide something that makes noise, such as a fan or a white noise machine. Keep in mind that if your puppy is in another room, you will need to be more alert for signals that your puppy needs to go out to the bathroom.
Step
5
Make nighttime trips as calm as possible
Most young puppies can't make it through the night without a trip to the potty. Keep trips outside as calm as possible. The less stimulation your puppy gets, the better the chance she'll go back to sleep without barking or howling. Try not to talk to her or give her attention. As soon as she is back in bed, go back to bed yourself.
Step
6
Be strong and ignore false signals
When you know your puppy doesn't need to go outside to the bathroom, ignore her noises. If you pay attention to her, you will only encourage her to keep barking or howling. It can be incredibly difficult to ignore a little puppy's cries, but be strong and you will teach her to calm herself down and sleep quietly through the night.
Recommend training method?

Success Stories and Training Questions

Training Questions and Answers

Question
Milo
Crestepoo
8 Weeks
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Question
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Milo
Crestepoo
8 Weeks

My dog keeps barking in the middle of the night. We tried ignoring him, but he continues to bark louder and more. We can’t let him do that because we live in an apartment and it will disturb our neighbors. Do you have any advice?

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
620 Dog owners recommended

Hello Nghi, First, practice the Surprise method from the article linked below during the day to help pup adjust quicker. https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate Know that a puppy this age will need to go potty a couple of times at night also, so if it's been at least 2 hours since pup last went when they wake, take pup potty on a leash, keep the trip as boring as possible - no play or treats, then put pup back into the crate to go back to bed after. I highly recommend ignoring the barking at night, in addition to practicing with the treats for being quiet proactively in the crate for a lot of short sessions during the day, to help pup make the transition quicker. The most consistent you are the quicker it will go. If you have somewhere you can stay with pup for a long weekend that won't disturb neighbors, you may even want to do that while teaching this. That's generally what's recommended when puppies are this young and simply needing to learn how to adjust. There is another protocol that is used with older puppies and dogs. I don't usually recommend it for puppies this young but it can be tried when you have no other option. 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 (in the crate - where he needs to be sleeping for now) before it has been 2-3 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 because that can cause issues, but DO practice with treats during the day for night training to be more effective. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Anous
Poodle x boomer
15 Weeks
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Anous
Poodle x boomer
15 Weeks

Hi, its now the 4th day we have him here, but we don’t really know what to do. We have to sleep in the living room, otherwise he will not constantly bark. But even when we sleep in the living room he will still bark, once or twice, and then stop. We don’t want to put his crate in the bedroom, so we feel like we don’t really have an other option. Can you please give advice for this. I do let him rest in the crate through at day time, and then he only whines and barks if we are in the same room.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
620 Dog owners recommended

Hello Joudia, First, check out the the Surprise method from the article linked below. I suggest following that method during the day to teach quietness in the crate when you aren't so tired. Surprise method: https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate Only give treats and use the Surprise method during the daytime. At night there are a couple of other things you can try: 1. Put him to bed a bit early (everyone else go to bed and do things like read so the house is quiet but you aren't exhausted and ready to go to sleep yet if he barks for a couple hours - ignore the barking and do NOT go in the den or sleep with him. Only go to him if it has been at least 4 hours since he last pottied when he cries. Get everyone ear plugs for this period. Any potty trips at night or early morning should be super boring, on leash, without play or treats, then straight back to the crate after. Two weeks of being firm about letting him cry it out at night and working on the Surprise method during the day works for most puppies - this approach feels gentler than option #2 but takes longer generally. After the three nights of being firm most puppies will cry for about 30 minutes for the next two weeks before going to sleep for the night, then stop crying in the crate normally after that. Those first three nights can involve long crying spells though and you have to be firm and consistent for th training to work best. #2 The second option is to discipline the barking. Work on the Surprise method during the day so he will understand how to be quiet in the crate and be rewarded for that. When he cries, use a small rolled up towel with rubber bands around it to keep it rolled or a pet convincer to interrupt the barking. You can either tell him "Ah Ah", and bump the towel against the crate to interrupt him, then leave again, or tell him "Ah Ah" and spray a small puff of unscented air through the crate wires at his side (NOT face), then leave. During the daytime when he stays quiet for a few minutes after doing this, then return and sprinkle a few treats through the crate wires as a reward for quietness, then leave again. Repeat correcting whenever he barks and cries, rewarding when he is quiet, and do all of this with a calm attitude and not in anger or excitement. At night only correct - don't give food. Only use unscented air. Don't use citronella - it lingers too long to not be confusing and is too harsh for a dog's sensitive nose. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Question
Luna
Shorkie
4 Months
1 found helpful
Question
1 found helpful
Luna
Shorkie
4 Months

