Last Updated on August 28, 2022 by The Puppy Mag
We all look forward to the days of the week in which we get a few extra hours of peaceful slumber. There is nothing better than the feeling of sleeping in after a hard week, but this pleasure can come to a screeching halt when your puppy wakes you up at the crack of dawn.
Having a puppy that refuses to sleep in can be stressful, and leave their owners wondering if they will ever get to snooze past sunrise. To help you better understand this behavior and how to put an end to it, let’s discuss the details below!
Do All Puppies Wake Up Early In The Morning?
If you have a puppy that always wakes up early, you may be curious as to whether or not this is standard behavior for dogs.
Rest assured that your pup is not the only one that is up and howling at dawn, and this is a common frustration for many dog parents.
- This behavior is seen often in young dogs that are still adjusting to your schedule, as they don’t understand the concept of sleeping in just yet.
Many puppies will wake up at odd hours until they learn what to expect in your home, so an adjustment period is always to be expected.
If you are overwhelmed with your pup’s morning habits, just know that they will catch on to your preferred morning schedule soon!
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7 Actual Reasons Why Your Puppy Wakes Up Early
If your puppy seems to be an early riser, there are a list of potential factors behind this early bird behavior. To help you better understand your pup, let’s discuss a few common reasons why below.
1. They Are Ready For Breakfast
Many puppies will wake up early in the morning because their hungry stomachs begin to grumble. Puppies have a small stomach that needs to be filled with multiple small meals a day, so by early morning time, they are ready for their next meal.
This need to eat 3-4 meals a day will subside as they get older, but until then, many puppies will wake up early when they are ready for breakfast.
Puppy parents may need to wake up early earlier than usual for the first 3-5 months of their life to fill their food bowls, but after that, your pup should be able to go longer periods without food. Once they reach the 6-8 month mark, you can typically enjoy a morning spent sleeping in!
2. They Need To Go Outside
If your puppy wakes up with a full bladder, it may be hard for them to keep quiet until you wake up. Just as their stomachs are smaller and need to be filled more often, their bladders are smaller as well. This makes it more difficult for them to hold their pee for long periods overnight, and they may be ready to burst by the time the sun comes up.
Your puppy may need to pee every few hours until they reach 4-5 months, but this phase will pass as they grow and learn how to hold their bladder for longer periods. You should be able to get some quality sleep soon, but until then, you may need to let them out for a quick potty break once they wake from their slumber.
3. They Sleep For Short Periods At A Time
Did you know that babies of all kinds must learn how to sleep on a set schedule? Both human babies and puppies are not born with a need to get all their sleep in at one time, and rather sleep in small doses throughout the day. Because of this, it may seem like they are early risers.
It will take time for your puppy to learn how to sleep throughout the night, as this is essentially a trained behavior that they will need to pick up on. Thankfully for the puppy parents out there, they typically pick this up quickly.
4. They Hear Noises Outside
As the sun rises and the city begins to wake, your puppy may find it hard to ignore the noises coming from outside your home. These sounds may be exciting and unfamiliar to your pup, making it even more difficult for them to ignore.
If you think this is the case for your furry friend, you may consider sleeping with some form of sound machine or background noise. You can also keep their crate in a quiet portion of the house if they are crate trained.
5. They Are Bored
Just like human children, puppies often have a hard time sitting still. The time spent waiting for you to wake up may seem unbearably boring for a puppy, causing them to bark and attempt to wake anyone in the home.
If you think this is the case for your pup, we suggest making sure they have access to a few favorite toys or bones that can offer a distraction.
Giving in to their whining immediately may only encourage the behavior, as they will soon learn that whining gets them the attention they want. Learning how to refrain from whining in the morning is yet another behavior they will have to pick up over time.
6. They Haven’t Learned Their Routine Yet
If your puppy is still getting used to being in your home, it may take them some time to get used to their new sleeping routine. Not only is sleeping through the night a learned behavior for puppies, but we have no idea what their sleep routine was like in their previous environment.
As your puppy begins to settle into their new home and feel safe, they will soon catch on to any routines you want to implement. Again, most puppies catch on to this fairly quickly.
7. They Miss You
While this is surprising for many dog parents, our canine friends may perceive our time spent asleep as separation. They may miss you while you are sleeping, causing them to whine and bark in attempts to wake you up.
This is most common when you first welcome a puppy into your home, as they may not feel entirely secure in their new environment just yet. As your pup gets older and more comfortable in their new home, they should struggle less with this perceived separation.
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Can I Train My Puppy To Sleep In?
While it may be frustrating to deal with a puppy that will not sleep in, this is often a behavior that diminishes as they get older and get used to their sleeping routine.
Sleeping in or sleeping through the night is a learned behavior that all puppies have to work on, but with dedication on our part, most will get the hang of it in no time.
So how can I train my puppy to sleep in? Let’s list a few of our favorite tips below.
- Make sure your pup is tired out before bed. This means offering them plenty of exercise throughout the day, or even taking them on a long walk before bedtime. The more tired your growing puppy is, the more likely they are to sleep through the night.
- Make sure your pup is not going to bed with a full bladder. While many puppies will still need to pee every few hours for the first couple months of their life, this can be limited with a night time walk. By taking them on a walk before they head to sleep, you are hopefully preventing them from waking you up for potty breaks.
- Try to make sure that your puppy is not going to bed on an empty stomach. If you offer them dinner an hour or so before they go to sleep, this will allow them to stay asleep for longer periods without interruptions.
- Try to keep your room as dark and distraction-free as possible. This helps to promote restless sleep for your growing pup, and hopefully prevents them from waking up at the crack of dawn.
- Avoid yelling back at your puppy if they begin to whine in the early morning hours. Your puppy will just see this as a game, and they will only continue to whine as a result.
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It is extremely common for young pups to wake up earlier than we’d like, but many will grow out of this behavior as the weeks go on.
As long as we are diligent about promoting restful sleep and offering patience along the way, you should soon be sleeping in peacefully with your furry friend at your side!
Extra info: AKC Puppy sleep info