If your dog often wants to go outside, at night, you might be wondering why and what you can do about it. This post will show you a number of possible causes and what you can do about them.

So, why does my dog want to go outside at night? Possible reasons why your dog wants to go outside, at night, are needing to pee, trouble sleeping, hearing noises, an issue with its diet, or old age.

There are actually multiple possible causes and it might be doing it due to a combination of reasons. However, there are a number of things you can consider when figuring out the main cause and there are a number of things you can do about it.

Reasons why your dog wants to go outside at night

Below are a number of possible reasons why your dog wants to go outside at night and what would make each of them more likely to be the main reason.

Needing to pee

The reason why your dog wants to go outside at night could also be that it needs to pee. This would be more likely to be the cause if it wants to go outside straight away to pee, if it is a puppy or if it is elderly.

In this case, it would be important to continue letting it out to pee quickly. It would also help to let it out to pee just before bedtime. If it is a puppy, it would help to have some patience since it is likely that it is not yet able to fully control its bladder but it should gradually need to pee less and less at night. If it is an adult, it would be best to take it to a vet for a checkup since it could be due to medical issues.

It hears noises outside

The cause could be that it hears noises outside. This would be more likely if it tends to want to go outside when you can hear noises yourself or when you know there were animals in your backyard.

Illness

The cause might be that it has an illness. This would be more likely if it has been doing it suddenly and if it has been showing signs of being ill such as vomiting. In this case, the best option would be to get help from a vet.

An issue with its diet

The cause might be that there is an issue with its diet. It might be being fed too late, too much or it might be eating things that it shouldn’t be causing it to wake up during the night. This would be more likely if it has been waking up during the night since a change in its diet and if it does it more when it eats certain foods.

An issue with the room it sleeps in

It might also be the case that it has been struggling to fall asleep due to a problem with the room it sleeps in. It could be the case that it is too bright, too hot, too cramped or too noisy. This would be more likely if it has started waking up during the night since having to sleep in a different room.

Separation anxiety

The cause could also be that it has some separation anxiety. This is where it does not like being left alone and the prospect of being left alone causes it to become anxious. This would be more likely if it starts showing signs of becoming anxious when you are about to leave it at night.

In this case, it might be worth following the tips given in this book on Amazon about dealing with dog separation anxiety.

Age

The cause might be that your dog has been needing to pee more because it is getting older. This would be more likely if it is old and if it has gradually needed to go out, at night, more as it has gotten older. In this case, it would help to let it pee just before bedtime.

Things to consider

Below are some things to consider when figuring out the main reason why your dog has been doing it.

What else happened when it first started doing it

If your dog did not always want to go outside at night, it would help to consider what else happened when it first started doing it. If it started doing it suddenly, it might be due to things such as a bladder issue, a change in its diet or an illness.

What is different when your dog doesn’t go outside at night

If your dog does not always want to go outside, it would also help to consider what is different when it does not want to go outside. For example, if it does not do it when it does not eat certain food, in the evening, it might be the case that there is an issue with what is has been eating.

What to do about your dog wanting to go outside at night

Below are some options you have when dealing with the behavior.

Ensure that it gets a chance to pee

It might be the case that your dog has been waking up during the night because it needs to pee.

The best option for you here is to try to give it water a bit earlier in the evenings and to let it pee just before going to bed. This way hopefully it won’t need to pee as much at night. It would also be an option to let it pee quickly in the mornings and then to quickly go back to bed. If it is not a puppy, it would be advised to take it to a vet for a checkup.

Ensure it is getting the right diet

It might be the case that there is an issue with its diet that has been causing it to struggle to fall asleep. It would help to make sure that it has been getting the right diet and that it has not been eating things that it should not be.

Get help

If your dog has been needing to go outside multiple times at night or it seems like it could be due to an illness, the best option would be to get help from a vet. By doing so, you should be able to get expert advice tailored towards your particular dog and to rule out the possibility of medical causes.

Ensure the room it sleeps in is ideal

It would also help to ensure that the room it sleeps in allows it to fall asleep easily. It should be cool, not too bright, there should be space for it to lay down and not too loud.

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I created and currently manage Pet Dog Owner, the website you can go to when you have questions about your dog's behavior. It is my hope that you find Pet Dog Owner to be a helpful resource. It is also my hope that it will help you to improve your relationship with your dog. You can read more about me and my website here.