My Bulldog Keeps Wanting To Go Outside At Night, What’s Wrong?

If your dog keeps wanting to go outside at night, something is surely wrong. You have to know what’s pushing your Bulldog to go out, especially if you already took it on its last potty break before bedtime. The reasons for this can range from behavioral to serious health problems, which require immediate attention.

In this post, I will discuss the possible reasons why your dog is exhibiting this behavior. I also included some tips that will help you fix the problem.

My dog keeps wanting to go outside at night, what’s wrong?

Dogs can show unusual behavior from time to time. But if yours tend to like going outside in the wee hours, the following might be the reasons why:

🐶Your Bulldog is peeing more than usual.

dog keeps wanting to go outside at night

First, ask yourself, have you taken your Bulldog to a potty break before going to sleep? If not, then it’s a very valid reason for your doggo to go bonkers in the middle of the night. While adult Bulldogs can hold their bladders for long, you shouldn’t push it past 7 to 8 hours.

However, if you didn’t miss any potty breaks, your Bulldog may have a health problem that increases its urination or defecation.

Older dogs tend to experience this as their bladder muscles get weaker and can no longer hold urine for long.

However, health problems like diabetes can also make your dog urinate frequently. This is accompanied by an increase in thirst as the dog’s body tries to eliminate glucose through the kidney.

It’s best to bring your dog to the vet for proper examination. At the clinic, your Bulldog will be examined and tested for potential health issues.

🐶Your Bulldog is hearing menacing sounds.

If Bulldog is in the pink of health, the possible reason for this behavior is outdoor sounds. Canines have a heightened sense of hearing, so it’s normal for your pooch to hear sounds that you can’t easily perceive.

At night, the surroundings are quiet, which makes subtle noises more audible. It can be the rustling of the leaves due to wind or the sounds squirrels make as they run around. For a curious and poorly desensitized Bulldog, all of these may sound threatening.

As a result, your Bulldog will try to go outdoors. Some will bang on doors, bark endlessly, or even chew up the door itself. This is because the dog’s territorial instincts are kicking in and it feels compelled to patrol the area.

This behavior can be corrected with proper training. However, if your raised your Bulldog to be a guard dog, this reaction could be beneficial for your household.

But if the behavior is starting to cause a nuisance, you have to assess the environment. It’s crucial to train your dog not to react to the slightest sounds.

🐶Your Bulldog wants to play.

dog keeps wanting to go outside at night

Failure to exercise your dog during the day will lead the pooch to expel the energy at night. Your dog will want to keep going outside late at night to run around. It’s also possible that there’s an animal it wants to chase.

While Bulldogs don’t have an intense prey drive, boredom can drive them crazy. The last thing you want is a Bulldog that runs around the house and bangs at the door as you sleep.

It’s best to reserve playtime during the day to prevent ruining your dog’s schedule. Never initiate playtime in the middle of the night just because you’re bored. When you do so repeatedly, your pet will pick up the habit and do it every night.

🐶Your Bulldog is hungry.

Bulldogs are highly food-driven dogs. If they feel extremely hungry at night, they will sniff around looking for something to eat. Also, the doggo will whine and even run to you in bed for some snacks.

However, if your dog can smell something delicious outdoors, it will likely try to go out even in the middle of the night. It could be the leftovers you dumped at the trash can or your mulch.

Aside from that, diet problems will make a dog want to eat grass. According to experts, grazing is due to the lack of enough fiber on a canine’s diet. It’s also triggered by stomach upset as the pooch tries to appease its gurgling tummy.

🐶Your Bulldog is aging.

Aging Bulldogs get confused easily. They will start slipping out of their usual habits, including trying to go outside at night even if it’s not going to pee.

Also, the pains and aches your senior dog feels will wake it up at night frequently. And when the old pooch gets awakened, it’s more likely to wander off and become eager to go out.

There’s nothing you can do when it comes to cognitive decline in canines. Still, you can make your aging Bulldog more comfortable so that it won’t wake up too often at night.

🐶Your Bulldog doesn’t want to sleep indoors.

Despite its warm and safe bed, some dogs just want to sleep outside. It’s possible that its current sleeping quarters don’t feel comfortable or that it feels scared inside the house.

And if the Bulldog can’t access other rooms, it will just seek the outdoors. This can happen, especially if your Bulldog can get in and out of the house freely during the day.

🐶Your Bulldog feels too hot inside.

Lastly, it might be too hot indoors, so your Bulldog wants to get some fresh air in the middle of the night. This is more prominent during the summer season, especially since dogs don’t have pores where they can sweat. And if you cut back on air conditioner use, your Bulldog may suffer.

Take note that Bulldogs have poor heat tolerance. They can easily overheat and suffer from life-threatening conditions if exposed to high temperatures. So if you know that it’s hot outside, you should keep the dog’s sleeping area cool and ventilated.