My family just gave Luna to me for Christmas-shes a Shih tzu x Yorkie. They have had her for almost 2 months and she's been doing well with training- she's even been sleeping through the night for them, but not for me. I'm guessing its the change in routine (placement of kennel, me being around, its only been 3 days with me around). She's learning her name well, doing well with sit command but even though water/food isn't given a few hours before bed (cut off 7-8, bed at 10), and we play before bed ...she'll go in her kennel fine to GO to bed, not even a bark, but then is up in 3 hours, then every 2 hours all night long..barking like crazy to be let out.

I let her bark 5+ mins before getting up. Take her out, don't play with her and just outside to do her business and back in. She gets a 'good girl' or treat then back in kennel, cover down and bed. Her kennel is 10 ft from me.

Is there something i should be doing differently? I'm trying to disuade attention barking even at her young age, but don't want to miss the "i really need to pee' barking. Thanks!

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
620 Dog owners recommended

Hello Kellie, Congratulations on the new puppy. At her age she should be able to hold her bladder for up to four hours while awake. If she barks before it has been that long since the last potty trip, then I suggest ignoring her. I believe she is barking for attention. Also, when you take her potty at night, I suggest not giving her a treat. During the day treats are great for that, but you want to keep night trips super boring with no extra attention or rewards so that she won't ask to go just to get attention or food. The first three nights you try ignoring her barking before it has been four hours since the last pee trip expect a lot of barking, especially since the barking got her out of the crate before, but if you stay consistent she should start to improve within a week in most cases. Moving her out of your room and using a baby monitor to listen for any true pee related wake ups will probably help too. That is not completely necessary at this point if you want her in your room but it usually makes the process go faster. Many people choose to crate puppies in walk-in closets and bathrooms connected to their bedroom because then the puppy is close-by but can't see them so don't wake up as often. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Atlas
Shepherd/black mouth cur
6 Months
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Question
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Atlas
Shepherd/black mouth cur
6 Months

Dog wakes up everyday at 5 am. I get up then for the gym on week days but weekends I sleep in. Is he conditioned to get up at 5 am? He still gets up

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
620 Dog owners recommended

Hello Eric, Dogs have internal clocks like people so his internal clock is likely set to 5am. I suggest crate training him and stuffing hollow chew toys, like large Kong with his breakfast the night before the weekend. When he wakes up at 5am, take him potty, put him into the crate with the food stuffed toys (so that he will work for his breakfast), and go back to bed. Correct or ignore any non-potty related barking in the crate. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Pip
cockapoo
5 Months
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Pip
cockapoo
5 Months

Pip goes to bed in his crate no problem but wakes up and barks twice in the night, usually about an hour after bed and again at around 3am. It starts as a small wood then escalates to full barking. We can’t leave him to bark for long as we have close neighbours. What can we do to stop the barking?? We put the crate in our bedroom for a while which worked for 2 nights and then he went back to bad habits.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
620 Dog owners recommended

Hello Esme, If the wake ups happen at least 5-6 hours since his last potty trip, he probably really needs to go potty once awake. When you take him potty, take him on a leash, keep the trip super boring (no play or treats or affection), give him about five minutes to do his business outside, then bring him back inside and put him into the crate. If he barks before 5-6 hours (like the one hour time after bed, or when you put him back into the crate after taking him potty), then use a Pet Convincer to correct him - A Pet Convincer is a small canister of pressurized unscented air. First, teach him what "Quiet" means by following the "Quiet" method from the article that I have linked below, practice during the day. https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bark When you put him back into the crate after taking him potty, or he wakes up and barks before he needs a potty break, tell him "Quiet". If he does not get quiet, spray a small puff of air from the Pet Convincer at his side through the crate holes (Do NOT spray him in the face). The puff of air will not hurt but it should surprise him enough to stop his barking. After you spray him, leave. Repeat this every time that he barks. Also, practice crating him during the day for at least an hour. Tell him "Quiet" if he barks. If he gets quiet and stays quiet for at least three minutes, go over to his crate and sprinkle a couple small treats inside, then leave again. Every 5-10 minutes that he stays quiet in a row sprinkle treats into his crate calmly without letting him out. Whenever he barks, correct him with a puff of air at his side, then leave again. Only use treats during the day because you do not want him to wake up to eat during the night or have to go potty from eating. The rewards during the day for being quiet will help him learn what to do instead of bark - be quiet. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Teddy
Cavalier King Charles Spaniel
5 Months
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Question
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Teddy
Cavalier King Charles Spaniel
5 Months

