Bringing a new puppy at home is exciting. Their seemingly endless energy infects everyone around them and becomes a source of joy and happiness. 😍😎🥰
However, once you realize that this liveliness extends into nighttime, you will find yourself rethinking your appreciation for it. If you can’t get your puppy to sleep through the night, it won’t be the only one affected.
Instead, since its uneasiness is just as infectious as its happiness, it will impact you. We’re not just talking about the emotional toll of watching a sweet little creature struggle and whine throughout the night, but also about how you won’t be able to sleep yourself.
But don’t worry, because we have a solution. These ten tips will get your puppy snoozing quietly in no time. Each one plays an important role in encouraging your pet to settle in and appreciate blissful sleep.
How soon can your puppy sleep through the night?
Most dog breeds can sleep through the night by the time they are around four months old. At this time, they get at least six hours of sleep every day. On days with extra exercise, the number goes up to ten hours.
But if your puppy is waking up in the middle of the night, chances are it won’t get enough sleep. Consequently, your dog will be tired throughout the day. Your bundle of furry joy will turn into a sad, exhausted puppy, and that won’t be fun for anyone.
Therefore, if you see your pet struggling to get as much shut-eye as it should, you need to put proper sleep hygiene on the top of your to-do list.
Ten tips to help your puppy sleep through the night
1. Crate training
Crate training is one of the best ways to get your puppy to sleep through the night. You’ll need to put in some time and effort, but once you do, the results will speak for themselves.
Your job is to create a strong positive association with a crate so that your pet feels safe in it. Start slowly by feeding your puppy in the crate and eventually build up to it sleeping in there.
The most important thing to remember when crate training is that this space needs to be your puppy’s. No one should bother it while it’s in there, and ideally, each pet should have its own.
2. Choose the correct crate
An important consideration when buying a crate is how easy it is to clean because puppies appreciate cleanliness. If you purchase products you can’t reach into, and therefore, can’t wash, you’ll never successfully crate train your pet.
Another factor you should look at is whether or not the crate can be broken down and transported.
Once your pet gets used to sleeping in a particular crate, it won’t sleep anywhere else. So you should only buy a product that you can take with you when staying over at a friend’s or going on a road trip.
3. Establish a nighttime routine
The third tip that will help your puppy sleep is by establishing a routine. Set a fixed bedtime, and make sure your pet sticks to it.
Moreover, pick some activities and do them with your puppy every night before going to sleep. For instance, you can sing a specific song, spray a scent, or turn the lights off.
By associating these actions with sleeping, you subconsciously prepare your dog to go to sleep. 🐶
Most pets find comfort in predictability. The certainty helps calm them down and ensures they’re ready for a few hours of sleep.
4. Tire out your puppy before bedtime
You can help your puppy sleep through the evening by getting plenty of exercise during the day. If your pet is full of energy at bedtime, there is no way it will sleep. So you need to make use of all of it before then.
Additionally, when you take your puppy out for a walk, you give it a chance to relieve itself. This makes it less likely that you will wake up to a whining dog who needs to poop in the middle of the night.
This also gives you an excuse to burn some calories.
However, if you’re not a fan of physical exertion or can’t leave the house for some reason, you can invest in a dog puzzle. These games are very engaging for puppies, teach them many basic skills, and tire them out.
5. Set up a comfortable sleeping space
Puppies can sleep in pretty rough spaces. But this doesn’t mean you can’t spoil them. Dog trainers recommend doing so since it significantly increases the chances of your puppy sleeping more often.
The specific type of spoiling changes from puppy to puppy, which means you will have to try different options until you find the right one. Some prefer soft and warm bedding, while others lean towards a simple blanket and crate pad.
A general rule of thumb when shopping for beds is that you should pick a product that’s durable, comfortable, and chew-proof! For younger puppies, look for washable and waterproof products.
