Dog with IBD waking me up at night EVERY FREAKING NIGHT
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Thread: Dog with IBD waking me up at night EVERY FREAKING NIGHT

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    Senior Member pyralis's Avatar
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    Dog with IBD waking me up at night EVERY FREAKING NIGHT

    I love my dog. She's going on five years old, and has always, always, always slept through the night. When she was a couple years old we stopped crating her at all, and I in fact sold her crate to a friend when she was four since we didn't use it and I was tired of lugging it around with every move.

    Around December or January she started having serious problems with diarrhea (that is not what this thread is about), but even at its worst she never woke us up in the middle of the night to go out.

    Now that she's been on medications and a new diet, but the same day-to-day routine in general, she is waking us up EVERY night in the MIDDLE of the night as if she desperately needs to go to the bathroom.

    Initially, when she was still somewhat sick, I'd let her out, and she'd immediately run off and I could see she was either trying or actually defecating (but hey, it's DARK at 3AM).

    Now, weeks later, as I'm writing this at 4:45 AM, I'm really starting to think she's just now in the habit of going out at night when she really could just hold it for a few more hours and it's making me extremely irritable especially when I'm trying to sleep so I can go work a 10 hour day that starts at 7AM.

    Does anybody think it would be wrong to make her wait? Any suggestions on how we could keep her from waking us in the night aside from buying a new crate? If I lock her out of our bedroom she'll lay by our door, then every few minutes I hear her get up and run to the door, run back, lay down, get up and run to the door, run back, etc (we have linoleum and I hear every bloody footfall).

    I really want to stop this cycle, because I feel like I'm going to snap if I don't. She's never had an accident in the house, even when her diarrhea is at its worst, and she always makes it just fine the one or two days a week when she's left at home for 10 hours (which, tomorrow should be the last one of those ever, thankfully), so why can't she make it through a 6 or 8 hour night?

    Home is where our Border Collie, Boxer/Pit/Something Mix, 20-odd horses, and 7-odd cats are.

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    Senior Member railNtrailcowgrl's Avatar
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    Re: Dog with IBD waking me up at night EVERY FREAKING NIGHT

    What time is her last feeding for the night? Pebs gets fed around 6PM and goes out one last time at 11PM. If I feed her any later and she has to go out around 2AM.

    All my dogs have been scamps and thieves and troublemakers and I've adored them all. ~Helen Hayes

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    Senior Member Cracker's Avatar
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    Re: Dog with IBD waking me up at night EVERY FREAKING NIGHT

    Yes, it is likely that she's gotten into the habit of going out at night. This is a tough dilemma because of course you don't want her stressing if she really needs to go (IBD SUCKS). SO, if the IBD is now under control I would start ignoring her, possibly crating her again.

    Remember that behaviours take a while to extinguish and that you are likely to get what is called an 'extinction burst' while working on this...where the behaviour suddenly seems to worsen before it actually dies. This is often where people give up on trying to change it, thinking whatever they are doing is not working. It IS working, this is the last ditch effort by the dog to get what always worked to work again before giving up.

    We do the same thing:

    Say your car won't start. You have a history built of "turn key, car starts". When it doesn't start how many times do you keep turning the key HOPING the dang thing will start before actually finally giving up and calling for assistance? RIght before you do call for assistance the key turning gets almost frantic (this is where most folks flood their cars). This is an extinction burst.

    So I"m sure you can get this situation under control, but it may take a bit of time for the dog to get to the point of stopping the behaviour completely.
    Maggi and Cracker, Dog about Rosedale


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    Senior Member ioreks_mom's Avatar
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    Re: Dog with IBD waking me up at night EVERY FREAKING NIGHT

    I am sorry that you are going through this.

    I agree with Cracker. If the IBD is under control I would start ignoring.

    I can completely understand how you feel. I have a puppy, well he is almost 10 months old now. He is completely house broken and hasn't had an accident in months. But, it was SO long before I could break him of the habit of going out each night. I thought I was going to go insane from lack of sleep. I mean, he could hold it all day while I was at work (9 hours) but would wake me up after 3-4 hours in the night. No way! I finally just started ignoring him and he started letting me sleep through the night about 3 months ago. Then last week...he started again!! Argh!

    I just wanted to let you know that I am feeling your pain. I have gone back to ignoring again but it is frustrating.

    I hope that you get some rest soon.
    mindy and the fuzzbutts!

