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My six-month-old puppy is still creating a lot of noise each night when in his crate and alone. I return to him when he creates a fuss, but I’m not sure if this is a good idea. How can I stop this, please? I’m exhausted and need a good night’s sleep!

Nick Jones advises…

This is a common question with puppies and my usual advice is to go to bed at the time you prefer and return at the time that suits you and not before. By returning to a puppy that is making a noise (though I realise you’re well intentioned), you are rewarding the pup’s efforts and he will come to expect that you reappear like a genie each time he calls out for you. At this age, strict bedtime hours are the best way forward.

Try to make daytime sleeps happen in the same crate so that you set up a good sleeping habit in that location. Once this has settled and he gets to nine to 12 months old, you can begin to relax the use of the crate, as you should be able to trust that he is clean and dry in the home at all times. This varies from dog to dog, so keep abreast of this as he matures.

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