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Firstly, let me apologies for this post, I can agree that I'm not in the right mindset at the moment but I just feel like I need to get it out and hope those who have been through puppy-hood can advise and support.

I work as a sports therapist and I book in clients to suit my schedule doing hours here and there a day; so over the last fortnight I worked extra more to gain and take 2 weeks off. Day 1 off - I collected Sonny on Saturday, he was 8weeks on Monday and today is Wednesday Day 5 at home. It's not even been a week yet I'm honestly struggling and pulling my hair out.

As my first ever puppy, I was SO excited about getting him, I read and read and I really did think I was prepared but now only 4 nights in; shamefully I'm actually starting to think twice and question the full-time commitment I let myself in for. I'm actually feeling quite emotional; which is quite embarrassing to say, even though I'm not an emotional person.

I do realise that although his size he is only a baby and I know that the more effort I put in the better and I'm sure it all come together eventually but really I think I'm trying far to hard and don't know how much longer I can do this. When I see other threads with people saying 19weeks and 6months still pooping during the night etc etc.. that really worry me.

I'm back to work in a week in a half and with my time off right now perhaps I'm making a mistake having the puppy with me all the time as I won't always be there.

NIGHT-TIME
Since night 1 he's been going outside twice a night. Mainly for a pee then both a pee and poop. From Saturday I put him on to 8pm, 12pm, 4pm, 8pm feeds. The breeder had him on 10pm, 2pm, 6pm and 10pm feeds, but in a kennel pen situation outside so he pee'd and poo'd when he needed. I had him in my room first 2 nights and slept downstairs with him last 2 nights; I've tried setting my alarm for times I think but when he's been wakening up and stirring I just get up then and take him. If he goes to bed around 10, it's like half 12-1am for pee and then between 4-5am for pee+poo. To be honest; I really wasn't prepared nor expecting to get up two times during the night, I though one would be suffice. Is there any way at all I could anything to get it to one night time outside trip? Like changing feeds or water etc.. I'm guessing there really is no easy way!!

Trouble is; If I get up and go outside, he will have no fuss and potty, then back into crate and either whimp for a minute or straight back to sleep... Where as I'm lying there shattered but fully awake and can't fall back over. Like last night I went to bed at 10 with him, he was up at half 12 for a pee and then went straight back to sleep, I couldn't fall back over and was like a washing machine tumbling and seen 1.40am on the clock. My mind is far too active and rattling.

DAY-TIME
He roughly goes to pee every hour. I'll admit right now I'm near enough spending with him every second he is awake; He's only really in his crate during the day for naps and every other time I'm with him watching and hovering over him. I don't think I should be doing this but don't know what else to do!! He normally naps for around an hour or more and If I try to get some sleep then while he is napping; I can't sleep as it's mid-day and I'm not a mid-day napping person no matter how tired I am, I've tried the last days and I'm just lying there awake. So I normally just get stuff done and when he is asleep.
__________

I live with my mum and little brother; my mum works shifts but some days
she's in the house at some point; the puppy is my responsibility and I can't expect her to get up during the night. Also though; during the day if it would work, I could try arrange for him to sleep then take him for a pee then back into crate but obviously not for all that long but would that be mean?

Anyway; I honestly don't know if what I'm doing is right and don't know what to do in order to make things easier for myself; I totally honour those who have been through this and manage to cope.

Any feedback?

Thanks Very Much!
 

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Hi,

The fact that I can't really remember what Henry was like at that age is a good sign, because it means that when Sonny is a year old it will all be a distant memory for you.

It really is early days yet. Henry was in his crate in a separate room downstairs from day 1, with a throw over the crate and the door shut. He was fed at 7.00am, noon, 4pm and 8pm During the first couple of weeks I took him out every hour for a wee. At night I think I took him out at about 2.00am.

During the day you really should leave him alone for periods of time, otherwise when you do have to leave him he will find it really tough. Get on with whatever you did before you had him, pop down to the shops, go for a walk, so long as he is safe in his crate he will come to no harm.

You sound like you are quite young so I assume that you are not used to having a disturbed nights sleep - unlike some of the mum's and dad's on here!!

:)

Just to add he would go to bed at 10.00pm and then get up at 6.00am as that's the time I get up anyway - he doesn't like getting up that early anymore :)
 

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Don't worry - it gets MUCH better! My friend is a first time dog owner and she felt the same - all is well now.

I hovered over Tatze too - and it meant her house training was done and dusted in two weeks! As long as you are playing with him and doing some training too (just five mins here and there), not *just* hovering, don't worry about spending a lot of time with him. Bu yes, he needs to be left all alone in his crate too - he is very unlikely to wee or poo in there - they don't sol their own beds unless they HAVE to.

