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So, after an extended work disability leave, I am going back next month. I can't wait! One who - if he knew it was coming - would hate the idea, is my 6 month old puppy.

Boris has so far been confined to his crate when I leave the house, or if I have to be away for over 3-4 hours, I drop him off at my parents'. Now, when I start work, I will be away from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. on average. I really don't want to leave my dog in his crate for that long, poor thing. What do you do when you have to leave your dog alone all day? Do you leave him in his crate or is he loose? Any tricks?

Today I tried to leave him out of his crate when I had to go out, to see how he would do. I confined him to the main area of the house (kitchen, dining room and living room, which are open plan.) He was alone for 2 hours this morning and 4 hours this evening and he did perfect. No messes, nothing was chewed that shouldn't have been, so far so good.

Does anyone have tricks to help him cope? I've been thinking of leaving his crate open and accessible, since he sleeps in it (he pretty much goes in it by himself when tired.) I left all the toys out of course, as well as water and food. I'm thinking leaving food all the time might not be a very good idea if I don't want him to poop in the house. Maybe I should teach him to eat when fed (as in the bowl on the floor for only a short amount of time. If you haven't eaten then, too bad...) I couldn't leave him without water though... What are your takes on that?
 

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I never saw this. If he did ok 2 hours alone that's great! Providing him with toys is a good idea, just make sure they aren't going to be destroyed.

You want to go slow, increase the time left alone slowly I mean.

I would not leave food out but water is ok just do a small amt. Do you have someone who can let him out in the afternoon? My concern is him being young I wonder if he can hold it for 8 hours.
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Hi! Thanks for answering!

I've been working on this, and the longest he's been alone was five hours. That may have been a bit long too soon as he pooped in the living room and chewed the doorstep. I put cayenne pepper mixed with water on it now so he won't be tempted.

My main concern is that, except for when he needed to poop, I think he doesn't leave the carpet that's in front of the door for that whole time. His food and water remain untouched, his toys - which I leave lying around the house - haven't moved ... Poor little thing doesn't move while waiting for me!
 

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hey how about maybe getting another dog when i had my new puppy she had 2 otehr dogs for company,leave the radio on,hide toys and bits of food round his crate or mayvbe could you leave him in a dog proof room?
 

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I have two dogs, one who just sleeps everytime he's left on his own for five minutes or more so we'll forget him for this discussion! My other dogs an eight month old boxer and he really doesn't like being left, the first time he was left for fifteen minutes he completely destroyed an armchair, cushions stuffing and all! i can leave him for about 4 hours maximum now providing i take him on a decent walk first, i leave him a couple of kongs with treats in but not enough so that he'll need to go to the toilet before im home, and i keep him and my other dog in seperate rooms, I tend to leave my other dog in my room as he Just sleeps on the floor at the foot of my bed and my boxer in the living room with the tv on quietly. The reason i seperate them is because i left my webcam running one day to see what they got upto while i was away and basically my boxer would wait for my other (larger) dog to go to sleep then climb up onto the sofa and pounce down on him! He did this repeatedly for two hours! If you left your dog for two hours and there was no mess and nothing chewed chances are you've got a dog similar to my older one in which case so long as you take it slowly you shouldnt have too many problems leaving him on his own
 

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I would crate train. I have a 4 month old puppy and he stays in his crate at night for seven hours with no accidents. Crate training is the safest way to go I think.
 

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A crate/kennel is the safest place a dog can be for many hours. Leaving a dog unsupervised on a big area of the house can stress him out a bit and will start getting involved with things around the house besides his toys. Don't say "poor thing" and feel sorry for leaving him in his crate. Now that he is still young he needs to learn all the rules, boundaries and limitations of your household. My Zeva from day 1 till today (she is now 11 months old) is always confined in a big kennel for the hours that I'm away on the job and she does just fine, she has room to move around a bit, room to stretch if needed and to lay down and sleep (which is most of what she does after her kong is empty). Don't think of it as a bad thing, he gets to relax and wait for you to come home to play with.
 

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We started small. We gave him full access to our kitchen while being locked into it. It has his kennel which he always slept in but the door was open. After about 6 months of making sure he was 100% potty trained, we moved to giving him access to just the first floor. We gated the stairs and made sure it was doggy proof. He learned very fast that his favorite spot was the couch. We always left out the favorite toys and a full bowl of water. We liked to leave on some soft music and even an essential calming diffuser that he could NOT reach at all- hes a pug and it was up on the kitchen counter lol. Slowly but surely. Now he has full rage of the house. On Fridays though we DID hire someone to come let him out and give him some TLC. He goes to doggy daycare 2 days a week which helps him remain calm and sleepy 2 days a week. Then on Fridays, he gets some love with a dog let-out person.
 
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