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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
My husband and I both work, so our puppy will be alone from about 7:30 am to 2:30 pm. He'll be about 8 weeks I think when we get him and know he will not be able to hold for that long. I read puppies can hold about 1 hr longer than months of age, so 2 months = 3 hrs of holding. We have a great little nook in our garage. Plan to put him there during the day. Eventually plan a doggy door and hidden fence to our 2 acre lot during the day, but not while still so young. How should we go about house training?

Also, how old before we can train with hidden fence/doggy door?
 

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My pups were trained to a doggie door by the breeders so when I got them at 8 wks they knew how to use it. Is there anyone that can come over and let him out before you get home?
 

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how much freedom are you planning on giving the little guy? I would be VERY careful leaving a young pup like that in a garage. the is sooo much he could get into so puppy proofing will be huge.
 

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We have a great little nook in our garage. Plan to put him there during the day. Eventually plan a doggy door and hidden fence to our 2 acre lot during the day, but not while still so young. How should we go about house training?
Also, how old before we can train with hidden fence/doggy door?
Hidden fence: (assuming you mean underground fence with shock collar?) May or may not keep your dog IN the yard but does nothing to prevent animals or people from ENTERING your yard. These fences work really well for some dogs but I would never depend on one if I wasn't at home.

If you plan to eventually leave your dog outside while you work a good kennel with a run is your safest bet.
 

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Is there anyone that can go let him out during the day? That would be better rather than giving him a larger area that he can relieve himself and start a bad habit of going in a crate or a pen.
 

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Where do you live? Here in Florida it gets pretty hot, so depending on your area it may not be very humane to keep him in the garage.

If you don't mind me asking, why did you get such a young pup if nobody would be home to care for it?

I'm not trying to be mean or anything but housetraining is like caring for a baby. You have got to be watchful at all times and be two steps ahead of the pup.
If you are looking for a backyard dog that will do nothing more than protect your backyard, than maybe torturing the pup to a small area in the garage will make a backyard seem like paradise.
 

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7 hours alone is a bit long for an 8 week old puppy, but if either of you can take some time off, it's doable. For example if one of you could take off the first week and the other the second week, now your puppy is 10 weeks old and should be able to hold it for at least 3 or 4 hours. And if either or both of you can take long lunches for a couple of weeks after that, you could easily get to where the puppy could be crated the entire time you're gone.

I work 4 days a week, and after the first week off with a new puppy I work 3 hours in the morning and 3 hours in the evening, with 3 hours off mid-day. I'm about a 45 minute round trip from work, so it's not feasible for me to go home unless I take a long lunch. So I was able to get in 6 hours of work a day instead of 8, and only use one vacation day each week. I did this for a couple of weeks, and then cut back to 3-1/2 hours AM and PM, with a 2 hour break to go home with the puppy.

If your employers are at all flexible, you can make this work. Otherwise, I'd look into a petsitter to let the puppy out during the day while you're both gone.
 

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I also have to go to work so my puppies need to be CRATED for longer than I'd like when I first get them. But using the crate is a huge help. I just realize that they may not be able to last the entire time, but I use a large enough crate that they still have a clean place to lay in.

Crate training is key. So if there is an accident it's an easy clean up.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 · (Edited)
Victoria Lynn, you are being quite mean with your assumptions. Don't assume or even suggest that I am looking for a dog that would do nothing but protect my backyard! Sorry to be mean right back, but boy did that hit a nerve.

I can probably get home during my lunch hour but it would mean I could spend about 10 minutes with the pup, pretty much just let it out to pee/poop assuming it would even do it that quickly. Would your try that? Is it feasible that it would do it's business quickly?

We have a little nook in our garage that we are thinking about keeping him that is made for storage. It's an empty area about 8 ft by 6 ft. I know a small crate is great for training but that's 7 hrs in a crate. At least a bit more than 4 hrs in crate if I go home for lunch. Seems that is too long for pup to hold it and a long time confined to such a small space. Maybe one a bit larger, then coming home lunch hr could be the solution.

If it would be unsafe for a grown dog to be in a hidden fenced yard, then I would love to hear that, as we would instead build a kennel. Just thought that 2 acres to roam while we are not at home would be great (once the dog was of appropriate age of course).

If a kennel would ultimately be better, then could we use that with a small pup? That would certainly help with potty training if the puppy had access to go outside, but I'm just worried that that wouldn't be safe for some reason, but not really sure why it would not be safe.
 

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how much freedom are you planning on giving the little guy? I would be VERY careful leaving a young pup like that in a garage. the is sooo much he could get into so puppy proofing will be huge.
I agree. A baby that young I'd rather just deal with accidents than the dangers of so much freedom, so I'd use a crate or expen.

When I got Nikon, I had a college student come over during the day to let him out and play with him. I went home around 11am to let him out and then she came around 3pm. 10 minutes is plenty of time, at least for my guy I never had to wait around for him to go, that was always the first thing he did (and I carried him out to prevent accidents along the way) and then if I had a few more minutes of time to play, even better.

