How do you stop a dog from whining all night?

I have a chihuahua/beagle/terrier mix that I got in April. She was 2 months old then. I’ve had a very difficult time training her, she still has accidents all the time, and so I have her sleeping in a kennel every night. She’s been doing the same routine every night for 6 months, and she’s STILL not used to the kennel! She whines ALL NIGHT LONG! And digs and scratches at the bottom of her cage. She wakes me up every night several times every single night. And being pregnant, and in my 3rd trimester, I NEED that sleep! What can I do to stop her incessant whining and crying!?
I have put the crate next to me, that’s what I’ve been doing. It makes no difference whatsoever. And training her- I know how to train a dog. I have another dog that’s a German Shepherd, and I had him trained in 2 weeks. I know to take her out 15 min after she eats, I know to take her to the same spot every time… I know to give her treats and praise when she goes outside. Give me a break for God’s sake. Don’t just assume you know me. I’m doing everything right. She’s just ridiculous. She even poops and pees in her kennel, whether she’s been in there for an hour or 3 hours.
I take her for several walks a day. She runs around all day every day non stop. She SHOULD be tired.
I will be taking her to the vet this week, thanks for that advice.. Bc I can’t figure her out. I’m a life-long dog-lover, and I’ve never had so much difficulty training a puppy. People told me to beware of the chihuahua in her, bc they don’t train easily, but I didn’t believe them, and I got her right before I found out I was pregnant, otherwise I would’ve thought twice before inviting a 2nd dog in my life! I’m not giving up on her, but I was just wondering what I could do about her whining. Her crate is only big enough for her bed.

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11 Responses to “How do you stop a dog from whining all night?”

  1. freshprince says:

    At this age, the dogs bladder should be able to hold it it all night and she should be be cratetrained such that she can easily spend all nite in a crate. So that leaves either health or separation anxiety issues. Assuming she’s showing no other signs of ill health – and a quick trip the vet might eliminate this explanation – you’re probably dealing with separation anxiety. So here are a few things to consider:

    1. this is not your german shepherd, so don’t benchmark one against the other – they’re characteristics are very different, e.g. chihuahuas are notoriously difficult to housetrain – so know that.

    3. this mix means you got it from a petstore, rescue, or byb. She may have inadvertently been trained to go where she sleep because she had no other choice – going in her kennel may make her whine.

    4. Do you have solid evidence of when the dog was separated from her litter? If she’s a petstore or rescue dog in particular it could easily have been separated prematurely (regardless or what you were told) which can contribute to a host of problems, especially separation anxiety or fear in general.

    5. To tire her out she requires two things: a. the RIGHT type of exercise for her breed and personality. If the terrier and beagle are predominant, she probably needs lots of off-leash running and walks should be 1/2 hour min (2 or 3 per day – 3 if she shows more terrier and beagle) and vary the route to keep her interested. Get a dog-walker if you’re time constrained. b. lots of mental stimulation – constantly practice obedience training (just short sessions are fine, e.g. teach her to heel and not to pull when you walk), and use stimulating toys like kong stuffaball.

    6. As others have said, you need to revisit crate-training. Is the crate size correctly? She should just be able to turn around in it comfortably, but no more.

    *Crate-training takes advantage of a dog’s natural denning instinct. That means there should be times where the dog goes in the crate on her own because she views it as a safe, quiet place. Does she do that? If not, you need to go back to first principles.

    *Put her in her crate for regular intervals e.g (1 – 2 hrs) during the day with stuffed safe chewtoys, like stuffed kongs. Put the stuffed toy in every time for the next few months – she should learn to chew her chewtoy, which relieves anxiety and tires her out – ergo nap time. Keep repeating this and she’ll build a positive association with going in her crate and learn to entertain herself. Try this even when you’re in the kitchen, e.g. pop her in crate with chewtoy when cooking.

    *Do not force her into or carry her to crate. You need to teach her to go in by herself. Teach her the command "crate" or "bed". If she won’t go in by herself, you need to remove the fear. Put a treat in her crate with an open door. Repeat several times. When she’s used to going in by herself then close the door (with a stuffed kong). If she whines, just keep practicing.

    *you try a towel or cloth over her crate as well to really make it feel like a den.

    *Do NOT put the crate next to you. That’ll only worsen her separation anxiety. DO put it in a central location in the house filled with positive associations, e.g. the kitchen.

    *with good crate-training, the minute your dog sees you go for a kong she should run to the crate on her own.

    7. Does she whine when left alone in the house? Do you know for sure? (hint: ask your neighbors). This is another telltale sign of separation anxiety. If so you need to pratice entering and leaving the house (I’ll let you look that one up on your own)

    8. Do NOT respond to her whining EVER. If you do that even once, she knows she can get your attention through whining. Never see her or give her any attention whatsoever when whining – no looks, no speaking, nothing, until she his quiet for 30 seconds. Keep practicing this and eventually she’ll build a negative association with whining.

    9. Everyone in your family needs to be committed and on the same page.

    10. Given your time constraints, and the short amount of time you have to modify behavior, you should have one or two consultations with a dog behavioralist/trainer.

