woman sleeping in on the weekend with dog in bed
(Photo Credit: Ioannis Tsotras / Getty Images)

3 Ways To Get Your Dog To Sleep In On Weekends

We’ve all been there before. After a long week of hard work and fulfilling other responsibilities, all you want to do is turn off your alarm for the weekend and sleep in. So, you do. But at 6 a.m. sharp on a Saturday morning, your dog is sitting at your bedside, giving you the death stare or whining for you to get up. Unlike us, our pups have no idea what the weekend means or how important it is for us to sleep in.

Dogs are, quite often, creatures of habit. They get accustomed to a routine that we usually set. If you’re someone who has to wake up at 6 a.m. on the weekdays, that’s exactly what your pup will do, too, even on weekends. But even though they have a routine, that doesn’t mean that it’s set in stone.

Here are three simple ways you can adjust your pet’s routine and get that extra hour or two of sleep on the weekends.

Adjust your dog’s feeding schedule

Most of the time when our dogs are up bright and early, it’s because of one simple reason — they’re hungry. And when they’re hungry, there’s no chance of you getting any extra winks in.

Pushing your dog’s feeding schedule back by an hour will encourage them to wake up a little later than usual. Adjust both breakfast and dinner times slowly by 15-minute increments every couple of days until you reach an hour’s difference.

Also, try not to feed them as soon as you wake up on weekdays. Wait at least 30 minutes before breakfast time. This will help your pup get used to the idea that it’s not time to eat just because you’re awake, so they may be less inclined to wake you up for food.

Exercise before bedtime

Another reason your pooch might wake you up early in the morning is that they need to go potty. An easy way to fix this is to let them out right before bedtime. Taking them on long walks during the day will also help tire them out.

According to vets, depending on their breed and overall health, all dogs should get at least 30 minutes of exercise a day. If it gets too dark in your area, playing fetch in the backyard or doing indoor exercises will also help.

These types of activities will not only empty your pet’s bladder for the night, but they will also tire them out enough that they may wake up later than usual.

Make a perfect place to sleep

Wherever your dog sleeps at night, make sure that it’s a place specifically for sleeping. Most dogs are light sleepers and in tune with their sharp senses. That means if sunlight is peeking through the windows where they sleep, it can definitely wake them up.

Make sure you close the drapes in their sleeping room to keep the morning sunlight from waking them up. If your dog is sensitive to sound, make sure your television is off and all their squeaky toys are put away. Playing ambient sounds or soft classical music can help them fall into a deep slumber.

If your dog is crated, you can cover it with a blanket to keep their sleeping place dark and comfy while they snooze.

Things to keep in mind before changing your dog’s routine

There are two basic things to keep in mind before changing any of your dog’s routines.

First: consider your dog’s age. If they’re a puppy, then it’s best to take them out whenever you hear them crying or when they wake you. Their bladders are still not fully developed, and they need to go more frequently. The same is true of senior dogs who might start to show signs of incontinence.

Second: consider your dog’s health. Keep an eye on their frequency of bathroom breaks, especially during the night. If it seems like your pooch is waking you up at least once every couple of hours, they might have a urinary tract infection or digestive issues and may need a trip to the vet.

No matter what methods you try, hopefully, you and your dog will be able to enjoy that extra hour or two of sleep on the weekends!


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