Dog Forum banner

1 - 13 of 13 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
131 Posts
Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Hi everyone,

As some of your may know, I will be getting a Kelpie puppy next week. The puppy will be 8 weeks old. Anyways, I was just wondering how long I can leave the puppy alone each day? I won't be working full time (teaching near my house) until next year February so I'll have Oct - Jan free to spend time with the puppy and socialising him. However, I do tutor Yr 12 students and since their final exam is coming up next month, I need to tutor approximately 2 days per week for 3 hours each time. This means that I won't be home for 4 hours (including travelling time) on Tuesdays and Saturdays throughout October. My mum will be able to take him to the toilet during the time I'm away but I highly doubt she will be able to spend 4 hours with him. Is it alright if I leave him with a Kong or something safe to play with while I'm gone?

The other concern I have is that I'll be doing full time work next year. I did not expect this when I bought the puppy from the breeder but I just received a job offer from a nearby school last week so I've decided to accept the ongoing position as ONGOING teaching jobs are quite competitive right now in Australia unless I go to rural areas. I don't think it makes sense to turn down a job offer for next year because I'm getting a puppy now. I actually thought about turning down the job offer initially but everyone around me was saying how stupid I would be to reject this rare opportunity due to the fact that I have a dog.

I would consider this opportunity to be very rare. I know first year teaching is tough so I'll try my best to take care of the puppy and take him to professional training sessions among all the marking, lesson planning etc

I'm staying home so the puppy will be with my family too. My mum will be home for most of the days and my siblings will come home in the afternoon from school so I guess they can spend a bit of time with the Kelpie when I'm at work. However, I can't guarantee people will be home every day. So here's my daily schedule:

6am - 7:30am: Exercise and play with dog. Go out for a long walk / free run and play fetch.
8am: Feed dog and leave for work.
Noon: Mum takes dog out on a walk.
4:30pm - 5:30pm: Arrive home and take the dog out for another walk / free run and play session
5:30pm - 6:30pm: Training and doing some mental stimulation work with the dog e.g. puzzles, hide seek
7pm - 9pm: Complete school work (lesson planning, marking) with the dog next to me
9pm: Sleep

What are your thoughts about the above schedule? If you work full time, do you think the above schedule works? If anyone is a teacher here, how do you manage that work/life balance to take care of your dog?

Thanks!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
900 Posts
As long s you can dedicate enough training/socialization/exercise/love before and after you work, it should be fine. People need to make a living so you can provide for your dog, so I say go for the job and keep the pup. Congratulations on the new puppy and job! :)

I used to work full-time, had 6 dogs (including puppies), and fostered. It was hard work, but I made sure to give them a lot of stimulation before and after work.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
131 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
As long s you can dedicate enough training/socialization/exercise/love before and after you work, it should be fine. People need to make a living so you can provide for your dog, so I say go for the job and keep the pup. Congratulations on the new puppy and job! :)

I used to work full-time, had 6 dogs (including puppies), and fostered. It was hard work, but I made sure to give them a lot of stimulation before and after work.
Thank you for the insight! I'm just terrified about the amount of work I need to do as a full time teacher. I don't want to burn out but the school does demand teachers to work work work aside from eating. I hate staying back after school to work as I don't want to neglect my dog but I'm also scared that people at school won't understand me (I mean I can't use my dog as an excuse to leave work on time right?) I will take work home but I'm not sure whether I'll be able to survive the multitasking with having to teach 4 year levels in my first year :( I just want to spend enough time with my puppy!
Posted via Mobile Device
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
290 Posts
6am - 7:30am: Exercise and play with dog. Go out for a long walk / free run and play fetch.
8am: Feed dog and leave for work.
Noon: Mum takes dog out on a walk.
4:30pm - 5:30pm: Arrive home and take the dog out for another walk / free run and play session
5:30pm - 6:30pm: Training and doing some mental stimulation work with the dog e.g. puzzles, hide seek
7pm - 9pm: Complete school work (lesson planning, marking) with the dog next to me
9pm: Sleep
- 8 week old puppies cannot consciously hold their bladder/bowels yet. They need to be let out to do their business at least every two hours, if not more often (depending on how the pup does with a certain time). Somebody should be available to do this or you will almost certainly come home to messes. Also, don't expect to sleep through the night because a puppy this age most usually won't. Still need potty breaks because they can't hold it for another few weeks.

