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Sleep Problems

Discussion in 'Dog Training and Behaviour' started by jilldaniel, Jun 24, 2010.


  1. jilldaniel

    jilldaniel PetForums Junior

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    Hi,

    Just after some advice for my 11 month old dog. We rehomed him about 2 months ago, tried keeping him in the kitchen at night but he was so distressed after 5 nghts ended up letting him upstairs. Now that he's settled in decided to get a stairgate and keep him downstairs when we're out and at betime. My dog trainer suggested leaving him gradually at nights, as he's nervous and this worked well for leaving him during the day. So I started leaving him for 10 mins and have built up to 2 hours. At the end of the time I let him upstairs. However he has just barked and cried for the entire time each night, I'm not sure letting him upstairs after a certain amount of time is sending him the right signal? But the trainer thought we shouldnt go cold turkey with him. tonight I should be leaving him for 4 hours but am dreading it! Does anyone have any advice, would it be better to continue with what we are doing or just leave him to cry/bark. How long should this take before he gets used to the new arrangments?

    Jill
     
  2. sue&harvey

    sue&harvey PetForums VIP

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    Is he crate trained? If he is then you can gradually withdraw his crate over time, to where you want him to sleep. :)
     
  3. jilldaniel

    jilldaniel PetForums Junior

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    No, he's not crate trained.
     
  4. sue&harvey

    sue&harvey PetForums VIP

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    Would you be able to crate train him? It is fab. I never believed in it until we had to with Harvey due to SA. The best thing we ever bought for him and he loves it. :thumbup:
     
  5. jilldaniel

    jilldaniel PetForums Junior

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    We tried in for two nights and he got so distressed, just howled all night. He's had a lot of changes and maybe it was just too much for him. I feel like he would be happier with a bit more space. He's fine when we leave him to go out, I leave him for 2/3 hours every day and have left him for 4/5 hours once or twice. I leave him with a treat and he's fine.
     
  6. sue&harvey

    sue&harvey PetForums VIP

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    The manner of introducing the crate really is important. With Harvey I left it in the lounge and ignored it, so he got used to it being there and could sniff it and realise it wasn't an alien. (1-2 days)

    Then I out his blanket in there, with a toy, and buried some small treats in there so he had to have a rummage around. Also fed him in there, door open and moved the food further back when he seemed relaxed. (3-4 days)

    Once he was in the crate eating his dinner I shut the door, whilst he ate but opened it again before he had finished. (2-3 days)

    Harvey began to lay in there of his own accord, so I shut the door and gave him his kong. Happy lad.

    The first night he slept in the (had been sleeping on the bed) the crate was next to my bed so I could put my fingers through the bars. Within 4 night he was near the door well away from me. This is where his crate belongs now, but I could keep moving it if we wanted.

    Also what sort of crate did you try... the airline ones are cosier as the sides are enclosed. The show crates can make them feel a bit vulnerable as they are open on all sides.

    Hope this helps :)
     
  7. jilldaniel

    jilldaniel PetForums Junior

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    Hi

    Ok, we've borrowed a crate and he just wont go near it! We've continued with keeping him downstairs at night and when we're out. He's fine when we're out, no barking (I've checked with a neighbour) but at night he's waking anytime between 4-6 and just barking like mad. We've tried ignoring him, but he's not getting any better. When we leave him to go to bed he's alright, sometimes barks/cries a bit but soon settles. So I guess he is getting better because a few weeks a go he was pretty much barking through the night. This morning after 30mins of barking i went down and let him out, he doesnt need the toilet, just wants company. I tried settling him again but he continued to bark. I dont mind leaving him, but am really concerned about my neighbours, who have been really good but this has gone on for a long time now. I ended up sleeping on the sofa from 5.30-7 this morning, this is the first time i've done this but just didnt think it was fair on our neighbours to let him bark like that.n

    Any advice? The reason we dont want him upstairs is because he was having a lot of accidents and is chasing the cats!

    Sorry for the incoherent rant - i'm shattered!!!! Really considering giving up and letting him upstairs again, but it's not really what we want. He slept all night quite happily on our bed but the cats werent happy and he would go down in the night sometimes and poo in my kids bedrooms!!

    I feel like we need to do some sort of control crying like with babies!!!
     
  8. sue&harvey

    sue&harvey PetForums VIP

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    Hi, Sorry you are still having problems.

    With the crate you have borrowed, how did you introduce it?

    If you can get him to settle happily in it, then it will be easier to slowly transition him down stairs.

    It sound as if you have made some progress so don't loose heart. We will help as much as possible :)
     
  9. jilldaniel

    jilldaniel PetForums Junior

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    We have put it in the living room and put treats in etc, but he wont go near it. We got him when he was 10 months old so maybe he's had a bad experience, he gets very stressed if shut in a room too. that's why i htought a stair gate would be good.

    My neighbour 2 doors down heard him last night, so I dont think I can carry on leaving him to bark. Not sure what to do tonight. I'm going to try and make it darker as there is a lot of light coming in at 4am. Also might cancel the milkman as that could be wakening him at that time too. He's generally fine up to that time but once he starts barking he wont stop.

    Help!!!!
     
  10. tripod

    tripod PetForums VIP

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    Carry on with what you're doing for now as management to prevent the barking at night and your neighbours going crazy.

    In the mean time work on crate training and then alone training with this fella slowly.

    Here is a shaping plan for crate training gradually so as to prevent any further distress on your or the dog's part.
    Calming Your Cerrrrraaaazzzzzy Canine: Crate for Calm « pawsitive dogs

    When he's ready look at combining some alone training strategies too: Home Alone – calming for separation « pawsitive dogs
     
  11. jilldaniel

    jilldaniel PetForums Junior

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    The weird thing is he's fine when we go out, no barking at all. Its just that he knows we're in i suppose and wants to be with us.
    Is there anyway of doing this without a crate??
     
  12. Daggre

    Daggre PetForums Member

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    Why are you so against having a crate?
    It may well be the best way to resolve the issue.
     
  13. jilldaniel

    jilldaniel PetForums Junior

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    I'm not against it, we've tried it and he was terrified, wouldnt go in, we tried putting his bed, meals in etc but he wouldnt go in. Maybe he's had a bad experience.

    Just wondered if there was another way. If anyone had tried anything else for this kind of problem. He's fine at nights until about 4-5am, then he starts barking.
     
  14. sue&harvey

    sue&harvey PetForums VIP

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    Have you tried taking the top off the crate? Get him comfortable with the bottom, then put the top on, and take the door off, when comfortable, put the door on but don't close it. and so on.

    Can't help with other ways, as this is how we managed situations.
     
  15. swarthy

    swarthy PetForums VIP

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    All I can say is very early on, these pups get VERY good at associating behaviour with results - if he is crying and you let him upstairs - he knows he is on to a winner.

    I know he is older, but I always tell my puppy owners that if they let pup sleep with them to stop crying, then be aware it may be something they have to do for a long time, possibly the dogs entire life :eek:

    You are either going to have to bite the bullet and just leave him cry (and talk nicely to any close by neighbours) - or leave him sleep with you.

    I am beginning to think I should be on commission for this - but Bach's do a range of rescue remedies - and there are experts who can advise you the best combination to use - and they really do work - something to think about if all else fails ;)
     
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