Also - those of us who have had kids know what real sleplessness is - and the puppy sort is nothing compared to it! So it's not so easy when you have never experienced it before. The good news is that it's over in a few weeks not a few years!!

:)
 

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This is why doing your research on dog owning is so important before you commit to becoming an owner. This is not a dig at you personally so please don't take it as such. If someone were to ask you now your advice on getting a dog i'm sure you would be trying to put them off! :?

I know exactly what you are going through, hang on in there!! Don't use your two weeks off and spend every living second with Sonny, now is the time to introduce periods of solitude, build it up gradually, pop him in his crate for 10mins, half an hour, etc all the way up to how long you expect to leave him when you are back at work. If you don't this he is almost certain to develop separations issues and things will get worse not better!

The toilet issue will also get better, Sonny has a very small bladder at his age so needs to toilet more frequently, as his bladder gets larger he will be able to hold it in for longer. Does he have access to water during the night? As Mags has said use you time off to work on toilet training, you probably won't suss this in two weeks but its a great start.

If you put the time, effort and most importantly patience into raising your puppy now, you will have a wonderful dog and companion. It is hard work, you will have some frustrating times ahead when it seems like things are going backwards not forwards but you owe it to you puppy to raise him to the best of your ability.
 

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First - lots of sympathy. I was feeling very much the same just a couple of weeks ago; exhausted and wondering if I'd made an awful mistake in getting a puppy.

The good news - it will change, very quickly over the next 2 - 3 weeks. I've had puppies before, but had forgotten what it was like. My Molly, at nearly 13 weeks, is now much easier to manage and I'm beginning to really enjoy having her around.

Night times - Molly sleeps in her bed in my room and is clean and dry all night. She has her last feed around 5 - 5.30 p.m and perhaps a biscuit at around 7pm. I insist she poos in the garden before bed (I stand there until it happens!) Even when she was on 4 feeds a day the last feed was no later than 6.30pm, so you could try feeding earlier.

In just a few weeks you will be able to take your puppy out and about and I've found this has made a huge difference - I think the mental stimulation of meeting other people and dogs tires her out.
I'm lucky enough not to have to go out to work now, but I did work when I had my last dog and he was fine, with someone coming in every couple of hours - I'm sure your pup will be too.

Stick with it - it really doesn't last long. (Babies on the other hand - my son didn't sleep through the night till he was gone 2!)
 

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The first couple of weeks are ALWAYS the worst. I always go through a 'what have I done' phase, but you're just adjusting to the new 'normal'. Plus he is still a baby, and they are ten times more work when they're that age! My advice to you would be:

1) If you find you can't get back to sleep, pop the TV on on something quite inane like BBC News 24 but very very quiet. It always helps me to nod off. The toileting will get easier, and he'll slowly start getting the hang of it and you won't have to let him out. And yes some dogs do take a while to get it, but some get it quickly and don't have any issues. Consistency and perseverance are key!

2) You don't have to watch him all the time, and in time you'll have to teach him to be on his own. Best to start this now! Pop him in his crate sometimes during the day when he is awake, and leave him with some chew toys or a stuffed Kong. He will protest at first, but he'll soon learn that crate = nice things and he'll be happy to settle. Also don't be afraid to let him have the run of say two or three rooms at once (not the whole house in one go). You can potter around the house and do what you need to do, and just keep an ear out and pop your head around every so often to check he's fine. If all is silent that's when you worry! Also, he will love trotting around after you seeing what you are doing, so just go about your business and let him follow - they are like toddlers and just love to see what you're doing.

So basically just give it some time - its still new for you both so it will take a few more days yet to be back on an even keel. It feels so overwhelming now, but I promise you, give it six months and you'll look back on this first week with fondness, wishing you had your tiny fluffy bundle back :D
 

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Hang on in there, it'll all come together like the others have said!

Your first ever puppy is a bit of a shock to the system even if you know roughly what to expect, but before long you'll have a routine that works for you and things will get easier in terms of toilet training and sleeping through the night.

Having two weeks off work will give you a really solid start to toilet training especially. I agree that you should start to leave Sonny for short periods so that when you go back to work it won't be completely new to him. Fill a kong with some goodies (I freeze them too, so they take longer to eat) and pop to see a friend for an hour, go shopping, do something you enjoy, and then get into the routine of letting Sonny into the garden as soon as you get home so he can have a wee and give him lots of praise and a treat. It will soon sink in that peeing/pooing in the garden is a good thing and being alone for a while is also good because it means a kong of goodies :)

I am totally crazy because I got 2 puppies only a few months apart, but even now, those first few days of settling into a routine are a distant memory, and my two are 7 and a half months and 5 and a half months. I couldn't be without them and spend every minute at work talking about them and wanting to go home and see their gorgeous little faces! They really are a joy to have around and as sad as it sounds, they're my best friends! Once you've found a routine that works for you, I'm sure you'll feel exactly the same.

