View Full Version : Not Sleeping through the Night

31st March 2007, 01:00 PM
I'm wondering if anyone can offer me advice on getting Zoey to start sleeping through the night. She was doing great when we first brought her home and has seemed to regressed a lot. Its driving both of us crazy!Shes 4 months and 1 week old. Right now she is currently sleeping in her crate beside our bed.

Here is our usual routine;

5:30pm: Feed dinner (no treats or food of any kind given after this last meal)
No water after 8:00pm
11:30pm: One last trip outside, up to our room in her crate.
3:30am: Whining, howling, barking etc. resulting in someone getting up and taking her to the bathroom
5:30am: Same as above
6:30am: Same as above

We both can't continue having her do this. Its starting to really have an impact on our daily lives being so sleep deprived.

Any suggestions on what we can do? Shes not completely crate trained and I think I'm going to go back to basics with that, but any other help anyone can offer would be very appreciated!

31st March 2007, 01:07 PM
Hello Elude

Sleep deprivation is awful! :flwr:

First up, I'd move Zoey's crate out of the bedroom. It is extremely difficult to ignore barking when it is in the same room. Put Zoey in her crate at her bed time, or just before you go to bed. Cover the crate with a sheet & then just ignore her. During this phase it is very important to make her sleep in her crate every night... no snuggling up with mum & dad on the bed. If necessary put her crate at the other end of the house with the door closed in between. She is perfectly safe in her crate, and if she isn't nearby you will be less tempted to give in to her. She may carry on for a couple of nights but I promise you this works.

31st March 2007, 02:14 PM
I had the same problem with Chester when he was 8 weeks old, a couple of nights i had him in my bedroom in a long cardboard box with a bed, toys, water, food and newspaper in it and after lots of whining and barking, my dad forced me to put him downstairs in the laundry for the same reason - sleep deprivation. I was 14 when we first got him so i had school all week so i couldn't go without sleep.

He was absolutely fine though because the laundry was nice and warm and cosy and he had everything he needed. He got used to it after a couple of nights, i still heard him whining before he settled down into the routine but after that he knew that after having his dinner, a last potty break and lots of hugs and kisses it was time for bed.

I know how hard it is to want to run to them at every little whinge, but once they get used to it, they look forward to seeing you in the morning for more hugs and kisses! Seeing that little face looking so happy to see you is absolutely priceless!

Fast forward 9 and a half years, we moved into a rental house whilst we're looking for a new place to buy and Chester just doesn't like being outside on his own all night in a strange house so for the last 3 months he's been sleeping on my bed because we don't want the neighbours to get upset so he's with me all night then i let him out for his pee/poop after we wake up. The joys of having a fully house-trained dog!

It's not easy when they're young puppies, sometimes you think they'll never be 100% reliable inside not to pee/poop, but they do learn and you get to the stage when you just know that they won't go to the toilet inside.

Sorry for the long post but i hope it helps you. Don't worry, Zoey will still love you if you put her in a room on her own and she'll be very happy and excited to see her mummy and daddy in the morning!

Good luck!

31st March 2007, 02:31 PM
Could it be that she might be thirsty? Otherwise have you tried putting something in with your smell on that she can cuddle up to? Also, whilst I can't speak about crate training per se as I have never used a crate with any of my dogs, I agree with Caraline about covering the crate over. If she can't see you, it might stop her whining.

Hope you all manage to get some sleep soon :flwr:

31st March 2007, 02:39 PM
I agree with Donna,

She could be thirsty. Faith is 4 1/2 months *just about the same age* and she causes a stir in the middle of the night if she's thirsty.

