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barking to go out when they don't need to go out.

Posted: Fri Apr 01, 2016 12:59 am
by UpwardDog
Sam is going to drive me mad. During the day, he only asks to go out every 6 hrs or so. I'd say he goes out after breakfast to have a poo and then often not again until mid to late afternoon. In the evenings though, he is asking to go out hourly from about 10pm on. I think he partly wants me to go to bed or at least get off "his" couch. If I'm up on the computer or watching tv, he thinks he can "go for a last pee" and then we'll all go to bed. Sorry, Sam, I'll decide when I'm going to bed, not you.
If I go to bed at midnight, he's often asking to go out at least once between 2 and 4 and then he's up again by 6 or 7. He really doesn't seem like he's desperate to pee or anything, at least not til about 6.
I have great difficulty with sleep as it is. If he gets me up at 4, odds are I'm up til 5. Geoff and I are both really over not getting a decent night of sleep. Ben is gone-I'd like to sleep now, finally FFS.

Things I've tried that have not helped:
bed time snack

If I crate him at midnight, I can hear him panting at about 6:30am. By then I think he probably does need a pee. I don't want to crate him because I know he's a lot more comfortable on a dog bed or the couch. We need sleep though, in a big way. He gets up more often than a newborn and half the time I don't think he does anything.

When Richard was here dog sitting, he said he took all the dogs down to his room in the basement and shut the door. He said Sam slept on his bed for the night and didn't bark to go out til morning.

What else can I try?

Re: barking to go out when they don't need to go out.

Posted: Fri Apr 01, 2016 1:10 am
by UpwardDog
He is sound, not lame, can still walk a 5km, he's just slow. He isn't seeming to be having GI issues as he has at times in the past. He has lost some hearing. Between being somewhat deaf, slow on walks and driving us nuts all evening and up in the night, I am not enjoying him. I find myself annoyed with him so much of them time and that makes me sad.

Re: barking to go out when they don't need to go out.

Posted: Fri Apr 01, 2016 2:10 am
by Riddick
We went through pretty much the exact same thing with my 16 year old Apollo. He would pace and pant and go up and down the stairs all night. He would cry and ask to be let out 2-4 times a night and then just take two steps off the back deck and stand there. It was driving us all insane. We knew that he didn't need to go because he would empty himself at 10 pm when we let him out for the last time before our bedtime.

What finally worked was giving him a set bedtime and just putting him to bed. We got a huge Great Dane sized crate and put it in a spare bedroom, put a nice super cozy dog bed in there, let him out at 10pm, gave him a small drink of water and a cookie, put him in his crate, locked the door, shut off all the lights, said goodnight and shut the bedroom door. If he cried or whined at any point during the night he got a stern "NO" and a squirt gun to the face. Took him 2 days to catch on and then he was sleeping without a peep from 10 pm to 8 am when my mom went to get him up while she got ready for work. We honestly think it made him happier and more secure feeling. He wasn't confused anymore, he knew when bedtime was and he had his own place. He slept like that for the rest of his life and we never had a problem at night or with sleeping after we set him up like that. Night time is very important for us too and between him and my 19 year old dementia cat who howls all night long our animals were killing us at night. Now that cat gets crated too at night in the basement in the laundry room and night time has been so much more peaceful! Good luck with Sam!

Re: barking to go out when they don't need to go out.

Posted: Fri Apr 01, 2016 6:17 am
by connie
I'm pretty much with Lyssa. I think old dogs, like very young puppies, can't handle the amount of freedom that adult dogs can. I also think they need, and understand, routines that don't vary.

My three seniors are gated into the dog room at about 9 p.m., while I'm still up and watching TV, and at 10 p.m. it's lights out and they get their cookies and the radio in there is turned on to the classical music station, and I tell them good night. They're there until about 6 a.m., when I come and open the gate in the doorway. It works (knock wood) really well. At first I had just the Merle Girls in there, but Charlie will wander around the house at night and get the Boyz annoyed, so I popped him in with the M/Girls and after an initial kerfuffle in which Posey told him to stop being a Pomeranian dick-head, all was well. The dog room is full of cozy beds, the shades are drawn, and the radio is on very low. No water bowl, they had a last go at water after their 9 p.m. potty. And it's away from my room -- my room is off the dining room, the dog room is off the living room.

Maybe you can try a similar arrangement for Sam? I don't crate -- Peeks has a crate in the dog room, but that's the only one set up in the house, mostly because they take up so much room -- but I gate off areas, which works pretty much the same way. I'd give Sam a comfy bed with enough room to move around, some soft music, a bedtime cookie, and then darken the area and leave.

Re: barking to go out when they don't need to go out.

Posted: Fri Apr 01, 2016 8:21 am
by Calypso
I had to do the same thing with Cousteau. It hurt to do it - it seemed so wrong - but between young kids and my ex who didn't want his precious sleep interrupted for any reason, I had to. And he was good with it. He'd put himself to bed and would sometimes be annoyed if we were watching TV in the den where his bed was. During the day he had access to our bedroom with a dog bed in it, but he always chose his bed in the den, even if Havana or Pixel were on the bed - he'd just wait them out, act like there was something really exciting outside so they'd get up, or look pathetically at me until I made them get up.

Re: barking to go out when they don't need to go out.

Posted: Fri Apr 01, 2016 11:45 am
by UpwardDog
Hmm, maybe I'll try putting him to bed at 10 or 11pm in Griffin or Skylar's room with a dog bed, but not in a crate. I'd still like for him to be able to move around a bit as he is old and arthritic.

Rosie is now having audible farts that freak her out and we've had the odd mystery piece of poo lying around. I sure hope total incontinence isn't on the horizon.

Re: barking to go out when they don't need to go out.

Posted: Fri Apr 01, 2016 12:33 pm
by connie
Good idea. I think you need to make it a set-in-stone bedtime, too: no matter what else is going on, Sammy goes to bed at X time every night, here's your cookie, kiss on the nose, see you in the morning. Over the years of housing so many rescue dogs, I've become convinced that dogs will accept darn near anything if it's a ROUTINE.