My Puppy Goes Crazy Sometimes! What Do I Do?

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My Puppy Goes Crazy Sometimes. What Do I Do? Puppy Zoomies!
My Puppy Goes Crazy Sometimes. What Do I Do? Puppy Zoomies!

Guess what? My puppy goes crazy sometimes too. Does this sound familiar:

Puppy springs across the room, runs into the wall, jumps up on you, bites your hand, pulls on and tears your pant leg, dives under the couch, sprints back and runs into the screen door…repeat for 30 minutes.

Yep! Those are our pup’s exact actions this morning!

QUICK ACCESS: If you’re having puppy training problems then you should join our Puppy Training Tips email list and get instant access to our New Puppy Owner Checklist PDF. To get started CLICK HERE.

Not to worry folks, you’re not alone.

Every puppy we’ve raised has had these momentary lapses of craziness before reverting back to that calm, sleepy puppy lying on the doggy bed.

A sleeping puppy is a good puppy.  🙂

QUICK RECOMMENDATION: Speaking of dog beds one of our favorites is this Portable Dog Bed by Carlson. It’s raised off the floor and great for travel and outdoors especially if you like taking your dog camping.

My Puppy Goes Crazy Sometimes!?

We recently got an email from a reader asking us if we thought her puppy might be the spawn of Satan…

…I wanted to ask you if there could be a serious issue with my puppy.

I think she is the spawn of Satan or at the very least possessed. When she is being corrected or is extremely tired she turns into a vicious out for blood puppy.

She is 9 weeks old…she will not submit for over half an hour till I give up.

Then she passes out (not without one last lunge at the face). She makes god awful noises also during this time…is this normal?

I’ve been praying to God more the last few weeks than I have in my whole life!!!! –J.C

Spawn of Satan…Vicious puppy…Out for blood…

Our assessment? She could be:

  1. Vampire – after all puppies do have little dagger like teeth.
  2. Zombie – the zombies that sprint like in Zombieland. Not the slow Walking Dead zombies.
  3. Spawn of Satan – according to the Omen that would make her puppy Damien. UPDATE: Do you watch American Horror Story: Michael Langdon Puppy.
  4. Puppy – with a case of the zoomies.

Yep, she’s just a puppy, not the Spawn of Satan.

Since I started raising puppies for Guide Dogs of America way back in 2006 I’ve only had one puppy that may have been the spawn of satan…not naming names, but it was quite the Journey…

The problem is what do you do when your puppy goes crazy?

We have a few answers that might help save your favorite pair of jeans as well as help you avoid a few puncture wounds to the hands, legs, and feet.

What Do I Do When My Puppy Goes Crazy?

Crazy Puppy...It's called ZOOMIES!
Crazy Puppy…It’s called ZOOMIES!

So what do you do when your puppy goes crazy?

