ClickerSolutions Training Articles

Creating a Nighttime Ritual

Okay, first of all, realize that your pup is scared to death. She has never been away from her siblings and parents. It will take her some time to get used to being crated by herself at night. You did good by putting the crate in your bedroom. If you can, put it right alongside your bed -- even up on the nightstand, so she can see and smell you, and you can dangle your fingers inside to soothe her.

Take her up to bed about 15 or 20 minutes before you want to go to sleep. Let her get her last-minute zoomies out, and then let her settle down on her own to sleep. When she is already asleep, pick her up and put her in her crate. Obviously, that will wake her again. Sit with her, and stroke her until she falls asleep again -- presto! Bedtime with no fuss.

In the middle of the night, it's not quite that easy. When she wakes, she'll need to go potty. Pick her up and carry her outside -- don't talk to her or pet her or otherwise interact with her. Put her down, and as soon as she potties, pick her up and carry her back to her crate. Do not talk to her or pet her -- she needs to be stimulated as little as possible, and she needs to learn that the middle of the night is *not* for playing.

She'll wake up early. You have a choice then -- you can get up early and stay up, or you can get up, feed her breakfast, and pop her in a second, larger crate with a marrow bone for another couple of hours while you go back to bed. I choose the latter. :-)

Be prepared for lack of sleep for the first month or so. It *does* pass, but it'll pass on her terms, as her bladder grows and as she gets control of her bodily functions.

Melissa Alexander
mca @
copyright 2002 Melissa C. Alexander


| Training Articles Contents || Site Home |

Copyright of all posts is the property of the original author. Please obtain permission from the original author before copying, quoting, or forwarding.

List and Site Owner: Melissa Alexander, mca @