How long to let a puppy cry in the crate at night? 5 Risks to ignoring a puppy.

How long to let a puppy cry in the crate at night

It is normal for puppies to be crying in the crate especially at night at the beginning of the crate training process, it takes some time to get used to the crate and feel safe in it.

You also can’t let the puppy out of the crate whenever he cries, so most new dog parents find themselves confused, about whether they should let the puppy out when crying in his crate or just ignore him.

Even when you decide to ignore it, how long to let a puppy cry in the crate, and is it safe Are there any risks to doing it?

Is it OK to let a puppy cry in the crate?

Before we get to how long you should let a puppy crate in the crate, we first need to make sure that it is ok to ignore him in the first place.

Ignoring the crying puppy is actually a very common tip when crate training but is it safe and does it work?

Sometimes it does work but it’s not the ultimate solution, puppies that are just seeking attention will usually calm down if you ignore them, and accept the fact that they’re not getting any.

However a scared puppy or sick one will not stop crying if ignored if anything it will only make matters worst.

So to be able to ignore a puppy you need to be sure he’s ok physically and not scared or feeling down, which is really hard to tell, so it is best to play it safe and check on your puppy when crying in his crate.

How long to let a puppy cry in the crate?

What we recommend is to let the puppy cry in the crate for no more than five minutes, if it’s attention he seeks he’ll calm down, but if it persists then you need to do something.

When we say you should not let your puppy cry in the crate for too long, it doesn’t mean you should give up and let him out, there are plenty of ways to calm a puppy down in the crate.

The first thing to try whenever your puppy is crying in his crate especially at night is to simply talk to him, puppies are attracted to sound and will stop crying and pay attention to you which is your opportunity to calm him down.

Always give it five minutes before you interact, to make sure the puppy is not just trying to get attention, then you can make sure he’s fine, and if so, you can ignore it for a few minutes at a time.

How long will the puppy cry in the crate?

A puppy crying in the crate is just frustrating especially a new dog owner trying to crate train his dog for the first time.

The crying seems endless and the long nights start to weigh in, giving up seems like a good idea, but how long will the puppy cry in the crate?

If you’re doing a good job crate training a following the steps as you should then it doesn’t take more than a couple of weeks in the worst cases.

The crate training process is all about making the crate feel the perfect place for your dog to be, and it’s all about associating good experiences with it, so the dog will soon start to realize it’s not so bad to be in the crate and finally calm down.

If the puppy won’t stop crying in his crate after the first couple of weeks, then you should reevaluate how you’re crate training is going.

You can take a step back and start over, puppies can be conditioned to like specific places by associating them with food toys, and good experiences, unless something is wrong with the crate it usually takes no more than a few days.

Why do puppies cry in the crate?

There are multiple reasons why a puppy will cry in the crate, but the most common ones are :


Puppies are playful creatures that need attention, and if they spend too much time in the crate they’ll eventually get bored and will cry to be let out.

This is normal for young puppies, they can not spend more than an hour in the crate at a time once or twice a day at most.

Some new dog owners can get easily distracted and leave the puppy in the crate for too long which is why they’ll let you know the only way they can, crying.

If a puppy is not getting enough exercise and playtime before going into the crate he’ll also start crying for some.


Puppies are very curious pets and they love to explore their surroundings that’s why they hate being in the crate in the first few days of being in a new home.

They will always try and find out what’s going on in their new home and follow their noses to places you didn’t expect, this is why it’s always a good idea to puppy-proof the area where they are.

Seeking attention

Puppies do get attached to their owners especially in the first few weeks after leaving their family to a new home.

A puppy will always appreciate the attention and will seek it any way he can and being in the crate means no attention for him that’s why they cry.

Usually just ignoring them for a few minutes especially if they’ve had enough playtime does the trick and they calm down eventually.

Potty break

Young puppies have small bladders and can not hold it for too long especially smaller breeds, that’s why you need to let them out of the crate for their potty break.

No puppy will be able to hold his bladder through the night in the first few weeks of his life and will wake up once or twice at night and you need to let him out.

This is why it’s a good idea to place the dog crate in your bedroom for the first few weeks and then move it elsewhere.


A sick puppy will let you know by crying whether he’s in the crate or not, and that’s why you should always make sure your puppy is not sick before you ignore his crying.

You can tell by the continuous crying even when to let out of the crate and getting your attention, a sick puppy will also refuse to eat or eat less, and not be as enthusiastic for playing and exercising.

If you suspect anything you should immediately consult with your vet and make sure he gets the care he needs.

What to do when your puppy cries in the crate?

What you don’t want to do is to let the puppy out of the crate whenever he cries, especially in the early days of the crate training process.

If the puppy learns that the way out of the crate is by crying in the crate, he’ll never stop, so you need to break his crying cycle in the crate.

All you need to do is get his attention by talking or tapping on the crate, puppies are curious and will always be attracted to the origin of the sound, when they are you can go ahead and comfort them.

Using chew toys is also a good idea, especially the Kong (check on Amazon) it does a great job distracting the puppy, especially when filled with some treats making a great food puzzle.

Risks to ignoring a puppy crying in the crate

Ignoring a puppy crying in the crate can have several potential risks, including:


Ignoring a crying puppy can erode the trust between the puppy and its owner, which can have long-term effects on the puppy’s behavior and overall well-being.


If a puppy feels ignored or abandoned, it can develop separation anxiety, which can lead to destructive behavior, excessive barking, and other behavior problems.

Fear and stress

Puppies that are left to cry in a crate can become fearful and stressed, which can lead to physical health problems such as digestive issues, respiratory problems, and a weakened immune system.

Inappropriate elimination

If a puppy is left in the crate for too long and cannot hold its bladder or bowels, it may eliminate in the crate, leading to discomfort and unsanitary conditions.

Negative association with the crate

If a puppy is left to cry in the crate, it may develop a negative association with the crate and resist going in it or staying in it, making crate training more difficult.


In conclusion, crate training is an effective method for housebreaking and providing a safe space for your puppy.

However, it’s important to approach crate training with patience, consistency, and compassion.

When it comes to how long to let a puppy cry in the crate at night, it’s best to start with short intervals and gradually increase the time as your puppy becomes more comfortable.

Ignoring a crying puppy in the crate can have negative effects on its physical and emotional well-being, so it’s important to provide plenty of love, attention, and positive reinforcement throughout the crate training process.

With time, patience, and a positive approach, you can successfully crate train your puppy and help it become a happy, well-adjusted member of your family.