CRATE TRAINING ISSUE - 4 MONTH OLD ROTTIE
HI, I have a crate training issue with my 4 month old Rottie bitch (Reba) took to her crate straight away and within days she was sleeping in it all night - I have weeks of bliss, no toilet accidents, nothing - heaven - now last week, she has starting to wake up around 3am and just howls and cries to get out? Why would this be?
Many Thanks Reba's mum
It's hard to say what is causing this sudden change in behavior, but there are a couple of possibilities that come to mind.
Firstly, if she actually NEEDS to go pee when she's waking up at 3am, and if she seems to be urinating more often in general, then it's possible that she has a urinary tract infection.
This is fairly common in puppies, and seen more often in females than males. I think it would be worth having your vet test a urine sample to rule out an infection as if she does have one and it goes untreated it could cause more serious health problems.
Also, at four months old Reba is moving out of the 'baby' stage and into adolescence. Many times you'll see a regression, or 'acting up' while a pup moves through this phase. Rottweilers are slow to mature and develop and can remain 'teenagers' for a long time. You may see behavior and attitudes that are very similar to that seen in human teenagers .... defiance, efforts to assert individual authority, emotional 'outbursts', alternating over confidence and anxiety and so on.
It's important to keep the ground rules fixed and to enforce them firmly but lovingly, and to be totally consistent about what you expect from her during this time. She needs to feel loved and secure in order to develop properly.
If I were you, I would take her out right away when she wakes at 3am and give her the chance to pee. Then put her right back in the crate and ignore any more fussing. During these night-time potty breaks don't reward her with any type of attention. Don't talk (apart from the basic potty commands and a quiet 'good girl' if she goes), don't make eye contact and don't pet her. You don't want her waking up just for attention. This way she will stop waking up when she no longer needs to 'go'.
If after several nights she doesn't seem to want to pee, then you can probably simply ignore the 3am wake up call and she will eventually stop doing it.
Hope this helps, best of luck with Reba.