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If you put the puppy's crate in your bedroom where she/he can see you, you'll avoid potty accidents and it will comfort the pup to know you are close by. We put the water up around 7pm and do lots of trips outside before actual tuck-in time, around 9:30 pm. Once puppy is tucked, we do not talk to her until it's time to get up in the morning. If she fusses, just a stern "QUIET!" and then silence usually gets the point across. If the puppy wakes up and needs to go potty, CARRY her outside without talking, get the business done, and then right back to bed. This way puppy won't have an accident on the floor on the way out, and the lack of conversation will prevent her from thinking it's time to get up and play. If you can make it in and out without turning on lights, that also helps (I have a night light in the hallway that helps me to see down the stairs.)
The crate should only be big enough for the dog to comfortable turn around in ...any larger and she may make the extra space a pottyland. A rolled up blanket at the back of the crate helps close the gap, and I like to think it also makes the puppy feel cozy.
You may have a few sleepless nights as the puppy gets used to the routine, but it won't take long for her to get used to your schedule. Eventually you can move the crate out of the bedroom when you feel confident of your puppy's ability to "hold it". Some people keep their dog's crate in the bedroom permanently. If you make dietary changes it's nice to keep them close in case they have loose bowels while adjusting to different food. My puppy Saydee is 5 months old and at this point we still keep her in the bedroom just to be on the safe side. Better to avoid the accident altogether...
Congratulations on your new puppy & welcome to the forum. Hope this helps!
Last edited by SaydeeMomma; 10-09-2008 at 09:03 PM.