    11. BTW, she should NOT be running around all day every day non-stop. She’s a puppy and regardless of breed she should be getting about 16 hrs sleep/day. Teach her the "settle" command if you haven’t already done so. Also using the methods above, she should have some good long naps in her crate. Make sure your other kids respect that and give her some quiet time on her own. Stimulating her all day without downtime could contribute to the separation anxiety at night.

    12. To this end, puppy gates and a confined area are useful. E.g. gate your kitchen, with some toys and water and the crate (with an open door). She’ll run around, play with toys, whine for you, but when you don’t come she should tire out and go sleep in her crate on her own.

    Good luck!!!!

  2. Not what you want to hear says:

    Just because you think she *should* be tired doesn’t mean that she actually is. She needs more exercise. Also consider blocking off part of her crate; it shouldn’t be so large that she can potty in it and then sleep on the other side. Clean it out thoroughly with Nature’s Miracle, and block off part of the crate with a plastic bin, box, etc.

    Definitely take her to the vet to rule out any sort of infection that may be causing the house-training issues, though. You can also talk to the vet about getting her on anti-anxiety meds, if the vet feels she could benefit from them.

  3. debbie says:

    Hi, well, obviously this is something you need to sort out before your baby is born.

    Is the crate in your bedroom or in another room?
    I would say, have it in your room, but You will be having a crib in there soon.
    So, that’s not very practical.

    You need to focus on the toilet training.
    And be very consistant with that.
    She’s about 8 months old now??
    And she should be house trained.
    I know it must be difficult in your condition.
    But you have to sort it out now.

    Then, perhaps, she can stay in the kitchen, out of her crate and she may be happier.
    Lots of toys and somewhere nice and cosy to sleep.
    A large soft toy to snuggle up to.
    Give her something that smells of you.
    Like a t shirt you have worn.

    Don’t give her any water to drink after 5pm. So, she has chance to do all her wee’s before bed time.
    You could also, give her Kongs with treats in, to occupy her.

    Once she is house trained, she could sleep on your bed with you.
    So, this is what you have to focus on.

    Do you get up in the night, to take her out to potty?
    Or, what do you do, when she wakes in the night?
    Unless, she is asking to go potty.
    Then, you should ignore her.
    If you are getting up, to tell her to be quiet.
    Then you are giving her negative attention.
    Get yourself some ear plugs and don’t get up to her, untill the morning, when she needs to go potty,
    Straight away. Even when you have the baby to look after.

    Make sure, her crate is not to big for her. You can make it smaller, by putting some cardboard or something across.
    So she just has room for her bed.
    Most dogs won’t go to the toilet in their bed.
    You have to use the crate in the day as well, not just at night.
    And don’t let her have access to any other rooms in the house, until you can trust her.
    Make sure all her accidents have been cleaned up properly.
    Biological soap powder is very good for this.

    Just keep taking her out and use a phrase like, ‘go potty’.
    Loads of praise when she go’s.
    And ignore any accidents.
    Don’t tell her off.
    Just clean up.

    If you can’t sort this out before your baby is born.
    You may have to think about re homing her?

    EDIT: Having just read your additional details.
    Then I would NOT have her in your room.
    Leave her in the kitchen and ignore her. (ear plugs)!
    Reduce her crate size. so she only has bed space.
    Don’t let her run around in other rooms.
    She will have to stay in the kitchen, untill she ‘gets it’.
    You have to be more stubborn, than she is!
    Try the calming spray at night.
    Get her spayed and vet checked.

  4. Voelven says:

    Kennel or crate? After 6 months of this, it sounds like it is either the crate training (as in getting used to the crate) that has gone wrong at some point, or she is one of those dogs that just cannot be confined in such a small space, assuming that you keep her in a crate.

    All depending, I see two options. The first is to start the crate training from scratch, teaching her that her crate is a nice, safe, lovely place to be.

    The other is to keep her in an enclosed area next to your bed, so that you can reach down and touch her when she starts fussing. The plus side of this is that you will probably also wake up when she has to go, which should help speed up the housebreaking.

    Once she’s calmed down and sleeps through the night, you should be able to gradually move her sleeping place to where you want her to sleep, so that you will be ready for the baby when it comes.

    Have you been consistent and diligent with her housebreaking training and routine? By 8 months old, she should be housebroken by now. If you’ve done everything according to the book, I would suggest that you take her in for a check-up at the vet, it could be a medical issue.

    An 8 month dog can be an obnoxious teenager, but basic things like sleeping through the night (puppies should automatically start to adjust to the pack’s daily rhythm when they hit 4 months old) and not having accidents in the house should be over at this point. If she gets the all clear from the vet, my suggestion is to get a professional trainer or dog-behaviourist to help you out.

    Also, do you have the possibility to have someone look after the dog for a couple of days, so that you can get some sleep? You must be absolutely exhausted. My first dog slept through the night from day one, but my current dog slept just 2×2 hours every night when we first got her. Luckily, she settled into our rhythm at 4 months old, exactly according to schedule, I can’t imagine what it would be like to have to live without proper sleep for 6 months.

    EDIT: She sounds stressed. Have you tried giving her brain work and teaching her "quiet time"?