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    Senior Member Jod-dog's Avatar
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    Re: Dog with IBD waking me up at night EVERY FREAKING NIGHT

    I agree with the other posters, but if you are concerned that it's not just a habit, can you put in a doggy door?
    Jodi and Scrappy
    My 12 lb Poodle/Schnauzer mix

    I LOVES me the Scruffy Dogs!

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    Senior Member pyralis's Avatar
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    Re: Dog with IBD waking me up at night EVERY FREAKING NIGHT

    Quote Originally Posted by Cracker View Post
    Yes, it is likely that she's gotten into the habit of going out at night. This is a tough dilemma because of course you don't want her stressing if she really needs to go (IBD SUCKS). SO, if the IBD is now under control I would start ignoring her, possibly crating her again.

    Remember that behaviours take a while to extinguish and that you are likely to get what is called an 'extinction burst' while working on this...
    What your saying makes perfect sense, and that is my dilemma, not stressing her if she truly needs to go. She does seem very frantic when she wakes us (not by barking, she'll lick and just start shaking as soon as our eyes open, which makes her collar tags jangle). Though, in recent days she has not whined at all. In the past, when she is physically ill and needs to go (or else she'll lose control), she whines piteously.

    She's not 100% over the IBD, but she IS getting noticeably better every few days. So maybe with still having somewhat loose stools, she feels like she needs to go more often. (*throws her hands up* Who knows?)

    In response to other posters:

    She is normally fed once at 7AM, once at 5 or 6 PM, and goes out one last time before bed around 10:30 or 11. We are thinking about moving her dinner up to 3 or 4PM to see if this helps. She's not going out to pee (water intake at night doesn't seem to be an issue), it's actually to "go poo" as we say.

    To another: We cannot install a doggy door. 1) It's a rental house, and 2) we have no fenced in yard (though many, many acres). While I trust her when I'm around, I don't like the idea of her out unsupervised for longer than it takes her to use the bathroom. If anything, the longer she's out at night, the more likely she'll get sprayed by a skunk!
    Home is where our Border Collie, Boxer/Pit/Something Mix, 20-odd horses, and 7-odd cats are.

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    Senior Member pyralis's Avatar
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    Re: Dog with IBD waking me up at night EVERY FREAKING NIGHT

    PS. Also, thank you all for the sympathy. I love the silly dog, and I'll do anything for her. The lack of sleep is just starting to really get to me!
    Home is where our Border Collie, Boxer/Pit/Something Mix, 20-odd horses, and 7-odd cats are.

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    Senior Member Jod-dog's Avatar
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    Re: Dog with IBD waking me up at night EVERY FREAKING NIGHT

    Quote Originally Posted by pyralis View Post
    To another: We cannot install a doggy door. 1) It's a rental house, and 2) we have no fenced in yard (though many, many acres). While I trust her when I'm around, I don't like the idea of her out unsupervised for longer than it takes her to use the bathroom. If anything, the longer she's out at night, the more likely she'll get sprayed by a skunk!
    Sorry, didn't know it was a rental.
    Jodi and Scrappy
    My 12 lb Poodle/Schnauzer mix

    I LOVES me the Scruffy Dogs!

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    Senior Member pyralis's Avatar
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    Re: Dog with IBD waking me up at night EVERY FREAKING NIGHT

    Quote Originally Posted by Jod-dog View Post
    Sorry, didn't know it was a rental.
    Oh, don't be sorry! I didn't mean to come across as terse. Just letting you know why it wouldn't work. She has on more than one occasion found a skunk at night, and whooee, that is worse than having to let her out briefly at night.

    Home is where our Border Collie, Boxer/Pit/Something Mix, 20-odd horses, and 7-odd cats are.

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    Senior Member Jod-dog's Avatar
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    Re: Dog with IBD waking me up at night EVERY FREAKING NIGHT

    Quote Originally Posted by pyralis View Post
    Oh, don't be sorry! I didn't mean to come across as terse. Just letting you know why it wouldn't work. She has on more than one occasion found a skunk at night, and whooee, that is worse than having to let her out briefly at night.

    I can imagine! Oh, skunk is a terrible smell! LOL
    Jodi and Scrappy
    My 12 lb Poodle/Schnauzer mix

    I LOVES me the Scruffy Dogs!

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    Senior Member pyralis's Avatar
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    Re: Dog with IBD waking me up at night EVERY FREAKING NIGHT

    Thanks for the advice all. After getting four hours of sleep the night before, last night as soon as I heard her start to get up and approach our bed (around 2AM), I gave her a sharp, "No!" and she quietted down for the rest of the night without problem.

