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Crating new puppy at night...did I do this right?

1863 Views 5 Replies 6 Participants Last post by  andreangil
Luke is 12 weeks. The first night we had him home he went in his crate fine (the breeder already had him used to a crate and had him sleeping through the night...he's a Havanese...at around 8-9 weeks), whined once and was fine after I reassured him by putting my fingers in and showing him I was there. Then he went to sleep and slept through the whole night. During the night we move his crate to the foot and beside our bed on my side.

Last night was his second night. We went to bed at 10:30. He whined at first, I reassured him and he layed down. Five minutes later, more whining. He would fall asleep and wake up every ten minutes to find me. I had to get out of bed to reassure him b/c he'd start howling/whimpering. At about 11:15 I moved his crate closer to me hoping he could look up and see me but our bed is high. He'd lay down after he saw my face but I'd have to lean over the crate for about 3-4 minutes so he'd see me b/c he'd look up 3-4 times to make sure I was there. I'd no sooner fall asleep then ten minutes later the whimpering would start again. I'm right here! So then I remembered reading where some people elevated their puppy's crates to make it easier. So I got one of our large tray tables and put his crate up there. The rest of the night we all slept peacefully.

This morning he went out fine and while I got ready he went in and out of his crate to lay down.

How will we be able to move his crate to the floor eventually? I know it's only day 2.

I left the house for the first time this morning to take the kids to camp. We tried to make it as uneventful as possible. I left him with a Kong to distract him but I guess since they call this breed "velcro" dogs, there's a reason. He did notice us leave and I heard him whimpering/whining as we left. I came back 20 minutes later and I swear I heard him still whining as I was opening the door. Does it get easier? I'm back home now but will have to leave later today for longer periods and tomorrow as well. This was a good first week to have him because I'm more flexible and can come in and out periodically. But next week I'll be more regular...3 hours then a break, etc.

Thanks..sorry this was so long!
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Five minutes later, more whining. He would fall asleep and wake up every ten minutes to find me. I had to get out of bed to reassure him b/c he'd start howling/whimpering.
This was a mistake. :) And every time you "reassure him", you're teaching him that you will come when he whines. My strong advice is to put the crate where you want it to be and let him whine, cry, howl, whatever until he realizes that you're not coming to "reassure him". Ignore it. He will get the idea and then go to sleep. Every time you go to him, you're making a mistake.

As regards leaving the house, once he gets used to the idea that you aren't coming because he whined, he will calm down in his crate. Since you came to him when he whined in the night, he thinks whining brings you back, so of course he's going to whine when you leave. Just start ignoring the whining. Don't go to him or even look at him or let him out of the crate when he's whining. What you need to teach him is that whining doesn't do any good, so it's wasted effort. Then he will stop.

Good luck!
"Life is tough and then you die" There is no reason to make it tougher on yourself. FIC has given you good advice because your pup is playing you like a fiddle.

Now, if it makes you happy to have pup crated in your bedroom go for it. These are choices that people must make and the choices must fit the owner's personalities. I don't even want a crate near my bedroom, our dog is crated in a spare bedroom. That's the choice that fits my personality. I always felt that if we had a good nights sleep it would make wife and I better dog owners as we would have the energy/drive needed to work and make money to feed ourselves and the dog. Yes it's going to be rough now because puppy/babies are a pain in the butt at this age. You will survive though.
I crate next to the bed where I can touch them/reassure them. I move the crate a few feet away after a week or two...eventually to their corner of the bedroom. Yes, my dogs sleep in our bedroom all their lives.

FIC makes a good point....there is a fine line between unneccessary reassurance which can become a really bad habit and giving the pup confidence when they need it.

For me, this is the time for one of the earliest, best lessons that I can do in a controlled, extremely low distraction area....the Shhhhh or Quiet command. To me, that's not reassurance....well, maybe it's a side effect...I call it teaching.
My pups usually slept through the night without whinning or barking but, I worked them pretty hard during the day with basic training so they just zonked out.
Yeah, as painful as it may be to you just have to ignore them. If you ignore them you are doing them and yourself favor and training the same time.
ditto on the ignoring your dog. :)

The trick is to get your dog to like his crate. All good things come from his crate. This means he gets his food, toys and treats from his crate. Put a dirty smelly tshirt in there as well, he'll be comforted by your smell. Also make sure he gets plenty of exercise before bedtime and limit food and water. I haven't had trouble with my dog and his crate since his 2nd night home and this is our night time routine

6:30--come home, short walk, potty
7:00--dinner, potty
7:15--puppy entertains himself (while we eat)
7:30--relax, watch tv, play with puppy
8:30--long walk, potty--no more water after he pees
9:00--play fetch till he gets bored
9:15--get ready for bed
9:30--ignore puppy
10:00--bedtime, put puppy in crate inside our bedroom, but not right by our bed. I don't make a big deal out of it, he just gets a simple good boy and that's it. He has his only bully stick in his crate if he gets bored. He also has a cushion, pillow and blanket to get comfy with. Occasionally he whines but it stops in two minutes. If I'm awake with the light on and he's in his crate he will whine until the light is off, and then he knows its bedtime. If he whines in the middle of the night, I go to his crate, immediately put a short leash on him and take him outside. I don't talk to him, pet him, or even look at him. Its straight outside, I stand in one spot and wait for him to go, if he goes he gets praise and a treat, if he doesn't go in a minute or so, I pick him up and take him straight back to his crate with out saying a word.

Hope this helps!
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