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Why Does My Puppy Wake Up So Early?

Why Does My Puppy Wake Up Early Feature Image

Few dog owners might be okay with saying, ‘my dog wakes me up too early.' But some dogs seem to have a strange habit of anticipating their owner's alarm going off by 5 to 10 minutes–which leaves a dog owner wondering: Why does my dog wake up so early in the morning?

Puppy owners should already expect their baby dogs to awaken them early in the morning. Often, a young canine wakes up very early because something has disturbed them or they need something. However, this is different when it comes to adult dogs–except for those with a health problem. 

So, what are the reasons why a dog gets up too early? And how to get a puppy to sleep longer in the morning? Keep scrolling to find out.

Reasons Why Your Puppy Wakes Up Early

If you have a new puppy, you can't expect him to go through the entire night without waking you up for their potty break. Puppies will need to relieve themselves at least one time during the night simply because they don't have full bladder control. So it's normal for your young dog waking up early.

However, if this happens almost every morning, then it's also normal as his owner that you want to change this type of behavior. But before you do, it's important to know the reasons behind the question: Why do dogs wake up so easily?

Wake Up Time for Dog Owner with PuppyAnxiety

Your puppy might be having some separation anxiety. This is when your dog does not like being left alone and the possibilities of being left alone cause them to be anxious. This would be more likely if your pup begins showing signs of becoming anxious when you are about to leave them at night. Separation anxiety might cause your dog to get up earlier and that he wants to be around you sooner.

Need to Pee

You'll often notice this if he wants to go outside right away to urinate. In this case, it would be best to let your dog pee quickly in the mornings and then hurriedly go back to bed. Puppies frequently wake up two or three times at night needing to pee. As your pup's bladder capacity matures, his need for an early morning toilet excursion decreases.

Change in Routine

If you normally get out of bed at a certain time, but you suddenly start waking up at different times, the cause could be that Fido is used to waking up at a certain time. This would also be possible if he tends to wake up early on the weekends.

Generally, dogs like having a routine. But when their routine is disrupted, it can cause them to behave abnormally. What you can opt to do here is to continue waking up at the new time or to gradually wake up at a certain time, and to wait for your dog to get used to waking up at the new time.

Hunger

Another possible reason is hunger and that your pup is used to getting fed at a specific time. One option here is to try giving him small meals throughout the day instead of serving two big dog food meals. Giving the last meal close to your dog's bedtime could make him sleep through the night, with his stomach full.

Moreover, you could also increase the hours between your pup's last meal and his bathroom opportunity to reduce the chance that he's waking you up because he really has to go. Remember that high-quality diets are more digestible, which minimizes early-morning urgency and decreases fecal output.

Reason Old Dog Waking Up Too Early

Medical Condition

If your dog has a digestive upset, a urinary tract infection, or some other medical issue that makes him uncomfortable or otherwise affects his elimination habits, he may have to go out 30 minutes before you usually get up to let him out. The best course of action here would be to take your dog to a vet.

Environment

Due to an issue with your pup's sleeping environment, it could also be the case that he has been struggling to fall asleep. It may be because the room is too loud, bright, hot or that there isn't enough space for your dog to lay down. In this case, he may start waking up earlier since he's sleeping in a different room.

Excess Energy

Generally, dogs need to get their exercise daily. When they do not get enough exercise, they may become a lot more energetic and it might be one of the reasons why yours has been waking up early or much earlier than before. So make sure your pup is getting the right amount of exercise for his breed and age.

How to Help Your Puppy Sleep Better

“My dog wakes up too early, what can I do to help him sleep better?” Firstly, rest assured that lots of puppies wake up early. But as they reach adulthood, they'll do more of their sleeping at night, and snooze in longer. Here are some tips you can use to help instill good habits.

Keep Them In Your Room

This has lots of advantages for your dog's well-being. One of which is helping your dog feel safe and comfortable at night. Another is helping him feel secure in their relationship and bond with you that he knows you're committed to looking after him. These feelings will help him relax and sleep better and longer at night, without needing to check you regularly that you're really still there.