I'm getting another puppy in Nov. and I plan on keeping him in my kennels in my van so I can let him out and socialize him on my breaks.
 

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I would never leave a dog unattended with a hidden fence. Doesn't matter how well your dog is trained, that does not prevent anyone from coming in or other animals or stray dogs going in your yard and causing trouble. I fenced off a large area of my yard with a physical fence because I had too many problems with people trying to touch my dogs or stray dogs picking fights. It's just not worth the risk. GSDs are very bonded to their people and don't really entertain themselves anyway. 2 acres doesn't mean much to a dog by itself. The dog will still need you to train and exercise and play with it every day.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Thanks for all the usable advice. I could bring the dog to work in a crate and leave him in my SUV. I could let it out at 9:30, then at 11:30 let him out for quick pee/poop, then even bring him home. Daughter gets home at 2:30. It's the perfect time of year, as I live in the Northeast and it's cool but not cold. Just leave the windows partially down and dog in crate in back. I'll seriously consider this. Not sure my work would appreciate dog doing it's business on their lawn though, even though I would of course pick up it's poop.
I am also going to look at a service to let him out in the morning. Thanks for the tip, I never even new that existed. How long do you think I should do that before he'd be OK to be in crate for 4 hours in morning before I could get home for lunch to let him out?
 

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Crates are GREAT. The pups complain but when you are out of earshot learn to accept it and settle in. It would be fantastic for the pup if you could come home at
lunch even for 10 minutes. He/she would probably 'perform' easily during that time. Once you establish a routine your pup will adapt to it. Assuming you give lots of exercise and attention morning and night.
 

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Hi Sarahsmith, did you come to a conclusion on what you will do? I'm on the same boat (i think you actually answered one of my postings LOL) and I'm curious to know what you are going to do with the puppy during the day. I think an outside kennel at this age is not a good idea (too overwhelming for the puppy). When he's older, my puppy will definitely be outside during the nice days to get fresh air, etc. But right now, he's too young so what do we do?
 

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I plan on bringing my dog to work and kenneling in the van. The kennels in my van are larger than the puppy crate I use at home, plus I get three breaks I can use for pottying and socializing (I work for a small, private college). If you do the same, make sure the dog is safe/secure. If I have a dog in my van, my kennels are locked down and locked shut. I park in the shade in a private lot (for college faculty and staff) that is patrolled by security. It's also just outside my building, very close. So even if I have windows down for air someone would have to steal the entire van to steal a dog, and where I work everyone knows it's my van, they've all seen (and petted) my dogs. I would not be comfortable parking any farther away, or in a public and/or unsecured lot.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Thanks to all for the great ideas. I will definitely crate rather than use the storage area in my garage based on all the advice. I will come home for lunch and let puppy do potty. Still debating whether to bring puppy to work. That may depend on whether he quickly is able to hold for 4 hours or not in the morning. I'll love to visit with him every day during lunch anyway! And bringing him to work would also be wonderful (just not sure how the bosses will react if they notice). My parking lot is out of the way from the public and I can walk towards a window to see my truck and I'm on the first floor. Will eventually build a kennel rather than a hidden fence. Without all the advise I would have done things differently so thanks again.
 

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If you could bring him to work for part of the day that would be perfect! You could set up a crate in your office and take him out when he needed plus he would get tons of socialization with ppl!

I would not advise keeping him in your vehicle if that was your thought. It's getting to be fall, it will cool off but we still have those freaky days that will be hot. Tomorrow it's going to be 90 in NEPA! Yesterday I had a sweater on!

Look on craigslist for chainlink fencing. Especially in the spring when ppl are starting home improvement projects.
 

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I am having this problem now. I am looking at now staying and working home for a week to help it out but I know I will need a fulltime solution until he is fully housebroken. May even consider him living with someone else to get that and crate training down. With me living by myself and no one to help him as a puppy it may take a long time I live 35 minutes from my job so it makes it impossible for me to go home during lunch to just take him to the bathroom.
 

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If you can't come home and let him out at lunch time, how about a kennel in the garage? Here's a sample picture, but Lowes has a really nice one for about $300. Put a bed in one corner of the kennel and expect the puppy to poop and pee in the rest of it, unfortunately.

The guy is so young that you really need to let it out every 3 to 4 hours. Your working situation is going to make housebreaking more difficult, but if you are on your toes when you are home with the puppy, it should be fine.

I have a friend with 4 adult dogs. Sometimes they have to be gone a long time, but the dogs know there's a spot in the basement where they can potty if they can't hold it.

I also think invisible fences are a bad idea. Another friend of mine raised Collies. She had a setup where there was a fenced space in the garage with dog beds, and a little door to an outside dog run with a cement base. The dogs stayed in the garage at night except in the coldest weather. In addition, her entire yard was fenced with a 6 foot privacy fence.
 
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