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Avatar universal

Older dog wakes up early

I have a rescue dog who is about 8 years old. He gets a walk once a day (nothing too long or strenuous, as he is a small dog). I have had him for two years, and he has never done this. However, the last month or so, he wakes up at 4:30 a.m., like clockwork, every single morning. He used to only wake up when I woke up or when my alarm went off around 6:30 a.m. When he wakes up he goes to the bathroom, then he whines for food. Annoying, constant whining. I have ignored him on several occasions and it doesn't stop until I wake up at my normal time and feed him.

He stays at home most of the day by himself, and has no issues. At night, he is out and in his dog bed (in my bedroom) by 9:30 p.m. I have tried to give him a small dose of children's Benadryl, but that didn't phase him.

I am exhausted, and do not know what to do. He has anxiety (not sure what his past was like), but crating him is my last resort.

Any suggestions?
1 Responses
Avatar universal
Have you ever heard that elderly people don't sleep much?  It could be his age.  I wouldn't worry too much.  Try playing with him a bit before bed or even a short walk.  It might make him sleep longer.  Also, when he wakes up, can you put him in your bed for the last 2 hours?  Daisy would sometimes wake up before me and I'd let her sleep in my bed (on nights when the boyfriend was there) for a few hours or so.  Once he's in that routine of you waking up with him at 4:30am, he will be accustomed to that.  Try getting him to wait until 4:45 for a week then 5am.  Don't get out of bed until 10 or 15 minutes later each week and see if that helps.  
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