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How to Get a Puppy to Stop Crying (2024 Updated Guide)

Hey there, fellow dog lovers! If you’re a proud new pup owner, you might have noticed that your furry friend can sometimes be quite vocal. But we’re here to help! In this guide, we’ll explore the reasons why your adorable dog might be crying and share with you 10 practical tips on how to get a puppy to stop crying. With our help, you’ll be able to quickly calm your little buddy down and enjoy a happy and peaceful life together!

Why is my puppy crying?

1. Separation anxiety

Puppies, especially young ones, can feel scared and lonely when separated from their mother and littermates. This is particularly common in the first few weeks after they come home. Crying at night, when left alone in a crate, or when you leave the house could be signs of separation anxiety.

2. Physical needs

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Your puppy might be crying because they have basic needs that aren’t being met. This could include needing to go potty, feeling hungry or thirsty, or being uncomfortable in their crate or bedding. You should observe their behavior and environment to figure out what they need.

3. Boredom or lack of stimulation

Puppies are naturally curious and playful, so they might cry out of boredom if they’re not provided with enough mental and physical stimulation. Ensure your puppy has plenty of toys, playtime, and interactive walks to keep their minds and bodies engaged.

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4. Discomfort or pain

Crying can also be a sign of physical discomfort or pain. If their cries seem high-pitched or frantic, accompanied by other symptoms like limping, lethargy, or loss of appetite, consult your veterinarian promptly.

5. Seeking attention

Sometimes, puppies simply cry because they want your attention. While giving in every time might reinforce the behavior, ignoring them altogether can worsen their anxiety. You may want to offer calm reassurance and positive reinforcement for quiet behavior to teach them appropriate ways to seek your attention.

Top 10 tips on how to get a puppy to stop crying

How to get a puppy to stop crying in crate

1. Positive crate reinforcement is key

Don’t use the crate as punishment for your puppy. It will make them associate it with negativity. Instead, try to make it a happy place by offering treats, giving them meals inside, or praising your pup when they go in calmly.

2. Location, location, location

The crate’s ideal location is your pup’s dream bedroom. You want it to be cozy, quiet, and secure but without being too isolated. Avoid setting it up in busy and noisy areas such as the living or laundry rooms. Remember, a peaceful retreat does wonders for your pet’s well-being.

3. Gradual introductions

Just take it easy; don’t expect the results to be instant. At first, let your little puppy explore the crate with the door open. Then, gradually increase the time they spend inside with the door closed and give them some rewards to make them feel comfortable. Also, stay nearby to keep them company.

How to stop puppy crying at night

4. Establish a bedtime routine

Just like human babies, puppies thrive on routine. Set a consistent schedule for playtime, dinner, potty breaks, and bedtime snuggles. This predictability helps them feel secure and anticipate what’s next, making bedtime less stressful.

5. Create a cozy den

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Puppies are just like their wild ancestors, who love to hide in cozy spaces. So, you can set up a snug bed or crate with soft blankets, a toy they love, and even a ticking clock that sounds like their mom’s heartbeat. In addition, make sure that the place is warm enough and not too drafty for your furry friend.

6. Tire them out before bed

A good dose of exercise before bedtime helps puppies burn off energy and settle down more easily. Take them for a lively walk or have a stimulating playtime session about an hour before lights out. However, it’s best to avoid roughhousing right before bed, as it can be too exciting.

7. Address basic needs

Make sure your furry buddy has had their last potty break and a satisfying dinner before bedtime. A growling tummy or an urgent need to go can quickly wake them up. 

Top off their water bowl, but avoid leaving too much water as it can cause an accident. With their basic needs fulfilled, your pup can sleep well and not cry, so you will also enjoy some uninterrupted rest!

How to stop puppy crying when you leave

8. Provide distractions

Before you head out, give your pup something fun to do, like a puzzle toy or a KONG filled with tasty treats inside. These games and snacks will keep them entertained and busy while you’re gone, turning their separation anxiety into a fun treasure hunt! As they solve puzzles or find hidden treats, they’ll be rewarded with mental stimulation and positive reinforcement, making your return all the more exciting. A happy pup is busy and engaged, meaning fewer sad whimpers when you leave.

9. Ignore the initial cries

Leaving your adorable pet behind can be tough, as they might give you those sad puppy eyes and start crying. But did you know that rushing back in to comfort them might actually be reinforcing this behavior? Yes, it’s true! Instead, try waiting for a few moments until they calm down, and then reward them with some praise or a tasty treat when you return. This lets them know that quiet will get them the attention and love they deserve.

10. Keep it casual

When leaving your pet, try to avoid making a big deal out of it. Just give them a quick pat or a calm praise before you go. And when you’re back, don’t get too excited in your greetings. Keep it simple and low-key. This way, your pet will understand that your absence is temporary and nothing to be worried about.

How do you comfort a crying puppy?

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Puppies may take some time to adjust to new environments or routines. When comforting a crying puppy, it’s important to understand their needs and provide reassurance through positive interactions. First, approach your dog calmly and gently. Use a soothing tone of voice, as they respond well to human emotions. Petting them gently or holding them close can also make your pup feel secure. Wait for a moment of quiet before offering attention to avoid reinforcing crying behavior. If your puppy is in a crate, a familiar blanket or soft toy with your scent can provide additional comfort.

Conclusion

Seeing a little puppy cry is heart-wrenching and might leave you feeling helpless. But don’t worry. You can comfort the dog with patience, understanding, and positive reinforcement. Creating a comfortable and loving environment, establishing routines, and gradually introducing new experiences will help your puppy feel secure. Just remember, they need your consistent love and care to thrive. 

Becoming a dog parent is one of the most memorable moments of life. You may feel overwhelmed by tons of puppy products on sale and not sure what items your beloved pet actually needs. That’s why I’ve compiled this minimalist puppy checklist to help you get started.

Last but not least…

For an all-in-one solution for most behavior problems your dog has now or may have in the future, check out this free online dog training workshop that improves dog-owner relationships and prevents poor behavior like: 

    • Barking
    • Accidents
    • Leash pulling
    • Not coming when called
    • Jumping on people
    • Running out the door
    • Chasing cars or animals
    • Chewing
    • Nipping or biting
    • Begging
    • Getting too excited
    • Ignoring commands

The workshop is conducted by Dr. Alexa Diaz, Ph.D., one of the most respected service dog trainers in the United States, and Eric Presnall, host of the Animal Planet TV show “Who Let the Dogs Out.” It has made life easier for many dog owners. Click here to get it.

About us: Pet Chao is a community for Asian dog breed enthusiasts. Our goal is to keep you and your four-legged friend healthy and happy by providing valuable resources and fostering a like-minded community.

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