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I am going to be bringing a new puppy home near the end of the month, more than likely, and I was wondering how much company and training he will need throughout the day.

I have two older shepherds, and a dog door for them to get out to use the restroom, and I can seal them off in the kitchen, so I'm not too worried about him ruining anything when I'm gone. My first puppy figgured out the dog door pretty fast, so his basic needs should be covered.

I just worry he will be too bored. Is it a bad idea to leave him with two other dogs 9-10 hours a day? I intend to spend lots time with him when I can, but I live alone and work full time, so there are limits to what I can do.

Does anyone have any tips, advice, or warnings about raising puppies when you can't be home too often?
 

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I don't like to leave puppies unsupervised with adult dogs. It is asking a whole lot of the adult dogs (especially when the pup is a pest and the adults have no place to go for some peace and quiet), and I don't want my puppy to get too "doggy" (too bonded to other dogs, and not seeing me as the main supplier of everything good and fun in the world).

I would hire someone to come in and give a puppy potty breaks, etc. before I would leave a puppy loose with adult dogs for such a huge portion of the day.
Sheilah
 

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I generally don't leave dogs together unsupervised unless they're both mine, in my house or a safely enclosed area (safe from escaping dogs and from dog thieves!), AND they have been living together for several months and I trust them with eachother.

It's fine to leave him in a crate or other safely enclosed area as long as you can come home sometime in the middle of the day to take him out. You also need to give him lots of playtime and mental exercise (fun, short training sessions and/or Kongs) How old is the puppy you're planning on getting? A slightly older puppy (4 to 6 months) might be easier with your schedule since they have more bladder control than an 8 week old. It is important that once you get home it's all about the dog though; take him out, play with him (teach bite inhibition), walk him some (at least start getting him used to having a leash attached to him and let him drag it around the house), and mental exercises. A few 5 to 10 minute training sessions with lots of praise and treats/toys a day are great for young puppy (under 6 months), as well as stuffed Kongs or similar toys.
 

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It can be done. I also live alone and am gone 9-10 hrs a day for work. However, from the time I brought Willow home until she was about 7-8 months old she was crated during the day and I had a dogwalker come to my house every afternoon to let her out so she could potty and play. It worked out fine. Almost all my free time was spent with the dogs during her early months and we attended many training classes together the first year. She turned out just fine :)
 

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I agree it can be done, but takes dedication to the puppy BEFORE work and after work. You need to get up early enough (2-3 hours) to get in some good quality time with you puppy, feeding, training, outside, potty, etc. Then crated while you are gone - and a young puppy is going to have a difficult time being crated that long with no potty break. You may need to do an ex-pen type thing, with crate in it, and piddle pads available so as not to encourage pottying in crate. I too would not leave my puppy un-crated alone with my adult dogs until several months and all is well.

After work some deal - ALL PUPPY! That fella is going to need your time. No more going out to dinner or the bar, etc. It's puppy time now.

Best of luck!
 

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I have a now ten month old GSD puppy and work full-time. Monday thru Friday I am gone for ten hours. No dog walker and no neighbors that can help either (or that I would trust). My puppy stayed in a kennel run that is indoor-outdoor, part of my attached garage and heated and air conditioned.

I also have adult dogs and rescue/foster too. Never would I leave a puppy with any adult dogs! Even with supervision, the adult dogs get tired of the puppy.

Use a large crate or ex-pen and keep the puppy inside while you are gone. There are too many reports of dogs being stolen too for me to consider letting my dogs go in and out via the many dog doors that my home has. My dogs can use the dog doors when I am home and they have a fenced yard to play in. I just never leave them with the ability to go in and out on their own accord. I would rather clean up a mess than come home to an injured, dead or stolen dog. JMHO.
 

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I would come home at lunch for the first few months. But the first few weeks that wasn't soon enough and I did a lot of pee cleanup in the crate. ;)
 

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It will be harder to house break him if he has to potty inside the house. He can't go more than a couple hours without a potty break until he is older. I agree with everyone else, don't leave him alone with older dogs. Another thing to think about: My friend got a beautiful English Spaniel pup. She left him in the kitchen and came home to find he had chewed the corners off several of her lower cabinets. I believe that was quite an expensive repair. Puppies will chew everything they come in contact with.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
It will be harder to house break him if he has to potty inside the house. He can't go more than a couple hours without a potty break until he is older. I agree with everyone else, don't leave him alone with older dogs. Another thing to think about: My friend got a beautiful English Spaniel pup. She left him in the kitchen and came home to find he had chewed the corners off several of her lower cabinets. I believe that was quite an expensive repair. Puppies will chew everything they come in contact with.
My first puppy chewed up a corner of my cabinet, but it wasn't a big problem - some bitter apple spray fixed that pretty quickly.

What is the concern about leaving a puppy with older dogs? My first puppy got along well with two german shepherds. He would sometimes annoy them, granted, but they would let him know when to knock it off.

I do have a crate, and plan on leaving him in it during the night, but I'm not sure that leaving him locked up for hours on end (when I'm gone) is very good developmentally.

My setup is essentially locking him up in the kitchen - he can't get to the carpet and pee on it, if he pees on the tile than I don't care, and he can always let himself out if he wants to go play.

I can keep the older dogs out of the kitchen easily enough, but then they won't be able to use the restroom if they need to.
 
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