- Puppies should not be heavily walked until their growth plates close. A long walk for a puppy this young could cause damage to their joints and cause other unpleasant medical problems in the future. A play session and outside time at the puppy's own discretion is good enough.

According to your schedule, assuming puppy potties in the morning when you take it outside, you will need someone to let him out more often while you're gone: 7:30 (you leave), 9:30, 11:30, 1:30, 3:30, 4:30 (you arrive home), 7:30, 9:30 (bed), 11:30, 1:30, 3:30, 5:30, 7:30 (you leave). Puppies are ridiculously hard work sometimes, especially when they're so young. Of course, as puppy gets older and learns to hold it he can be left alone for longer periods, but four hours alone right now is pushing it.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
131 Posts
Discussion Starter #5 (Edited)
- 8 week old puppies cannot consciously hold their bladder/bowels yet. They need to be let out to do their business at least every two hours, if not more often (depending on how the pup does with a certain time). Somebody should be available to do this or you will almost certainly come home to messes. Also, don't expect to sleep through the night because a puppy this age most usually won't. Still need potty breaks because they can't hold it for another few weeks.

- Puppies should not be heavily walked until their growth plates close. A long walk for a puppy this young could cause damage to their joints and cause other unpleasant medical problems in the future. A play session and outside time at the puppy's own discretion is good enough.

According to your schedule, assuming puppy potties in the morning when you take it outside, you will need someone to let him out more often while you're gone: 7:30 (you leave), 9:30, 11:30, 1:30, 3:30, 4:30 (you arrive home), 7:30, 9:30 (bed), 11:30, 1:30, 3:30, 5:30, 7:30 (you leave). Puppies are ridiculously hard work sometimes, especially when they're so young. Of course, as puppy gets older and learns to hold it he can be left alone for longer periods, but four hours alone right now is pushing it.
Sorry wait - the above schedule is for next year Feb. The puppy will be 6 months old by then. I know an 8 week old puppy will need to go to the toilet at least every 2 hours which is why I'm staying home from Oct - Jan to take care of that. Hopefully by 6 months, he will be able to hold on for majority of the night. I don't think at 6 months of age, he'll need to go to the toilet every 2 hours at night. He will hopefully be potty trained by Feb next year and he can go to the toilet by himself (I'm setting up a pet loo from the very first day he arrives so I'll train him to only go there). Of course, I'll be getting up every night from Oct - Feb.

October: (2 months old) = 9pm/ 11pm/ 1am / 3am/ 5am
November: (3 months) = 9pm/ 12am/3am/ 6am
December: (4 months) = 9pm/ 1am/ 5am
January: (5 months) = 9pm/ 2am/ 6am
February: (6months) = 9pm and 6am (hopefully he can hold it for that long by then)

In regards to me being away for 4 hours twice a week during October, I did state that my mum will take him to the toilet during that 4 hour period.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
290 Posts
See, this is why it's never a good idea to have me in a house full of boarders waking me up ridiculously early. At 6 months old that schedule should make more sense.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
131 Posts
Discussion Starter #7 (Edited)
See, this is why it's never a good idea to have me in a house full of boarders waking me up ridiculously early. At 6 months old that schedule should make more sense.
Haha it's okay. My post was ridiculously long. I think I would actually need to turn down the job offer if I have an 8 week old puppy arriving at the start of Term 1 :D

I'm lucky that the dog boarding/day care place is 5 minutes drive from the school, which means that I can send him there when he is full grown in case my mum is away during the day (more expenses on top of the ridiculous amount of money I've spent on toys, kennel, assessors, training books, insurance) lol I need a full time job or else I'll go bankrupt at this rate haha
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
3,750 Posts
I am by no means an expert on raising puppies. (I've never done it!)

