As much as we love our puppies and dogs, it can be baffling and sometimes frustrating when they suddenly have uncontrollable bursts of energy. Frenetic Random Activity Periods (FRAPs), otherwise known as dog or puppy zoomies, can include running in circles, barking, jumping, and even destructiveness. We'll explore the reasons why puppies and dogs get the zoomies and provide some tips to help you manage your pup's behavior.
Reasons Why Puppies and Dogs Get the Zoomies
They are Excited
You may notice that your puppy or dog will get the zoomies when they first see you after being separated from you for a period of time. The expression "beside themselves with excitement" sums up this situation perfectly.
They Have Been Inactive or Sleeping
Your pup is more likely to get the zoomies first thing in the morning or late in the evening. This is because puppies and dogs are likely to have pent-up energy at the end of the day if they have not had enough exercise or, in the morning, after sleeping all night. If a puppy or dog does not get enough exercise during the day, they may become hyper at night, trying to burn off their excess energy. Puppies and dogs who do not get enough exercise may also develop behavioral problems, including anxiety and aggression.
They've Just Had a Bath
Dogs will often get the zoomies after bath time. This may be because they are cold, relieved to be done, or they are just feeling proud and excited to receive praise from their pet parent after their bath.
They're Feeling Stressed
Some zoomies are triggered by stressful situations like being introduced to other dogs or being separated from their pet parents. Your pup may also be experiencing separation anxiety and are reacting with hyperactive behaviors. Separation anxiety can be particularly strong at night when the house is quiet.
Puppies and dogs are naturally curious and need lots of mental and physical stimulation to keep them engaged and happy. If your pup does not get enough attention or stimulation, they may become bored and restless, which can lead to dog and puppy zoomies and biting.
They Are Teething or Physically Uncomfortable
Some puppies and dogs get the zoomies when they are feeling physically uncomfortable, either to alert their pet parents or to try to run away from the feeling. Puppies go through a teething stage, which can cause discomfort and pain. This can make them irritable, restless, and hyperactive, particularly at night when they may be unable to sleep due to the discomfort.
How to Calm Down Puppy and Dog Zoomies
Provide Enough Exercise During the Day
One of the best ways to prevent your puppy or dog from having frequent episodes of zoomies is to provide them with plenty of exercise and activity during the day. This will help them burn off their energy and to stay healthy. You can take your pup for walks, play fetch, or provide mentally challenging games and puzzles when you can't get outside. Chewing a bone, toy, or dental chew are also healthy ways for puppies and dogs to burn off some steam.
Establish a Bedtime Routine
Establishing a regular bedtime routine can help your puppy know when it's time to sleep and when it's time to be active. Try to create a calm and peaceful environment for your puppy at night, with dim lighting, comfortable bedding, or a crate. This will help your puppy feel relaxed and ready for sleep.
Train Your Puppy or Dog
Training your puppy is an essential part of pet parenting and can help them develop good behavior and self-control. You can use positive reinforcement training to reward good behavior and discourage bad behavior. You can also teach your pup to follow basic commands, such as "sit," "stay," and "come," which will help you manage their behavior more effectively. While occasional zoomies are normal, if your furry friend displays this behavior frequently or is getting destructive or aggressive, you may want to consult your veterinarian or an animal behaviorist for additional guidance.
Address Separation Anxiety
If your puppy or dog is experiencing separation anxiety, it's important to address the issue as soon as possible. You can start by gradually acclimating your pup to being alone by leaving them alone for short periods of time and gradually increasing the time. Crate training can also be helpful for puppies and dogs when separated from their pet parents, as it can become a safe and comforting place for them and also minimizes opportunities for destructive behavior. For tips on crate training, your veterinarian is a great resource.
Frequently Asked Questions
Why does my puppy go crazy at night?
Your puppy is likely experiencing Frenetic Random Activity Periods (FRAPs) or puppy zoomies at night. This is because your puppy is burning off the last of their energy before preparing for sleep, may be anxious about being separated from you, or they may be teething. Your veterinarian can help you find out the cause of your puppy's zoomies, but it is usually completely normal.
Why is my puppy hyper and biting at night?
Again, this behavior is likely to be puppy zoomies and a way to use up excess energy. Puppies get excited and playful and, due to teething, have a tendency to chew things and bite other pets and their pet parents. Redirecting this energy into a desired behavior is the best approach by offering chew toys and some additional playtime before bedtime.
What age do puppy zoomies stop?
Zoomies don't usually stop when puppies reach adulthood, although they are more infrequent in older dogs. As long as your puppy's or dog's zoomies aren't causing any issues, this behavior is just part of your dog's playful personality and is completely normal.
Puppy and dog zoomies are usually completely normal and serve a purpose for your furry friend. There is no reason for concern unless your pup is showing other signs of pain or distress. Constant zoomies may be a sign of a larger behavioral or health problem, so it's a good idea to keep tabs on how often your dog is zooming and for what reasons to share with your veterinarian. Do you have a cat in the household? They get zoomies too!