From Chaos to Calm: How to Crate Train a Puppy at Night 09 Jul 2024

From Chaos to Calm: How to Crate Train a Puppy at Night

No matter how well daytime crate training is going, crate training your puppy at night is a whole other kettle of fish!

Your house at night is much quieter and darker, making it feel much more alien for your new four-legged friend.

If you’re struggling with night crate training, you may have found that your pup seems to wail or cry – and while it’s very tempting to pop back downstairs and give them a cuddle, this can actually undo all of your hard work throughout the day.

So, how can you successfully crate train your puppy at night and ensure a peaceful night for both you and your furry friend? We’ve got some great tips to help you out.

Our top crate training tips at a glance…

  1. Put the crate in the right spot
  2. Be mindful about food and water before bedtime
  3. Try to tire your puppy out before bed
  4. Time potty breaks immediately before sleep
  5. Don’t get them all worked up too close to bedtime
  6. Make sure their crate is as comfortable as possible
  7. Don’t be too eager to shut the crate door behind them


dog in crateImage by cmannphoto from Getty Images Signature via

Why is Crate Training a Puppy Important?

Crate training is important for several reasons. It gives your puppy a safe, secure space of their own, reducing anxiety and stress by creating a cosy environment for relaxation.

It also aids house training, as puppies avoid soiling their sleeping area, promoting good bathroom habits. Not to mention, this saves you from having to wash their dog bed constantly!

Crate training keeps your puppy safe when unsupervised, too, preventing accidents and protecting your belongings. They won’t be able to chew at the corner of the sofa or cabinet if they’re happily snoozing in their crate.

Plus, a well-trained puppy is a pleasure to have around. They will learn to enjoy their crate and see it as a positive space rather than a punishment. This makes travelling and staying at the vet or groomer much easier for both you and your furry friend.

dog on vet bedding

Tips for Crate Training Your Puppy at Night from Pet Parents

Every puppy is different, and even if you've successfully crate-trained a puppy before, your new bundle of fluff might find it a bit more difficult to grasp.

From one pet parent to another, here are some tips to make crate training at night a breeze.

Tip #1 – Put the Crate in the Right Spot

Proper crate placement is key for effective training. At first, keeping it near your bed or bedroom lets you hear your puppy’s needs, offers comfort and security, and reduces the risk of messy nighttime accidents.

This closeness also reassures the puppy, reduces nighttime anxiety, and helps them adjust faster, leading to a calmer and more restful environment for both you and your furry friend.


As your puppy matures into an adult dog, letting them sleep on their own builds confidence and self-reliance.

Placing the crate in a central but separate area helps set boundaries, promotes a balanced routine, and ensures both you and your dog get the personal space needed for a healthy relationship.


Tip #2 – Restrict Food & Water Before Bedtime

Restricting food and water before bedtime is crucial to preventing overnight accidents.

Limiting intake a couple of hours before helps regulate your puppy’s digestion and bladder control, reducing the frequency of nighttime bathroom needs.

This practice not only keeps the crate cleaner but also helps your puppy develop a consistent nocturnal routine, leading to fewer disruptions and a more harmonious sleep environment for both you and your puppy.

Shop Waterproof Dog Beds

Tip #3 – Tire Your Puppy Out Before Bed

Exercising your puppy before bedtime is essential for ensuring a peaceful night.

Physical activity helps to expend pent-up energy, making your puppy more likely to settle down and sleep through the night without restlessness or whining.

A tired puppy is a content puppy, which leads to a smoother transition into the crate and a restful night for both you and your furry companion.

The best time to exercise your puppy for bed is after their afternoon nap, so they're not too well rested before night comes.


Tip #4 – Time Potty Breaks Immediately Before Bed

Taking your puppy out for a potty break immediately before bed ensures their bladder is empty, significantly reducing the likelihood of overnight accidents.

This routine helps your puppy understand that bedtime follows their final bathroom break, reinforcing good habits and promoting a cleaner, more restful environment.

By establishing this consistent practice, you can expect fewer disruptions during the night and a smoother transition into a dependable nighttime routine.

Here's a guide to help you plan your puppy's potty breaks by age.

Age (Weeks) Time Between Potty Breaks (Minutes)
8-10 30-60
11-14 60-180
15-16 180-240
17+ 240-300


Tip #5 – Don't Rile Them Up Too Close to Bedtime

Getting your dog excited through playtime or walks too close to bedtime can make it much harder for them to settle in their crate.

When a puppy gets worked up by playtime or exercise, it's difficult for them to switch to sleep mode.

To make crate training at night easier, it's best to ensure there's a window of wind-down time before you expect them to go to sleep.

