puppy sleep

Getting a new puppy?

Description: Got a new puppy! Wonderful! Now find out how to make your pup the best ever with this post. Lots of resources to get you started fast | FREE GUIDE | #newpuppy, #dogtraining, #puppyandolderdog, #puppytraining, #puppycare, #dogbehavior | www.brilliantfamilydog.com

It’s the time of year when many people start thinking about new life, re-birth, flowers blossoming, trees leafing up. And why not get that warm fuzzy feeling of new baby-ness in your home, with a new puppy! 

Great idea - IF you do a bit of planning.

I love it when people write to me that they will be collecting their puppy next week, next month - even next year - and they’re researching now. Love it!

If you’re getting a new baby in the family, you don’t wait till the birth then start researching, purchasing equipment, and asking advice of friends and relations! It’s in the front of your mind for many months. You have plenty of time to work out how you’re going to manage things.

Many parents will have their newborn sleep in their bedroom with them. They don’t panic that they will have a teenage lout still there in 15 years’ time! They know that things will naturally change, move on.

And so with your puppy. When I advise new owners to have the puppy’s crate in their bedroom to ensure a full night’s sleep, I’m met with cries of “I don’t want a dog in the bedroom!” and “How will I ever get the dog out of my bedroom?”

Wrong (and fairly nonsensical) responses. The question to ask is how to settle the puppy in so that everyone rests at night. Once you achieve that happy state, you can start thinking about where you’d like your adult dog to sleep.

Forward planning!

Have your puppy sleep ALL NIGHT from the first night! Get this free guide to show you how

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You don’t want to rush in without at least having an idea of the type of dog you want for your family. And if you’re offered a rescued pup out of the blue, then you’ll know whether this puppy is likely to fit your family or not. You’ll be in a good position to take the puppy or leave it for someone who would be able to give it a more suitable home.

It isn’t our responsibility to try to rescue every abandoned puppy! It’s our responsibility to choose, as far as possible, the right puppy for our home, our family, and our lifestyle.

Of course there is more variation between individual dogs than between breeds. But you’ll get off to a poor start if your idea of exercise is walking from the car to the shop, and you choose a dog bred to tramp the moors for many hours a day, just because you like the look of it. You need to put your realistic head on!

What about my older dog?

Some of you may be introducing a puppy into a household with a resident dog. You’ve so loved your friendly old dog that you’d like to get him a playmate. Do remember that your dog has an opinion too! He may have had nothing to do with the choice process, but he has to handle the fall-out when the puppy arrives. And it may be the last thing he wants - to be harried all the time by a young whippersnapper who he’s reluctant to tell off.

Think how you’d feel if your husband came home with a pretty girl on his arm and said, “I so enjoy having you as my wife I’ve decided to get another - she’ll be a great playmate for you. You don’t mind her sitting in your favourite armchair?” Yeah. Wouldn’t go down too well.

It’s essential to create boundaries to give everyone - including both dogs - peace. You’ll find detailed guidelines in this post.

Brand new to puppies?

Exciting! Lots to learn, love, and enjoy. See what one reader said about New Puppy! From New Puppy to Brilliant Family Dog - How to survive the early weeks and still love your puppy!

“We gave our kids a Westie puppy (8 weeks old) for Christmas. I delayed getting a dog because I didn't grow up with one in our house, and I am frankly intimidated by most dogs. Reading this book ahead of our puppy's arrival helped me feel calm and excited. Even reading the book, I could finally see what "dog" people were so excited by. Since the puppy came, things have been really smooth. We are still working on housetraining (two days later), but he so far he's slept through the night both nights he's been in the house without accident or waking us up. He's incredibly sweet, and I'm so glad I have this method to work with him. I actually told my husband that I wished we had read it before our kids were born as the lessons apply to children as well and took us years to learn as far as the kids go. We are going to take one of the author’s online courses now as a family.” Amazon 5* review

Good preparation PLUS a friendly, clear, force-free, guide had an amazing effect on this family and their new puppy!

The puppy starts growing up …

Yes! In time you’ll be over the baby stage and dealing with an adventurous, boundary-testing, teenage dog (that’s around 6-8 months or so)! You need a whole new set of skills for coping with this - kindly, efficiently, enjoyably. And you’ll be so glad you took the time to lay the foundations so that your dog always looks to you first for information and entertainment.

So check out this puppy page regularly to catch up with the latest educational posts on this blog. And don’t miss the Resources list below, which will give you masses of information for getting started. Many of the posts have a free guide for you!

Do write and tell me about your new puppy, his/her name, age, breed or type, especially personality - and how much you’re enjoying each other. I read every comment and every email. And I love seeing photos! And - who knows? - your puppy may end up as a poster child here or in one of my books (with your permission, of course).

RESOURCES:

Your puppy’s first day home!

New Puppy!

I know he’s only a puppy but …

Choosing a Puppy, Part 1

Choosing a Puppy, Part 2

Choosing a Puppy, Part 3

What puppy gear do I really need?

Errorless Housetraining and Crate Training

10 Ways to Stop Puppy Biting

I have a new puppy - will I ever sleep again?

I have a dog - can I get a new puppy too?

Our family’s always had dogs - why is this one so difficult? (SOCIALISATION GUIDE)

 

A puppy meets a carefully-chosen older friendly dog. These early meetings must be managed closely!

A puppy meets a carefully-chosen older friendly dog. These early meetings must be managed closely!

 

My dog is busybusy all day long and never stops!

Help! My dog is busybusy all day long. How can I get him to calm down? | FREE BOOK! | #newpuppy, #dogtraining, #newrescuedog, #doghealth, #dogbehavior, #dogsleep, #overexciteddog | www.brilliantfamilydog.com

You may enjoy your dog keeping you company all day - but if your lifestyle is very active and busy you’re actually not helping him! Like toddlers, dogs need to have naps and calm periods built into their day. They are crepuscular beasties - which means they are most alert at twilight, their ancestral hunting time.

