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puppy questions
by Renee' Sweeney

puppy questions HELP! We got our baby on Saturday, 1-10-98. He is 8 weeks old- too young I now realize to be separated.

Here are my questions/dilemmas- How long will he need to get up in the middle of the night? He usually wakes around 2 or 3 o'clock- I realize he can't hold his bladder, so I usually bring him of his crate to potty, but then he wants to play, so I have to stay up with him for about an hour or so. I am so exhausted! Also, is it too cold to take him outside at his age? I live in Dallas, Texas and it has been low 40's or so, and also raining alot. I have not been going out with him because of the rain, but I worry that the Pee-pee pads might give him the wrong idea.

During the day he is in an (fairly large) exercise pen in my kitchen and his dry food and water, along with toys and his crate are in there with him. He can go in and out of the crate at will- which he does when tired. When we go to bed at night (around 10 o'clock or so), I latch him inside his cage (he's asleep 95% of the time then) and he is fine. After I take him potty when he wakes up, should I put him back in the crate and let him cry a little or is crying a bad thing all around? I'm trying to think of him as an infant, and I know you are supposed to let them cry in their crib sometimes, but is he too young?

I realize this is very long, but I need help to be the best parent I can be, and you guys all know so much!

Thanks in advance for any advice... Renee'

I think you're on the right track, but would put him straight back in the crate after going potty - otherwise he will associate this time with play time and continue.

I like the wee pads, we are in WA and it's cold and wet and after a month am having great success with them! Try putting one in the floor of your bathroom for the midnight run, instead of turning him outside. A quick bladder relief may just be the ticket to getting him back to sleep. You could keep doing the outdoor thing in the daytime... Good luck!
Leslie R

Congratulations. I also got mu puppy too early. It is not the end of the world, although it may seem like it sometimes. I put CJ in a box by my bed at night so I could put my hand down and pet her when she woke up. Yes, you will have to take her out and she will want to play. We played with her for a few minutes and then just put her back in and said "night-night". After a week or 2 she calmed down. She still would wake up and cry so we ended up letting her sleep on the bed with us (after she was housebroken). It works ok although I would prefer her on the floor in her own bed. She used papers during the day with a 12'X12' space in the kitchen. I gradually took more of the paper away as she got older and she eventually just had an accident or 2 and was almost completely trained at 4 months. As for the weather, it was the end of May in VA when we got her so the weather was pretty nice. I still took her outside when it was rainy or cool - she just didn't want to stay out as long. They get the idea. As far as the rest, I spent as much time with her as I could when I was not at work. She does fine and is 9 months yesterday. Sleep when you can. Good luck.
I recently purchased a puppy, and we brought him home at 7 weeks. Now, I don't know if we were unusually lucky, but 'Bundles' was put in his crate begining with the second night, and only cried for the first three nights, and we only had to take him out in the middle of the night twice. He even started going to the door by the end of the first week. Luck or not, this is truly a remarkable breed. Have fun!!
I agree with Leslie. You're on the right track. I would put him right back in the crate after potty. That's what we did with Alex. I kind of like the Pee-pee pads also. It's great when it's raining (we live in Houston) and boy, he anderstood that quickly. He was housebroken in no time. I put a puppy john in my laundry room and took him there a few times, and that was it. He asks also to go outside.
We also adopted a young puppy, 9 mos. old, but luckily, she was used to sleeping in a crate (open top) as a pup, and since it was May, we started outside, walking to the same spot everytime, with the verbal cue to "get busy". It worked great. Mika slept in her crate downstairs until the nights got hot and we brought her crate up to the air conditioned bedroom. She would wake up once a night, panting, and bark when asked if she needed to go out, and after a quick outside in the backyard, she was wide awake and ready to play. Amazingly, a couple of minutes of play (with us in the bed) was all she needed and I could put her back in the crate to go back to sleep. Then she'd sleep the whole night through. Luckily, we also are good at going back to sleep, so the 30 minutes a night for a week or so didn't upset our routine too much. A funny aside, though, about the verbal command: don't mention the word to your husband in front of the pup while playing with her in the bed. Sometimes these fluff balls learn too quickly! Poor Gary was really chagrined when Mika immediately responded to cue. He leaped out of bed so fast, and I had a tiny puddle to swab and sheets to change, all because Mika "got busy". I had just told Gary how well Mika was responding when I told her to "get busy". What an understatement!