This also means that their final potty break should be as calm as possible instead of a long walk or with excited praise.

dog  in crateImage by Christine McCann from Getty Images via

Tip #6 – Make Their Crate Comfortable

Just as we wouldn't want to have to sleep in an uncomfortable bed, your dog doesn't either. Making their crate comfortable and inviting is a great way to make them more eager to settle down at night.

Our range of premium dog crate bedding is perfect for creating a safe and comfortable environment for your new pup.

Our Traditional Vet Bedding is made from premium polyester pile fabric and is machine washable in domestic washing machines, making it convenient to clean up after nighttime accidents. It’s also highly durable, so it can withstand eager puppy teeth at night.

Our wool pet mat is an ideal choice for a more luxurious and comforting base for your dog's crate. Made from 100% natural wool with a non-slip backing, this premium mat keeps your new pup warm and cosy, even during the colder months.

Puppies sleep on average between 18-19 hours a day, so giving them a comfortable space to snooze between playtime and meals helps them settle into your household’s routine better.


Shop crate beds

Tip #7 – Don't Be Too Eager to Shut the Crate Door

Taking your time to shut the crate door after your puppy enters is crucial for making them feel safe rather than trapped.

By allowing them to explore and get comfortable first, you build positive associations with the crate.

Closing the door gently and gradually, rather than hastily, helps reduce anxiety and reinforces the crate as a secure and welcoming space, making the training process more effective and ensuring your puppy’s comfort.

Top Tips to Make Crate Training Go Smoothly

There are a few things you can do to help make the process of crate training your dog go as smoothly as possible.

Remember, these aren't foolproof tips. Every dog is different, and some will take to crate training much more easily than others, so just stick with it.


Create Positive Associations With the Crate

Creating positive associations with the crate is essential to ensure your puppy views it as a safe and inviting space.

This foundation of trust and comfort reduces anxiety and promotes acceptance. For example, you can place your puppy’s favourite toys or treats inside the crate to encourage voluntary entry.

Also, feeding your puppy treats in the crate can turn it into a rewarding environment. By associating the crate with positive experiences, your puppy is more likely to enter willingly and settle down quickly, making the crate-training process smoother and more effective.

dog  in crateImage by Ирина Мещерякова from Getty Images via

Try to Wake Up Before Your Puppy

By waking up before your puppy, you can proactively manage their bathroom needs, prevent accidents, and reinforce a regular schedule.

This practice minimises stress and confusion for your puppy, who learns that you will provide opportunities for bathroom breaks at the right times.

Establishing this routine helps cultivate good habits, ensures a cleaner crate, and facilitates a smoother transition into being fully crate trained, ultimately making it a more positive experience for both you and your puppy.

How Many Hours Should A Dog Sleep A Day?

Cry it Out or Comfort Items?

Adding comfort items like blankets, toys, or even a piece of your clothing to your puppy's crate helps them settle quicker by providing familiarity and security.

These items carry scents that remind the puppy of their home and owner, reducing anxiety and creating a more comforting environment.

This approach is often more effective than letting them "cry it out" or howl at night, as it promotes a positive association with the crate and eases the transition into crate training.

What to Put in a Dog Crate to Make it Comfortable

Be Consistent & Patient

Consistency and patience are key to successful crate training. Remember, your puppy is just a baby learning new habits.

Stick to a routine, reinforce positive behaviour, and provide comfort when needed. Over time, your patient efforts will pay off, resulting in a well-adjusted and happy dog.

Final Thoughts: Make Night Time Crate Training a Breeze with Bronte Glen

Creating an inviting space, sticking to a schedule, and being patient is essential for easing nighttime crate training. Remember that this period of dog ownership doesn't last forever – every puppy learns at their own pace, so stay calm and encouraging throughout the process.

Our crate bedding for dogs will also help create a comfy and cosy safe-haven for your puppy, making their crate feel more like home and nighttime crate training just that bit easier. Your puppy will thank you with lots of cuddles, love, and loyalty in the years to come!

Explore our full range of dog crate bedding online today!

Shop Dog Crate Bedding


The time it takes to crate train a puppy at night varies, typically ranging from a few days to several weeks. Consistency, patience, and positive reinforcement are vital, as each puppy adapts differently. Stick to a routine, and soon your puppy will comfortably sleep through the night.

Yes, crate training an 8-week-old puppy at night is beneficial. It provides a secure space, helps with house training, and prevents night-time accidents. Ensure the crate is comfortable and placed near you, and maintain a regular potty break schedule to ease their transition.

Yes, it's okay for a puppy to cry in a crate at night initially. This phase is temporary. Use comfort items and maintain a consistent routine to soothe them. Avoid giving attention during crying to prevent reinforcing the behaviour, and ensure their needs are met before bedtime.

Yes, lock your puppy in the crate at night to promote safety and house training. Ensure the crate is comfortable and near you, and follow a consistent bedtime routine for a smoother transition and restful sleep for both you and your puppy.