Walter is waking so early...help!

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KellyDP
Puppy
Posts: 8
Joined: 04 Aug 2020, 19:39
First Name: Kelly
Dog #1: Walter
is a: P/S Mini Dog
Born: 26 Aug 2020

Walter is waking so early...help!

Post by KellyDP »

Hi, Walter is nearly seven months old and is generally doing really well except that he keeps waking earlier and earlier each morning (5:47 today!). Does anyone have any advice on how to get a puppy to learn to sleep in longer in the mornings? I don't mind getting up early I and am not one to sleep in anyway, but just getting him to not howl and bark before 6:30/7:00 would be a real bonus.

When he was younger he usually slept through to 7am but as he is getting older and the mornings lighter he is waking earlier and earlier and just barks and howls. We ignore him and refuse to get up to him until 6:30 so that he has a consistent time that he knows we get up but this does not prevent the barking and howling. He sleeps through the night fine in his create and we go to bed at around 10:00-10:30. I don't think he is desperate for the toilet as he has had a bladder of steel from 12 weeks onwards and when he wakes up he can take a good 10 min in the garden before he goes.

He has always slept in the crate with the door shut and three sides of the crate is covered so its nice and dark for him, even though its light outside. Should we be thinking of opening the crate at night now he is older? Is he perhaps frustrated to be trapped in his crate when he wakes?

I suspect he may be hungry but we are consistent with meal times and breakfast is at 7:30 no matter how early he may wake, we always make him wait. He then has lunch at 12:00 and tea at 6pm. (We tried getting him down to two meals at six months but this ended up in an upset stomach and I don't think he is ready for this yet) I wonder if a later tea might help?

I think he is waking up and missing us, he is very affectionate and has a real bond with me and my partner. We are trying to gradually build up leaving him for small periods in the day but I think he wakes up full of beans and just wants us to wake up and be there with him. Once he is up he plays on his own really well, so we are not giving him a lot of attention first thing. He then crashes at 8am and goes back in his crate for a nap and then has another nap after his lunch and after his tea.

Any advice would be appreciated!

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zeta1454
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Joined: 19 May 2011, 16:58
First Name: Leigh
Dog #1: Magic
is a: P/S Mini Bitch
Born: 20 Apr 2010
Dog #2: Trilby
is a: P/S Mini Bitch
Born: 15 Mar 2012
Dog #3: Pip
Born: 21 Feb 2014
is a: P/S Mini Bitch
Location: North Yorkshire
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Re: Walter is waking so early...help!

Post by zeta1454 »

Unfortunately many animals and birds do have a different body clock to us humans or at least they respond more to the seasonal changes and as the days get longer and sun rise earlier many do want to be up and about regardless of what time it is on the clock. We have hens who are in an enclosed coop at night which must still be dark inside at sun rise but they have been wanting to get up earlier now as they seem to instinctively know it is light outside. Our younger dogs too (although not puppies) want to get up earlier now than during the winter months.

I don’t think it will be the need to toilet or being hungry - schnauzers are in my experience always ready for a meal but that doesn’t mean there is any need to change meal times. Is Walter’s crate upstairs, in your bedroom or in a downstairs room? If it is in your bedroom you could try (if you are OK with this) letting him come on the bed once he has woken up if you think he is wanting company or leave the crate door open overnight - which may mean he gets on your bed anyway! If he is sleeping in a different room and there is nothing he could damage or hurt himself on if unsupervised, you could try leaving the door of the crate open as it may be, if he has a chew item (Kong, antler, root or yak stick) to occupy himself that he may wait quietly until you want to get up.

There is always the possibility though that if Walter can get out and wander, he may pee indoors even though he is housetrained, if he is frustrated still at not being with you. Many dogs do want to go outside to relieve themselves once they are awake in the morning even though they are content to hold on if they are in a crate.

Some of our dogs who sleep in a crate have a Yak stick or antler actually in the crate with them overnight and they will often have a chew on this before we get up and let them out so it might be worth trying this if you don’t want to leave the door open. The Yak sticks come in different sizes and a puppy is best with a small one but the medium size will last longer if he is a strong chewer. They do get very small eventually and I don’t leave them unattended with anything that is small enough for them to try and swallow whole so only give Walter a chew item of a safe size if he is left alone with it.

https://yakers.co.uk/
Dogs are not our whole life, but they make our lives whole. ~Roger Caras

Magic - Silversocks Sharade at Darksprite
Trilby - Darksprite Rosa Bud


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KellyDP
Puppy
Posts: 8
Joined: 04 Aug 2020, 19:39
First Name: Kelly
Dog #1: Walter
is a: P/S Mini Dog
Born: 26 Aug 2020

Re: Walter is waking so early...help!

Post by KellyDP »

Thanks for the advice! He is in a crate downstairs so we will try the Yak stick initially and hopefully that will help. Thanks again

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