6. Give your puppy its own toys (security blanket)
If your puppy isn’t sleeping through the night, it may be because it struggles to settle in. Think about when you first brought your pet home. It probably snuggled into your bed. It was the center of your universe, and while that still holds true, you might not want to baby it when it is older.
Unfortunately, your puppy is just one part of your life. But it doesn’t know that. After you come down from the high of adopting it and jump back into your day-to-day tasks, it will feel left out and unappreciated.
These feelings come to the surface when at night, you’re tired and want to sleep, but your pet wants to play.
Luckily for you, this problem can be fixed easily. 🐶
All you need is a security blanket – something to remind your puppy that you still appreciate it. You can buy a blanket for the crate or use of your own since it will have your smell. Either way, you need a conduit for your love to help your puppy sleep through the night.
7. Reward good behavior
Sleeping itself is a natural desire, and your pet will give into it at some point. So you can’t reward your puppy for the act itself. 😍🥰
What you can do is establish positive reinforcement for the actions leading up to sleeping. Encourage your pet to sleep in a specific area or at a particular time.
If you’re still toilet training your puppy, it may need to relieve itself in the middle of the night. When that happens, it’s important to keep the interaction brief and to the point.
Don’t give any treats at first; take it to the chosen toilet spot, wait until it’s done, and return to your sleeping quarters. This can sound cold, but it ensures one training doesn’t interrupt the other.
8. Create a calm environment
Puppies don’t like being bored and tend to make their own fun when you’re not around. For example, if you leave a toy near its sleeping area, it will likely play with it instead of going to bed.
Therefore, if you want to help your puppy sleep, you need to limit distractions and create a calm environment. Packing up its toys at night is the first step.
The second is removing treats. Puppies don’t need food at night, and even though they should always have access to water, we don’t recommend leaving a bowl with them at night.
In fact, food and water right before bedtime or during the night can only lead to a late-night toilet trip.
Moreover, try to stay quiet at night. Don’t play loud music or talk to your puppy when it’s time to sleep.
9. Don’t acknowledge tantrums
You need to learn how to draw a line between comfort and attention. When your puppy starts whining, it will seem like the end of the world. But as much as it hurts you, you must not respond, and you simply can’t comfort it.
Giving in to your pet’s demands one day will only encourage them to try the same tactics the next day and the day after that. Your puppy will never sleep through the night.
So instead of holding your pet, you can try something like letting your furry friend sleep in a crate or dog bed in your room. Your presence should be enough to provide it with the necessary attention.
As it starts getting used to sleeping in its bed, you can slowly move its crate out of your room and to the place you want it to rest in finally.
10. Check for health problems
At times none of the tips outlined above will work. Your pet will wake up in the middle of the night despite the exercise, routine, and comfortable crate. In such cases, you should check for health-related problems.
For instance, pets can’t sleep in rooms with drafts. It makes them very cold and can have a significant impact on their sleep routine.
Since dogs are nowhere near our height and tend to sleep on the floor, cold air coming in through an air vent or from underneath a door is very uncomfortable. We won’t notice it, but they won’t be able to sleep because of it.
The best course of action here is to buy a draft excluder.
The ten tips outlined above are tried and tested. Each one has helped dog owners like you – who once struggled with their dog’s sleep routine – help their puppy get a good night’s sleep. Now you can do the same.
At their core, each of our tips has one goal: making your puppy comfortable. Imagine sleeping in a stranger’s bed. It won’t be as easy as sleeping on your own. The same applies here.
Your puppy is just getting to know you. Until it is comfortable, you have to go out of your way to mold your home’s surroundings to its needs. Get an excluder for the draft, stop playing action films on high volume at night, take your puppy out for walks, and most importantly, be patient with it. 🙏🐕
But remember that even with the best training, you will hit a few bumps down the road. Your puppy isn’t perfect, and neither are you. Disruptions like a sudden trip, guests staying over, etc., can hurt your puppy’s routine.
As long as you can power through such setbacks and continue applying our tips, your puppy will continue to sleep through the night.