We have crate trained Teddy since we got him.His crate is in the kitchen. For the past few weeks he is barking constantly at night. We are going to let him out if it's been a few hours since he used the toilet but he often doesn't go. We don't make any fuss or give treats when we go to him in the night. He will bark for an hour then be quiet for a couple of hours then start barking again. Please help, we are all very sleep deprived.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
620 Dog owners recommended

Hello Sue, It sounds like he has a history of being fine in the crate - so this isn't a crate introduction need, and the barking might be related to him getting older and less sleepy and simply demanding your attention and wanting to play...If that's the case and there isn't some medical need like needing to potty constantly (which it doesn't sound like is the case), then I suggest correcting the barking at this point. Teach Quiet during the day by following the Quiet method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bark Once he understands a bit of what Quiet means, at night when he barks and it's been less than 6 hours since he peed, tell him Quiet. If he gets quiet, great! Go back to bed but don't give treats at night (quiet is just his warning to be quiet so he understands what comes next). If he doesn't get quiet or starts barking again after stopping you can do one of two things: 1. Walk over to his crate, tell him "Ah Ah" and through the crate wires, and spray a small puff of unscented air at his side (not face) through the crate. After correcting, leave again...the entire thing should be done calmly. Repeat the calm corrections whenever he barks until he goes to sleep. 2. Option 2, whenever he barks, tell him "Ah Ah" and use a rolled up dish towel with rubberbands around it to keep it rolled up, bump the rolled up towel against the side of the crate by his side, then leave again. Repeat this calmly each time he barks. During the day when you crate, when he stays quiet for longer periods of time in the crate, return to him and sprinkle treats in to encourage the quietness, and give a food stuffed hollow chew toy (if you stuff one and freeze, freeze it with a straw through it and take the straw out before giving it to him - to create a hole in it to prevent suction when he licks it). Correct barking the same way you did at night in the crate during the day, except you can also give treats if he stays quiet for a few minutes, then calmly walk away again after sprinkling the treats in. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Cooper
Vizsla
8 Weeks
0 found helpful
Question
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Cooper
Vizsla
8 Weeks

This is our pen setup at home for our pup, last night he went down at 9:15 and was completely knackered, he had a toilet break just before going in the pen, he slept till 3:30 and then barked, whined and was trying to get out of the pen for about an hour and half, we gave in and went down and he did stop and found he'd pooed in the pen on the pad but had also knocked some into his bed, we cleaned up let him outside and then put him back in the pen and left him and he continued for another half hour before going back to bed. We were leaving a bowl of water in the pen which we've seen is a mistake so we'll no longer do this. Is this setup ok? Should we continue to ignore his barks/whines as he's seeking attention? Thanks

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
620 Dog owners recommended

Hello Liam, I would ignore the barking that's happening after you have already checked on him - which is just attention seeking. The initial barking was likely due to pup waking up needing to go potty, but not understanding where they are supposed to go potty yet (its early in the training process). You may want to set up an inexpensive video monitor to watch him at night - so that you can see whether you need to go in and clean something up while he is still learning where to go potty, or if the barking is just for attention and should be ignored. You can look for an inexpensive security type camera like Wyze or something less fancy online for monitoring at night, rather than spending more on an expensive baby or pet monitor (unless you prefer a nicer one for more). Check out the Exercise Pen method from the article linked below - which can be used with pee pads, a grass pad, or a litter box, to help pup learn where to go potty during the day - so that they will know where to go at night. Exercise Pen method: https://wagwalking.com/training/litter-box-train-a-chihuahua-puppy Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Question
Carbon
Labrador Retriever
4 Months
1 found helpful
Question
1 found helpful
Carbon
Labrador Retriever
4 Months

My pup needs my attention at nights and wants me to be with him ! Which I can’t do all times ! My sleep is getting disturbed ! I don’t know how to manage !