  5. Sammy Gabbie LOVE raw meat! says:

    Someone needs to run this dog at night. Tire her butt out. Tire her out several times a day as well. I think much of this is she’s not getting enough exercise.

    She’s six months old now..meaning heat will start soon. That could be part of it. Have her spayed. You should also have her bladder checked. That may be the reason for the accidents all the time. She should also be going out to potty every hour or so.

    Edit: Ok, this sounds more like a behavioral problem with her. She may need some sort of anti-anxiety medicine. I would still have her spayed, as she definitely should not breed. And with you having a new baby as well as two other kids to keep up after, and her going into heat in the next month or two, it’s going to be too much. You say YOU are the one doing the potty training and such. I don’t see you say hubby or kids are doing any of it. Why the H isn’t hubby doing the work, what with you being so far along? Time to have a GOOD talk with hubby about stepping up. It’s also time to start getting the kids to doing much of the work with the dogs..if they are old enough. Even at 4 or 5 years old..they can put food in the dog dish, water, etc. They can pick up poop out of the yard, etc. They’ll need supervision, but it’s a good time to start getting them involved in doing the work.

    As for us assuming..we can only assume if we don’t know everything going on. It’s good for us to know that you have trained other dogs just fine, but this one is a bugger. Most of the time with these problems, it’s usually lack of consistent potty training and lack of exercise. But apparently not so in this case.

  6. ČĤĨĞĨŔĹ *The Nose, Knows* says:

    Something is going majorly wrong with training… are you taking her out every couple of hours, to the same spot, giving the go potty command & then rewarding with lots of praise when she goes. You have to be consistent. That is the key.

    Crates are okay to use whenever she cannot be watched, but I really do hope you are not leaving her in there all the time. Make sure she is getting plenty of exercise during the day…at least an hour or so…may take her for a walk before bed time as well. As far as the whining if all else fails make sure her needs are being met during the day…if she is tired & happy…she should sleep during the night…& after being on a consistent schedule…the whining should stop….also don’t give into the whining. Don’t put her in your bedroom…she isn’t lonely. Your best bet is to put her in another room with maybe a blanket over her crate…make sure it’s not where she can pull it through the holes.

    OKAY well after trying to offer you some ADVICE…re-home the dog…I’m sure she would be better off anyways. Obviously…no one gave you the answer you wanted to hear.

  7. Santa Fe says:

    My sister used an electric collar on her dog to stop her barking at night. The jolt is adjustable and it only takes a time or two for them to learn.

  8. Autumn says:

    Take her crate into your bedroom at night. She’s afraid and lonely. She’ll probably be quiet if she is near you.
    If she’s still having accidents in the house that’s a training problem not a behavioural problem.

    ADD: We replied to the information you provided. Had you given your added information at the start you would have received different replies.

    Maybe this is a dog who would sleep better in a dog bed next to your bed rather than a crate. Some dogs just hate being crated.
    Take her to the vet to see if there is a physical problem causing her inability to hold her bowels and bladder.

    If you still can’t cope with her surrender her to a no kill shelter.

  9. Kerri says:

    sell the dog your not fit to own one

  10. Blade says:

    Chloroform.
    Or adoption.

  11. dorothy s says:

    I haven’t read all of the answers, consequently I don’t know who you were getting at when you added details. You should bear in mind that none of us know anything about you, all we can do is try to help.Lets face it, you must me doing something wrong if she is not toilet trained yet.

    If she is peeing in the house you are obviously not taking her out enough, she should be taken out every hour, after she drinks, after she eats and after a nap. Your GSD could not have been completely reliable after two weeks, in any event your GSD would be more intelligent than your present dog.

    Hopefully you TAKE her out just before you go to bed, it’s pointless just letting her into your garden/ yard because she does not know that it is her last chance for a pee before bed time. If she whines during the night, I think that you should take her out for a pee OR DUMP THE CRATE. You could put a bed into a room with a tiled floor and leave newspapers down for her, if you dip the newspapers in pee she will be attracted to this.
    My last suggestion is that you should re clean the carpets and floors that she has peed on.

    After a dog has urinated or defecated in the house, obviously you will clean this up. Perhaps you think that you have got rid of the smell and your friends will possibly confirm this, however your dog will still be aware of a smell. Your dog thinks that your house is a lavatory; dogs have a much greater sense of smell than we have.
    There is a washing machine powder called Ariel get the BIOLOGICAL version Or get some special cleaning solution from the pet shop and clean your floor with this. When you are sure that you have cleaned every part of the floor that your dog has pooed or peed on do the following.

    When your dog urinates outside and when it is in full flow use a catch phrase I say “get one”, always use the same catch phrase when your dog obliges. Praise profusely afterwards, let your dog sniff around the garden or yard and play with it. Use your catchphrase for the rest of your dog’s life and when it’s an adult it will pee on command.

    If your dog urinates on the floors or carpets that you have cleaned, you have not cleaned them enough and you will need to do them again. NEVER EVER USE PINE DISINFECTANT OR BLEACH BECAUSE THIS ENCOURAGES A DOG TO URINATE,