Puppy STILL won't sleep through the night! Help!

posted 3 years ago in Pets
Post # 46
190 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: September 2016

I think you should definitely be bringing her in to be tested for a UTI and diabetes. There’s no reason she should need to be drinking that much water unless something is wrong with her health. Excessive water drinking is a sign of diabetes, and obviously needing to go often is a sign of a UTI. Definitely rule that out before you continue. Does she drink water when you aren’t home? My rescue has some anxiety problems and won’t eat, drink, or chew on any of the fun stuff we leave him to do until we get home. We’ll often open the door and after he’s said hello will go over and empty his water dish. Some vets say that dogs regulate their water intake during the day, maybe she’s making up for it at night. 

Honestly, some dogs just do better with the free reign of the bed/house than others. I’ve had dogs my whole life and only a few I was able to keep in bed with me. My current rescue dog absolutely cannot sleep in the bed. He gets up constantly and drinks water, prowls, barks at shadows, and generally just bothers me. My year old puppy, however, picks a spot in the bed and sleeps through the night without moving. It has to be about the personality of the dog, not your own wishes. They both sleep in their crates the majority of the time, however, because they like it and feel safe there. It sounds like crate training is a must for you at least until she learns to sleep through the night.

The night you just had sounds like the first few nights after I brought my 2 year old dog home from the shelter. He wasn’t crate trained and we tried to push him too quickly to tolerate it. It sounds like you may have done the same. You have to gradually introduce the crate with treats and games and short intervals. With my puppy, I placed it close enough to the bed that I could reach through the bars and place my fingers inside when he cried. That typically reassured him that I was still there and that limited the amount of times he actually woke me up to go out. After about a week or two of him sleeping right next to the bed, we backed it up so that he could still see us, but was further away. Then we moved it to the other side of the room, then out into the hallway, then finally downstairs. He was sleeping through the night by the time he was 4 months old, and we never took him out more than 2-3 times a night even when he was 9-10 weeks old.

If you push them too fast, though, then of course they’ll howl and cry and hate the crate. Putting her in when you’re frustrated is going to make it worse. You’re, of course, starting yourself at a disadvantage because you’ve allowed the dog to dictate the rules. She knows that she can get what she wants if she makes enough noise. So be consistent, but try not to do all of your training at bed time. And definitely see a vet if you can.

Post # 47
3767 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: November 2016

TwinkleBoss :  It takes at least a few days for the crying to stop.  I didn’t sleep any of those nights, but three sleepless nights far outweigh your Fiance never getting a full night’s rest (trust me on this one, I was in your FI’s place getting woken up a thousand times a night while my Fiance slept peacefully through the night).  Yes, it sucks.  Yes, I wanted to start crying right with our puppy, but it will get better if you stay firm.  Now my dog LOVES his crate and hangs out there willingly.  He has full reign of the house (he’s almost a year and a half old) and has only had an accident when he’s been sick.  Definitely invest the time in crate training.

Post # 48
127 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: April 2015

I had a puppy that acted like we were killing her if we put her in the crate so we kept her blocked off in the kitchen, but she would still whine and bark on and off all night long!  It got so bad that I started sleeping on the couch so I could tell her to hush numerous times a night.  I lived in a duplex and I was worried the neighbors would complain. I literally slept on the couch for MONTHS!!  So unless you have a super comfortable couch that you won’t mind sleeping on for a long time I would NOT recommend the sleeping in the living room option.  We eventually moved the crate into the bedroom and after a couple weeks on telling her to hush numerous times a night she thankfully figured it all out.

Post # 49
33 posts
  • Wedding: December 2016

Can we see a picture of the puppy in question? 

Post # 51
108 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: June 2018

Our dog is a suspected yorkie/chihuahua mix. One thing that worked for helping him sleep through the night when he was little was to take a metal water bottle, fill it with hot water, and cover it in something to keep it from being too hot and put it in his bed. That helped with the “warm body” need and he would sleep until it cooled down in the early morning. Then we changed it to a heating pad for pets which lasts longer. Now he sleeps in our bed, but also wakes up at night sometimes. We don’t really notice as we have a Freshpatch in the bathroom across the hall so he can go in there to pee and then come back to bed and doesn’t wake us up at all. Hope that helps besides what the others suggest. 

Post # 52
1710 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: October 2013

TwinkleBoss :  sometimes it takes more than a week for them to be comfortable in a crate. I slept on the floor next to our puppy’s crate for the first 2 nights (crate is downstairs, our bedroom is upstairs). I then slept on the couch where she could see me for about 2 nights. Then I slept on the couch upstairs so I could still hear her, did that for like a week. And now tonight I think I can finally sleep back in my bed. She howls and barks and cries still for about 20mins-30mins straight sometimes when we first put her in her crate but after that settles down and sleeps. Hoping the barking and crying stops eventually! You just have to stick with it.

