Poodle Forum banner

1 - 20 of 27 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
46 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Hi everyone,
This post is a Hail Mary because I am at a loss of what to do. I got my 8 week old toy poodle puppy last week and it’s been mostly a disaster. The silver lining is that potty training is going very well! I think she understand she’s supposed to go outside although obviously she can’t hold it for long yet.
We are STRUGGLING with crate training and being alone. She seemed to be improving and only crying a little when left alone and at night. But the last two days she has gotten progressively worse to screaming at the top of her lungs most of the night. She also can’t stand being left alone in her ex pen, it took an hour of screaming last night until she settled. The time is taking longer instead of shorter, I must be doing something wrong.
Please note she is always pottied, fed, watered, and exercised before being left. She is given plenty of attention as well, we all try not to initiate attention unless she is calm. She has toys and bully stick and treats in her crate but she doesn’t care for much beyond our attention.
I have slept so little that I feel like I’m losing my mind. It’s very hard to bond with her when it feels like I am constantly frustrated. I’ve had puppies and dogs before but nothing like this. My family is not happy with either of us and I feel like I’ve made a mistake in taking on a puppy. Any insight or ideas is welcome. Waiting her out is not working ☹
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
474 Posts
I'm probably the worst person bc when our pups come home they always end up in our bed after about a week, if that. I'm home all day so I just set my alarm for each hour so he can sleep and I can take her out. I do start with a puppy pen and I train fast being I don't work.
When I used to kennel I'd always have it by my bed.
I'd try crate training in daily training.... treat when she goes in and have her go in and out repeatedly doing this. Treat on every time she goes in. Then maybe placing the crate right next to the bed at night. lots of exercise prior to you leaving or going to bed may help as well.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
12,479 Posts
Is there a reason that you can't at least put the crate by your bed? Or if you are definite about it staying out of your bedroom, sleep beside her for a few nights until she learns that your home is a safe place to be alone? I am another who simply took my pups into bed with me - so much easier all round! They did get crate trained, almost accidentally because I use a crate in the car, but I found I was smply no good at leaving a baby to cry herself into eventual exhaustion.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
474 Posts
Is there a reason that you can't at least put the crate by your bed? Or if you are definite about it staying out of your bedroom, sleep beside her for a few nights until she learns that your home is a safe place to be alone? I am another who simply took my pups into bed with me - so much easier all round! They did get crate trained, almost accidentally because I use a crate in the car, but I found I was smply no good at leaving a baby to cry herself into eventual exhaustion.
I'm soooo glad I'm not the only one 😂
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
751 Posts
The good news - our poodle quietly sleeps in his crate in the family room each night.

The news you may like less - getting him there took some work.

For the first two or so weeks, we placed his crate in a guest room beside the bed. Then we took turns sleeping in that bed. I often slept with my hand in the crate. But all three of us slept.

We then moved him into the family room. Now comes the embarrassing but effective part. I slept on the soft in that room so that I could hush him if he fussed.

That, too, took about two weeks.

He now goes into his crate at bedtime on his own.

The travails of the first month were worth it.

Good luck.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,031 Posts
The only way I managed to get sleep when I first had Annie was to put her crate up on a chair beside my bed, door facing me, and flick the light on and hold my hand out the moment I heard her stir- not cry, stir. She was a dog who could scream for 3 hrs (found that out the first night, when I had driven 10+ hrs to pick her up, and had work the next morning), sleep for a bit, then start screaming again and I live in a 1 bedroom apartment- no where to hide from her.(luckily no neighbors in the bottom apartment at the time). I moved her crate to the chair in desperation in the middle of the night, and after a few days she stopped waking up in the middle of the night confused and crying, and I moved her into a wire crate on the floor.

Honestly I would probably sleep with the dog for the first few nights if I was to do it again.

For leaving her in her ex pen... could you work on give treat, walk away (even just to the other side if the room), walk back, give treat, walk to the other side of the room (or a few feet, only to a distance she isnt concerned about), sit down, and get her used to it. Then move a bit further next time?
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
3,395 Posts
You have an infant of another species in your house. No one with an infant sleeps. It's hard, I know. The suggestions of putting the crate in your room are good. A sleeping bag on the floor next to the crate is also an option. I slept with my puppy's crate in my bed for the first two weeks. Well, not really sleeping, but napping. Babies keep everyone up at night.

I do hope you find a way to keep the crate close. It made a world of difference for us.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
5,160 Posts
That exhaustion is so normal. Deep breaths. You're doing better than you think. :)

What process have you used to acclimate her to the crate? Maybe we can help you troubleshoot.

I can tell you that my husband slept on a cot next to Peggy's crate at first to help her settle in. And we took her out to potty once in the middle of the night, keeping the lights turned off so she wouldn't wake up too much, and sometimes letting her fall back to sleep on the floor next to us before gently putting her back in.

If I were to let a puppy cry it out, it would only be until the instant they stopped. Then I'd open the door and let them out so they quickly made that positive association with settling.