    In fact, when my alarm went off at 6AM, she was still laying (asleep) in the same spot as if there was no real urgency at all.

    We're going to try and feed her earlier in the day anyway, but it can be difficult with our work schedules. Here's hoping I get some sleep from now on!
    Last edited by pyralis; 04-28-2010 at 08:49 AM. Reason: Edit: OUR bed, not HER bed, ha!
    Home is where our Border Collie, Boxer/Pit/Something Mix, 20-odd horses, and 7-odd cats are.

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    Senior Member MagicRe's Avatar
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    Re: Dog with IBD waking me up at night EVERY FREAKING NIGHT

    hi.....if i may suggest....don't change her schedule just yet....with feeding, since what you did last night may well be the answer.....give it a few days to see if this is the real deal of a habit she's gotten into or something else....

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    Senior Member pyralis's Avatar
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    Re: Dog with IBD waking me up at night EVERY FREAKING NIGHT

    Quote Originally Posted by MagicRe View Post
    hi.....if i may suggest....don't change her schedule just yet....with feeding, since what you did last night may well be the answer.....give it a few days to see if this is the real deal of a habit she's gotten into or something else....
    Good idea! Thanks!
    Home is where our Border Collie, Boxer/Pit/Something Mix, 20-odd horses, and 7-odd cats are.

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    Member snark's Avatar
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    Re: Dog with IBD waking me up at night EVERY FREAKING NIGHT

    Hope it works out for you!

    Guess I'm an idiot - my first dog got me up at 2am every night, without fail, for 17 years because she had to pee. I did perfect a semi zombie-like state while trudging down the stairs, standing outside waiting for her to pee and going right back to bed again. You get used to it after the first couple of years...

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    Senior Member pyralis's Avatar
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    Re: Dog with IBD waking me up at night EVERY FREAKING NIGHT

    Quote Originally Posted by snark View Post
    Hope it works out for you!

    Guess I'm an idiot - my first dog got me up at 2am every night, without fail, for 17 years because she had to pee. I did perfect a semi zombie-like state while trudging down the stairs, standing outside waiting for her to pee and going right back to bed again. You get used to it after the first couple of years...
    lol, well at least I'm not alone I guess.

    After our successful trial the other night with telling her "no" when she tried to wake us up, we tried to repeat the exercise last night. I should have realized something was different. She gave up after one "no" the night before, but last night kept trying repeatedly. At 5:55AM I heard a whine and jumped out of bed (I know whine's are only used as a last resort with my dog), but I was too late. She was sitting by the door looking guilty next to where she had poo'd (and of course it's not her fault).

    We're going to go back to our plan of feeding her either earlier in the day, or a larger breakfast, and a tiny dinner. If she persists after we tell her "no" once at night, I guess I'll be doing the zombie-walk to let her out regardless.

    *sigh*
    Home is where our Border Collie, Boxer/Pit/Something Mix, 20-odd horses, and 7-odd cats are.

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    Senior Member Cracker's Avatar
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    Re: Dog with IBD waking me up at night EVERY FREAKING NIGHT

    Something to keep in mind...
    When I was suffering from intestinal issues (now under control with diet change and probiotics) the FEAR of having to go find a washroom on short notice was more stressful than the stomach issue itself AND triggered more frequent bouts. I work as a dogwalker, so you can imagine me trying to plan my walks around where I could tie up the dogs and find a washroom in an emergency...

    So, now you know that if she settles immediately after you say no, that she's LIKELY okay and if she doesn't that you need to get her outside. Poor pup.
    Maggi and Cracker, Dog about Rosedale


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    Senior Member MagicRe's Avatar
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    Re: Dog with IBD waking me up at night EVERY FREAKING NIGHT

    Quote Originally Posted by pyralis View Post
    lol, well at least I'm not alone I guess.

    After our successful trial the other night with telling her "no" when she tried to wake us up, we tried to repeat the exercise last night. I should have realized something was different. She gave up after one "no" the night before, but last night kept trying repeatedly. At 5:55AM I heard a whine and jumped out of bed (I know whine's are only used as a last resort with my dog), but I was too late. She was sitting by the door looking guilty next to where she had poo'd (and of course it's not her fault).

    We're going to go back to our plan of feeding her either earlier in the day, or a larger breakfast, and a tiny dinner. If she persists after we tell her "no" once at night, I guess I'll be doing the zombie-walk to let her out regardless.

