Why Is My Dog Afraid to Go Outside at Night?

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For about 7 years, my friend Jessy whom I met in the vet, is with her dog, Jackob. Jessy has a habit of going out for a walk in the evening with her dog. But last day when I was in the vet for my dog’s regular checkup, Jessy was there with a problem. Her dog is afraid to go outside at night all of a sudden.

She was confused and couldn’t find out the reason. Then I joined her and talked to the vet. I also take her to my familiar pet club to meet some experts. In the end, we learned many things about the issue. So, today I am here to share what I have learned that day about the reasons a dog is afraid to go outside at night.

Generally, a dog denies going outside at night when she is having poor eyesight. The other reasons include:

  • Past trauma for the young dogs
  • Injury and other health issues
  • Dementia or depression

For more details, I suggest you check out the following parts. I promise, you will learn something new and who knows! maybe it is essential for you.


Reasons for What My Dog doesn’t Like to Go Out at Night

There can be several reasons your dog denies going out without it is night. After talking to many experts, dog owners, and veterans, we have found several issues regarding the problem. Check out the following reasons. Hopefully, it will help you detect the exact problem your dog is facing while going out at night.

  • Having a Poor Eyesight

When your dog is scared about nighttime, it may be because of their vision problems. If so, then you must visit a vet in order to become certain about the problem. An eye exam is recommended in this situation.

After that, your vet will suggest a good solution for this. There are chances that you might have to test for a neurologic examination or ophthalmoscope. It will help to detect her problem properly.

  • A Young Dog

Puppies are sensitive when they are at a young age. It’s not a big concern as they need time to get habituated to a new lifestyle. A new sleep schedule or a new bed might be a reason for her uneasy act at night.

Another reason may be because of a different surrounding. It happens when she is unfamiliar with the territory. After she is detached from her mother this behavior is expected for some days. She will get over it with time.

  • Past Trauma

Dogs have a strong memorization capacity. So at night, if anything happens that is inappropriate, she will remember it for a long time. Therefore, the incident will have a negative impact. And, whenever she sees the same repetition of that situation, she gets scared about it.

In order to solve this out, you must keep patience. Careful observation can lead you to the reason behind it. Moreover, you can apply desensitization treatment to fix the problem. But nothing can help more than your affection.

  • Dementia

Another name for Dementia is Canine cognitive dysfunction. It is a common health issue for dogs that have no cure. The complication keeps growing as they are aging with time. Well, dementia causes temporary memory loss.

If your dog is suffering from dementia, she can express the problem through some changes in behavior such as confused reactions, different sleep schedules, anxiety, etc. But it all starts with the first symptom of not willing to go out at night. Lack of hearing and eyesight is related to it.

  • Depression

If your dog is stressed, it can lead her to be depressed. The reasons behind it are many. Stimuli-rich surrounding, disturbing sounds, a noticeable redesign of pattern, etc are the most common causes of a dog’s depression.

It can also happen when you shift to a new home. This sudden change in environment makes her uncomfortable to fall asleep. You should look carefully to see if something is not right in their sleep positions.

  • Health Issue

You must check out if there is any type of medical problem that your dog is going through. She might get hurt or any kind of ache can make her feel irritated. And this can be a reason she cannot walk comfortably and then isn’t willing to go out.

For mature dogs, you have to frequently take them to the vet and diagnose them to find out health issues. In emergency conditions, you should not ignore the problem and quickly go to a vet for a check-up.


Tips to Help Your Dog Going Out at Night Comfortably

You have learned about the most common issues that bother your dog to go outside at night. Hopefully, you have detected the exact reason for your dog already. Now, it’s time to help her. Follow the below tips and I am sure you will get help.

  • Start with a Short Session

If your dog is young and new in your home, you have to train her properly. Maybe she is not well-trained, so she is afraid of going out at night. If things are happening like that, you have to start with short sessions.

You can take your dog out at night for 5 to 10 minutes in the beginning. And then gradually increase the time and let her be comfortable with you in the darkness. Make sure to find the highest area in the beginning. It will help her be confident too.

  • Try to Start Outing at Dusk

Some dogs are afraid of the dark and do not want to go outside at night. They are in need of training and waking at the time of dusk. You have to focus on the time of the sunset and that is the right time for the training. This is because the dog needs to cope with the fading light and the transition of light to the darkness.

They fear the darkness in general, but if you keep them at evening time, the exposure of outside will make them used to the condition. Eventually, the dog will ease up and be less afraid of the night.

There are some benefits of training and exposure to outside at dusk. They are, at that time natural light is available, the transition is even and smooth which helps to reduce the fear greatly.

  • Find out Her Fear and Be Trusted to Her

If she is fearful of going outside at night, maybe she is not trusting you properly. In this case, you have to be patient and take time to be a trusted person to her. Make sure that you are paying proper attention to her and your affection is touching her.

  • Use a LED Dog Collar

Dogs panic at total darkness and nighttime outings are fearful to them. So, adding a LED collar comes in handy. You should choose a balanced yet bright LED light-based collar. This is a very effective solution, as it provides a very pleasing light and it is also near the head area. They can easily see the nearby area and can walk with ease in darkness.

This is a very easy and convenient solution and requires near-zero training for your pet dog. It is a perfect way to make your dog cope with night and this allows you to bring your pet with you in your nighttime jogging sessions. Keep in mind, the collar should not be tight and must not irritate the dog. Try to buy high-quality ones as this is essential and should last for a long time.

Some other facilities of LED dog collars are, good ones that provide additional comfort to the dog, tend to be a play plaything, especially the ball-shaped ones, and moreover, these types of collars make the dog more confident and stable.

  • Follow a Proper Exercising Guide

Are you sure that you are training your dog properly? You should follow a proper exercising guide to keep her healthy and joyful. Dogs need exercise for both their health and mind. So, to make her strong and confident, you should follow a proper exercising guide.

  • Take Her to the Vet

Another way to reduce the fear of darkness and outing at night is to attend sessions in veterinary centers from time to time. This is helpful for both beginner pet owners and intermediate-grade owners.

You can additionally use an LED light solution and try to make the dog cope with nighttime naturally. Veterinary doctors and pet experts know better about this condition. They can provide you proper guidelines according to your condition and needs.

So, try to visit the vets at least once a month. Generally, the main tip is going outside for a short amount of time in the first phases. This will require time but gradually you should extend the outing sessions.

These outings will make the dog habituated and here the LED collar solution helps a lot. Vets will give you customized ideas and training guidelines for you and your pet dog. A popular training regime is going outside at the same time in the same area or road for a couple of months. This way the dog will be able to overcome the fear. And make sure to interact and cuddle with them as much as you can.


Final Words

For most of us, the best part of having a dog as a pet is to go out for a walk with her. But the dog is afraid to go out at night, it must be a matter of being upset. Unless your dog is very old or injured, it is fixable. You have to carefully find out if she is having poor eyesight or being stressed.

The rest can be handled by the vet as well. So, make sure to take your dog to the vet regularly. Hopefully, you got your answer. So, it’s time to depart. Thank you again for your time.

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