And only one special treat in the crate, one that's so delicious they can't help but go in after it (ideally at first this would be a frozen stuffed Kong they can really work at).

On that note, I never "put" a dog or puppy in the crate except during those rare late-night sleepy moments. They always have to make the choice for themselves.

This is still a rule in our house.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
1,478 Posts
I start out sleeping on the couch with the puppy between me and the back. It keeps the puppy from yelling, and I know the little guy needs to go out when the wiggling starts. Initially I only use the crate for daytime naps, and I stick within hearing distance.

I think I made a mistake with Pogo in trying to force him to tough it out in the crate before he was ready. He would cry for hours, even when the crate was next to the bed. It also didn't help that we were doing this in summer, so his crate was hot. I finally let him sleep loose in a puppy proof room with his brother Snarky, and the screaming stopped. Pogo hasn't liked confined spaces since then.

I was a lot more careful about introducing Galen to his crate. I started out by putting his food, water, a toy, and a comfy pillow in the crate and then blocking off that part of the room with an xpen. I would put him in the xpen during the day when I couldn't supervise him, but I tried to stay within his sight and hearing. Galen could choose to nap in the crate on the pillow or on the door of the xpen. When I couldn't be near I locked Pogo in the room with the xpen. I ttink having a person or Pogo always within sight reassured him a lot. After a few weeks he started considering the crate a familiar part of the landscape. Not good, not bad, just there.

We continued sleeping on the couch in the puppy room at night, but within a few weeks by mutual agreement he started going into the xpen to sleep. Once he did that we moved the crate into the bedroom. Now at night he will sometimes briefly cry angrily when we put him to bed. He doesn't want the fun to stop, just like any youngster. These cries sound different than lonely distressed puppy wailing. Unless the cat is taunting him (in which case I put a blanket over the crate) he usually stops crying fairly quickly. He can see and hear that none of the rest of us are doing fun things without him.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,639 Posts
Oh I remember sleepless nights. The sleep deprivation was horrible usually the first 2-3 weeks. I don't ***** foot around, puppy goes in the crate as soon as he comes home. I take him out to potty followed by some cuddle time, then potty again and back in crate. I never ever take them out while they are carrying on but as soon as they are quite for at least 5 minutes, out they come for potty & cuddle. And at certain times a nap on the lap. We did take turns sitting by the crate the first week while the puppy settled , I think we may even have stayed there on the floor for maybe 3 nights, after that well I need my sleep. In 50 plus years this has worked for me and my dogs all now stay quiet and asleep until I have made my morning coffee. No fussing as they no it doesn't work. LOL We will be getting a puppy in a few months (adult daughter, who lost her boxer to a brain tumor, will get a new companion, once again a shih tzu). I do not look forward to any sleepless nights it will be all on her, lol She will take the first week off from work.
I do feel some of the toy breeds are more difficult and have a stronger desire to be with you for warmth n security. So if you find its not working at all and you have given it time (or all that you can stand) you could get a soft crate and just put her in bed with you, (or at least next to your bed) in the end she will probably end up there anyway, as many of the toy breeds do.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
23,170 Posts
Well this is how life works when you have a human infant and a puppy. The grown ups often have sleepless nights. This will pass if you do some tough love practices to help the baby human or critter figure out how to self soothe. Self soothing is an incredibly important life skills for the littles to have in their wheel house.

To tell two stories in short versions, here are self soothing skill acquisition one for a human and one for a pup. One of my nieces was born with a heart malformation. When she cried she turned blue. Her parents were very reluctant to allow extended crying, but when she reached the age where she needed to learn how to put herself back to sleep her cardiologist warned them to allow her to cry lest they raise an incredibly selfish and needy nightmare of a kid. The toughed it out and good for them. She got through her huge surgeries at age 2 and 4 with confidence and great success because she had no issues with being out of their sight or earshot. She is now a magnificent 20 something!

Now for a puppy version. Lily and I went to a weekend obedience and rally trial just 2 weeks after Javelin joined our home. He already had decided he hated his crate. It was in the room next to our main bedroom and I had spent a fair amount of sleeplessness on an uncomfortable bed in that room or in the living room with him on the sofa with me to allow BF to get a decent night's sleep. He had full days of work and I had just a night class so I could afford to have lousy sleep. When I took Lily and left all of my guys at home. BF had to just drop him in the crate at night. He screamed enough to probably bother neighbors' sleep so understandably BF put him on our bed. He never went back in that puppy crate to my displeasure. Since he shows in sports and has to go places with me calmly I had to teach him to accept the crate. It took about two years to get him to be chill in a crate when it should have just taken a few weeks. He still tends to react to dogs near his crate so he has to be covered and I have to supervise him as much as possible.