But, I wonder if your plan of being with your puppy nearly 24/7 for the first five or six months and then starting a full-time job might be setting your dog up for quite a case of separation anxiety. Of course, you're going to want your mom's help on working in some potty breaks while you are tutoring, especially at first, but your puppy needs to learn that it's ok that you are absent for stretches of time. As you prepare to start full-time teaching I think you need to get your puppy used to the idea of being left alone.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
4,613 Posts
Agree with @SusanLynn . In addition to all the other training you'll be doing, it is important you do some separation training as well. I'm lucky that I stay home all day with my two, but I've been doing some training with them, by going to get the mail alone, going to get some ice cream etc.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Sha

·
Registered
Joined
·
131 Posts
Discussion Starter #10 (Edited)
But, I wonder if your plan of being with your puppy nearly 24/7 for the first five or six months and then starting a full-time job might be setting your dog up for quite a case of separation anxiety. Of course, you're going to want your mom's help on working in some potty breaks while you are tutoring, especially at first, but your puppy needs to learn that it's ok that you are absent for stretches of time. As you prepare to start full-time teaching I think you need to get your puppy used to the idea of being left alone.
Yes that's right. I'll be doing 5 minutes of absence at first, then gradually adding 5 minutes every training session/ day. I won't make a fuss when I leave or return during those sessions so he won't think that it is a big deal. Rewarding is also important but only when he is calm and not jumping up or down =D There's heaps of stuff on separation anxiety and training in the training basics book I bought from the breeder. They compiled a whole book on Kelpies and training them, which is extremely helpful.

I just received some photos from the breeder and they have finally chosen the puppy with the right temperament for us - very calm, gentle and smart.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
669 Posts
I am a teacher and started my full time teaching job when my puppy was just over a year old. I'm gone from the house 7:15am-3:45pm with the dogs being let into the yard around two times while I'm gone. This was my first full time job and my dogs, even my grown ones, definitely had a few adjustment issues. I'd been gone that long before, of course, just never day after day like a teaching job requires. There was some anxiety and some overzealous welcomes home, and some new whining behaviors when I left for the first couple weeks. But then they settled down, got used to the fact that, yes, I WAS coming home every day, and they would get to come out, play and have fun all day.
I take a lot of work home and my school doesn't care so long as I get it done. In fact, Quenya, my Kelpie mix, is going to class with me this week to help the kids learn about dog behavior!

So I guess my closing point is that the first few weeks may be rough, even with a six month old, but give it a little time, don't jump the gun, and I believe in most cases with a well prepared dog and plenty of activity and playtime after work and on the weekends, the vast majority of dogs can adjust to a teachers schedule.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
90 Posts
I know this forum isn't 'fresh', but have you considered crate training? Especially if you have to be out of the house lots during the day, a crate can be a safe place for a pup. Once they are crate trained (mine is at 4months), they are less likely to go to the bathroom in their crate when you are away and won't get into things that could harm them in the house. Even the best puppy-proofed rooms have some degree of danger, while a kennel is fairly safe.

When you work at home, practice leaving your dog in a safe space (exercise pen, kennel) for longer periods of time while you work in the next room (or at least out of sight)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
131 Posts
Discussion Starter #13
I know this forum isn't 'fresh', but have you considered crate training? Especially if you have to be out of the house lots during the day, a crate can be a safe place for a pup. Once they are crate trained (mine is at 4months), they are less likely to go to the bathroom in their crate when you are away and won't get into things that could harm them in the house. Even the best puppy-proofed rooms have some degree of danger, while a kennel is fairly safe.

When you work at home, practice leaving your dog in a safe space (exercise pen, kennel) for longer periods of time while you work in the next room (or at least out of sight)
Thanks for your reply =D Yes I have my puppy now and it has been four days. He is well crate trained (well almost...) as I paid extra money to the breeder to crate train him before 8 weeks so that he won't be stressed out with flying interstate for a few hours. The puppy sleeps through the night pretty well for his age even though the first two nights were horror. He whines and barks for 15 minutes when I put him back in the crate after midnight potty but that's about it.
 
1 - 13 of 13 Posts
Top