Puppy Zoomies at Night (What to do?)

By Britt Kascjak

When you first brought home that sweet puppy, you may have had dreams of cuddles and playtime.

But then the sun went down and suddenly your puppy is running around the house chaotically, with no end in sight.

Rest assured, your puppy is 110% normal! As crazy as this may seem, it’s just a case of the puppy zoomies.

What Are Puppy Zoomies?

The puppy zoomies are a sudden burst of intense energy for a short period of time. The more technical name for this occurrence is Frenetic Random Activity Period.

At this moment, your puppy is releasing any excess energy that he has pent up.

It can sometimes be triggered by excitement, following a game of fetch or the moment you return home from work.

Other times, it will seemingly come out of the blue. One minute your dog is calm and relaxed, and the next he’s running full tilt.

Either way, it’s normal in both puppies and adult dogs, and not something you need to worry about.

Is it Normal for Puppies to Get Zoomies at Night?

The main reason that puppy zoomies usually happen at night is due to our schedule.

During the day, they are often limited on opportunities to exercise.

This could be from being crated while you are at work or simply a lower energy day around the house. 

When the evening comes, he is left with all this pent-up energy and needs to release it somehow. When the opportunity presents itself, off they go!

How Do You Calm Down a Hyper Puppy?

Exercise More Through the Day

If your puppy is regularly getting the zoomies at night, this is a good sign that he’s not getting enough exercise.

Try working an extra walk into your schedule. If your schedule is packed, line up a dog walker to come to take your pup out. You may also consider using doggy daycare as an opportunity for your puppy to run and play with other dogs.

The goal is to wear out that energy before it gets pent up.

Offer Mental Stimulation

You may be surprised to learn that mental exercise can actually wear your dog out faster than physical exercise. This means you can use mental games to prevent the zoomies.

Rather than feeding your dog in a standard dog dish, try offering meals in a food puzzle.

You can also work some extra training sessions into your day. Obedience training not only teaches your dog how to behave but also makes him think.

Offer a Safe Place to Zoom

If the zoomies are an occasional event, there is nothing wrong with letting your dog run it out.

But, you want to make sure that he is doing so in a safe place. This means paying attention to any hazards or dangers that may be in the area.

Block off stairs to keep your dog on a single level of the home and move anything that he could run into and hurt himself.

Pay careful attention to any other pets in your home. A puppy that is normally okay with cats, for example, may chase when he’s in the zoomies mindset.

If you have a fenced-in yard, consider bringing your puppy immediately outside when you get home from work. That way he can run and ‘zoom’ to his heart’s content.

Photo of author
Britt Kascjak
Britt Kascjak has been active in the animal rescue community for over 15 years, volunteering, fostering, and advocating for organizations across Canada and the US. Her ‘pack’ includes her husband John, their 3 dogs – Daviana, Indiana, and Lucifer – and their 2 cats – Pippen and Jinx.