Remember, tough love with a good dose of kindness. Move the baby dog's crate near your bed until he really believes that your home is a good place to be. He does not know that yet!
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
6,542 Posts
I had all my toy poodle puppies crates next to my bed at night, usually with my fingers and even toes poked thru the bars to give comfort tossing a towel or blanket over the crate itself. I ignore them to a point whilst they are crated.
Alone time is worked up to, when you are frustrated understanding this will pass is rough.
Understanding that your puppy has left everything they know makes everything scary, your puppy is very young an infant so does need some soothing, all my puppies were over 17 weeks old but all cried and needed comfort in those first weeks.
My pups always were better if they could see me, I worked towards their self soothing.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
751 Posts
Even though the OP may not have returned, this is a great thread. If I had read it before getting our puppies, it would have better prepared me. I conveniently kept forgetting the reality of the first few weeks.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
267 Posts
First of all I have posted several dear god help me posts. I have a 17 wk old spoo and even tho he’s great in the crate he has other issues. Have u tried puppy in crate next to bed? Maybe an old shirt or clothing for puppy to snuggle with. I know that what did I do feeling. Not enough good days to outway the bad. I put my pup on a crate schedule. It was a rough couple days but he does great in there now. Keep us posted and feel free to come on here and vent. Everyone is super understanding 🥰
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
23,170 Posts
Well it has only been one day since OP posted here. Hopefully the pup is so exhausted that everyone is geeting a good happy nap and they will be back before long. I wasn't a PF member when Lily and Peeves were puppies. I wish I had been since then I would have had some new ideas and also reassurance I wasn't going through things other people had not also experienced.
 
  • Like
Reactions: cowpony

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,623 Posts
Waiting her out is not working
I might get blasted for this but waiting her out is not the strategy I'd use for a tiny baby just recently taken from everything familiar and left alone at night after having her mother and siblings (if any) with her to snuggle with every night of her life.

One of the most important things you can build with this young of a baby is trust and security.

Not everyone is physically able to, but I'm another one who always has my poodles sleep in my bedroom, in crate and on bed. When they're young, I can help calm them when they're scared and lonely, or know if they're not feeling well, or get them out if they need to go. I do the same when they're old due to their diminishing abilities. I do the same in all the between years for any of the above reasons and always too, because if there is an emergency, I want us all together.

If you're unable to keep the little girl in your bedroom, then go where you've put her and be with her til she adjusts.

As an additional tool, some member have said that the Snuggle Puppy helped their pup.

 

·
Registered
Joined
·
351 Posts
I also don't like having babies (human or furry!) cry it out, but on the other hand there is Absolutely No Dogs in the Bedroom per my husband and crates are a necessity in our house.
The compromise that worked for Raffi, was that I slept on the couch beside his crate- at first he would only fall asleep with my fingers in the door. After a few days I started going back to bed once he was sleeping. At that point he was walking up once or twice a night. By the time he was 11 weeks I only had to sit beside his crate when he first went to sleep and he was not waking up in the night.
Day time crating/separation was different. The crate was in the main room, and the only comfy bed was inside. If I had to leave, he was put in a puppy-proofed room with litter area, since I didn't want to 'poison' the crate.
A baby gate was put in the hallway to keep him out of the bathroom and bedrooms, and if I was coming back from one of those rooms I only stepped through as soon as he was quiet.
By the time we had him for a week or two he had settled in enough to enjoy his chews, and those were restricted to his crate (by the simple method of taking the chew and tossing it back in the crate when he tried to bring it out- took 5 minutes for him to figure it out).
By the time he was four months it all came together and he would walk into his crate when I tapped it, day or evening, and stay comfortably in it when we left or went to bed.
Buuut yeah, the first few weeks were a sleep- deprived mist that told me I am too old for any more kids lol. I can deal with a few weeks but not months!!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
46 Posts
Discussion Starter #19
Thanks everyone for your replies and suggestions. We ended up putting her in a crate that is “too big” for her but she decided she can sleep in it (downstairs). Now she is only crying for a few minutes at night. And no messes in there either 🤷‍♀️ I also had to scrap the ex pen. She hates it and screams for hours without relent in it during the day. We are slowly trying to have her spend more alone time.
She is slowly improving but I recognize I have some serious puppy blues. I still don’t feel a bond with her despite the innumerable hours we’ve spent together. I know they pass but it’s deeply upsetting and disappointing. I’ve cried everyday since getting her but I’m trying to keep going. This has been surely miserable and I’ve realized I’m not a puppy person!
Worth noting her breeder sent home a heartbeat puppy and she doesn’t care at all for it 😑
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
5,160 Posts
Aw. My heart really goes out to you. I'm not much of a puppy person either, despite how much they tug at my heartstrings when I don't actually have one. And I can absolutely relate to the crying.

Maybe try spending some time in the x-pen with her. Play, do a little handfeeding, and also just lounge together. Leave for a few minutes and teach her that the moment she stops crying, even just to take a breath, you magically reappear. Better yet, hide some treats in there so she learns to snuffle around a bit. That will engage her nose, which is very calming, and it's hard to bark when you've got something yummy in your mouth!

If you were to see my google search history from my early days with Peggy, you might be appalled, but also you would feel much less alone. I promise it gets better.
 
1 - 20 of 27 Posts
Top