crying at night
We have had our springer spaniel pup now for 4 nights and he won't stop crying at night time.
We got him when he was 12 weeks old. I have tried the hot water bottle and alarm clock trick, light on/off, ignoring him and letting him out more often but nothing settles him.
I am beginning to get frustrated especially as I have to get up for work at 6.30am and I have 3 children to deal with also.
PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE HELP ME.
Don't worry, I know this seems endless right now, but all puppies cry at night to begin with but this phase will end.
As you've got 3 children I'm sure you've experienced the sleepless nights associated with young babies. Raising a puppy is very like raising a child, and this phase is no different..the good news is it is much shorter in duration than with a human baby :o)
At 12 weeks old your puppy may still need a night time potty break, so if he's been sleeping for a few hours and then wakes up and cries, give him the benefit of the doubt.
Take him outside to do his business, then bring him right back in and put him back in his crate. Night time potty breaks are 'all busines' though, no playing, petting and minimal eye contact/talking. Once you've put him back, leave right away and ignore his crying.
In all other situations just ignore his complaining and crying as long as you know he doesn't need to 'go'. He's a baby and naturally wants to be with you as he's scared and lonely and in a new home. However, he needs to get used to sleeping by himself and it will be easier and quicker (honestly!) if he learns while he's young.
4 days is really a very short time, and although some puppies may learn within a couple of days, others can take a week (or two) to 'get it'. But rest assured, if you're consistent and patient he will understand in time.
If the alarm clock, hot water bottle, light on/off etc. make no difference, then just put him in his crate with a sturdy chew toy, turn off the light, say goodnight and go to bed. Don't ever go back to him if he's crying (with the exception of the potty break as discussed above), as that will only reinforce his behavior.
I know it's hard when you're tired, and I'm sure the kids are tired too (although they probably sleep through the noise better than you do, us moms' seem to sleep very lightly!), but be patient and don't give up. Soon your little guy will be sleeping like a baby :o)
You may want to read my Crate Training page for more tips and advice, and my New Puppy Care page may also be helpful as you're a new puppy parent.
Best of luck with your puppy.