There are a few options for how to deal with the puppy blues, most puppies will settle happily after a few minutes crying or avoid them entirely, but an occasional puppy will have a bumpy night or two after arrival.
The Puppy Meltdown AKA the dreaded PUPPY BLUES! Occasionally, when bedtime arrives and you put your new baby in her kennel for the night, you might find that the precious darling begins to vocalize loudly to let the world know that truly her heart is broken. Not only have you shut her up in that kennel that she just came OUT of and now you’ve gone off to bed, leaving her ALONE puppy horrors!
Puppies bond so quickly with their new families, even after only a few hours in their new homes. The meekest little morsel can begin to yelp and howl bitterly the first few times you put her back into her kennel. This is the time to use your backbone and be firm, turn a deaf ear to her protests, hopefully they will only last a short bit. If she cries more than a few minutes, I advise the following puppy interventions:
- Put a really great treat in with her that only goes in when she’s crated. For example, Kong has a toy that can have a bit of cheese stuffed inside which will help distract her until she falls off to sleep. (Remember, distraction is your friend!)
- Cover the crate with a light sheet, often if she can’t see the object of her devotion, she’ll nod off to dreamland.
- Be sure that she’s a tired puppy, give her by ample opportunity to play and exercise before you expect her to be happy going into her crate and ready for bedtime.
- Put her kennel beside someone’s bed, often this will be the only step needed to ensure pleasant dreams and peace and quiet for everyone.
- If she continues to vocalize, use something like a wooden spoon to tap the top of the kennel 2 times firmly while using the command, “No! Quiet” Tap once again with just enough force to startle her a bit and let her know that you want her to shush. (Sidenote: This is NOT being cruel, your puppy needs for you to set the house rules and if you don’t use a firm correction early on, you’ll have a puppy who can and will cry and yowl for hours. I had a puppy person laughingly tell me that after two days of struggling to sleep while her puppy yodeled, she tapped the crate firmly twice with the spoon and she never had another problem. Quiet puppy got some sleep and so did the family : )
If all else fails, you are allowed to carry her crate to a soundproof area of the house, sometimes just letting a puppy cry a bit will result in a battle won and a puppy that will decide that crying isn’t the way out of her crate, that it’s a cozy place to be once she settles and finds her favorite toy and that yummy Kong with a treat hidden inside.