Hmm... yes, puppies really hate to be left alone, and when they are young "alone" can mean just feet away from you.
Yes, he will outgrow this extreme needy version, but meanwhile here are some tips...
- Do everything you can to help him feel calm and secure. The MOST important thing you can do is to project a CALM energy from you. So the more worked up he gets, the more you need to breath and be the embodiment of calm safety around him. Move slowly, talk in a slow and reassuring voice. Truly this makes a difference.
- Yes, it is good to ignore the whining in the sense of not letting it upset you, and not making him more anxious by saying "oh you poor boy!..." and rushing to him (but I don't get the feeling you are doing that) But when he is this upset, it really is OK to take action. You can quietly go sit by his pen and read a book. Just let him know you are there, but you don't need to directly engage him.
- Make sure you get him nice and tired before bedtime. That means a little play time (outside if you can). Make sure he has eaten, had a drink, and gone potty. You don't want to over-do such a young fella, so 10 or 15 minutes of active play is probably enough.
- If he wakes in the night and won't settle, he needs to go out to potty, so take him out, reward him with a nice treat when he pees, and put him back in his crate with a nice stuffed kong toy. (get one ready before bed and have it ready) If he is tired, he'll likely fall asleep chewing. If he fusses, let him lick your fingers.
- Now you need to decide if you are going to let him in the bed or not. If not, then it's not fair to him to bring him to bed as he will come to feel that not being in bed is rejection and separation. If you want him to sleep in his crate next to you, and he fusses, even after out for potty and getting a nice chewie, you are going to have to just bear the whining and NOT react. You can not tell him "hush", nor tell him "It's OK." You cannot talk to him at all, as anything you say will be reinforcing the behavior. You may, however let him lick your fingers. That is a good thing for him to know you are there. The first night you hold the line he may cry quite a while, but the second night it will be less and in a few nights he won't cry much at all.
Overall your instinct that this is a stressful time for him, newly separated from his sibs and getting used to a new home, is right on target. Having empathy for him is good! The recipe to help him is to be a CALM, GENTLE and RELIABLE puppy parent.
-Don't scold him about anything. He's too young for scolding. If he gets into something "naughty" simply redirect him to something he is allowed to do.
- Never use any physical punishment. That only builds fear and distrust. - - Learn to train him the positive way. (see link below)
- Fill his days with a routine he can count on of meals, outside potty times, naps and play time. Routine really helps a pup because he learns to know what comes next and that will make him feel secure.
-There is no such thing as too much love for a pup too, so lots of cuddling and stroking is very good for his little brain chemicals to help him feel settled.
Have you any good puppy books yet?
Here is a good one:
You can read it to distract yourself while puppy settles in his crate.
Here's the training channel. Your pup is not too young for short lessons, just a couple of minutes at a time and stop while he still wants more! YouTube - kikopup's Channel