Actually, I am also interested in hearing other's advice on using the wee pads. We have a sailboat, and would like to have Mika be comfortable using a more "contained" system, should we decide to anchor out for the night. Are they very hygenic? And while we're on the subject, is this what is used in the Sherpa bags when traveling? Will pups use this method if they are not accustomed to it prior? It seems like Mika would just cry to go "out" and wait until her bladder exploded before "going" in the Sherpa. Mika's now 10 mos. and can go all night and not care anything about "going" first thing in the morning, which really blows me away because it seems to go against everything I've heard about puppies and housebreaking. She was like this even at 9 wks old! She'll play rather than ask to go out, and without accidents. These babies sure are special! I feel like even though she's my fourth dog, I'm starting from scratch because somebody changed the rulebook. I hope my ramblings are of help to you. I certainly have enjoyed hearing the stories of others on this site! June and Mika

Sounds like the housebreaking has been covered, but I would liek to comment on the crying. Everyone, of course, does it all a bit different so this is only my opinion. I can't stand to hear a puppy cry. They cry because the are lonely, and are alone if in a crate. I listened to Taffy cry a couple of times and then put her in bed with us. She never cried after that and never pee peed in our bed either. We would go out once during the night for about two weeks, then she was housebroke, and also slept all night. Now, at 1 1/2 years old, she still sleeps with us. Some nights she goes to bed early, and some nights she waits for me to carry her to bed when I go! She has a blanket on our bed and I cover her up with this, after all, she gets cold too!
Robin K
June - the Sherpa is not for pottying, like a crate they are supposed to hold it while in there. I don't know how your baby will do with the paper training, but I would certainly give it a try. Supposedly they are treated to attract them to the spot & all I know is they work like a charm on my Phoebe! If you are on your boat I would think it sould be simple enough to get him used to the pads, strange place means different potty?

As for the crying problems of a new pup - an old T-shirt or something that you have worn for a day or two and has your smell will ease the pups loneliness because it smells like you!
Leslie R

Renee, first - Congratulations on you new baby! About the crying, when Bailey first came home I had her in the crate at nights only and her first night she started to cry - well, i just can't stand to hear that so I actually put the crate up on the bed with me and spoke very softly to her. To my amazement, it worked - she stopped fussing and after a little bit went to sleep then I was able to put the crate on the floor right next to the bed and any noise i would tell her its OK i'm right here. This went on with the crate on the floor probably for a week but I never needed to put it back up on the bed again and there was NO MORE CRYING! I don't know if this will work for you, but its worth a shot. Good Luck.
Robin D.
First of all, thanks SO much to everyone for all your responses and caring.

PETEY is doing so much better now- it *was* just a case of getting used to everything. He still has to wake up during the night, but he goes right back to sleep after emptying his bladder and sleeps thru till we get up around 5:45 or so.

These dogs really ARE so smart and learn so quickly. It's AMAZING!!!! I had a Yorkshire Terrier and she really had trouble getting the hang of housebreaking- in fact, at 7 years old, she still had trouble... MALTESE are the greatest- but y'all already knew that, didn't you?! Once again, thanks for the forum. It's Fantastic! Renee' & Petey... :-))))
Renee' Sweeney

As it has once been said: This too shall pass :-)) It's great to see that everyone is doing well and adjusting. It's so easy to lose sight of the fact that our little fur babies are just that...babies and as such will grow, adapt and change as they mature. Keep up the good work and diligence! You will be rewarded with far more than you invested...guaranteed!!!!
Tracy Rowe
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