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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Zoey is about 6.5 months old now and we have been having some trouble with her waking up in the early AM and not going back to sleep. Some nights she will do fabulous and sleep quietly all night until we wake up and come downstairs. Other nights she will sleep til about 5 AM, cry/whine/bark/howl bloody murder. Here's where I get confused. Say we go to bed at 11pm and that was her last potty, by 5 AM its been 6 hours. So...let her out to go potty, no interaction, straight back into crate. Occassionally she will go back to sleep, but most of the time she continues that cry/whine/bark/howl/scream until my husband loses patience and gets up. I have told him NOT to let her out of the crate while she is throwing a tantrum and he doesn't, he waits til she's quiet for 20-30 minutes. She does stop when he goes downstairs, but I want to be able to go back to bed! To sleep in on a weekend! We are usually up between 5:30-6am on weekdays so when she starts at 5 we just get up and let her out and stay up cuz it's not worth it trying to go back to sleep, which I think is not helping.

So...what do we do?? Stop letting her out to potty? Keep letting her out, but always put her back and just wait out the crying? Any help, advice, opinions, input would be so great because this is getting real old, real fast. I feel like she's training us instead of the other way around!

ETA: Forgot to mention, her crate is downstairs in the living room, she has her antler, nylabone and sometimes Kong in there with her, radio is always on for her.
 

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When you let her out at 5 am, does she potty? Usually when dogs, especially puppies first wake up, they need to pee. She's a puppy and if she wakes up at 5 am and you DON'T take her out, she may wet the crate. So, I'd continue to take her out. I'd normally suggest giving her a stuffed kong after you take her out to potty at 5 am, but it seems you already do that.

You might try to wait 10-15 minutes before you take her out. So, it would be roughly 5:15 am. Then, after a couple weeks, try 5:30 am. So that you gradually shift to letting her out later and later. She may become accustomed to that.
 

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Consider that you just changed to Daylight Saving Time.... however she did not. So, her schedule just changed with no warning. If this is the case, then what Doxie said should work beautifully...
 

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Discussion Starter #4
So I decided Friday night to move her crate upstairs to our bedroom and she what happened. We have plenty of room for it up there and the only reason I didn't have it up there before was because I wanted somewhere to confine her to while we were downstairs, but we have a baby gate up now and she is getting more reliable in housetraining.

It was a huge success! She has slept quiet until we woke up all 3 nights in a row so far. Sunday morning I woke up about 7 am and had to go to the bathroom. So I got up, got her up and took her with me (it had been 7 hours since her last potty), let her out, then we went back up, I gave her a treat in her crate, and we slept for another hour without a peep from her!

I'm hoping this is an okay fix. When she is allowed to sleep out of her crate it will be in our bedroom anyway. And she is fine in her crate while we are gone so not worried about any separation anxiety. Anyone see any potential problems or any issues that we aren't addressing?
 

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Your happy, she's happy.....sounds like a plan! Congrats! :)
 
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