View Full Version : Routine's

31st December 2007, 02:41 AM
since i am sat here having a bout of insomnia it has made me think. how important to a dog is a routine? if i have a bad night i am lucky enough to be able to sleep as long as i need to. i was just sat here thinking as long as i make sure i let a dog out before i go to bed would it matter? your thoughts on this would be appreciated.

31st December 2007, 03:13 AM
since i am sat here having a bout of insomnia it has made me think. how important to a dog is a routine? if i have a bad night i am lucky enough to be able to sleep as long as i need to. i was just sat here thinking as long as i make sure i let a dog out before i go to bed would it matter? your thoughts on this would be appreciated.

In my experience dogs fall into routines very easily. I try to change up feeding times so they aren't so dependent upon them. They still basically know when it's time to eat, though! If I happen to sleep in later in the morning, my Springer will wake me up if it gets too late for her :rolleyes:. She fancies she's in charge, and will whine and push at me with all four feet. It can be very annoying!

Here's another example; when I get up in the morning I take them out first thing, then I will either get my own breakfast or feed them. Even if they've all done their complete 'businesses' they still expect to go out again after they've eaten. On some days I figure 'well, they've each done both, so they don't need to go out again' but they all stand by the door anyway. If I let them out they just stand out there doing nothing. I think that's a routine completely built in.

31st December 2007, 03:26 AM
Hi Ciren

Yeah, I am with BarbMazz. I think dogs like routine and I think they are creatures of habit that don't really enjoy surprises. However, I don't think that necessarily means we should all be slaves to the clock.

For example, my guys get fed anywhere between 5 pm & 8 pm. Sure, if I haven't fed them by about 6 pm they will come tell me I should feed them, but if I have something important happening, I might just go give them a few biscuits to tide them over until I get around to feeding them.

Similar thing with walks. Because we live on acres & the dogs get to race around here for exercise, I don't feel the need to take them on formal walks every day. Sometimes I do, sometimes I don't. I think that is different if the dog lives in a unit or has a tiny yard.

Are you worried about your irregular sleeping habits and what impact it may have on yuor dog? If so, I don't think you have anything to worry about.

I am quite a night owl and it is not unusual for me to hit the sack around 2 am, but on the days that I go to work, I try to be in bed by 11 pm. I don't find that this bothers the dogs at all. I just take them all out for a pee before I go to bed & then I sleep in to whever I want. We have doggie doors out to a safe place for the dogs to go on their own if they need an early morning pee. I am happily sleep in until about 10am. I find that my little dudes just sleep in with me.

I hope that has reassured you a little.

Cathy T
31st December 2007, 04:28 AM
We have very set routines. Hubby and I go to bed and get up at the same time (within 30 minutes) pretty much every day. But....when we travel with the dogs everything gets mixed up, and it doesn't seem to affect the dogs. They easily fall back into a routine, or even fall into a new routine. Jake had a habit of wanting me to throw his ball every morning while I sipped coffee (not a great combo!!), it was easy to break him of this routine. We just started something new. They adapt really easily to new routines and changes.

1st January 2008, 04:10 AM
Miles LOVES his routines! Every morning while I'm in the bathroom getting ready for work, he likes to lay on my boyfriend's robe on the bathroom floor. I put the robe on the floor a few mornings in a row so he had somewhere to curl up while I'm getting ready, and now if I don't put the robe on the floor right away he'll sit there, staring at the robe, and if I don't put it on the floor right away he starts whining for it! It kind of cute...once he has the robe he just curls up and falls asleep :)

1st January 2008, 05:24 AM
The only routine thing that Maverick has is waking me up between 8 and 9am to go potty. He sleeps when he wants to sleep and his feeding is all over the place cause I work weird hours.

1st January 2008, 01:14 PM
I do think that routine is important to dogs particularly for puppies and house training. My dogs are older and they need routine too. They are used to going out at regular times and when we are away from home sticking to that routine keeps them comfortable. Once they are housetrained yes they do adapt (I used to work shifts) but when they get older they need the routine back. Arne has a number of health problems now which mean unless he gets taken out regularly he can have accidents indoors.

2nd January 2008, 07:30 AM
I think dogs find their own routines to an extent.

For example, Cailean tells us when it is tablet time night and morning. Kevin quite loudly tells us when it is dinner time. :) :)

Kevin and Cazy like to go to bed early with me; the others like to stay up later with OH!

Whatever time they go out for their wee's etc before bed, they all need to get up and go outside to do their business first thing in the morning too ... even if we go back to bed again afterwards.

Norma's right too. Because of Cailean's meds., he is usually needing to out during the night a couple of times at least. He bangs on the bedroom door! So, a dog's needs may change over the years. He's not even that old yet - it's just his heart condition :(.

2nd January 2008, 04:23 PM
I agree to an extent dogs set their own routines. However now that my dogs are adults their routines vary day to day depending on what else I have going on that day. As puppies my dogs have a very set routine that I try very hard not to deviate from if at all possible, which really helps with the house training. Same goes for new dogs that I bring in that aren't house broken at the time I take them in, once they're reliable in the house, I'll start relaxing the routine somewhat, but the basic routines still stay the same. I work swing shift, so my work hours and days off change frequently, and can make it hard to stick to the same routine, but my dogs seem to adjust well. Althouth this is also why I wouldn't bring home a puppy right now - I want a fixed work schedule before I try to deal with training a puppy!