Hang in there :)
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Thanks everyone for the reassurance. It's just the overwhelming factor as you say. I highly value your feedback as I know you have been through it.

Regarding during the day - Check. I started introducing periods of solitude this afternoon. He went a bit non stop mad to let him out when I was on the kitchen as he could see me but when I went upstairs he went for a few minutes then went to sleep.

With Night Time... I haven't given water at night could I take it away after his last meal at 7-8 or is that too early? I think I'll keep him downstairs himself tonight and I can sleep in my own bed rather than the floor but I don't think I will hear him unless he really does go for it. Should I just leave my alarm and see if I hear him or should I set it?
 

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I doubt there are many of us who, at some time during the early days, have not thought that we have made the biggest mistake of our lives! But it does get better.You dont really realise it at first,then one day you suddenly think, "This dog ownership business is not so bad after all!!!"

Regards, John
 

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OK, some great help and encouragement above. But something I was to shout at the top of my lungs is....... WHAT DOES IT MATTER IF HE POO'S OR WEE'S INDOORS!! ;-) ;-) ;-)

It REALLY doesn't. he won't do it at a year old whether he takes a few dumps or wee's in the house right now, so don't come down twice at night, it matters NOT if he eliminates!! Its what keeps kitchen towel and dettol spray in business. Come down in the morning, armed with a bit of loo paper, walk in, give pup a pat, pick up the poo, chuck it down the loo, flush it, go back in, keep a cloth for poo and wee somewhere seperate near the sink, wipe it up, spray dettol a few times, wipe... and cloth rinsed. 1 minute tops.

Seriously we worry WAYYYYYYY too much about getting puppies clean. What is a few accidents between loving relationships!!? Mine still dump in the kitchen now and again at 2, 5, 10 years of age. It takes 1 minute to clean.

So stop worrying about them getting clean. Do YOU always go all night without using the loo? No? So why would a dog?

We don't rush human babies to be clean, we just buy stuff to clean up after them with. So please take all this pressure off yourself to 'get the dog clean'. Do your best, stop letting the dog take over your life, and live its life round you.

Come down once at night, for a couple more weeks yet, then ease off to not coming at all. If you are greeted with a pile, so be it! If its in its crate, wash the bedding.... our washing machine is on at least once a day for the dogs because of various smells, accidents and bits and bobs ;-)

And try and ease back from feeling you need to make yourself or the dog perfect.

Di xxxx
 

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JohnW said:
I doubt there are many of us who, at some time during the early days, have not thought that we have made the biggest mistake of our lives! But it does get better.You dont really realise it at first,then one day you suddenly think, "This dog ownership business is not so bad after all!!!"

Regards, John
I wholeheartedly agree with John - especially now Pepper is tucked up next to me, as I'm currently ill in bed and resting my elbow in her snoring body while I type! She's quite a good companion/nurse!

But in the beginning I remember being sleep deprived and getting frustrated with Pepper's apparent lack of comprehension of even the silliest thing I tried to teach her. At one point I said to my husband that it'd be better for Pepper to go back to the breeder's, for my sanity and her safety! :eek:

I'm with the others, telly on low, and yes, why not limit Sonny's liquid in the evening...But I found that kongs didn't really work in the beginning (she hadn't a clue what they were for and she much preferred my ankles, hands, toes, ears etc)! (although now she gets hugely excited whenever I pull her kong out of the freezer).

The one thing I am learning with Pepper is that persistance is the key - ad nauseum if need be and to the point of (me) cracking at times! Even now!

Chin up and take photos! I believe it is no accident that these little monsters are at their most adorable and sweet smelling when they're at their most frustrating! :lol:

Hannah & Pepper xx
 

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Di actually said what I was thinking but didn't dare say!

We didn't let Fin out AT ALL when he was a pup - we just let him poo/wee as he needed. And he was completely clean overnight by the third night.

He now won't even go in the garden, try as I might! We have to take him across the road to wee in the bushes, but he has never ONCE needed to go out during the night. He is an exception though as he is a bit of a camel, and I'm sure once he has his first upset tum we'll be getting up to let him out!
 

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we went through the same feelings when we had our pup ruby just over 2 years ago she was also our first puppy.

we also did not realise how hard it would be and such hard work .
we used to leave ruby in a crate with the door open in the kitchen and sit in the lounge or pop out so she got used to being left .
we used to let her out last thing at night and first thing in the morning and yes she did pee and poo in the house but as someone said get lots of kitchen towel and cleaning fluid and newspapers on the floor it only takes seconds on a tiled floor.

now out only regret is we did not get a dog years ago
 

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Wot Di says and relax!

