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Old 01-16-2013, 08:57 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default 9 week old holding for long periods of time

Hello all,
I am looking for a some advice. I picked up an 8 week old GSD female last week and have been home with her for the first 5 days. She has been great. No accidents in her crate since I got her. I have been taking her out to potty every 3 to 4 hours day and night. Yesterday was her first day home alone while I was at work. I put paper in her crate to encourage her to potty in the crate (she has been paper trained by the breeder) while I am at work (I am away from home for approx 9 hours). When I came home, I saw that she did not go potty in the crate for 9 straight hours. I immediately took her outside and she did her business.

My question: should I be concerned that a 9 week old is holding for 9 hours? I am considering putting a potty pad in the crate, but I dont want to confuse her since she has been doing so well with pottying in the same place outside since we brought her home. I am concerned that her holding for this long is not healty. Any suggestions?

Thanks
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Old 01-16-2013, 10:36 AM   #2 (permalink)
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I wouldn't be concerned, I'd be proud that she held it that long. I also wouldn't encourage using the crate as a place to go potty. It's in a dog's nature not to potty where they sleep, and you want the crate to be thought of as a safe place, a 'den' as it were. If you encourage use of the crate as a place to go it might make it hard to break her of the habit later, and might make it much tougher to potty train her in general.

If you are going to be leaving a puppy that young alone for that many hours on a regular basis, I'd try to work something out with a friend or neighbor to come and take the pup out to go potty sometime around midway through your time away at least until she is a bit older. If she can hold it consistently for that long, and some pups can but not most, then perhaps you will be ok. The general rule though is one hour per month of age is about as long as you should expect a puppy to be able to hold it.
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Old 01-16-2013, 06:58 PM   #3 (permalink)
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I wouldnt be too concerned. My 9 week old pup can hold his pee for 7-9hrs at night in his crate. He doesnt during the day, but he's never crated that long, so I dont know if he would or not.

I agree though with Ken. If you're gone that long frequently, maybe she should have a puppy sitter for awhile. Thats an awful long time for a dog to be crated on a regular basis.
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Old 01-16-2013, 09:01 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Moat healthy pups are not going to want to go in their crate and that's why she held it. Holding it that long is very difficult for a pup that young. As mentioned maybe you can get some one to come in and let her out about half way through the day. There are a lot of professional dog walk services out there. Ask you vet for a recommendation.
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Old 01-17-2013, 09:15 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Thanks for the replies. She still has not had an accident in her crate. I decided not to put a pee pad in the crate. I am going to try to manage my schedule to avoid her having to be in the crate for that long, but there will be times when she will have to be crated for that long.
Thanks for the help.
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