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
620 Dog owners recommended

Hello Kavya, If he doesn't have to go potty (it's been less than 5 hours while awake or 8 while asleep), then he doesn't actually need your attention at night - he needs to sleep too. Try to keep that in mind to help you stay consistent with the following. You need to let him cry when you know he doesn't have to go potty. He needs to practice learning to self-sooth and settle down and go to sleep. Whenever he cries and you go to him, he learns that crying gets him attention and fun so he cries even more. He is likely waking and crying because it has been rewarded with fun and affection and when you are a puppy, why sleep when you could be having fun...But sleep is what he needs as much as you do. Ignore the crying when he doesn't truly need to pee. Crate him at night so he will learn to settle down and sleep, and correct the crying with a Pet Conviner - which is a small canister of pressurized unscented air blown at his side quickly through the crate holes when he cries, if he continues to cry for more than a week even though you are ignoring the cries. It may sound very harsh and be hard to ignore his cries but he needs sleep for his proper development too, and you will do a better job of taking care of him and you if you get the sleep you need also - this may be a hard thing but he needs to learn it, and he is capable of learning. Know that most puppies will cry while adjust to the crate and sleeping alone, and if not crated many puppies will wake you up at night - so crating is an important part of raising a puppy to be healthy and happy and well trained so they can enjoy life with you. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Lucy
Labrador Retriever
8 Weeks
0 found helpful
Question
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Lucy
Labrador Retriever
8 Weeks

We got the puppy on Monday. We are having trouble getting her to settle at night and she doesn't like been by herself. She goes outside for wees and poops. The only thing we need help with is at night time. She has her own little area under the stairs with her bed and some soft toys. Any help would be appreciated

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
620 Dog owners recommended

Hello Miss Lynda, First, barking while crate training the first two weeks is completely normal. She needs to be given time to learn to self-sooth and learn to self-entertain. Don't let her out while barking unless she needs to go potty, and when you do let her out if you can try to wait until she is quiet for 1-2 seconds so her freedom is associated with being quiet and you are not encouraging more barking. Second, check out the article linked below. You can practice all of the methods but pay special attention to the Surprise method. Do this method whenever you can. If you don't have time to ease her into crate training most puppies will still adjust in two weeks (many only take three days), but doing the surprise method whenever you can should speed things up. In that method it talks about giving a food-stuffed Kong, I highly suggest doing that during the day to give her something to do while in the crate - you can even feed all of her meals that way and as treats at this age to keep her entertained. Surprise method: https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate Don't give food at night. She will likely wake up 2 times to go potty at night at this age. When you take her potty, take her on a leash, keep the trip very boring - no treats, play, food, or excitement, then calmly put her right back into the crate after she goes potty to go back to bed. Following this routine usually helps puppies sleep through the night sooner because they don't wake up for reasons other than needing to go potty - which they should outgrow and their bladders grow. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Ellie
Shih Tzu
14 Weeks
0 found helpful
Question
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Ellie
Shih Tzu
14 Weeks

We work all day so Ellie is in a fenced in area with a pee pad that she uses very well, an eating section and then a play and bed section. She gets tons of toys that only are used in there. We do a little kong with peanut butter. Turn on tv and a fan. We come home and let her out for about an hour at lunchtime. She barks all day. She will bark for 15 min then lay down for 5. And continues the process. Any suggestions?

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
620 Dog owners recommended

Hello Rhonda, First, if you are less than 2 weeks into this, she may just need more time to adjust. If it is past the initial two weeks, work on teaching things that help develop impulse control: 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/ Down-Stay: https://www.thelabradorsite.com/train-your-labrador-to-lie-down-and-stay/ Next, correct the barking early before she gets overly worked up. If she barks while you are home in another room, then you can use a Pet Convincer, which is a small canister of unscented, pressurized air. Tell her "Ah Ah", then spray a small puff of air at her side and leave again. If the barking only happens when you leave the house, then use a vibration collar - the smallest model you can find for her side, and with multiple vibration intensity settings if you can find it. Set up a camera to spy on her using something like two smart phones, tablets, or computers with Skype or Facetime on mute on her end, Go Pro camera with Live app, baby video monitor, or security camera. Every time she barks, vibrate the collar to interrupt her. When she stops for five seconds, then return to her, sprinkle a couple treats into the pen, then ignore her in the pen for 10 minutes while you pretend to get things done around the house - you don't want your entrance to be super exciting and always mean immediate freedom. Correct with the vibration if she barks at you. When she is quiet and it has been 10 minutes, then let her out of the pen, but when you do so, open the door slowly and when she tries to rush out, close it again. Practice opening and closing the door until you can open it all the way and she will stay inside the pen and wait. When she will wait, then tell her "Okay" and let her come all the way out - you want her to calm down in relation to the pen, and going in and out of it more slowly can help with that. Next, for longer term maintenance and entertainment you can also look into something like Pet Tutor or AutoTrainer - which will periodically reward her by releasing a treat for staying quiet if you set it that way. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Digby
Shih Tzu
13 Weeks
0 found helpful
Question
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Digby
Shih Tzu
13 Weeks

