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Discussion Starter #1
I'd like to get some feedback on my puppy schedule. My puppy seems to have an endless supply of energy, and I want to be able to wear him out, but still get him to sleep at night.

We'll get up, short walk, eat, then he'll go in the crate while I go to work. Prolly get taken out and another brief walk at lunch time. I'll come home from work and take him on a big long walk (like an hour or so), then give him his dinner. He still has energy to play after (which I don't, haha). Now I want him to wear himself out, but not too early so that he'll sleep with me through the night (and so that i'll sleep too cause he sleeps with me). Any advice on making this happen? (particularly managing the evening hours). If I put him in his crate after a long play he'll calm down and fall right to sleep. I don't want it to feel like a time out, but it works and he knocks out. Just don't want him to wake up when it's time for bed and be ready to play again. Any thoughts?
 

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You want to work his brain -- freeze a kong stuffed with peanut butter (or whatever your puppy likes) and let him work at getting it out.

Other good toys are Buddy Squirrel and the other Buddy toys (we had a barbell thing) that can be stuffed with a little kibble or treats.

Also, you'll eventually start obedience training and just 15-20 minutes of practice can really work their brains and wear the pup out.
 

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Training is what worked best with my Lab. Making him use his brain wore him out better than anything. Kongs never worked with Eddie because they upset him...(its a long explanation...suffice to say, he gets obsessed and upset); so Kongs didn't work with him...however, they did with Uallis and they still do with him. Give him a PB stuffed Kong and he's a happy camper...its the same with a Nylabone.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Well that's good to know. I don't really know any games and I do use a kong for his kibble sometime. I will try the pb frozen. He doesn't really sit still and chew alot (at least on his toys, esp in the crate). Does a filled kong really wear him out mentally that much?
 

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Does a filled kong really wear him out mentally that much?
Cupid is my Mr. Energy dog. Yesterday I gave him a frozen Kong. He worked at it for nearly an hour, then slept for another hour. This is the dog that does not sleep much during the day.

I wouldn't guarantee that it would wear him out, but it sure worked for me.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
That's a good enough answer for me. Esp if it will wear him out just enough to let him sleep at night with me. Mine's crazy energy too, but will sleep in his crate during the day. Although he doesn't chew in the crate. Which I find weird but hopefully that will change too. I know that can drain some energy as well.
 

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How old is your puppy? It sounds like a good schedule, although I can see the problem you have with evenings. Our dog was on the same schedule except when she went to daycare. Evenings were a blast/really exhausting until she hit around 2-2.5 years old. She just had enormous amounts of energy. So we walked and played with her for 4-5 hours every night. Like I said, it was a blast but very tiring. If we didn't keep her busy with exercise and play, she would nap a little and then drive us nuts at 11:00 when it was time to go to bed -- play biting the bed, zooming around the house, chewing a shoe, etc. Sometimes a stuffed Kong would work to calm her down but just as often it would give her renewed energy to go at it for another hour. She grew out of that phase, thank goodness, and now is pretty much settled in by 9:00 for the night.

Kongs are great but they aren't really mentally stimulating for my dog. She likes puzzles so we try to play a lot of "find it" games with her - find the ball in the blanket, find daddy or mommy (we hide around the house), etc. We also play games that rev her up for intense periods to help tire her out like chasing her around the house. I play a form of soccer with her I call "who's faster?" where I try to get the ball by her before she can grab it. It really challenges her physically and mentally since she not only has to chase the ball down, she has to think hard about which way I'm going to throw, roll, or kick it. Racquet balls are great for this because they do little damage inside the house if they hit something.

Sorry for the long post. Bottom line -- sounds like you just need to manage your pup's evening time with a little more play & exercise until he grows out of this phase (if he does!).
 

