Getting a new puppy is almost like having a child that worries you every time you hear them cry. They really can’t tell you what the problem is, and that makes you feel helpless. But just like children, puppies cry for many reasons, and if you can figure out what your puppy might need, it would be much easier for both of you.
Why Do Puppies Cry All Night
Puppies can cry if they feel hungry. However, you must stick to a strict feeding schedule that does not involve feeding your dog at night. Apart from that, your favorite little furball can cry because of three main reasons – fear, pain, or a full bladder or bowel.
Generally, puppies go through a phase of anxiety once you introduce them to a new environment. This is the period where they haven’t settled in their new home yet, and will probably take a while to adjust.
Typically, your new puppy will not want to leave your side – even for a minute. They will follow you constantly and probably make you trip once in a while. This is because during the first year, puppies hate being left alone.
Also, they’re very social animals that love having company almost all the time. When a new dog owner hops into the bathroom, the puppy will most likely be at the door, whining in distress. But this is very typical behavior for puppies.
However, leaving your puppy alone at night in another room will be very stressful for them. Young dogs feel even more vulnerable at night than they do during the day. Therefore, they are most likely going to cry because they need comfort or company.
Full bladder or bowel
Puppies will also cry if they need to go to the toilet at night. So, you need to monitor the puppy’s toilet routine at night. You could do this by setting several alarms very early in the morning. This means that you will have to drag yourself out of bed in the wee hours of the morning and into the garden with your little new friend.
However, you can try to limit the number of times you wake up at night by not giving your puppy snacks or water after dinner. Think of it like this, what happens when you drink more water and end up walking around with a water bottle? Exactly, you visit the bathroom like twenty times a day.
The same thing happens with your puppy. If you give them food and water right before bed, you’ll probably get up often during the night.
Pain and discomfort
Puppies might also cry all night if they are injured or having stomach pains. Hence, you must check for any injury by examining your puppy if they cry too much at night. A visit to the vet is also advisable, so that you make sure your puppy is not sick.
If you rule out sickness or injury, it will be easier to deal with a crying puppy because you will feel more at ease knowing your little friend is not sick.
What to Do When Your Puppy Cries at Night
There is no significant difference between having a new puppy and a newborn baby. They cry all night, can’t tell you what the issue is, and they simply just want to feel loved and cared for. People with experience caring for an infant would find it very easy taking care of a puppy. It’s simple – they cry, you respond.
Well, the responding part is pretty easy. But what to do when they just won’t stop crying?
Your pain is understandable. The puppy cries, you check on them and eventually slip back into bed. But then the puppy starts whining again. You take them out into the garden to pee, and they barely do. Then you slip right back into bed again. And the puppy cries, again! At this point, you are probably like, “What do you want?”
The puppy wants your attention. They want to see you there constantly. This is just because they are in a new environment and are too afraid to be left alone. But for some, they can be too whinny at night that it takes the joy of having a puppy.
Most people get a puppy for companionship, and problems like this can add stress in their lives. Puppies are too cute to be a source of stress.
The general idea is that a crying puppy needs something; food, water, to relieve themselves, or are in pain. But when you check all those items off the list, it becomes a little tricky. You see, when a puppy is calling for attention, ignoring or entertaining them has consequences.
How to Help Your Puppy Settle Down at Night
If you ignore your puppy, they will cry continuously for hours, and if you entertain them, experts say that you’ll be rewarding bad behavior. What to do then?
Find alternative comfort methods
Have you ever heard of something called the extinction burst? Not literally extinction, like what happened with dinosaurs and whatnot, but the disappearance of behavior by not encouraging it.
This is one way you can solve the issue of your puppy crying all night. Do not reward unwanted behavior! If you don’t want to wake up five times a night to pet your puppy, you must teach your new companion that you are not available for a pet session at night.
Instead, buy your puppy chew toys and teach them how to use it. There are numerous options out there, so you should have no problems finding something for your little buddy. Having access to chew toys will gradually train the dog to turn to the toy for comfort.
- Help the puppy get used to spending time alone
You must also train your puppy to get used to their own company by not always being there with them during the day. When you spend every minute of every day with your puppy, they will assume it’s how things are supposed to be. Therefore, they will end up crying all night for your company.
Leaving your puppy alone during the day will help them get used to spending time on their own.
- Come up with a routine
Another strategy you could use is to set a routine that tires your puppy out by bedtime. After dinner or while preparing food, you could engage in some intense playtime with your little friend.
Keep the puppy up and active, and by the time you need to put them in a crate or dog bed, they will not put up a fight. Your new canine companion will be too tired to wake up again before getting hours of sleep.
- No playtime during the night
Do not, whatsoever, play with your puppy when they wake you up at night. Remember extinction burst? You will be encouraging unwanted behavior and will create a routine where the puppy expects you to play with them when they cry. On occasions when you’re too tired to wake up, your puppy will think you didn’t hear them and cry even louder. And they will definitely continue this performance for days.
- Use a crate
When a puppy is newly introduced into your home, they will most likely be very scared and anxious. It is advisable that you bring the crate or dog bed into your room, but do not let your pup into your bed. This will make them more comfortable and less scared.
When your little friend cries at night, take them out to pee and make sure not to play with them. They must learn that night time is not playtime.
Notably, many people believe that it is cruel to crate a dog. This is simply not true. According to many dog experts, crate training, when done correctly, can provide a sense of security for dogs. However, you should not leave younger puppies in a crate for nearly 8 hours. This is just because they cannot hold their bladder for that long.
Puppies can sleep in their crate since it helps them sleep through the night. You can place the crate near your bed so that the puppy feels less frightened and lonely. This way, you can easily hear their cries and let them out for a bathroom break.
Despite this, you mustn’t abuse the crate. Some people might use it as a form of punishment or keeping their puppy confined during the day. This is not recommended. Also, you must watch out to see if your puppy does not like being in a crate. If this is the case, give them some time to get used to it.
All in all, it can be very annoying when you need to get to work early in the morning, and your new companion keeps crying. Dogs are meant to be playful companions and should not be an additional source of stress in your life. Waking up several times during the night isn’t fun for anyone.
Just be patient. Once your puppy grows up and gets used to their new home, the late-night cries will be a thing of the past. Make sure you provide your canine friend with the care they need, they will love you for life!