Top 3 Reasons Why Dogs Scratch the Door at Night

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Has your dog been frustrating you lately by randomly scratching and whining at the door at night? The odd scratch here and there is fine but compulsive scratching is a different story. Here are the most common reasons for dogs that do this more frequently at night.

1. Dog isn’t comfortable being alone

This can happen with dogs that spend a lot of time alone throughout the day. They may have a bit of separation anxiety. They are whining and scratching at the door because they want to be together with you at night. Some dogs also have a natural instinct of guarding their pack. They may want the door opened so they can keep an eye out for you.

One middle ground solution is to leave the door open and set up a baby gate. This way, the dog isn’t able to enter your room but he can still see and hear you. Crate training might also help if you need to train your dog to be more comfortable by himself.

2. Dog is bored at night

Some dogs might scratch the door because they are bored. They are scratching the door to get your attention. They want more play time to burn excess energy. Some dog owners stick to the same routine as their dog gets older. They need to keep in mind that a dog’s physical and mental need changes. The amount of exercise needed between a puppy and a young adult dog is very different. A simple way to stop the dog from scratching the door at night is to tire them out. A tired dog is a happy dog!

3. Distractions while sleeping

Some dogs might scratch the door at night after being woken up by untimely distractions. This could be a distant sound, an unfamiliar scent, or the sudden flashing of a bright light. There are some steps you can take to reduce the likelihood of your dog being woken up in the middle of the night. For outdoor noises, one method would be to generate white noise or to play calming music such as gentle Jazz. For bright outdoor lights, it may help to install blackout curtains in the room where the dog sleeps.

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