Puppies sleep a lot, up to about 20 hours a day. Unfortunately, they might struggle to sleep through the night. This is normal as they adjust to a new home and being away from their siblings and mom. Here are some tips to help your puppy sleep through the night:
1. Adhere to Consistent Routines
Consistent routines are really important for dogs. This lets them know when to generally expect bathroom breaks, dinner and breakfast, as well as exercise. Having an active routine will help your puppy sleep better at night.
Having an active day with plenty of mental stimulation will benefit your puppy’s sleep schedule. Let them nap during the day, but when they’re awake, play with them or make sure they have interactive toys to play with. Build a DIY obstacle course for your puppy.
Even if they’re young, they can start learning. Just make sure to clear it with your vet first so you do not damage developing joints. Playing a bit before bedtime will help but give time for your puppy to wind down. A well-stimulated dog is a happy dog who will sleep better at night!
2. Stick to Early Dinnertime
Consider having an early dinnertime to help your dog sleep through the night. The closer to bedtime that your puppy eats or drinks, the higher chance they’ll need to go out in the middle of the night. A few hours before bedtime, limit your dog’s food, as long as they have been well-hydrated and well-fed throughout the day. This should help eliminate potty breaks at 2 am.
3. Take Bathroom Breaks Right Before Bed
Along with limiting food and drink before bed, make sure you give your puppy a bathroom break right before bed, no matter what. This should be the last action of your nighttime routine and will help signal to your puppy that it’s bedtime.
Keep the bathroom break low-key. Don’t engage in a lot of activity in order to encourage a wind-down. Once you bring your puppy back in, put them in their sleeping spot, such as their crate or special dog bed.
4. Exercise Your Dog Well
Making sure your dog is physically tired is another great tip for getting them to sleep through the night. Play fetch, hide and seek, or indoor scent games if you can’t go outside. There are plenty of games and activities to play with your dog to tire them out.
Getting a good walk or two in during the day will also help them sleep well, too. Dogs need the exercise and mental stimulation that walks offer.
5. Crate Train
Crate training is a helpful tool in helping your puppy sleep through the night. Crates allow your dog to feel safe and that will encourage a night of deeper sleep. Crates can often become a puppy’s safe place once they adjust to it.
Make sure you have some comfortable, puppy-proof bedding in the crate so your dog has a comfortable sleeping space. This will encourage rest and sleep. Puppies do not like using the bathroom where they sleep, so crate training can also help with housebreaking and potty training your puppy.
These are just a few tips to help your puppy sleep through the night. Hopefully, you and your pup will both be enjoying full nights of sleep!