Owning a Labrador that wakes you up early can be a frustrating experience and one that you’d probably like to avoid. This post will help you to figure out why it’s happening and what to do about it.

So, why does your Labrador wake up so early? There are a number of possible reasons but the most likely one is that it has associated a certain time in the morning with getting food. Other possible reasons include wanting attention, needing to pee, being naturally active and possibly medical reasons such as pain.  

And how do you get your Labrador to wake up later? The two most effective methods would be to make sure that it gets to wee just before going to bed and to gradually get it used to waking up and getting food at slightly later times in the morning. Other options include giving it lots of exercises, ruling out medical problems, and giving it something to chew on.

It can actually be quite difficult, at times, to figure out the root cause of why your Labrador might be getting up so early. The best way to get your Labrador to wake up earlier will depend on the cause of why it is getting up early.

Reasons Why Your Labrador Gets Up Early

Below are some possible reasons why your Labrador has been waking up so early and what would make them more likely to be the main reason.

It has associated waking up at a certain time with getting food

The reason why it does it could be that it has learned that it normally gets food at a certain time in the morning.

This means that if you regularly give your Labrador breakfast at 6 am then it’s going to cause your Labrador to expect to get food at 6 am. This will cause it to wake up at this time and to get excited at this time.

This would be more likely to be the issue if it also gets up at the same time on the weekend.

It needs to pee

The reason why your Labrador does it could also be that it needs to pee in the morning. This would be more likely to be the cause if it wants to go outside straight away to pee.

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 and to let it drink earlier in the evening.

Rule out medical reasons

The cause of your Labrador getting up early could be that it is ill or it has a medical issue.

This would be more likely if it has started getting up early suddenly and if it shows other signs of medical issues such as needing to pee a lot.

In this case, the best option would be to take it to a vet.

It wants attention

If you tend to only give it attention in the mornings it might be getting up early in order to get attention from you. This would be more likely if you tend to go to work early in the mornings.

In this case, it would likely help to take some measures to deal with separation anxiety that it might have.

It’s Young

If your Labrador is still a puppy then you shouldn’t be worrying too much since it’s normal for Labrador puppies to be loud at times that might not suit you. It is also normal for them to need to pee during the night since they do not have control of their bladder yet.

If it persists for more than a few months then that would be something to be more concerned about.

It’s Old

The cause of your Labrador getting up early could be that it is getting old. As they get older their ability to control their bladder will deteriorate so it’s normal for them to start to need to get up earlier.

How To Stop Your Labrador Getting Up Early

Below are some options you have when getting it to stop getting up early.

Reduce disturbances

One option is to reduce the number of things that might provoke a reaction out of your Labrador where it sleeps.

This means that you should reduce the number of things that it can create noise with and to make the room darker to keep it sleepy for longer.

Although, you might want to keep a quiet toy for it to play with in the room so that it can quietly play with that when it gets hyper.

Gradually get up later

If your Labrador is regularly getting up at the same time then it’s probably used to getting things such as food and attention at that time.

If you want to get your Labrador to wake up later then your best bet is to gradually get it used to waking up slightly later each day.

You can do this in 5-minute chunks where you get up 5 minutes later each morning and feed it 5 minutes later as well and just repeat until you get to the time that you want to get up.

If you have to get up earlier during the week then this becomes more difficult. Here, you could get it used to waking up at the time you want it to during the week and then to just quickly give it what it wants at that time on the weekend and then go back to bed.

Let it go to the bathroom later

It could just be that your Labrador is getting up early because it needs to pee in the mornings.

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 in the morning. It would also be an option to let it pee quickly in the mornings and then to quickly go back to bed.

Give it lots of exercise

Labradors are a breed that is meant to get exercise on a daily basis. When they do not get enough exercise it can cause them to become hyperactive and it might be why yours wakes up full of energy.

Generally, it is recommended for Labradors to get at least an hour of exercise per day as healthy adults.

Ignore

When your Labrador gets up early it will likely be trying to get your attention if you ignore it for a while then eventually it will stop trying to get your attention in the mornings.

However, it is important to make sure to let it go outside if it needs to pee.

GIve it time

If your Labrador is still a puppy it will likely just need some time before it stops feeling the need to get up so early.

This is actually a good time to start building it up towards waking up at the time that you want it to so that there isn’t any trouble later on.

Consider crate training

While your puppy is still young you might want to consider doing crate training. This can help your puppy to feel more secure and to make it less likely to cause trouble in the mornings.

Give it something to chew on

One other option you could do is to give is a toy that it likes when it wakes you up that will keep it busy so that you can go back to bed.

Get help from a vet

If you cannot figure out why it has been doing it or it has been showing signs of being ill or injured, the best option would be to get help from a vet.

By doing so, you will be able to get expert advice tailored towards your particular Labrador and to rule out illness or medical issues as a cause.

Considerations

If it’s a puppy

If you have a puppy then it’s normal for it to be getting up at weird times. The main thing for you to do here is to be patient.

If it’s old

If your Labrador is getting older then trying to stop it from needing to pee in the mornings will be more difficult the best thing for you to do is to make sure that it gets to pee before going to bed.

Use an animal behaviorist

If you cannot get it to stop and it does not seem to be due to medical issues, another option would be to get help from a dog behaviorist.

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Author

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.