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We do all the "mental" work at night with our puppy. Obedience training, target training, recall training. She would get all wound up around 7-8 every night and want to wrestle with the other two dogs. A good session of training and she's zonked right out for the evening.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
How old is your puppy? It sounds like a good schedule, although I can see the problem you have with evenings. Our dog was on the same schedule except when she went to daycare. Evenings were a blast/really exhausting until she hit around 2-2.5 years old. She just had enormous amounts of energy. So we walked and played with her for 4-5 hours every night. Like I said, it was a blast but very tiring. If we didn't keep her busy with exercise and play, she would nap a little and then drive us nuts at 11:00 when it was time to go to bed -- play biting the bed, zooming around the house, chewing a shoe, etc. Sometimes a stuffed Kong would work to calm her down but just as often it would give her renewed energy to go at it for another hour. She grew out of that phase, thank goodness, and now is pretty much settled in by 9:00 for the night.

Kongs are great but they aren't really mentally stimulating for my dog. She likes puzzles so we try to play a lot of "find it" games with her - find the ball in the blanket, find daddy or mommy (we hide around the house), etc. We also play games that rev her up for intense periods to help tire her out like chasing her around the house. I play a form of soccer with her I call "who's faster?" where I try to get the ball by her before she can grab it. It really challenges her physically and mentally since she not only has to chase the ball down, she has to think hard about which way I'm going to throw, roll, or kick it. Racquet balls are great for this because they do little damage inside the house if they hit something.

Sorry for the long post. Bottom line -- sounds like you just need to manage your pup's evening time with a little more play & exercise until he grows out of this phase (if he does!).
He's 11 weeks. I guess the only problem is that I still have 2 weeks to graduation so it's hard to play with him the WHOLE night.

With that in mind, is it better to feed him before or after our evening walk/run?

We do all the "mental" work at night with our puppy. Obedience training, target training, recall training. She would get all wound up around 7-8 every night and want to wrestle with the other two dogs. A good session of training and she's zonked right out for the evening.
I'm looking forward to puppy class even more now. Thanks.
 

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11 weeks -- I'm so envious!! Yes, it will be a bit of a struggle for a while but it sounds like you'll be better able to deal with it in 2 weeks. Maybe you could try feeding your puppy his food with a Kong - will take longer and give you a break to do what you need to do in the short term. Some summer nights I would give our dog half her dinner frozen in 4-5 of the big black kongs. Cooled her off and kept her busy for at least an hour.

RE feeding - I always like walking my dog on an empty stomach because I incorporate training into the walk and there's less worry about bloat (her mother died from it). A hungry puppy is just more attentive. And as Chriley pointed out, the mental work will help tire your pup out.

This is what I would do: a nice long walk with a little basic training (you can start before classes - go to dogstardaily.com -- lots of good puppy advice there), followed by rest, then dinner in several kongs, more rest, a 30-60 minute play session and then bed. If she was feeling spunky, we sometimes had to take our dog out around 10:00 for another 15 minute spin.

One final thing: a trainer we worked with told us to begin rewarding our dog any time she was laying down calmly and self-amusing or just laying quietly. We combined this with a "go to your bed" command. She learned that good things happened when she was quietly laying down -- saved our sanity to get our caffeinated puppy to self amuse!
 

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I wear out my 5 month old puppy by taking her to the dog park. After spending about 1 1/2 to 2 hours there, she's zonked out for the rest of the day...depending on how much she runs around. It gives her the ability to wear out her running energy as well as socialization skills.

Many dog parks are part of regular parks, so they close late (mine closes at 11pm...it's still nice and cool/warm). So, perhaps you can take her there for an hour.

I do have a Kong, but she only uses it when she wants to. It's not like I can just put in a treat and hopefully she will start chewing on it. It's either she wants it or doesn't.

I thought trying to use peanut butter (btw - is there any type of peanut butter that's not good for puppies?), but it sounds like it will be messy.

Also - hopefully the puppy classes will help wear your pup out as well. Your puppy was pretty much contained all day, so it's holding all the energy. I'm a student, and my fiance works from home so we're home all the time, so Stardust always get played/attention every couple hours or so. I take her to dog parks 3 to 4 times a week.
 

