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Hi everyone, I'm new to the forum and was wondering if you could give us some advice on what is arguably our most pressing concern regarding our new puppy.

I come from a family of four. My parents work for most of the day and my Sister is still at school. I'm at University, and won't even be home for months on end.

A friend of ours has just had a litter of Labradoodles and we're getting one on the 30th September. She'll be eight weeks old, but unfortunately everyone will be back to their normal daily routines by this point in time.

This means that she will be left for four to six hours a day by herself. We're very concerned about the puppies well being and are looking for some advice.

Our current plan is to buy the puppy a crate, make sure that on a morning we get up early to play, take outside and for the toilet before leaving her inside the crate with a loud clock, a shirt with a scent, food and water and a puppy training mat inside with her.

On days where she will be alone for around six hours, we will make sure a family member comes by to look after her for an hour. However, we can't ensure this will happen.

Upon return, all members of the family will spend the evening training, playing and making sure the puppy is OK.

We understand that a lot of people condemn this, but we are looking for some proper advice. We all love animals, and it's safe to say that this little puppy will be spoilt rotten in terms of care, but we are very worried about what will become a major part of it's daily life 8-9 months a year.

All advice is appreciated!
 

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6 hours is too long to leave an 8 week old puppy, no matter how you do it. If you leave her in a crate, she will be forced to potty in her crate and will get used to being messy, complicating the house training issue.

ROUTINE is very important to a puppy. So it won't work to sometimes have someone check in midday, and sometimes not have someone show up. That will be extremely distressing for the puppy on those days.

The good news is that this very young stage does not last for very long, but meanwhile, your family really needs to figure out how to make sure the puppy is attended to at least every 3 or 4 hours during while folks are at work or school. Get a neighbor, come home for lunch... you can solve this!
 

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