Our lab Meeka will be 1 years old on June 18th. This morning at 4am we thought she was just playing in her crate until my husband went down at 6am to feed her to find that she was scratching at our walls. This is the 2nd instance this week with her, the first being she was going at the carpet also while in her crate?
No crate experience here, but I would guess that maybe she is bored, awake at 4 with nothing to do? Try leaving toys in the crate with her to keep her busy. Another possibility, maybe she has to go outside? Try changing her potty time to a later hour by feeding her last meal later. Another possibility, maybe she is lonely. Labs really want to be in the company of their people. Try putting her crate in your bedroom.