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Discussion Starter #13 (Edited)
One final thing: a trainer we worked with told us to begin rewarding our dog any time she was laying down calmly and self-amusing or just laying quietly. We combined this with a "go to your bed" command. She learned that good things happened when she was quietly laying down -- saved our sanity to get our caffeinated puppy to self amuse!
Wow did that actually work? I would sure like to teach him a command like that. Would beat having to put him in his crate for a few minutes before bed time so he can calm down to go to sleep. As for the rest of it that sounds like really good advice. He can do sit, but that's about it, lol.

I wear out my 5 month old puppy by taking her to the dog park. After spending about 1 1/2 to 2 hours there, she's zonked out for the rest of the day...depending on how much she runs around. It gives her the ability to wear out her running energy as well as socialization skills.

Many dog parks are part of regular parks, so they close late (mine closes at 11pm...it's still nice and cool/warm). So, perhaps you can take her there for an hour.

I do have a Kong, but she only uses it when she wants to. It's not like I can just put in a treat and hopefully she will start chewing on it. It's either she wants it or doesn't.

I thought trying to use peanut butter (btw - is there any type of peanut butter that's not good for puppies?), but it sounds like it will be messy.

Also - hopefully the puppy classes will help wear your pup out as well. Your puppy was pretty much contained all day, so it's holding all the energy. I'm a student, and my fiance works from home so we're home all the time, so Stardust always get played/attention every couple hours or so. I take her to dog parks 3 to 4 times a week.
Unfortunatly he's too young to bring to my local dog park. (He needs to be 4 months according to the rules). But I intend to as soon as he gets his final shots. I need another dog to teach him his bite inhibition because I'm not doing such a good job. He hasn't had a real playmate since he left his brother.

Btw, pb works great. They can't turn it down.

Also - hopefully the puppy classes will help wear your pup out as well. Your puppy was pretty much contained all day, so it's holding all the energy. I'm a student, and my fiance works from home so we're home all the time, so Stardust always get played/attention every couple hours or so. I take her to dog parks 3 to 4 times a week.
Yea I'm in class and work all day. And I'm raising him by myself (roommates aren't much help). So he's stuck that way until he can be trusted out or I get a house with a secure yard he can stay in. I'm really looking forward to the puppy class, for ALOT of reasons. haha.
 

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Wow did that actually work? I would sure like to teach him a command like that. Would beat having to put him in his crate for a few minutes before bed time so he can calm down to go to sleep. As for the rest of it that sounds like really good advice. He can do sit, but that's about it, lol.
Yes, it worked for us. Her bed became her waiting place. Taught her patience. She learned that if she went to her bed (or if we were in a room without her bed, a rug) she would eventually get rewarded. Keeps her from bothering us at meal times. It's pretty funny now = when she wants something a lot she'll run over to her bed and lay down and stare at us with this "Well???? Where's my yummy/toy????"
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Yes, it worked for us. Her bed became her waiting place. Taught her patience. She learned that if she went to her bed (or if we were in a room without her bed, a rug) she would eventually get rewarded. Keeps her from bothering us at meal times. It's pretty funny now = when she wants something a lot she'll run over to her bed and lay down and stare at us with this "Well???? Where's my yummy/toy????"
Haha. Yea I taught Waldo "sit" and "down", so now when I call him he will cycle through them to see if he'll get something, and I'm like... nope... doesn't work that way buddy.
 

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I know how you feel, I've had my 8mo. old since he was nine weeks. One thing my husband would do is throw a ball down the steps and have Rocco chase it over and over and over, like ten times in a row and eventually he would be so tired that he would not even go after the ball. That was an easy way to tire him out.
 

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I know how you feel, I've had my 8mo. old since he was nine weeks. One thing my husband would do is throw a ball down the steps and have Rocco chase it over and over and over, like ten times in a row and eventually he would be so tired that he would not even go after the ball. That was an easy way to tire him out.
Yea we don't know fetch yet. He knows go after... lol.
 
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