Tuesday Topics 1 - Sleeping at Night


Here's Cabana napping during the day. As you can see, she likes to get RIGHT in front of the space heater. Although I don't need to tell you that the z's were added in with the beauty of Photoshop, they are a mere shadow of the real snoring that Cabana produces. This puppy's snoring can put a 300-pound beer-drunken sailor to shame.

With my Tuesday Topics posts, I'd like to ask other puppy raisers out there some questions. Because I am a new puppy raiser, there are so many things that I don't know, and I'd love to know what others do.

So here's my question for this week. Where does your puppy sleep at night? In a crate? On a dog bed? With or without a tie down? In your bedroom or another part of the house? And why do you have the puppy sleep there? Does it help with a problem? What's the best scenario for getting to sleep in a bit on weekends?!

We put Cabana in her crate at about 10pm, and she sleeps all night without any problems. Not a peep. At about 6:30am, we get up and let her out to do her business. She might be able to wait longer than that, but I get worried that she's getting uncomfortable. Her crate is downstairs in our family room. As I said, she's a loud snorer, so I don't think we can have her sleep in our bedroom because I'll never get any sleep.

But I wonder when/if we should transition her to a dog bed. I'd like to, but I don't know if that will work for us since she's not in our room at night. And I won't be able to leave her on a tie down since she'll be unsupervised....

Please leave me a comment with where your puppy sleeps. I'd love to hear from a few of you, and I thank you in advance for your input!!

Elizabeth and Peyton  – (March 3, 2009 at 8:07 AM)  

Hi, my name is Elizabeth and I recently raised Accord's sister Alana. As for the bed question, I start out my puppies in crates. They always sleep in my room with me so I can supervise them closely. I've had a couple snorers and I've just endured it. You kind of get used to it after a bit and it doesn't bother you so much, at least with me. A puppy will certainly let you know when they are ready to wake up by flailing around in their crate! Depending on the dog, I can usually sleep in until about 9 a.m. which I am grateful for.

A couple of my puppies have had the privilege of getting to sleep on their dog bed, and a couple were just too mischievous. I start out by putting a blanket in their crate for a few weeks. If that goes well (if they don't chew it up) I first do a very thorough check to be sure there are no dangerous objects on the floor. Then I do not latch the crate, but put them inside. Sometimes it takes them a few nights to figure it out, but eventually they come out and sleep on their bed. Then they just go directly to the bed at night. I do the whole process very gradually--over the course of about a month or so.

Hope that helps!

Puppy Raiser  – (March 3, 2009 at 12:44 PM)  

Elizabeth, thank you for your comment! At what age do you start making the transition? I've enjoyed your blog--Peyton is a cutie, as well as Alana!

raiserally  – (March 3, 2009 at 3:09 PM)  

The age depends on the pup. My puppy who is two weeks younger than Cabana is reliably house-trained and is comfortable on tie-down and trustworthy not to chew on inappropriate things so is sleeping on tie-down by the bed. If the pup reliably doesn't chew on things, is potty trained completely and the room is clean that's when you can consider having them sleep on tie-down/in a puppy-proof room

Emily, Burgess, and Tahoe  – (March 3, 2009 at 4:07 PM)  

Hi! My name is Emily and I am currently co-raising both Burgess and Tahoe as my third and fourth puppies. I've enjoyed reading your blog :)

As for the questions, all of my puppies sleep in my room no matter what. I am too paranoid something will happen, they will need a midnight potty run, etc. They all sleep in a crate to start, and with the 2 I have right now, I have allowed them to sleep on tie-down with a dog bed, yet they are still able to easily go into their crates and sleep if they would like, which they usually choose to do. I started allowing them to do this at about 7 months. Hope that helps! Can't wait for more questions :)

Megan and Fullerton  – (March 3, 2009 at 5:52 PM)  

Hey, I have my pups sleep in a kennel in my room. Like Emily I am just too paranoid something might happen if they sleep somewhere else. I have had my share of snorers but after a few night I get used to it (and when they leave I actually miss it and can't sleep without a little noise) Anyway, depending on the puppy I usually will give them a little more freedom when they are around 6 months. But I had one pup that was very reliable at 4 months and started sleeping on tie-down then, as for Fullerton he has been sleeping on tie-down for a couple weeks now. I trust him potty wise and also to keep his mouth off of things. :D I have also raised a puppy who was in the crate until he left because I could not trust him loose in my room at all. And that worked for us. It just depends on the dog and the raiser, you know your pup and you will know when she is ready for a little more responsibility. :D Hope that is helpful.