Post # 53
2525 posts
Sugar bee

If she can hold it during the day, it’s probably because she’s not drinking water every two hours. Pick up the water, and be consistent if you want to see any actual results. You should already know by now how long you can leave her, and when she usually goes for the water bowl. You say you can leave her for 5 hours, then the only part of the equation you haven’t figured out is her water intake. Does she have access to water while you’re gone? If not, then you answered your own question, don’t let her drink at night, and she should be okay holding it for 5 hours then too. 

Post # 54
2525 posts
Sugar bee

Also, “doubling her exercise” before bed to tire her out, and then not providing water after is going to cause her to become excessively thirsty, and in essence, counteract everything you’re working towards. Her last “hard” play should be 30 – 60 minutes after dinner, allowing her to drink water as she wishes. Then, start taking her out to empty her bladder. I’ve found a nice evening stroll works wonders for this, but after, offer a sip of water to wet her whistle, so to speak. You’re attempting all the correct things, but forgetting that every thing leads into something else. Doubling play is going to make her extra thirsty, is going to make her have to pee more, and then you’re adding other stress on top of that by crate training.

You need to approach this differently. You’ve already created separation anxiety when you guys are there. Now, you have to fix it. That’s not going to happen by ripping her out of your bed and shoving her in a crate. It works so well with young puppies, because they don’t know any different. You already created a routine, and now you have to adjust it. Put her in her CRATE during the day when you guys are home. When she’s quiet, even if just for a split second, reward her – let her out, or give her a treat. Come up with a target word that the treat follows, my choice is always “YES!” 1 hour later, do it again. She needs to know that she can’t be with you all of the time. Increase the amount of time she has to wait for her reward… 1 minute… 4 minutes.. 11 minutes, whatever. And ignore her when she’s crying. She’s smart, she’ll get the idea quick.

It should go like this:

Little Girl goes in crate.

Whines for 7 minutes.

Shuts up for 13 seconds. In that 13 seconds, you say “YES!” (Or whatever you choose).

She gets her reward.

This needs to all happen matter-of-factly. No muss, no fuss. If she starts whining the second you say something, it starts all over, and she doesn’t get her reward. She will learn that by doing what you want, she gets what she wants. As she gets the hang of it, you start leaving the room some. She masters that, and then she starts going to bed in there, her first outing she goes to bed with you. Then if she goes out again, it’s back in the crate. She can hold her pee, but she gets attention, and whatever she wants, when she doesn’t – so why would she?

You need to learn to target and reward the behavior you want, instead of focusing on the behavior you want to erase. Focus on getting her comfortable in her crate, with or without you guys there, and everything else will happen naturally. Also, don’t get into the mindset that you have to do this for the dogs entire life. While some dogs need constant reminders, others are perfectly fine after a good solid year of consistent crate training. This is why most people do it for the dogs first year, and then slowly back off of crates. Also, I have a shepherd who I had to put into a crate for their own safety after 8 years of not being in a crate, and always loose in the house – he fell asleep. Laying down these foundation blocks gives you so many more opportunities later in the dog’s life, and yours. 

Post # 55
263 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: October 2018

I’ve had chihuahuas before. Because they’re so small, their bladder don’t hold much and they go to the bathroom more often. Honestly it’s harder to potty training smaller dogs because of this and at least she wakes to you to go potty. A lot of smaller dogs will just go in the house. Thank goodness mine didn’t. But chihuahuas also have a tendency to have “doggy diabetes” which causes them to want to drink more and thus use the potty more. Did you have her taken to the vet to check her out?

Post # 56
2001 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: August 2016

ceebee05 :  I agree with this advice!

OP! Always praise Never punish! It doesn’t work! Our pup whined and whined for what seemed like forever week1 and after a few minutes we would let him out and he would stop. We went to the vet and the vet said we had to firm and the puppy would tire out eventually and also to incorporate praise when puppy was quiet in the crate.

We moved the crate to our bedroom. Put the pup in the crate an hour before we went to bed. We would put the tv on for some noise and put a blanket over the crate to decrease distractions. For a week puppy whined to the top of its lungs for 5 minutes and then fell asleep. After that week of being firm puppy went into the crate. We also always gave our pup a treat when it went into the crate. You want to make the crate a good safe place! 

After 1 month we moved the crate to the bedroom beside ours and after that month we moved the crate downstairs. Its a progression! Now we let our pup sleep with the crate door open so it can sleep in or out of the crate in the living room at night! 

I promise there is hope bee! You are in the hardest part!

Post # 57
134 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: June 2017

 Crate her at night until she gets used to it. Don’t give her water after 7 and make sure her last trip is right before you fall asleep and then just let her sit in the crate. Puppies won’t pee in a space that’s gonna compramise their sleeping area. That’s how I trained my dog.

Post # 59
1388 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: June 2014

Yeah – never had these issues. We’ve always crate trained (and lived in rentals) without issues. All my puppies would cry in the beginning. It can often take a full month for them to “get” it. One month in the grand scheme of months and years – is worth it. 

My pomchi mix can even hold her bladder overnight. Now she gets free reign and doesn’t need to be let out in the middle of the night. We have never used potty pads b/c they confuse the dog. 

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