  1. Give Your Puppy His Favorite Chew Toy – A favorite chew toy can get a puppy’s attention off of craziness long enough to calm him down. Plus we’ve heard the chewing motion helps to relax a puppy. We usually leash our pup’s and let them sit by our legs with a favorite toy. Some of our favorite chews for puppies are
    • Bully Sticks – One of or favorites and it takes a puppy a while to gnaw on these things. Packaging says odorless, but these things do have an odor just not as bad as some of the other bully sticks I’ve tried
    • Hide-Squirrel Toy – One of our favorite plush toys. It entertains puppies a little longer because they are busy removing squirrels from the stump.
    • Deer Antlers – we only use these with our pups and not the older dogs because we’ve heard many stories of cracked teeth.
    • Nylabone Dura Chew Toy – Adelle’s favorite toy! Be careful if your pup drops this on your foot it’ll leave a mark.
    • Classic KONG Toy – Some dogs love them (Dublin). Some dogs can care less (Linus). We love it’s simplicity and durability plus you can fill it up with peanut butter and freeze it to keep your puppy busy for a while.
  2. Cradle Your Puppy – We had the luxury of raising our Golden Retriever, Bear and his siblings since birth and started cradling these little guys since they were one week old. One thing we do when Bear gets the extreme puppy zoomies is cradle him between our legs for a good 5 minutes. This calms him down and usually when we release him from the cradle he wonders over to his doggy bed for a little nap.
  3. Channel Your Puppy’s Energy In A Positive Way – Instead of letting your puppy go nuts running around the house uncontrollably try engaging in a game on your terms by teaching you puppy to fetch. Our little Bear is a Golden Retriever so fetching his toys comes naturally and he enjoys playing the game.  Even if your puppy already knows the game of fetch we’d suggest using a leash or long line to make sure your puppy always comes back to you. This could also be a good time to work on your puppy’s recall and teaching him his name. Getting your puppy’s mind on track can often time break him of the crazies.
  4. Manage Your Puppy With A Tie Down – Tie downs are a great tool to manage your puppy. When our pups are showing a little bit of their satanic side we will sometimes put them on tie down (always supervised) with a toy. This is very similar to #1, but instead of keeping our puppy near us we have them on tie down away from us. QUICK RECOMMENDATION: Our tie down is essentially a wire cable similar to this one: Tie Out Cable except ours is only 4 feet long. You can use a leash instead of a cable which we have, but we have had puppies gnaw right through the leash if your not paying close attention.
  5. Let Your Puppy Take A Break In His Crate – As J.C. mentioned her puppy goes crazy sometimes when he is “extremely tired.”  If this is the case we will sometimes use our crate to calm down our puppy, but be careful because you don’t want your puppy to have a negative association with his crate. When our puppy is extremely tired and doing the “crazy thing” he will go right to sleep in less than 60 seconds after being put in the crate. Our trick is we will usually lure him to and into the crate with his favorite treat then once inside the crate we’ll give him a couple treats and in under a minute our puppy is snoring away.
  6. Stimulate Your Pup’s Mind With Interactive Puzzle Toys – There are several dog toys that will stimulate your pup’s mind rather than their zoomie bodies. Here are a few we’ve tried and liked:
    • KONG Wobbler – Stetson loved the KONG Wobbler when he finally figured out how to get the treats out of it. Check out our video of Stetson playing with his Wobbler.
    • Aikiou Dog Bowl – We used our Aikiou Dog Bowl to try and slow down Stetson’s eating. It also makes for a great interactive brain toy.
    • Dog Brick Puzzle Toy – I’ve been working with dogs at a boarding facility which has given me access to tons of puzzle toys. This one is one of our favorites for working our dog’s brain.

And that folks is how we solve the puppy crazies.

Every puppy is different so one of these methods will undoubtedly work better than others.

So, if you try cradling your puppy and it doesn’t work to well to calm your puppy maybe a good chew toy or a supervised tie down will work best for your little guy.

QUICK RECOMMENDATION: As we previously mentioned we sometimes use the crate to help calm our crazy puppy. We love and recommend the MidWest Life Stages Double Door Crate w/ Divider. We still use the first MidWest crate we bought for Linus over 13 years ago. Can you say durable!

Now back at you. If you’ve ever raised a puppy what do you do when your puppy goes crazy?

Tell us about your experiences in the comment section below.

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My puppy goes crazy sometimes! What do I do? We liked to call it the puppy zoomies. One minute your puppy is normal the next he’s bouncing off the walls, not listening and running like a mad puppy. Yep, it’s a case of the zoomies. Here are some things you can do that will help you puppy came down. #puppyzoomies #crazypuppy #puppyrunningaway #puppygoescrazy #puppyinattackmode #puppytraining #puppybiting
When My Puppy Goes Crazy What Do I Do?

