There is nothing like puppy eyes; they have the ability to penetrate through the hardest of souls. However, canines do not appear as lovable the morning after incessant barking through the night.
During their formative years, dogs can be a pain to deal with before getting used to their crates. But your pup is not out to make your life miserable. They just do not know any other way of expressing themselves.
Pull up a chair because this article will let you in on how to stop your dog from barking in his crate.
Why do Dogs Bark in their Crates?
If you have never had a dog before, then you should know that pups are pretty much like toddlers. If you have any experience with babies, then you know that they will simply cry to get your attention, and nothing else.
It is the same for pups. They need your attention more, as they are still trying to adjust to their new surroundings. As such, they might be anxious and fearful if they feel that they are alone.
Therefore, by barking, they are hoping that you will go over and keep them company. As such, even if you go there and tell them to shush, they will still have accomplished the mission of getting you there.
While it may be some form of negative reinforcement, you should always go when they call out to you during the initial days, as that will be incredibly helpful towards alleviating their anxiety.
Your pup could also be calling out to you because they want to go potty. Pups have high metabolisms, meaning that their digestive systems are putting out waste constantly. Therefore, ensure that you go check out if that is the case.
Most importantly, your pup or dog could be barking in their crate due to an illness. If you cannot identify the reason for their barking, have the vet evaluate them to find out whether they are okay.
9 Tips for Stopping Your Dog from Barking in His Crate
A dog that constantly barks at night is a nuisance not only to you but also to your neighbors. Therefore, to save you from the wrath of your friends and foes, consider doing the following.
1. Carry a Blanket or Plush Toy When You Go to Pick Them
Blankets and plushy toys are great at retaining scents. Therefore, it is a great idea to let your pup’s littermates to snuggle all over the pup’s items. Next, put those items in the pup’s new crate. The lingering scent of his former family will help keep him calm, as he will feel like they are there with him.
2. Feed Them At Least One Hour Before Bedtime
Feeding your pup at least an hour and a half before bedtime ensures that they have enough time to handle their business at least twice before they sleep. This eliminates the chances of your pooch, waking you up to take them potty.
3. Exercise Them
Exercise your animal to wear them out. Wearing out a dog, however, is easier said than done. Nonetheless, try to involve them in as many tasking activities as you can to burn off that energy. Play fetch, chase them around or take them for long walks.
4. Cover their Wire Crate
Due to being open all around, a wire crate can make the dog feel exposed, thereby raising their anxiety levels. A good way of alleviating that anxiety is by covering the top of the cage with a sheet, as it makes them feel less “naked.”
- Related Read: Should You Cover Your Dog’s Crate? (The Quick Answer)
5. Take the Crate to Your Bedroom
If your little buddy craves for your attention, then him knowing that you are nearby might be all they need to relax and fall asleep. Moreover, having the crate near you ensures that you do not have to get up every time they whimper.
6. Serve His Meals in the Crate
Dogs associate food with comfort. Therefore, by serving him his meals inside the crate, they will associate it with a place of comfort. Consequently, when it comes to naptime, they should be feeling comfortable being inside the crate.
7. Reward them For Being Quiet
This is positive reinforcement. Whenever your dog goes for long periods inside the crate without barking, give them a treat, as well as verbal praise. Moreover, shower them with affection more than it is the norm.
The reverse is also true; take away your attention whenever they start barking inside the crate. Dogs are not dumb, as, with time, they will put two and two together. They will realize that they get rewarded for being quiet while in the crate. With dogs being dogs, they will want to do more of what makes you pleased with them.
8. Get Him a Snuggle Toy
Numerous dog owners have found the Snuggle Puppy Toy to be an incredible crate training aid. This toy features a pouch that holds a pulsating device and a heat pack. This allows the toy to mimic the mother’s heartbeat and warmth, thus comforting the pup.
Related Read: Crate Training Your Pup at Night: Is It Cruel?
9. Ignore Him
As mentioned earlier, sometimes, your pup simply barks to get your attention. It does not matter to them that it is two in the morning. Therefore, if you are sure that they are not sick, and they don’t need to poop, do not give in to the little tyrant’s demands. If you do, they will abuse that privilege.
To avoid sleepless nights, it is important that you crate-train your dog so that they become comfortable sleeping inside it. However, you must first ensure that they do not have any underlying health problems.
If the vet says that they are in good condition, go ahead and apply the tips offered in this article. The key, however, is to be patient, understanding, and firm at the same time.
You may also like: What to Put in Your Pup’s Crate and What NOT to
Featured Image Credit: Parilov, Shutterstock
- Why do Dogs Bark in their Crates?
- 9 Tips for Stopping Your Dog from Barking in His Crate