Digby has been with us since Christmas eve, he has become a little brother to our 10 year old pug x pekingese lola and my 8 year old sons first pet of his own (we are responsible dog owners i promise!).

Digby was raised in a crate at the breeders and he is crated in our home. We have soft bedding, toys, crate buddies with heat and heartbeats etc. He slept soundly for the first two nights and since then has been very difficult, by screaming, whining, barking non stop and generally getting himself very worked up. If he is in the crate and we are in the room he puts up a fuss for about a minute but then settles down, when we leave him its another story. We have the Adaptil puppy collar and the plug in (vets recommendation) too but this seems to have made little difference.

Nighttime's were so bad we ended up putting the crate in our room, after a week we moved it to a different position in our room, a week later a bit further away.

At the breeders they put him bed at 9pm till morning and he wasn't a bother, apparently! Last night he woke up at midnight, 2am, 4am and barked non stop. We ignored for a short time and went to him during a 'silence'. We took him outside each time in case it was the toilet he needed. Once returned to his crate he started again and each time it took me sitting near his crate to settle him, eventually bringing his crate next to me in the bedroom. I am 99% convinced this was the wrong thing to do but i was desperate for sleep!

Digby follows me everywhere, he cannot stay in a room on his own. If he's dozing he will still jump up and follow. We have tried to follow all of the guidelines for crate training but thus far it's not seeming to help, we feel we have made very little progress.

We have set feed times, set walk times and set play times - never when he is removed from the crate as we do not wish to encourage this.

Our older dog Lola also dislikes him immensely! He ploughs into her, steals treats from her (by dropping his own and taking hers), takes every toy from her, sits on top of her, runs into her physically when she is standing or toileting and doesn't give her any peace. She is timid by nature, never barks, and is not the type of dog to 'put him in his place'. We try not to interfere in their interactions but do not know when enough is enough? I wish to reassure you we feed them separately, i refer to the little treats we offer.

We do not know what to do now, we are concerned that things seem to be getting worse not better. My partner regrets getting him when he has caused so much disruption which breaks my heart although this is said at 4am when we are woken yet again and feeling tired and frustrated.

We desperately need help and guidance and a plan for moving forward before it is too late and these behaviors become the standard with him.

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

Hello, Digby (love the name!) looks pretty cute and comfy in the picture you provided. First off, we have to remember that Digby has had a lot of changes to undergo since coming to your home. Leaving mom and siblings, moving from familiar surroundings, a new housemate, etc. Puppies crying at night in their crate is a very common problem and most of the time, it does not last forever! As well, puppies cannot hold their pee all night. Getting up a few times a night until the bladder has matured is also a common necessity. Although I cannot say for sure, it does sound as though Digby may have some separation anxiety. Or, he may yet need to develop a sense of security. Here are a few guides on the topic: https://wagwalking.com/daily/understanding-separation-anxiety-in-dogs https://wagwalking.com/condition/separation-anxiety As for having the crate in your room at night, I do not have an issue with that. If that is what it takes to enable the household to get sleep, then do it. If you eventually want to move Digby out of the room, move the crate inches at a time, not feet. But in the meantime, remember he may have the need to pee at night for some time. Some dogs like to have the crate covered at night, at least on the sides. It soothes them and makes them feel secure. Just make sure he is not chewing the covering. Lastly, exercise! Take Digby for a LONG walk in the evening to tire him out. Have your play fetch or roll the ball. This will help! As far as the behavior with Lola, this has to stop. Obedience classes are a great way to secure your bond and to give Digby manners and direction. Check with your vet about the vaccine schedule and inquire about when Digby can start classes. Good luck!