How to stop your Bulldog from wanting to go outside at night

If your Bulldog is always keen to go outside late at night, the following tips will help put a stop to the behavior:

✔️Crate training is the answer

Crate training is a versatile solution to many canine behavioral problems at night. It’s also a key component of potty training as it forces your dog to hold its bladder for a few hours.

Aside from that, crate training your dog will give it a sense of security. This will prevent late-night sleep disruptions that may lead to the eagerness to go outdoors.

Remember to use a crate that’s spacious enough for your Bulldog. Your pooch should be able to stand, lie down, sit, and turn around without feeling too cramped.

Most of all, you should be patient with crate training. It’s a long process, especially with Bulldogs known for stubborn behavior.

✔️Make indoors interesting

Your dog won’t seek the outdoors if it’s more interesting indoors. Playing with your dog inside your home is a good way to make the indoor experience positive. Soon enough, your pooch will associate staying indoors with fun and playtime.

As part of keeping your Bulldog indoors, you should also remove any attractants outdoors. Consider covering your chain-link fence, so your dog won’t see through it. You should also seal trash cans that may attract your curious dog’s nose.

It’s also important to assess potential stressors indoors. Other pets and family members might be making your dog feel unsafe, which might be the reason why it likes to go outdoors.

✔️Remove any nighttime disturbances

If you want your Bulldog to stop wanting to go outside at night, you have to remove disturbances. Hide all your dog’s toys away and empty the food/water bowl. If your pooch spends time staring at the window at night, consider installing blinds or curtains that will block the value.

Keeping nighttime as calm as possible will help your Bulldog tone down as well. Down the line, you’ll also enjoy better sleep.

✔️Don’t miss any potty trips

It’s a mortal sin among pet owners to forget scheduled potty trips. This is the main reason why dogs will beg to be let out at night. If you fail to do so, you should expect to wake up on puddles of pee all over the house.

Whatever dog breed you own, it’s integral to have a potty break schedule. Usually, it’s one in the morning, two for the rest of the day, then another one before bedtime. Depending on your Bulldog’s health, it may require more trips.

You’ll never want to force your dog to hold its bladder for too long. Aside from the mess it will leave on your house, missing potty breaks will also take its toll on your dog’s health.

✔️Drain your Bulldog’s excess energy

If your Bulldog seems to be upbeat at night, you may need to change its daytime routines. Make sure that your dog gets ample exercise to drain its energy.

Short playtime sessions of around 10 minutes done throughout the day will help a lot. This will also prevent your dog from being active at night.

Just remember that Bulldogs don’t need a lot of physical exercise. Aside from short walks, you should give more brain games to help tire out your pet.

✔️Stick to a routine

Remember that canines are creatures of habit. They thrive in a predictable household with fixed schedules, especially when it comes to their own activities.

It’s crucial to be consistent when it comes to your dog’s routines to prevent them from wanting to go out at night. Like with kids, being lenient with bedtime schedules will soon induce bad habits.

✔️Shut the bedroom door

Lastly, consider shutting your bedroom door at night, so your dog won’t bug you to go out. However, this is given that your pooch has been taken out for its last potty break of the day. This will also save you from waking up to your dog’s barking.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: Why is my dog waking me up at 3 am?

A: Don’t worry, there’s nothing creepy about your dog waking you up at 3 am. The pooch probably just wants food or to be let out for a potty break. However, some Bulldogs don’t have boundaries, and they will try to invade their owner’s bed in the middle of the night.

Q: Can dogs go all night without peeing?

A: Yes, dogs can go all night without peeing. That’s around 8 to 10 hours of holding it in. If your pet is healthy and is an adult dog, it can hold its urine for this period without problems. However, you should never push this period further as it can affect your dog’s kidneys and overall health.

Q: Can a dog be outside all day?

A: There are so-called outdoor dogs that can be left outside for most of the day. However, Bulldogs aren’t one of them. This breed is sensitive to extreme temperatures, so they need to be in a controlled environment.

Q: How do you know when a dog needs to go outside?

A: Aside from scheduled potty trips, you’ll know if your dog wants to go outside if it’s bringing the leash to you. Some dogs will fetch their owners’ footwear as a way of saying, “let us go out!”. Other canines would even bang their paws on the door out of desperation.

Q: Can I leave my dog outside for an hour?

A: It’s not advisable to leave your Bulldog outdoors without supervision. This is crucial, especially if you’re yet to train the pooch and you don’t have a proper fence yet. Dogs are pretty much like kids who can be in trouble within minutes of not having an adult around.

Final words

My dog keeps wanting to go outside at night, what could be wrong? Believe it or not, but this is a pretty common problem that pet owners face. But with proper training and a few hacks, you can wean your dog off this habit. Just be patient and practice consistency.

Do you have other tips to add here? Let us know below!


  • Brad

    Hi I'm Brad, the founder of Having been a vet of 6 years I work alongside our team to provide valuable insight into your dog's health. I have a frenchie myself named Senzu who is my pride and joy!