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81 Comments

  1. We just got a Mini Golden Doodle 3 weeks ago. He is 12 weeks old now. Id like to say he is somewhat potty trained in that he will quietly go to the door and sit…. I put the leash on him and he does his thing. He does pretty good on a leash in the house… but when I take him for a walk he goes completly crazy.. he pulls and jerks, flips so hard he chokes himself and starts coughing. I can pick him up and calm him down, but when I put him down.. he’s possessed again so I end up picking him up and taking him back home. I’ve tried to distract him with his favorite treats, and toy…. nothing works.. its like he’s possessed. What can I do?

  2. My puppy only goes psycho on me. The only way he will calm down is if I leave the room. I give it like 10 min thinking he will be my sweet baby, but nope he jumps on me and WILL not stop attacking me. He only wants to be by me which is cute and all but I’m about ready to have a nervous break down.

    1. Did you find something that worked? This is my life! 5 adults in the house but this dog wants to be with me all the time and goes ballistic on my half the time. He’s a pit mix and I’m really worried. He’s 12 weeks old.

  3. We have a 10 1/2 week old Brittany. Overall, he is doing great- goes out to do his business, can follow “sit” very well, “ come”, well working on it! 95% of the time aok, then, he looks up at me and goes balistic😖 He jumps, barks and tries to grab and/or bite whatever he can. Ruined a couple of shirts already. I’ve tried the say”ouch” real loud and just stand there- doesn’t stop him. As others have stated, I think it is related to being over stimulated and tired. I know pups need a lot of sleep. The unfortunate thing is, that a lot of the time I don’t have a chew toy or something to distract him- hard to remember to carry something all the time! Hoping to figure it out and get him to stop as I really love him but want a good pup!

    1. Congratulations on your new puppy! That crazy puppy behavior is very common and we see it in pretty much all of our puppies when they are young. Funny you brought up not always having something in your pocket. Since I’ve pretty much had a puppy at the house almost constantly for the past 15 years I always have a toy and poop bag in my pocket. I feel lost if I don’t 🙂 Good luck with your puppy!

  4. My 6 month old puppy goes NUTS without provocation, usually at night, right before bed. Realizing it may be related to her being overly tired makes sense. The snapping, biting, and wild behavior is so puzzling. Good to know I don’t have a demon dog, just a puppy with a temporary attitude.

    1. My 12 week old puppy runs around the garden knocking things over and crashing into things he then turns his attention on me and lunges at the back of my legs if I pick him up to try and calm him he attacks my fingers arms and face.I put him in a room and ignore him for 10 mins.and when I look he’s fast asleep

  5. I’m glad I’m not the only one. I truly and afraid that our puppy of 6 months is going to get worse and hurt someone. she just “snaps” and starts biting us and barking and lounging at us.. over and over. Its quite painful by the time we get her back in her crate or restrain her. Last night my daughter and I took her for a bath at the local pet shop. She was fine in the car up there and on the way back, she first started jumping around trying to play with a water bottle… then all of a sudden she was attacking and biting me in the front seat. This was very scary…

  6. I have a 9 week old heeler.

    He has really really ferocious zoomies at around 8pm daily. He bounces off the walls, runs really fast, and is a holy terror. He bites me during this time.

    I feel sad. How can I truly keep him? How do I know he’ll get better as he ages? I give him as much exercise as he wants.

    1. I really do feel for you. I’ve been there, exactly the same, and it feels like it will never end. It will end though…hang in there! It is really common for there to be an evening ‘speedy zombie’ time. Interrupt the pattern and do something else with him just before 8pm…explore the house/garden with him, or do a bit of reward-based training. It will stop, and in its place you will have a gorgeous friend for life, which will be well worth the effort you put in now. I posted on here in complete desperation when my labradoodle pup was 8 weeks, and again when she was improving at 12-14 weeks, and now at 10 months she mostly – after a good bit of play and a short but of training – settles down in the evening with an antler/ coffeewood chew and we put our feet up! A few months of perseverance and teeth-gritting now will result in 15 or so years of being glad that you did. Good luck 😊

      1. Thank you for your words of encouragement. Puppies take patience, persistence, consistency, and like you said time. Puppies are adorable, but they are a ton of work. I have a 5 year old and a 12 year old in my house and they are great dogs, but they were once crazy little puppies.