Elizabeth and Peyton  – (March 3, 2009 at 6:52 PM)  

I'm another paranoid one. :) Like everyone else said, it really depends on your puppy. I've got a feeling that Peyton will be mature enough to sleep outside of his crate in a month or so, while Alana was just too much of a trouble-maker. Like Emily mentioned, they often prefer to sleep in their crates anyway since their crate is like a safe haven. Can't wait for the next question!

Puppy Raiser  – (March 4, 2009 at 6:50 AM)  

Thanks everyone for your input! I'll post a follow up shortly!

pup4gdb  – (March 4, 2009 at 6:14 PM)  

Want your leader's opinion? :) No dog bed unless she is in your room. Why? Because she wouldn't be on tie-down and that is far more freedom than she needs at her age - or ever potentially. The trick to getting her to sleep in is to not let her out every day at 6:30. She'll be fine! She can hold it a little longer! She may "cry it out" the first time, but she will survive! And so will you. These dogs tell time - she knows that you are willing to get up at 6:30 (even if you think you aren't - she has learned that you will) So, she gets up at 6:30. Make her stretch. Or send her to my house - no way am I getting up at 6:30 on a Saturday!

All my pups start in the crate. Most are crated until they are fully housebroken and sleeping through the night 100% of the time - typically around 4 months. From there, they move to tie-down on their dog bed. I never never never put anything comfy in the crate. A dog who will sleep great on a dog bed on tie down is still likely to eat a bed in a crate. I've backed down on that a couple times over the last 20 years. Each time, the comfy thing has been shredded. For now, the lessen has been learned. The next pup may convince me to try again though.

at 12 months old, Accord is sleeping on tie down on his dog bed with a blanket ('cause he gets chilly and his dad is a push over). Most nights, he is still on tie down. Why? Because there isn't a reason for him not to be. Monday, John and I each thought the other connected his tie down. Neither of us had, so he slept loose - and I woke up with an Accord cuddled up next to me in bed with his head on John's pillow. John got up and in the shower & Accord thought he would come keep me company. Since no one was awake to tell him no, he decided it was ok. A tornado wouldn't wake me up, so I didn't notice until my alarm went off. He's been back on tie down since that night :) See - no reason for him to be off tie-down :)

She may be more quiet on her dog bed, on tie down in your room - or with one of the girls. But, as long as she is down stairs, a crate is recommended. :)

Puppy Raiser  – (March 4, 2009 at 6:27 PM)  

Of course, I would LOVE my leader's opinion! I agree, I wouldn't put Cabana on a dog bed downstairs. I'd only transition her if she was in our bedroom. But that's my hesitation--having her in the bedroom at all, with the snoring and "other" issues. Too funny about Accord getting into your bed. You MUST be a heavy sleeper. I would have woken up the second I felt the bed jiggle.

raiserally  – (March 13, 2009 at 11:40 AM)  

About the "other" issues ;-) I got Eclipse when I had been married only 4 months. I have had my pet dogs sleep in the room with me/in bed with me since I got them although that changed when I got married. My husband isn't a big fan of my long-haired double-coated dogs sleeping on my pillow with me and him :-) Which now that I look at it, neither am I. However, the dogs don't even react and neither does Eclipse. They know that the bedroom means it's time to go to sleep. Eclipse heads instantly to his dog bed where his tie-down and night time collar are (he wears a martingale and it sounds like a puppy peeing at night when it clinks) and my pets head straight to their crates. So no issues with "other" issues at my house. Although my husband was slightly unsure to begin with he got over that quickly. Hope that helps!

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