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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi there,

We are trying to transition Pacífico (7-month intact male) from sleeping in the kitchen on his bed (there's a baby gate at the kitchen door, but no crate) to a converted walk-in closet in our bedroom, where we put the baby gate as well and he can see us.

We are trying to do this for two reasons:

1. He whines and barks frantically every single morning when we wake up, even if he wasn't up before us. He tries to hop over the gate (even fell trying once), and gives us a headache in the process. He won't even let us go to the bathroom before we come into the kitchen. We've tried ignoring him, but he happily continues for 30min +, and we eventually need access to our kitchen. He has dinner at 6pm and does all his business before bed every night, so we don't think it's that. He's completely food obsessed and always hungry, so we think that's why he's whining and barking like crazy. He also wants attention, but when he goes to sleep in the kitchen at night he never cries or whines... He knows it's bed time and that's where he sleeps.

2. We're tired of having him in the kitchen as he always sees us cooking and eating, jumps on the counter when we leave, and he also leaves a lot of hair everywhere, which becomes unsanitary. He is always around food, so we think it doesn't help his obsession with it. Even when he just had his meals, he becomes crazy as we deal with our own cooking and just acts like a starving pup.

We don't have a spare room in or 1bed appartement, so the walk-in closet is the only other option if we want him in a space where we can control him. We've tried to make it cozy with his toys and his bed,cushion and cover in it. We thought he'd really be reassured to see us near, be in a darker room at night, and maybe snooze until 8 with us. So we gave him a chew treat there last night l, but as soon as he finished it he became crazy anxious as he realized he was behind the gate. Even with us in the room, he tried everything to get out and even managed to slide under the gate, so we moved him back in the kitchen where he's used to be.

We definitely don't want him free roaming in our room as he would definitely jump on the bed (he's done it during the day and even marked our bed...) and we're not okay with having him sleep in the bed with us.

We would otherwise love him to be in his bed in the hallway but we're worried he might come and scratch at our door or get destructive as he does when he wants attention during the day.

We're starting to think about an anti-bark collar (vibration or citronella but not shock) but are concerned he might get even more anxious and that might only be a quick fix that won't actually remediate his issue.

Our nerves are shredding, and we're very frustrated as he is otherwise a lovely puppy with whom we have a great bond.

Any ideas? Anyone in a similar situation? Or with an older puppy that has calmed down?

Thanks,
Manon
 

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I wish I had advice but wanted to post about the post wake-up tantrums. Our 5mos old female does the same thing. We actually have her in a crate in our master bedroom walk-in closet (basically a small room). We keep the door open at night. She's totally fine until we get up out of bed. She pulls the same thing as your pup, carrying on barking and whining in her crate while we are in the bathroom/getting changed. We never succumb to the barking and have even left the bedroom and let her bark it out , only letting her out when she quiets down. We deal with it every morning and its really annoying, as she knows she won't get out carrying on. Typically after one of us leaves the bedroom to get her leash or jacket, she quiets down.

This seems to be the same problem that you are having, out of bed tantrum to "LET ME OUT NOW!". I guess maybe you can feel better that you are not alone. Our next plan is to try to slowly move her crate out of our bedroom into the office area on the other side of the house!
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I wish I had advice but wanted to post about the post wake-up tantrums. Our 5mos old female does the same thing. We actually have her in a crate in our master bedroom walk-in closet (basically a small room). We keep the door open at night. She's totally fine until we get up out of bed. She pulls the same thing as your pup, carrying on barking and whining in her crate while we are in the bathroom/getting changed. We never succumb to the barking and have even left the bedroom and let her bark it out , only letting her out when she quiets down. We deal with it every morning and its really annoying, as she knows she won't get out carrying on. Typically after one of us leaves the bedroom to get her leash or jacket, she quiets down.

This seems to be the same problem that you are having, out of bed tantrum to "LET ME OUT NOW!". I guess maybe you can feel better that you are not alone. Our next plan is to try to slowly move her crate out of our bedroom into the office area on the other side of the house!
Hi Dan, your post actually helps, as it made me realize being in the bedroom with us might not help at all if it's still behind a gate. I guess the only success people have with a vizsla in the bedroom is when they literally share the bed, but we don't want that, personally.

We haven't tried again as he as been having diarrhea these days, so we thought it too risky to change his sleeping space. What we did, however, was give him a little bit of kibble right before bed to rule out the hunger in the morning. And... Miracle!! When my husband woke up and went to the bathroom, he didn't make a noise and was waiting patiently by the kitchen gate. We praised for quiet. He didn't even cry for his food! So maybe it was hunger, for us. It seems that 4 small meals work best than 3 bigger ones. His digestion also got better.

Maybe something to try? Our other worry was that he needed the toilet (so we just take him out to te garden right before bed) or that he wasn't tired enough in the morning. He usually gets one half-hour run off leash per day (sometimes more). We gave him attention last night petting him in his bed and playing a bit with a rope toy. Maybe that helped too. We just hope it continues, as a silent morning definitely helped our moods!

Good luck 🤞
 

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Wow great discovery on the food! We are on a two meal per day schedule, something like 6am and 5:30pm. We will try giving another 1/2 scoop around 8pm as that’s when we remove her water.

as for being in the bedroom, it is doable if they are crated. It’s a common tactic for raising a pup for them to be close. Now she is older I want to start transitioning her to another room similar to what you did.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Wow great discovery on the food! We are on a two meal per day schedule, something like 6am and 5:30pm. We will try giving another 1/2 scoop around 8pm as that’s when we remove her water.

as for being in the bedroom, it is doable if they are crated. It’s a common tactic for raising a pup for them to be close. Now she is older I want to start transitioning her to another room similar to what you did.
Yes, we discovered that going by the book in terms of how many meals we feed is maybe not always good (we read the Vizsla Guide by Margaret Davis, which is great though). Apparently we should move him to 2 meals a day, but we realized that giving him smaller quantities more often seems to make him less anxious and less food obsessed. He came from a litter of 10 puppies and was the runt, so I guess that may also be why he is so obsessed with food, lol

And for sleeping in the room, we did that only for his first 2 weeks with us, when he was 2 months old. We were also torn between having him near or having our own space at night, so I completely understand your struggle... Maybe try to associate her new space with good experience by giving her treats or chews she likes when you first introduce her? Good luck!
 
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