On the first night, and for about three weeks, have the puppy sleep in a dog crate next to the bed. Line the base with blankets so that it is cosy and drape another blanket over the top to help it feel more secure. Give the puppy the stuffed toy that has its littermates' scent on it to snuggle up to.
Where Should a Puppy Sleep at Night? Your puppy needs to have their own sleeping space. A properly sized crate is useful for sleep training, and your pet will soon learn that this is where to go for a quiet and safe place to rest. Bonus: Teaching your dog to sleep in the crate also helps with potty training.
Spend a good 10–20 minutes playing with your pup (outside or inside) a couple of times during the evening. Play a game of tug or get them interested in chasing a flirt pole. Not only will this tire them out, but it will also give them some important physical exercise.
Crate them separately.
Your pups are going to have plenty of together time; they don't need to sleep together too. You can certainly leave them together in their puppy-proofed space when you're gone all day, but they should be crated separately at night.
The minimum time a puppy must be with its mother is 6 weeks, a period of time after which the puppy begins to wean. However, this is the bare minimum. The ideal minimum time that the puppy should be able to separate from its mother is 8 weeks.
According to the American Kennel Club, puppies younger than 10 weeks cannot be left alone for more than an hour. From 3-6 months, they should not be left longer than their age in months (for example, 3-month-old puppies cannot be alone for longer than 3 hours).
Start handling the puppies.
By about three weeks of age, you can—and should! —begin gently handling the puppies1 for short periods for reasons other than basic health care. Once the puppies have their eyes open, you can try carefully picking them up, holding them for a bit, and placing them back in the box.
They should be trying to climb out of their nest or whelping box by three weeks. By four weeks, the puppies should be able to walk, run, and play.
Create a comfortable sleeping environment
The puppy needs to be comfortable in order to sleep. Make sure that the bed is warm enough, but not too hot. The temperature should be around 75-78 degrees Fahrenheit. Also, make sure that there are no noise disturbances during the night.
Most responsible breeders do not leave newborn puppies alone with the dam. There are many reasons why it's best to supervise the dam and her litter at all times. Inexperienced dams can quickly become overwhelmed by the new litter and not being present might cause you to miss signs of rejection.
Do puppies need water at night? Unless your puppy is unwell or suffering from a medical condition, you should avoid leaving water out for them at night. Most puppies over the age of 12 weeks can go without water for 8 hours, but it's inevitable that you may wake up to a mess every now and then.
Most puppies can handle about 6 to 7 hours of nighttime crating when they are around 16 weeks old. For young puppies just getting started with house training, they should be given a potty break quite often throughout the day, even if they are able to physically hold it longer.
But in all honesty, there's no 'right time' for a puppy to go to sleep, as long as it's the same every night. While this may be the case, do note that your puppy will need, on average, around 8-10 hours of sleep per night.
In your whelping box, don't use hay, wood shavings or straw, as these can damage the puppy's skin and eyes. Also, don't have lots of small blankets or pieces of cloth as the puppies may crawl underneath them and either be smothered by them or may be crushed by their mum – one large piece of vetbed is ideal.
It is recommended, particularly with a first-time mother, to check the puppies every few hours to make sure they are all suckling and are warm and content.
The bottom of the box may or may not have a floor and may be lined with specially designed "whelping pads," or layers of newspaper (or fabric) to provide insulation from cold floors and to absorb fluids. Fabric covers or partial covers are often used on top to provide a "den-like" environment for the mother.
Puppies should not be taken away from their mother and sent to their new homes too quickly, as they learn important social rules and behavior from their mother and siblings. Puppies should not be separated from their mother if they are younger than 8 weeks old, and it may be illegal before this in many states.
But the truth is, those bacteria aren't big health risks for most people. So kissing your furry baby is OK, if it doesn't gross you out. Just have a healthy awareness of what could be in your dog's mouth, says Clark Fobian, DVM, president of the American Veterinary Medical Association.
Puppies less than two weeks of age should be fed every 3-4 hours. Puppies two to four weeks of age do well with feedings every 6-8 hours.
Eight hours should always be the absolute maximum you leave your puppy home alone – and only once they are over six months old. However, if your pup is outside or has access to the yard for a bathroom break, they may be okay being left alone for eight hours from a younger age.
Once a dog gives birth to her puppies, two different hormones contribute to her motherly instincts. The first is oxytocin, sometimes called the “love hormone.” It's what drives a mother dog to nuzzle her puppies or wrap around them to keep them warm while nursing.
It's a very common misconception that a female dog should have one litter before being spayed (neutered). Not only is it an out-dated concept, with no evidence to support that breeding a litter is either physically or psychologically beneficial to a dog.
What exactly is “littermate syndrome” and is it real? Littermate syndrome can occur when two puppies adopted from the same litter grow up together in the same home. In some cases, these sibling puppies form such a deep bond with each other that they fail to properly socialize with people and other dogs.