What I do is I'll take her outside and bring her back in and give her fresh water. I don't let her drink until she's "fully satisfied" otherwise she'll drink the entire lot, but I do give her a good 30 seconds or so. SHe'll settle and go to sleep after that.. it's great! :slp:

If she doesn't settle and you're unwilling to have her in your bed then I would probably move her to a different room :flwr:

31st March 2007, 04:58 PM
A dog should not need a drink in the middle of the night (unless you are exercising or feeding them lots of treats/salty items) but they will train you to get up and offer one as it also means you get up and give attention. If there's water there -- well, why not imbibe? I also think given how late you are going to bed you are fine leaving water for her til 9:30 or so anyway. I never took water up and never had problems with puppies weeing even though I had Jaspar at 8 weeks so I don;t really think this makes much difference unless the pup drinks a lot in the hour or two before bedtime.

This is definitely a behaviour issue. Agree exactly with Caraline. As long as you are not offering salty treats or exercising her a lot between 8 and 11:30 she doesn't need drinks in the middle of the night. You could also keep her in your room but cover her crate with a sheet, get some earplugs, and totally ignore the whining/barking. It may take a week or two but she WILL stop demanding attention from you three times a night.

Keep in mind dogs are total creatures of habit with strong internal clocks (this is what helps make it easy to housetrain) so if you are getting up at those hours nightly she is going to expect you to keep doing it for at least a few nights now before she begins to settle.

PS If Faith is needing to get up regularly at her age and drinking as long as 30 seconds plus, enough to finish a bowl if she had the opportunity, I'd talk to a vet. That is a huge amount of water and an odd time to want to be drinking it regularly. The recommended avg for water for a dog is 90ml per kg of body weight per day; if a dog is drinking a lot more than that it is a good idea to check with a vet.

Barb B
31st March 2007, 08:30 PM
The first night Star was with us, I had her crate in our bedroom and barely slept, certain that any moment she would wake up and need to go out. She slept until 5:45. I was happy with that, but also feeling bad that she woke my husband up so early, since he needed to go to work.

So the next night, feeling very guilty, I left her crate downstairs in the kitchen. She slept through the night and didn't make a peep until I came down to the kitchen. It's been the same every night since.

Star was 11 weeks old when she came to live with us, so I'm sure that helped. And every puppy is different. But I wondered if our tossing and turning was what woke her up earlier that first night. Oh yeah, and since both hubby and I are 50+, maybe it's our getting up in the middle of the night that would disturb a puppy...

Hard to really know, I read about such a wide variety of experiences here.

1st April 2007, 12:30 AM
Thanks so much for the suggestions. I really appreciate them. I think I will be transitioning her fully out of our room to the downstairs from now on.

Shes always been awful during the night except for the first few nights we have had her. I know shes also playing us for attention, but at 3:30 in the morning when you are overtired from previous nights already its soooo tempting to get up just to stop all the noise. I hope we can get it solved soon. I'll let everyone know how it goes!

Night one of the transition begins tonight.. Zoey is not going to be impressed!

1st April 2007, 02:01 AM
I agree completely with ignoring her while she is in the crate. No eye contact, even telling her to settle down is attention in her eyes. If she does have to go out to potty, take her out with no fuss, no play, just business and back to the crate. When you put her back in the crate a command is ok, but no happy sounding “see you in the morning”, just a calm voice.

Also try some positive association with her crate. Feeding in the crate can be a great way to do this.

Keeping a strict schedule like you are doing is great, it helps her learn consistency.

Good luck!

1st April 2007, 02:28 AM
My Katydid requires little sleep---always has. She was 11 weeks when I took her home in August and she is now going on 10 months.....
Invest in a good pair of earplugs.....they DO work. I refuse to give in to her early, uh, early morning calls.....10 minutes to 5:00 sometimes even earlier.