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Champion
Pomeranian
6 Months
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Champion
Pomeranian
6 Months

Hi.. we have this pomeranian since 4 days ago. I and my wife always go for morning walk and night walk with our puppy for 45 mins each. At night, we put him in the crate, outside of our bedroom. Our puppy keep barking at night (disturbing some of the neighbours); and only stop barking if we go outside of bedroom and sleep in front of his crate. What is the cause of his barking? What's your advice on this?

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

Champion is a cute little guy! Remember, he is young yet and this has been a big adjustment for him, the move to your home. I have a few suggestions. Make Champion's crate a place that he wants to go - cozy, welcoming and like a safe den. Give him a nice bed to lay on and a few toys. Some dogs like to have a blanket covering the sides and top of the crate - but leave the front so that he can see and make sure that he cannot chew the blanket as this is dangerous. As well, I think that for now, you should let Champion sleep in his crate in your room. This will enable everyone to get more sleep - you, Champion, and the neighbors! Once Champion is older, if you do not want the crate in your room, gradually start moving the crate out of the room but only by a few inches per night (not feet per night). Eventually it will be out of the room and by then your pup will have settled into his routine of sleeping peacefully in the crate. Enjoy your puppy and good luck!

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Buster
Parson Russell Terrier
12 Weeks
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Buster
Parson Russell Terrier
12 Weeks

Hi. We have had Buster for 4 weeks. He initially slept in a soft playpen in our bedroom and alerted me when he needed to pee and had already reached the point of one wake up at night to pee and slept through to 7.30. Then two nights ago we moved him to our downstairs utility/kitchen with his crate and a stair gate across the doorway. The first night he barked for several hours before going quiet until 5.30 when the boiler fired up (in the same room). He had pee’d and poo’d on the puppy pads. Last night we gave him a frozen stuffed puppy Kong at bedtime in his “room” and he stayed quiet while eating it then he started barking and crying again for a couple of hours before falling quiet until 5.30 again (had also pee’d and poo’d). Any ideas please? He is quite happy in the crate (with door open) but cries if closed. Thanks.

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

Thank you for the question. I think Buster is doing really well for such a young dog. It is understandable that he is upset; he probably felt quite secure in your room and may now be less comfortable in his surroundings so isn't sleeping through the night. Then, he needs to go pee as a result (and remember his bladder is not yet mature). However, he is using the pee pads that you have provided - I am not sure, but you are pee pad training him as well? Typically when a puppy is sleeping in the bedroom with the owners, I suggest (when you want to move him out) that the move is made inches per night, not feet, Buster has gone from the security of your room to another level so you may have some crying for a while. You can try methods from here: https://wagwalking.com/training/not-cry-at-night and here: https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate. I'm sure little Buster will progress well as he gets a little older. You are doing the right things; he is only young and to cry at night is not unusual. Good luck!

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Belle
Vizsla
6 Weeks
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Belle
Vizsla
6 Weeks

We have done two nights of crate training and I had to love her crate to the living room last night cause she wouldn’t stop crying/howling. I set alarms and checked on her throughout the night and every time she was still howling/crying. I am concerned she cried all night. Is that ok and safe?

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
620 Dog owners recommended

Hello Emily, Unfortunately, its normal for some pups to take two weeks to adjust. She is young so this is probably a bit harder for her than some puppies. I wouldn't worry just yet. Do make sure she is being taken potty VERY often at her age though. She will need yo go about every 2 hours during the night if awake. If asleep she can probably make it to 4 at this age at night. Check out the article linked below. Follow the surprise method during the day, practicing 30-60 minutes at a time when you are home. Using that method to reward quietness with your presence and treats and a Kong should help her adjust to the crate sooner. Surprise method: https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate Know that my own puppy really struggled at first and had to be crated without much transition due to being picked up from another state. She now loves her crate as an adult and is completely fine being left alone. Don't give up yet. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Hope
King Charles Spaniel
8 Months
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Hope
King Charles Spaniel
8 Months

Hi there, I have had Hope for 4+ months. I got her from a breeder so she’s been crate training from the start and I haven’t changed much since. She doesn’t really have a puppy bladder anymore.