Puppies pooh and wee. I've been lucky in that I put my pups in a crate, I feed very late, they go to bed of a full tummy and sleep. I don't go to let them out in the middle of the night. Movement means bladders and bowels get stimulated.

My philosophy has always been puppies sleep after eating with a full tum. Don't disturb, make their bed dark and cosy and quiet and they'll sleep for England. I feed late, usually around 11pm. I don't hear a peep until about 8am most days.

My latest hadn't been crated when we got her. She pooped in the crate within 5 minutes of leaving her breeder and my hubby had her in his knee for the best part of 14 hours on the journey home!

when we got hime she had dinner, i put her in her crate and She screamed the place down but I pushed her crate right up against the oldies crate and she slept right through. We've never had a disturbed night or mess in the crate since.
 

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I agree re not setting your alarm to get up in the night. I was really surprised to read on other threads that this seemed to be the norm. I only got up the first two nights because Molly woke me and I didn't want poo in the bedroom!
 

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Everything everyone else says is true.When Tara was a young pup,she was hard work.She messed in her crate ,even though she was being taken out regularly during the night.She has always been a very laid back dog,and we were missing the signs.She got over it,and we responded.I can honestly say once you are through this stage,you will be like the rest of us,saying it was the best thing you have ever done.Labs are the lovliest dogs going.They love to please.
 

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I feel for you. The first experience of sleep deprivation plus overwhelming responsibility is what new parents experience - at least this is a dog! Di is right, although I expect you're keen to get toilet habits right for the rest of the family. It can't be JUST your dog, they have to accept that you're all a big pack now, and mess on floors and initial night time noise is part of the package. The payoff is a loving member of the family who everyone can enjoy :wink:

1. Relax, enjoy your time off as a getting to know you, not a training deadline.
2. Go to bed, shut the door and sleep. If he's already accepted the crate you know he's safe. Put newspaper in one end and his cosy bed in the other and leave him to it from at least 11 or 12pm to 6am or later if you prefer. If he can't hold on he will use the paper not his bed. One day you'll wake up and realise he's quiet...OMG is he dead?? is the usual reaction
3. If you want to stick to meals as before chuck a small handful of his normal dry food in when you shut him in for the night, just to fill his tum, lift the water after his last meal.
4.Believe me, you WILL hear him squeal. Get ear plugs for the family.

Maybe one of the family will help by taking him out late so you can have an early night? Everything will seem better on a night's sleep. They grow so fast (unlike real babies) so this really is a short term thing.

Bless, we've all been there :?
 

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I can only echo what the others have said already.

With Kippa I can't remember it was so long ago ( went to the bridge 3 years ago :( )

Layla, I used to get up a couple of times during the night, stand in the garden with PJ's, wellies and mac on :roll: until she did what she had to do, together with loads of praise and thinking why have I done this again :wink:
She is now 3 years old.
And yes, there were accidents in the house, but that was down to us not picking up on the signs soon enough.

The pleasure, fun, enjoyment, love we have for and with her outweighs the sleepless nights etc. :D With Jess too of course, but Jess came to us at 9 mths old and she is just a comic :D
 

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It has almost got to the point of craziness in this day and age of pressured, perfect dog ownership where putting newspaper down on the floor for a puppy is a big no no "Your dog will never be clean in the house if you do that", if you don't feed raw then your seriously harming or even killing your dog, frowned upon by owners of "designer dogs" as you have a pedigree who is bound to be riddled with health problems :wink:

I have had many different mothers come up to me outside the school to ask my advice (think I must be known as "the dog woman" and deemed qualified to give advice as I've got 4 dogs :lol: ) as they're panicking about their puppies in one way or another..whether its waking at night, toilet training, picking things up in the garden, something someone has said in the park that has made them doubt their capabilities as a dog owner/training etc

I always reassure and tell them how my ultra laid back, well behaved, "stay close to mum"Murphy took over a week to really settle at night, 6 months old to be totally clean at night, how he chewed the rungs of the kitchen chairs, used to take off to see people he spotted across the other side of the park etc.....

It is very hard to see it when your tired and in the early days of puppy chaos but they do grow up and fast too...these days will soon be a distant memory, you are putting the work in and it WILL pay off!

Make Sonny's 8pm feed smaller and take him out for a final toilet about 11-11.30pm, then set the alarm for 2.30-3am for these first couple of weeks and then get up about 6.30. As Di said, don't worry :)
 

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Stick with it! Luna was haaaard work!! She is now an absolute pleasure... you will get there too xxx

NB: I went for an older rescue second time around though... ;-)
 
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