Found yourself waking up at night to tend to your sleepless dog? Without adequate training, your dog’s erratic sleeping pattern can wreak havoc on your daily routine. Here is a guide on how to teach your dog to sleep at night.
Give adequate exercise
An exhausted dog is unlikely to stay awake past bedtime.
Depending on the breed, dogs require 30-120 hours of physical activity every day. Take him out for long walks in the morning and early evening hours. Avoid physical activity too close to bedtime as it can disrupt his sleep cycle.
If your dog is still restless, use stimulating indoor dog toys during the day to wear out that excess energy. Close to bedtime, dog chew toys and dog bones are the best as they have a calming effect.
Establish a feeding routine
A meal too close to bedtime is prone to make your dog’s energy levels soar. So avoid over-feeding your dog and ensure you maintain consistency in meal timings and portions.
A small pre-bed-time treat on his crate or bed can work wonders. This will help him identify it as a part of his routine and teach your dog to sleep at night.
Keep him hydrated
Nobody likes waking up in the middle of the night dehydrated. Ensure that your dog’s water bowl is filled throughout the day. You could also add ice cubes so your best friend enjoys that crunch every time he visits his bowl. A calm, adequately-full belly will guide your dog to sleep instantly.
Create a comforting sleep zone
Be it a crate or a mat, it helps if you make your dog’s sleeping area as inviting as possible. Surround it with objects and toys that encourage calmness instead of stimulation and use fabrics that are soft, warm and non-toxic. Ensure that the sleeping corner has enough privacy but is not completely cut off from human contact.
Enforce potty training
Teach your dog to sleep all night by encouraging him to relieve himself right before bedtime. Try to avoid fluid consumption afterwards. If your dog couldn’t help the latter and wakes you up in the middle of the night, remember to make dietary changes.
Ensure that this late-night walk doesn’t morph into playtime as it can make your dog hyper.
Visit a vet
If your dog still keeps you awake at night, a visit to the vet will help you tremendously. He will be able to identify the problem area — ticks or mites, dietary deficiency, exercise routine, sensitivity to loud noises, bladder infection and separation anxiety in dogs etc. Alternatively, he can give you tips on how to train your dog to sleep through the night. Wagr offers online vet consultation facility that you can use to discuss various health issues of your pet at your convenience.
Dogs are creatures of habit and by maintaining consistency you can teach your dog to sleep through the night. A puppy with a well-established sleep routine is unlikely to give you trouble in his adult years. However, if it’s an older dog that’s keeping you up, training them to sleep all night might take a few weeks. Follow our sleeping guide for dogs so you can sleep tight like your best friend.