Early mornings

Discussion in 'Labrador Training' started by CarrieAlma, Jan 20, 2021.

  1. CarrieAlma

    CarrieAlma Registered Users

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    Hello, been having a discussion of sorts with my other half about our 5 month old lab Alma. Alma wakes up every morning at around 4am to go to the toilet, this is leaving us a little tired and my other half thinks it could be because I let her nap too much during the day?

    My understanding is that you should let them sleep during the day for their development, her schedule at the moment is:

    4am up for toilet then stays awake until 6.30am, during that time she will eat her breakfast at 5.30am.

    9am wakes again and will stay awake until around 1pm, then she'll have a 2 hour nap then maybe a 30min snooze at 5pm. Alma then goes to bed at around 8.30pm/9.30pm.

    At most she will have 13 hours sleep over a 24 hour period...is that too much or not enough?

    I honestly think its more to do with her age and bladder control at the moment as at 4am all she wants to do is go to the toilet.

    Any guidance would be much appreciated as we are first time doggie parents that are wondering around in a somewhat zombie like state at the moment.

    Carrie
     
  2. 5labs

    5labs Supporting Member Forum Supporter

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    I'd suggest training her to hold her bladder. If she is waking you up at 4am, I would set my alarm for 3.30, let her out of a wee and put her back to bed with as little fuss as possible. After a few nights, start moving the time to later by 15mins. This is how I toilet train puppies at 8 weeks old. By 4 months I would expect a pup to go through the night until 7am.
     
  3. CarrieAlma

    CarrieAlma Registered Users

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    Thank you for your help 5labs, we've been trialing that method for a few weeks but to no avail. Maybe Alma is just an early riser (she says whilst yawning )
     
  4. J.D

    J.D Supporting Member Forum Supporter

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    I expect she is waking early because she knows she will be fed. Try bringing her 5.30 feed forward and make sure it isn’t the first thing you do when you go down to her. Made that mistake with ours who starts his little whines at 6am. That’s ok during the week as we need to be up but the weekends are a bit tedious.
     
  5. CarrieAlma

    CarrieAlma Registered Users

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    Thank you, we have been trying this for a few weeks now but nothing seems to help with Alma. We are just both so tired. We have tried letting her cry it out for a bit too but nothing works. Its just so hard, its been months of early mornings and then early nights to try catch up on sleep. Deciding on who will go downstairs on the early's. I myself work 42 hours per (from home) and my partner does at least 50 hours. So the evenings pass by really quickly once you've cooked and eaten dinner, gone for walkies and then need to be in bed for 9pm to try and get a good night's sleep for a 4am start with Alma. I absolutely adore her but I am actually finding this part really difficult. Sorry for sounding miserable about it but I've already been up for 2 hours and its only 5.40am. I also have a 9 hour work shift today
     
  6. CarrieAlma

    CarrieAlma Registered Users

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    A big problem is you can't always get to bed at 9pm and can't just switch off and go to sleep straight away, so although I go to bed at 9pm I'm not sleeping straight away. I average around 4/5 hours sleep on an early morning shift with Alma.

    When we take it in turns on who gets up its usually one day on, one day off but with a much needed lie in (a full 7 hours) you tend to go to sleep later that evening so you find yourself choosing between getting a little extra sleep to a not enough. With that me and my partner are on different schedules one is: up early/bed early the other: full 7 hours sleep/bed later, we don't really see each other after a working day.
     
  7. Edp

    Edp Registered Users

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    Having a young pup is exhausting but it does not last forever. Your dog is still very young so it is to be expected that she wont fit round your schedule yet. Some pups do from and early age, but the majority dont. The zombie phase is pretty standard. I also think they do rise early when young as they are hungry as they are growing so fast. My husband and I have always done opposite shifts so he sayed up late and I got up early. You have tried alsorts, but what about taking her out much later, 11ish maybe ? You could go to bed set an alarm and take her out and see if she goes longer in the morning....worth a try maybe. Hang in there, it will pass.
     
  8. Joy

    Joy Registered Users

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    One suggestion is to take Alma out to toilet the very last thing before you yourself want to go to bed (so after you've done all your own bedtime bathroom routines). The other is to save a small portion of her food allowance and give that just before bedtime so that she's not waking with hunger. You could also have her in your bedroom as dogs will often sleep longer if they know they have company.
    It will pass, it won't last for ever - hold on!
     
  9. J.D

    J.D Supporting Member Forum Supporter

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    So when she wakens up at 4 and you let her out for a wee why are you staying up with her? Can you not go back to bed at that point. Is the room she sleeps in as dark as possible? There should be no interaction at 4 other than to take her out for a wee and put her back to bed. Could the person who gets up later in the morning have her in the lounge until they go to bed and take her out for a wee at say 10-11pm. Mine would sleep a lot during the evening but would then have a 10 min spurt of energy and go out for a wee about 10.
    When my kids come home to stay they think it’s hilarious that we go to bed so early. However we are the ones getting up early so it’s the only way to get a good nights sleep and it works for us. The world is a much easier place when you aren’t sleep deprived.
    Keep going. It will get better. Power naps(10-15 mins) during the day are underrated for a quick energy boost.
     
  10. CarrieAlma

    CarrieAlma Registered Users

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    Thank you for all of your replies :)

    We have tried later walks but it has been earlier at around 8pm but we will try for even later and see if that helps. Alma is very tired in the evenings and it is a struggle to keep her awake we try play and training but she really isn't interested...I think she is as tired as us by that point :)

    The small amount of food sounds like a good idea too so we will give that a go. We always take her out for the toilet before bed, it is literally the last thing we do before lights out.

    When Alma wakes at 4am we either just take her out for toilet and do no engage with her, then back to bed or we wait it out to see if she settles (that never happens but we are trying to teach her that when she crys we won't come running).

    You are all ever so kind and your advice is very much appreciated :) I'm holding out for the better sleep days/nights :) Other than that Alma is the most amazing loving, loyal, playful pup
     
  11. pinkwag

    pinkwag Registered Users

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    What I would do is let him drink water around 10pm and he will pee at 11pm. During our sleep he won't wake us up to pee since I rescheduled his water drink from our dinner time then let him drink again at 10pm.
     
  12. LizzyB23

    LizzyB23 Registered Users

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    We had a similar problem, although a 5.30 wake up, which to you must seem a luxury.
    We got up, took her to wee and pooh, no interaction. Then I nap on the couch and she settles in her bed beside us. Provided the cats don't come in I can get another 2 hours of peace. We tried putting her back in her crate, but she yelled the house down.
    At first I used to make tea and watch tele but that was a big mistake.
    Now the clocks have changed we are trying to train her to an alarm clock.
    Hang in there
     
  13. CarrieAlma

    CarrieAlma Registered Users

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    Hey everyone a little update...I think we have cracked it with a little help from many of the things you all suggested! Alma is sleeping in until 5.30am - 6.30am.

    I cannot thank you all enough for your kind replies. I feel like a new person with the additional sleep! Not quite my pre dog days lie in but I'll happily take it!
     

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