About a week ago she started barking at night, I haven’t had this issue until now. We normally go to bed around 11pm, she wakes me around 2, I take her outside and put her back in the crate, normally get 30 minutes or so of silence before the barking begins again. Last night she barked on and off from 2 to 6:30 when I finally gave up. I ignored her for most of it with the exception of taking her outside at 5.

I have to be up at 6am every morning to go to work, I’m writing this at 3:30 in the morning as she barks. I am losing my mind from sleep deprivation. She’s perfectly fine in the crate during the day, she normally spends about 5 to 7 hours in there a day and normally has to be woken up.

I don’t know what else to do. I’ve tried making her run around before bed, exercising her more, taking water away an hour before bed, feeding her a few hours before bed, ignoring her, going to her, nothing works.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
620 Dog owners recommended

Hello Kerstin, First, see if there is a noise triggering the barking and if so, address that. If there isn't a noise, I suggest correcting at this point because the barking may be due to her simply wanting attention and demanding to sleep elsewhere. 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 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 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. Practice during the day with treats though to help her learn how to be quiet and calm though - which will help nights go easier and corrections be more effective. Pet convincers can be purchased off of Amazon and Chewy.com typically. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Olivia (Ollie)
French Bulldog
12 Weeks
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Olivia (Ollie)
French Bulldog
12 Weeks

Hi! We've had Olivia for two weeks now and the first nights she would wake up through the night often. Then we bought her a crate and she loved it. She slept peacefully in it for three or four nights, but only with the door open, which was great because she didn't have to wake us up then for potty. Then one night, since her crate door was still open, she would stand beside our bed on two legs while whining and barking as soon as we got into bed. We would try putting her back in her crate, giving her chew toys, stuff with our smell, petting her, putting soft relaxing music. But she would get out of the crate and start over. She wouldn't stop no matter what and we were afraid we were disturbing our neighbors, so we would pick her up and put her in bed with us. It was the only way for her to stop whining and barking. I'm afraid she's getting used to that, but we just don't know what else to do...please help? Thanks!

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
620 Dog owners recommended

Hello Estefania, You need to crate train her during the day with the door closed. There will be crying but good crate training habits early can prevent future separation anxiety, help with potty training, prevent dangerous destructive chewing - which can get worse again at 5-7 months of age, and make travel and illness later easier. This age is by far the easiest time to do it, rather than having to go back when she is older and do it then because of a behavior issue, like increased chewing, that has occurred. Check out the Surprise method from the article linked below. It starts very similar to what you have already done - getting her used to an open crate, but then details how to get her comfortable with a closed crate also. Surprise method: https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate Stay strong - knowing it's the best for her. I have my own dogs and it's hard to hear them cry as puppies while first get used to the crate. They need the opportunity to learn that they are safe in there and that you always come back - which should be timed when they are calm and quiet, so encourage them to calm down sooner. Crate training now can means years of being trustworthy in the house out of the crate later as adults because dangerous habits are prevented during the first year of life though. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Kai
Boxer
5 Months
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Kai
Boxer
5 Months

Hi, my puppy used to sleep all night a week ago but one day my neighbors had a party that woke him up. Now he doesn't want to stay in his crate and barks a lot, wakes up a 3 am barks again and when I get there un the morning he pooped all his crate. The crate is appropriate for his size, I feed him 4 hours before sleep and try to tire him out with walks and play but nothing works. I need help