And just like toddlers, not getting these vital rest periods will result in disturbed behaviour. For your dog this means that he’s much shorter-tempered, easily agitated, hard to reason with.

This is making your life much harder than necessary! And if you are blessed with a Growly Dog who is already disposed to reactivity, fear, anxiety, or aggression, you can 10x that!

Plenty of ideas in this free 8-lesson email course for calming down your life with your dog!

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And as we know that stress is the silent killer for humans, so it can be for dogs, predisposing them to ailments that they are unable to resist.

I wrote about sleep and puppy-biting a while ago. And I’m revisiting this subject because it is SOOOO important, and so seldom understood!

So how can you curb your frantic dog’s activity and improve life for both of you?

Bedtimes

The first thing to do is establish sleeping areas in the home where your dog can sleep without being disturbed. So rather than letting your puppy crash where he runs out of steam, always transfer him to his crate or bed. Build these sleep-places into your day from the start.

Protected sleep times are also important to build in from Day 1. My dogs are all adult, and as I write they are all in or on various beds near me. They sleep while I work (lucky them!). This pattern of “when nothing’s happening you need to sleep” is carefully baked in from the day the puppy arrives with me.

A puppy who’s been awake for more than an hour or so needs to go to bed!

But you can still teach an older dog this way of life, even if there are established patterns of lunacy!

Teaching an older dog to rest

How much sleep should a healthy dog have? You may be surprised to find that it’s A LOT! This post will explain it to you, and how to achieve the right level for your dog | FREE BOOK! | #newpuppy, #dogtraining, #newrescuedog, #doghealth, #dogbehavior, #dogsleep, #overexciteddog | www.brilliantfamilydog.com

Here’s an extract from my book series Essential Skills for your Growly but Brilliant Family Dog which you can find here. I’m repeating it here because it illustrates so well how quickly you can influence some of your dog’s behaviours when you approach it the right way.

“I was visiting a very caring couple who had brought their young rescue collie Tim to classes when they first got him. I was glad they’d got in touch again, because the young dog was very fearful and couldn’t cope well with life. We arranged a visit.

While there, it became clear that this hyperactive dog was wearing himself out. For the first twenty minutes of my visit he never stopped. He raced in and out of the room, jumped up my front, my back, chewed my hair, poked the other dog, ran off again, paced … never rested.

So I quickly amended my training plan to include some relaxation work. After some active games to get Tim to engage with me, I started teaching him to slow down and relax. After just five minutes of this, his owner expressed amazement at seeing her frantic dog actually lying down still for more than ten seconds at a time!

When I finished the short session and released him, what did he do? Do you think he went straight back into busybusy mode, panting and racing?

Nope. He just slid onto the floor beside us, and as he lay there his head started to loll, his eyelids drooped, and he was … asleep!

To the total astonishment of his owner, who had never seen him sleep in the day!

So how much sleep should Tim be having?

Did you know that dogs need to have an average seventeen hours of sleep a day to work at their optimum level with the least amount of stress?

Seventeen hours.

I can hear you all saying, “My dog never sleeps that much.”

Well, it’s seventeen hours for adult dogs - obviously more for puppies. And some dogs need to be helped to achieve this total.

Tim had had a poor start in life before his present owners took him in and gave him a secure and loving home. So he’d developed habits of nervous and stressy behaviour which had stuck with him. Showing him how to relax transformed him in just a few short minutes and allowed him to get some much-needed rest.

His owners are carrying on this work with him, and it will make all the other things we have to teach him so much easier.”

Calm

Want to know what I did to relax this hyper dog? To get the exact program, work through the first book in the Essential Skills for a Brilliant Family Dog series: Calm Down! Step-by-Step to a Calm, Relaxed, and Brilliant Family Dog It’s free at all e-book stores, and also available in paperback online and you can order it from any good bookshop. Quite apart from the usefulness of this skill for any dog, anywhere, if you have a reactive dog it will hugely benefit him.

Be aware that teaching calm and relaxation is not teaching a stay exercise with the traditional stern shouting and finger-waving! (Although, curiously, you will get a solid stay as a result.)

The object is quite different - to change your dog’s mental state, not to anchor his physical position.

Learning how to switch off can also help with Separation Anxiety. If this is an area of distress for your dog, you could do with going through a whole protocol to make positive changes. This book by Patricia McConnell has a step-by-step program. It’s not an overnight fix, and few people in my experience can be bothered to resolve this issue for their poor dog - unless he’s destroying the house and defecating all over the carpet. But think how much happier you’ll all be if instead of agitated pacing when you’re out, you just get peaceful snoozing.

I’ll also mention the Relaxation Protocol. (These audios have been generously provided by Roxanne Hawn and are free to download.) This is a program which takes incremental steps from frantic non-resting dog to chilled-out dog with a lower heart-rate and dreamy feelings of comfort and relaxation.

It’s a simple program: you don’t have to do Day 1 only on Day 1 - repeat each “Day” till you have it right, then move on to the next “Day”. I choose to have the dog lying down for this - more conducive to dozing. It takes time, yes, but it’s time well spent helping your dog destress. You’ll feel as if you’ve had a relaxation session yourself when it’s over!

It’s worth getting started on it to help your dog access the calm side of his mind, which he may have lost sight of in his anxiety. Again, few people in my experience follow through on this and complete the cycle in several different places. But those who do get MASSIVE improvement! It’s especially useful for the never-resting dog, the hyper dog, the anxious or fearful dog, your Growly Dog.

For plenty more tips on getting the best out of your relationship with your dog, get this free 8-part email course

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