    2. Congratulations on your new puppy! 9 weeks old is still very young. Puppy’s definitely mature over time. One thing to note is some puppies will get crazy zoomies because they are overly tired just like a child (my 2 year old daughter) who is overly tired acts crazier then normal and refuses to sleep.

  7. We got a 3month old Mini Doxie. Have had him a month!!! The little stinker still wants to go in the house. Any advice as to what steps we should be taking??? Take him to same place to go potty. Always feed at same time. But he is so good at night. Goes to bed about 8pm and wakes up about 7am. So we know he can hold his water!!! Little stinker even pees in his kennel!!! Any advice would be appreciated!!

  8. I just want to give you all some hope! I posted on here a few months ago, when things were really difficult, and things have changed for us. OK, puppy is still doing the mad vampire/speedy zombie thing, but it has reduced enormously. I can now (usually!) walk through the room and out the other side with limbs and clothing intact, and she is spending more time on calm play with us and amusing herself with chews etc.. How we did this… First, I increased her exercise to wear her out. She is 13 weeks and now has three 15-20 min walks per day, and at least 3 training sessions per day of 5-10 mins each. Secondly, I put her in her crate for a sleep every 1.5 hours, so she doesn’t get overtired, which seems to rigger the behaviour. She doesn’t always appreciate this, but it does help! Thirdly, when it does occur, I stop talking to her or interacting with her entirely, or giving her any eye contact at all, but instead pick her up really slowly and calmly (yes, it does mean risking bites!) and pop her very slowly and calmly into the kitchen (when empty), or a crate we put up as a sin bin, and continue then to completely ignore her until she has calmed herself – usually only a few minutes believe it or not. The I let her out slowly with no talking at all, and give her a toy to chew. Initially I had to repeat this pretty much all evening long for several weeks, but then I started seeing results, and now I only have to do it once or twice before she stops and returns to normal. I don’t know if this will work for anyone else, but it is working for us, and our puppy is happier too! I do think the key is to lower your own energy to almost asleep/bored levels, rather than matching the puppy’s mad vampire zombie energy. There is hope – good luck everyone!!

    1. Thank you, Rose! So glad you added this follow-up note. I just brought home an 8-week-old Australian labradoodle who is going through the same craziness, and it’s a relief to hear that things got better with your labradoodle and to get ideas on how to deal with it!

  9. Our puppy is 7 months old and does the same thing. She also gets the psycho eyes (like she’s possessed). The only thing that works is to wrangle her into her day crate and leave her to chill out. We’d like to be able to trust her to be free in the house in the evenings when we’re home, but I’m scared she’ll go into her zoomie brain and hurt the cat, herself or one of us. Any idea on when she should outgrow this?

  10. All of this sounds very relatable, except all of these are for LITTLE puppies…my puppy does this and is 9 MONTHS old…she bites, barks, lunges and runs circles around me. I feel like she is playing but I don’t have a way for her to know when it is play and when it is not. She barks in my face when I tell her no, or command her to sit. I can turn her over and grab her muzzle and say no bite and as soon as I let go she is trying to bite again. I don’t feel like it’s aggressive but I’m afraid she is learning terrible habits!!! Is this normal for a 9 month old???

    1. I have a 6 month old boxer who is a holy terror. He has been to training for 10 days and was doing great until they brought him home. When entering his old environment, he regressed rapidly to jumping on me, nipping or biting my arms and ankles, disobeying commands and running around the yard like a wild Indian with an arrow in his butt. My wife is at the end of her patience and I must find some way to bring this dog under control. We even had the trainer come for a in home session and while he transformed immediately to a calm, obedient dog, when she left it was back to business as usual although we tried to impose the same rules and commands that she did. Help!

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