Good Luck!
Just so you know---I would NOT trade her for the world! ;)

Teddy and sweet, little Katydid

25th April 2013, 05:51 PM
Let me know how it went. I'm exhausted, and have been for two months. I'm concerned about really doing some damage to our pup's emotions, since we have another Cav and I know how tender hearted they are. Would so appreciate hearing about how it went when you removed our girl from the bedroom. Thanks- Katie

25th April 2013, 06:51 PM

As a puppy I tried to sleep Leo in his crate, he barked and whinned that I would get up at about 3am and let him out. Finally I ditched the crate at night and put his bed in the kitchen with the door shut.
he barked for about 3-4 nights until late but soon settled. I can only suggest you try something like that. Its hard for the first week but worth it if you can be patient.
when i say "Bedtime" now he's straight in the kitchen while I get his bed.....thats it until the next morning.
If you keep getting up to your little one she'll soon learn if she creates you'll come.
Good luck

25th April 2013, 07:50 PM
Hi Katie, this thread is from 2007, so the original posters might not still be following it. :)

A treat before bedtime helps enormously. Mine all run for their crates at night and wait for their bedtime biscuit. Maybe removing your cavalier from the bedroom will help -- your proximity and this now well established routine may be the key to the problem. Why not try moving your cavalier to the kitchen either in or out of a crate, at least for a few months until this habit is broken? (however I have found if I let Jaspar sleep back in my room then he whines when put back with the others in crates for a night... so I keep them all in crates now).

I never advocate punishment at all, but I do think people can confuse setting limits and giving structure -- which dogs absolutely need -- and somehow 'damaging' them. They do not really have emotions in the sense that training them to sleep where it is convenient to the owner, is doing harm. Very far from it. Dogs are social animals that trhive on structure and routine. If a dog is NOT trained to happily accept being left alone, calmly going into downstays, and being left to stay busy with a Kong, for example, then they WILL be damaged -- by becoming desperately anxious at any and every separation to the point where their own lives become miserably unhappy and unmanageable. These kinds of dogs have truly been affected negatively by their owners because they have little self control and everything unexpected becomes alarming and worrying -- sometimes to such an extreme that they they are impossible to live with. It is extremely difficult to reverse such damage once done. People need to make sure they do not become those kinds of owners!

I really recommend finding a good CPDT or APDT certified trainer if this is an ongoing problem, to get some sound, positive-methods training advice. Walk away from anyone who starts talking about dominance...

I'd also recommend downloading Ian Dunbar's free book After You Get Your Puppy which sets out how to train and manage dogs kindly and effectively but firmly so that you give them the structure they need. Cavaliers are just as tough and manipulative, funloving and gentle, as any other breed (my partner's German Shepherd is actually a lot softer than some of my cavaliers!! :lol:)-- please do not fail to give cavaliers the training they need, out of a notion that they are too tender for the good, firm training that will result in a happy and confident adult dog. :thmbsup:


26th April 2013, 04:51 PM
Mine all run for their crates at night and wait for their bedtime biscuit.

Same here! When its time for bedtime, my guys are running for the crate, looking for their little treat. Talk about conditioned dogs!

I do recall that when they first came to us, we had some crying issues, and while it is tempting to let them out, I wouldn't do it. If I felt that maybe they had to potty, it would be all business -- out of crate to yard, and then 5 minutes (max) while on lead to potty. ( If they don't go quickly, the crying was for something else - like attention or more play time!). I love my sleep and am very cranky without it. The dogs probably picked up on that too!

Good luck!


Sydneys Mom
26th April 2013, 05:10 PM
I do the same thing. After her last potty, I grab her treat and say "go to bed". She races down the hallway and waits patiently for me in front of her crate.

26th April 2013, 05:21 PM
Well, I am no help....I ended up letting our pup sleep with us. 3 years later, he is still in bed with us.

26th April 2013, 07:49 PM
Well, I am no help....I ended up letting our pup sleep with us. 3 years later, he is still in bed with us. Same here, haha :) But I can vouch for the treat thing! I give each dog a kong on my way out the door in the morning - they are the opposite of "separation anxiety" - they cant wait for me to leave!!!

1st May 2013, 01:42 PM
LOL!!! My 17 year old daughter is the last to leave the house in the morning, so she is responsible for doling out the "goodbye" treats. Earlier this week, she was rushing and was almost out the door, when Bosco nudged her, and she turned to see the my 3 dogs looking at her, quite expectantly! They know the routine, and will make sure she doesn't forget it!