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Hello!

I am new here and would appreciate any advice or thoughts from people who have had experience with puppies in the past. This is my first puppy and he is a 3.5 month old cocker spaniel. We are crate training him and he has also started staying home by himself while we are at work.

A few things to note: we live in an NYC apartment so neighbors can hear EVERYTHING. It's not quite as easy for training purposes as having a house and a yard.

My question is - we take him out in the morning at 7am, play, go for a 30 minute walk, play again and go the bathroom before leaving the apartment at 9am. A dog walker comes at 12:30/1 and brings him out to play, go the bathroom, eat. He is then in the crate again from 1:30/2 to 5:30. At night, he goes for another 30 minute walk and we play with him in the apartment (he goes in his crate when we are cooking and cannot watch him). Does this schedule sound fine?! Is he spending too much time in his crate?

He SCREAMS when we leave in the morning but I'm not sure if there is something seriously wrong or if he is getting used to his schedule. I was bringing him to the office for over a month (my office allows dog) but it was making training a nightmare because his schedule was always way-off, it was stressful going on the subway with him everyday, and at some point I have to concentrate on work! His potty training is much better at home.

I guess I'm just looking for some validation that we are not terrible puppy parents and just need to give it time? One final note, he is perfect at night and sleeps through the night, he doesn't make a sound or cry even if he is wide awake when we put him in there.

Thanks!
 

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I don't know if I have any useful information for you but I'm also in a similar situation (full time job, 4 month old puppy). My schedule is very similar to yours, but I come home during my lunch hour and my neighbor will come a few times a a week at 10am and 2pm to play with my puppy.

It will get better over time. How long have you had your puppy for?
When Mia was a bit younger she would scream any time she couldn't see me when I left her in the kitchen (I have her there with her crate, blocked by baby gates) but now that she is used to a daily routine/schedule, she might whine for a few seconds but then she'll just go into her crate and sleep or play with her toys.

It's good that you have a dog walker that comes in the middle of the day and its great that he is comfortable with his crate! I don't see anything wrong with putting him in his crate when you cannot watch him cuz if he's not housetrained yet he will have accidents around the apartment or get into something you don't want him getting to or chewing/eating.
 
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