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
620 Dog owners recommended

Hello, First, I suggest to going back to some basics and following the Surprise method during the day - in case the incident made him nervous in the crate overall. Surprise method; https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate Second, how often if pup pooping during the day. If it's not at least 2 times or you aren't seeing whether pup is pooping when let out into a fence, work on ensuring pup is pooping during the day. Follow the steps from the Crate Training method from the article linked below, for teaching pup the Go Potty command, rewarding with treats when they poop, taking pup potty on a leash to keep them focused, walking them around slowly to help things get moving physically, and giving pup an opportunity for 10-15 minutes after peeing to poop also while outside - keeping pup moving and focused during that time. Reward and praise when pup does poop outside! Many puppies hold their poop when they become more alert during the day, because they want to play while outside - and need help focusing on going potty first. Make sure play time outside always comes after finishing pottying. If pup doesn't potty, take them inside without play, so that play becomes a reward for pottying to motivate them to go faster, instead of avoiding potttying due to distractions. Crate Training method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-german-shepherd-puppy-to-poop-outside Also, pay attention to whether pup seems nervous while outside now. If pup is afraid, they are probably holding their poop until they feel safer inside. Work on helping pup overcome their fear or being outside if so. What does pup's poop look like? Are they pooping more than 4 times per day. If their poop isn't solid, they are acting ill in other ways, or pooping more than 4 times in 24 hours, I suggest a trip to your vet. The accidents might be due to a digestive issue leading to pup having to poop during the night. (I am not a vet). Work on doing the above training for the next week. If things aren't improving, I also suggest practicing the following. First, you need a way to communicate with him so I suggest teaching the Quiet command from the Quiet method in the article I have linked below - don't expect this alone to work but it will be part of the puzzle for what I will suggest next. (You can go ahead and teach Quiet regardless of whether its still needed for the hall barking - because it's simply a good command to teach with lots of uses). https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bark Next, once pup understands what Quiet means you will choose an interrupter - neither too harsh nor ineffective. A Pet Convincer is one type of interrupter. A pet convincer is a small canister of pressurized, unscented air that you can spray a quick puff of at the dog's side to surprise them enough to help them calm back down. (Don't use citronella and avoid spraying in the face!). You can hold the canister further away from pup to make this gentler. During the day, practice crating pup (or practice in early evening if pup only barks at night while in the crate). Command pup to be Quiet when you put them into the crate. If they obey, and stay quiet, return a couple of minutes later and reward with a treat and very calm praise, then leave again (give the treat through the crate's wires instead of opening the crate). If they bark anyway or continue to bark, say "Ah Ah" firmly but calmly and give a brief correction with the air puff, then leave again. Repeat the correction each time they bark until you get a brief pause in the barking. When they pause, praise and reward them. The combination of communication, correction, and rewarding - with the "Ah Ah" and praise to mark their good and bad behavior with the right timing, is very important. Once pup is calmer in general after the initial training, practice in all the types is situations he barks in - like the pen and the crate. Whenever he DOESN'T bark when you leave, return sooner, calmly praise and reward him for staying quiet to continue the desensitization process. At bedtime, after having practiced this with treats during the day to teach pup what they should do also - be quiet, then practice this at night without treats, only using the corrections and Quiet command. When pup barks, you will need to take pup to potty since they are actually pooping once awake. Take pup on a leash and keep the trip super boring - no play, affection or treats. Return pup to the crate, command Quiet calmly, then if they bark, tell them "Ah ah" and correct with the Pet Convincer air at their side. Correct each time they bark, then leave again right after - until pup goes back to sleep. If there isn't a medical condition, pup is pooping fine during the day, and pup's schedule is fine, then pup will likely begin to sleep through the night again and will be able to hold their need to poop until the next morning - once awake pup will have to go potty quickly though, regardless of the time. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Skylar
Pomapoo
2 Months
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Skylar
Pomapoo
2 Months

My puppy keeps pooping and peeing all over the house. Trying to teach him to potty in the toilet but he still does not get it. He even poops in his crate. Please help me.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
620 Dog owners recommended

Hello Arani, I suggest strictly following the crate training method from the article linked below. Crate Training method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-german-shepherd-puppy-to-poop-outside That method will also address how to properly set up the crate, and how often to take pup potty to help avoid pooping in the crate. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Coco
Shar-Pei
3 Months
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Coco
Shar-Pei
3 Months

i can get him to stay on his spot without barking. wave have tried many ways. we need help

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
620 Dog owners recommended

Hello Nicole, First, check out the articles linked below and work on the following commands. Quiet method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bark Place command: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O75dyWITP1s Second, I suggest giving pup a dog food stuffed hollow chew toy on Place (when he first gets on - before he starts barking), while working up to pup learning how to stay on place for longer. To stuff a kong you can either place pup's dry dog food loosely in it and cover 1/2 of the opening with a larger treat - so the dog food will dispense more slowly, or place pup's food in a bowl, cover with water, let sit out until the food turns to mush, mix the mush with a little liver paste, treat paste, or peanut butte (avoid xylitol! - it's extremely toxic to dogs and a common sweetener substitute), place a straw through the kong's holes, loosely stuff the kong with the mush, place in a baggie, and free overnight. Remove the straw before giving pup and grab the kong from the freezer as needed - for a time-released treat. You can also purchase several durable hollow chew toys and stuff them at the same time so that you have a stash in the freezer to grab from as needed. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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