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Hi everyone we bring our puppies home in 4 days! The way mine and my husbands schedules work out the pups will only be alone for 5-6 hours two days out the week. Otherwise someone will always be home with them to take them out.

Now we have already prepared and have a puppy proof area ready for those days. Puppy pads on one side, water and interactive toys on the other.

My main concern is will allowing them to use the restroom those days in house make potty training harder? We are going to crate train, but until they can hold their bladders the full 6 hours, we do not want to leave them no access to reliving themselves.

Any tips, ideas, experience appreciated.
 

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I would ditch the pee pads. You don’t want your dog to ever think it’s okay to go in the house. The puppies are probably going to rip them up anyway. Ideally you would get someone to let them out during that 5-6 hour stretch. Is there anyone you can get to come in and do that?
 

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I never used puppy pads when potty training my pup, don't really see the use of it since they're gonna go potty outside in no time. How old is your pup? My pup's stopped having accidents all at once when he hit 7 months. Before then I'd let him out every 2 - 4 hours. My advice is have someone take him out every 4 hours max. Use the 'natural pad' aka the grass/soil.
 

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I worked with all my puppies, and I also didn't use pee pads. I never wanted my dog to think it was okay to go potty in the house. In addition, I didn't want to transition a dog from pee pads to outside. I felt it would be confusing to the puppy, and would delay potty training. My puppies usually started sitting by the door to go potty by 3-4 months. My current GSD was sleeping outside of the crate at 4 months from about 10:00 pm to 5:00 am. He would jump on me in the morning to let me know he had to go out. Smart puppy.

For those two days a week, is it possible to get a neighbor or pet sitter to let the puppy out after a few hours?
 

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Definitely try to get someone to come relieve them halfway through the day. I had to leave mine inside the crate four hours at a time, twice a day, and at 8 weeks, he peed inside his crate. It wasn't perfect, but it was more important to me to manage his meal times to make sure he never *pooped* in his crate. I bought washable faux fleece liners for the crate and *luckily* he didn't eat them--your mileage may vary--so he wasn't sitting in a literal puddle, but I knew it would happen at that age. It only took a few weeks before he could go the four hours without incident. By sixteen weeks, six hours was a breeze. I agree it would have been far worse for me to leave him in an indoor exercise pen with puppy pads and free access to water. Dogs don't naturally want to use their "house" as a bathroom, so I actually believe it will aid in your crate and potty training to use the crate.
 
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