    *sigh*
    here again.....we do the same with our dogs...if malia whines once (bubba goes unconscious until morning - perfect sleeper), then we tell her to go back to bed. but if she jumps off the bed and starts whining, we know to take her out.

    i was told, and i forget by whom, that if you want your dog to go through the night, feed later not earlier.....

    can't go by my dogs, as they are transitioning to raw...so anything goes, i guess with them for now....

    but during their home cooked days, we fed them later than we used to....instead of 7:30 a.m. and 4 p.m., they get fed at 7:30 a.m. and 6 p.m.

    and i must admit...i think it has helped....but let us know how she does with an earlier feeding..

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    Senior Member pyralis's Avatar
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    Re: Dog with IBD waking me up at night EVERY FREAKING NIGHT

    Quote Originally Posted by Cracker View Post
    Something to keep in mind...
    When I was suffering from intestinal issues (now under control with diet change and probiotics) the FEAR of having to go find a washroom on short notice was more stressful than the stomach issue itself AND triggered more frequent bouts. I work as a dogwalker, so you can imagine me trying to plan my walks around where I could tie up the dogs and find a washroom in an emergency...

    So, now you know that if she settles immediately after you say no, that she's LIKELY okay and if she doesn't that you need to get her outside. Poor pup.
    I know. I feel terrible for her. She's on a special diet now, and a supplement of fiber and probiotics and it really seems like she's on the way to recovery. I almost wish we could put in a doggie door (can't, as we rent, unless we replace the whole door, and the yard isn't fenced), but then we wouldn't be able to monitor her progress as easily either.

    It just seems odd to me that she's having to go out every night now, when her symptoms are finally going away, instead of before when she was having really nasty problems. We're about to move to a new house (also rental, no fence) literally this weekend. I'm secretly hoping something about the new environment helps (maybe she was allergic to something here?), or that it helps her settle into a new routine. I also won't be working immediately after the move, so it'll be a bit easier for me to go out with her in the middle of the night, or put her on a new feeding schedule.

    Here's hoping at least.
    Home is where our Border Collie, Boxer/Pit/Something Mix, 20-odd horses, and 7-odd cats are.

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    Senior Member pyralis's Avatar
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    Re: Dog with IBD waking me up at night EVERY FREAKING NIGHT

    Quote Originally Posted by MagicRe View Post
    i was told, and i forget by whom, that if you want your dog to go through the night, feed later not earlier.....

    can't go by my dogs, as they are transitioning to raw...so anything goes, i guess with them for now....

    but during their home cooked days, we fed them later than we used to....instead of 7:30 a.m. and 4 p.m., they get fed at 7:30 a.m. and 6 p.m.

    and i must admit...i think it has helped....but let us know how she does with an earlier feeding..
    That's an interesting thought. I mentioned before we normally feed her around 6:30 or 7AM, then we would put her dinner out at 5 or 6PM depending on when we got home from work. But the most frustrating thing about her is that she never seems hungry when we're leaving for work, and often doesn't finish her breakfast until one of us comes home (separation anxiety maybe?). And then because she just finished her breakfast, she doesn't eat her dinner until much later either (sometimes 8PM or later).

    So we're reaching this other point where we're thinking, do we just pick up her food after 10 minutes (breakfast and dinner) if she doesn't eat, in an effort to get her on a more rigid schedule? We've done that before and it pretty much led to her sporadically eating all her dinner one day, and then nothing for a day, and then breakfast the next day (but not dinner). OR, do we just go ahead and give her the whole day's food at breakfast or dinner, instead of even trying to split them up, as she doesn't seem to like to eat in the morning?

    She has been this way about not being interested in eating since she was a puppy as many previous roommates can attest to (even when she was otherwise 100% normal and healthy). We've done blood panels and parasite screenings on and off for years wondering if her anorexia was caused by something else, but never found anything. When another dog is in the house, it admittedly helps her appetite, but we can't really afford a second right now (especially with as many vet trips as she's had lately!).
    Home is where our Border Collie, Boxer/Pit/Something Mix, 20-odd horses, and 7-odd cats are.

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    Senior Member Jod-dog's Avatar
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    Re: Dog with IBD waking me up at night EVERY FREAKING NIGHT

    Quote Originally Posted by pyralis View Post
    We're about to move to a new house (also rental, no fence) literally this weekend.
    Maybe she's picking up the stress everyone's feeling because of the move, and it's increasing her need to go.
    Jodi and Scrappy
    My 12 lb Poodle/Schnauzer mix

    I LOVES me the Scruffy Dogs!

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