Exercise Before Bed Time

Puppies have the energy to burn, and burning it off through exercise during the day, training games, and playtime is a great way to lay the groundwork for a long night's sleep. Allocate some time for this a few hours before your pup's bedtime, so he's still got time to wind down again afterward.

Keep in mind that a puppy doesn't need much in the way of walking, and too much leash walking on tough surfaces may potentially harm his growing joints. Training games that stimulate your dog's problem-solving skills are a more effective way of tiring out his brain as well.

Reasons Your Dog Wakes Up Early

Maintain A Good Sleeping Environment

The fewer triggers there are to awaken your puppy, the less likely he is to awaken you. Turn off the television. Close the blinds. Turn on soft classical music or a white noise machine. If he is crated, cover it. If not, restricting their movement is a simple way of stopping them from leaping on you early in the morning.

If your dog doesn't like their crate, perhaps you can purchase and utilize a baby gate to keep them in the bathroom. You can also invest in heavy drapes to blind the lights at night. And try to raise them at a regular time every morning, so your pup's body clock can adjust and estimate what time to expect the day to start.

What Not to Do When A Puppy Wakes Up Early

We've discussed how to teach your dog good morning habits. But here are some foolproof ways to undo your work, which you have to avoid.

Punish It

Punishing your dog for waking up early isn't going to fix the issue. Generally, punishment is very counterproductive to what you want your dog to learn. When baby dogs are frightened, it impedes their ability to make connections and learn between consequences and actions [1].

Plus, it's unlikely for your puppy to understand what he is being punished for. Punishing can also damage your puppy's bond with you. It tears down the feeling of trust that you're going to protect and look after him.

Feed It

Puppies need three or four meals a day, depending on their age. You can feed them fewer meals, or use those rations as training snacks. Decide before your dog comes home when breakfast time is. And resist the urge to serve him food before that.

Not only will your puppy learn a habit of expecting breakfast at a certain time but he will also get used to having breakfast as soon as he wakes up. This can lead to your puppy waking up earlier and earlier because he's too excited to get that food.

Play Games

If your puppy wakes you up early in the morning, you'll need to take him out. But don't cuddle or play games with him during that time. If you do that, there's a high chance that your dog will associate waking you up with something fun and he may learn to do it regularly.

Keep Them Awake During the Day

When you're desperate for a dog to sleep later in the mornings, then preventing them from taking one of their daytime naps or keeping them up later at night seems like a tempting and logical strategy.

But this practice is not wise. Sleep is vital for a young pup's health and development. The sleep schedule they keep in the early days may be exhausting for you, but it is only temporary.

Make Sure You Set Your Alarm for Your Pup Wake Up Time

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I stop my puppy from waking up so early?

If your puppy has made it his mission to ensure you're never late for breakfast by waking you up so early in the morning before your alarm does, then you can apply these tips to put a stop to this routine. One of the first steps you need to do is to rule out medical conditions that could be behind it. 

You can also tire your puppy out or not feed him before bedtime. This will not only make him snooze better at night, but it can also reduce fecal output and early-morning urgency. If your dog is a night sleeper, you need to reduce the distractions in the bedroom for a better sleeping atmosphere.

What do I do if my puppy wakes up too early?

If your puppy wakes you up too early, you can again make use of the mentioned tips above. However, if nothing else seems to work and there's no physiological need behind it, then perhaps your puppy just wants attention. In this case, you need to ignore his intentions. 

To do this, you need to set the time that you'll get up and completely refuse to get up before that hour arrives. No matter how much your puppy whines or barks, stay in bed and if you can, try to go back to sleep. If you use an alarm clock, your doggo may come to associate its sound with you getting out of bed.

How can I get my puppy to sleep longer?

You can get your puppy to sleep longer by training him to sleep later using the ‘alarm idea.' Unless you're absolutely sure he has an urgency problem, do not get up before the alarm goes off. This will condition your dog to the sound of the alarm as their cue to wake up.

Conclusion

Early beginnings are simply one of the things which can take new puppy owners by surprise. Fortunately, it's something most young pups naturally grow out of, with gentle coaching and a little patience. The bottom line here is you can certainly fix this ‘dog waking up early' situation. You just need to be persistent and learn what works for your pup!