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Discussion Starter #1
I don't know where is best to start this, so I'll begin it here...

Mei has been pretty spoiled this summer. Spoiled as in there has been people, myself/wife/kids, around to keep her entertained. She still took her naps a couple times a day, but most of that was either on the floor in the dining area by an AC vent or on the bed with me when I got home from work.

Crate training with her has been great from when we got her at 8 weeks. I never used the crate as a punishment and have always had it covered and essentially made it her safe space to go. There has been days I've been off work and in the middle of the day she is trying to take a nap on the floor and my youngest daughter is bugging her, so I take and put her in the kennel. She'll walk right into it no problem. The potty training was very easy as well.

My main concern is, I don't want her to get any type of separation anxiety once the kids go back to school and my wife to work. My wife will work at a school that is literally like 5 minutes away and I work about 15 minutes away. So any of us can run home to let her out for some exercise/play.

What would any of you recommend to prepare her for this?

I don't want to start her cold turkey like, here you go into the kennel and I'll see ya in a few hours. This is what I am thinking... Even though my wife will be home during the day rest of this month and part of next, we put her in the kennel for an hour or two to gradually get used to it. I eventually want her to have free reigns in the house, but that is very far down the road and a different discussion.

Thinking gradually get her used to being alone with the kennel? I just don't want her to get separation anxiety or something and/or super bored being alone. Or even just sleeping the whole time to where sleeping at night becomes a problem.
 

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I agree that it would be wise to start slowly now so that it isn't a huge change later. Putting her in her kennel for a while when you are home is a good start, but you want to be sure she is in the kennel when no one is home as well. You guys could make purposeful trips everyday so that she's home alone in her crate for 45+ minutes and it becomes no big deal. Maybe you could take the kids to the park and leave her at home one day. You could all go to the pool and swim for another. Even just going grocery shopping (which I know is't fun with kids) for 30 minutes is good. The point is that she needs to be used to being completely alone, not just in the kennel. It's best to give her some time like that every single day instead of randomly sprinkled in here and there.
 
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Discussion Starter #3
Lesson learned.

Mei is most active, meaning not wanting to just lounge around, mornings and evenings. Yesterday evening I went with friends/co-workers boating on the lake nearby. My son was at a quinceanera and wife and daughters were camping with the in-laws. I play/train/exercise Mei for like half hour before I left at like 515pm. Prior to that she was awake but just lounging/playing in the house for quite some time. Oh, also we did some training at Home depot for like half hour, so I figured she'd be ready to lay down when I leave.

I was gone for a little over three hours. I told my buddy I need to leave no later than 730pm. Lake is only 15 minutes away from my house. One of the guys had his kid with him and he wouldn't listen when it was time to go. Long story short I was gone longer than I wanted.

I get home and of course Mei is in the kennel, but so us the sheet that we cover it with, s couple now ruined stuffed animals and some toys. And there she was sittin with a big grin on her face lol. I want in a picture taking mood lol. She didn't relieve herself, so theres a silver lining lol.

I learned to never leave her toys and other stuff on top of the kennel. Are there such things as actual kennel covers?? I have a large 48" one. Biggest lesson learned is being gone for three hours during the time she is most active and her dinner time isn't the best idea, with a 6 month old puppy.... I was a little upset I was kept at the lake longer than I wanted.

Today was good though. I had a plasma appointment. We had obedience training from 10-11. Got home, put her in the kennel, with nothing on top. I took my chances with a sheet though. She was in the kennel for an hour and half until my son got home to let her out and no issues.

This is gonna be challenging lol.
 
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