Post # 1
Fi and I are planning to adopt a puppy in December, but are both concerned about making sure he/she gets the proper care and attention that they need.
Collectively, we are out of the house from 8am-6pm, Monday-Friday. I know there are doggy day-care and dog walker options. I am looking into both.
What did you do when you got a dog, or more specifically a puppy? (as they need to go out to use the bathroom and socialize more often.)
Post # 2
- Wedding: March 2014 - Chicago, IL
Getting a puppy in the winter is rough! Be prepared for midnight potty breaks in the blistering cold (if you live in that type of climate). I think that also may make it a little harder to potty train, because the puppy won’t be happy to be going out in the freezing weather, either. I always adopt my pups (well at least I try to) in either the spring or early fall for this reason.
Absolutely will need to get a dog walker, and probably should consider crate training or confining the puppy to a small area during the day.
Post # 3
We just got a puppy in June. I work from home, so am home with her all day. For the first few months, we socialized her amongst friends and people in the neighborhood when we’d take her out for walks.
We started taking her to puppy class around the 3 month mark and just started doing doggy daycare in the last couple of weeks. At first, she slept most of the day and didn’t need a ton of activity to get her crazies out. However, as she’s getting more mature, she definitely needs more social time with other pups, and we’re finding that doggy daycare seems to do the trick for her.
Post # 4
Hi! So exciting you’re getting a puppy. My first dog I got in college so I was able to come back to my apartment to let him out often. For my second puppy, my then girlfriend and I worked semi-opposite schedules so I would take her to her place in the mornings and then pick her up after work so she was only crated a few hours total.
Puppies need to go out often. Rule of thumb is age in months for hours they can hold it (so an 8 week old puppy should go out at least every two hours.) Most daycares won’t accept puppies until they are fully vaccinated which isn’t until about 4 months. Until then, I suggest you get a dog walker to come take your pup out a couple times a day and on a walk.
Crate training was key for us to potty train. Take them out often and be patient. Reward and praise when they go outside and try to keep cool when they go inside because they really don’t understand.
Lots of chew toys and stuff they can tear up instead of your belongings.
Socialize as soon as you can. So 4 months for dog parks and daycares due to vaccines. This is key to not having a dog aggressive dog.
Don’t forget flea medicine and don’t go cheap. I did once and he got fleas so never again. Also heartworm medicine.
A special bed for just them if you do not want them sleeping with you.
All I can think of off the top of my head. It’s great and only a few months of hard work to get a really great dog!
Post # 5
We currently have a puppy (3 months old) and we are very fortunate that my sister is in university and stops by between classes to let her out and play with her. The first week we had her she was at my mom’s house since my she works from home and wanted her. I would recommend seeing if any friends or family mind checking on her during the day. For our pup, she is fine being let out twice during the day and is almost able to handle once a day now but I am home at 5.
Post # 6
I’m a teacher, so with our first puppy, we got him on the last day of school and then I was home with him all summer. Our second puppy was a Thanksgiving puppy and she went to my grandma’s every day until the spring. Now, the dogs are outside while we are gone. We have a heated doghouse for them that’s inside a garden shed that’s full of toys and food and water, so they have access to the whole yard, the shed, and the doghouse inside the shed. We pay the neighbor kid to walk them after school and in the evenings we play fetch. When the weather is nice we take them down to the river to swim to get more energy out. Tired puppies are good puppies!
Post # 7
Ahhh, that’s a good point! I certainly do not enjoy being cold. Perhaps holding off until Spring is a good idea.
Post # 8
My husband and I both work full-time and don’t have the opportunity to go home for lunch. We adopted a young adult dog (probably ~2 years old at the time we got him) rather than a puppy. He came to us fully potty trained and able to hang out in the house without an issue while my husband and I are at work. We work slightly shifted schedules, so the dog is at home 9:30-5:45 usually. I won’t get on my high horse and tell you that you MUST adopt an adult dog rather than a puppy, but there are certainly so many adult dogs out there, and they are an easier choice to bring into a home with 2 working adults.
Post # 9
I understand your point, thanks for sharing! It’s something to consider.
Post # 10
No advice, but I had a very similar experience to ellyd23. I thought I wanted a puppy but wound up adopting a 1 year old dog from the shelter. It was the blessing I didn’t know I needed. He was already house trained and used to being alone for long periods of time. Puppies are absolutely adorable and I do wonder what my dog was like when he was a baby, but the puppy would have required more attention than I could have given him at that time.
Post # 11
- Wedding: April 2016 - Manhattan, NY
I was going to recommend the same!
We adopted an adult dog last July who is an absolute angel. She was already house broken and it only took us about a week to learn her potty schedule and it’s been smooth sailing since then. We took her out 4x a day in the beginning but she goes out 3x a day now. She’s also a large breed dog, and bigger dogs have bigger bladders, meaning they tend to be able to hold their urine longer.
Post # 12
Puppies are a lot of work if you have never had one plus being away that long during the day isn’t really fair to them especially if they have to go out a lot.
We adopted a 1.5 year old dog and he tried spraying a couple of times before we corrected the behavior. He is still very puppyish even though hes not a puppy puppy per say.
I am up with him at 6 and he gets out for a wee then I feed all the pets then we go for a walk for him to go poop.
He gets crated and let out by the dog walker around 11 for pee and stretch his legs. Then we get home between 4 and 5 and we let him out for pee then play, food, and long walk. He sleeps in his bed at night.
We had to correct some behavior and work on some other with him.
Make sure you research the breed. We picked an active breed dog because we are active people. He also had to get used to us and us to him so the first couple of weeks were frustrating. With time treats, love and lots and lots of patience, he is turning into a wonderful companion.
He will need puppy school and additional training also which we are working on.
A puppy is a big responsibility. I’m not saying you are doing this, but remember dogs and cats/pets are for forever. You can’t just give up on them if you get sick of them etc. They rely on you for everything 🙂
I also strongly encourage you to get pet insurance. It is worth the $35 or so a month for peace of mind God forbid anything were to happen. Puppies get into EVERYTHING (again, depends on the breed), but they will chew, eat, swallow things they arent supposed to in 2.5 seconds sometimes.
Good luck on your search!!
Post # 13
I agree a dog from the shelter is the best way to go, also take a week off work for the first week it’s in your house, or at least an extra 1-3 days around a long weekend. You will need to establish a new pattern with the dog, it’s best if you’re home. Not sure if you have a house or an appartment but your dog will likely bark a lot at first when left alone due to fear. You’ll need to take them out to pee probably every 1-3 hours at first to make sure it doesn’t start peeing in the house. Then you’ll need to dog proof your house, anything it can reach, eat, chew or get to. Not sure about other people’s dogs, but ours ignored us completely for about a year, wouldn’t walk, barked all night, peed inside often, tried to steal food out of our hands or off the table, it was a hard adjustment. We took dog training courses and both my partner and I had to be on the same page about all levels of training. We also would go home at lunch to let out the dog and check on things. Teach your dog to walk properly with you and most other things will fall into place easier. If you get a young dog – you’ll need to give it lots of physical and mental exercise. Good luck, bringing a new pet into the house can be a challenge but once you all bond it’s a very rewarding experience.
Post # 14
We adopted our gorgeous dog in February, so in the winter time as you are planning. However she was 3.5 years old when we got her. And honestly this was also difficult (this depends of course on your dogs previous history).
Initially we tried leaving our dog alone in our main floor of our home (we left for about 30 minutes), just to see how she did. She went crazy, she clawed the door and side of the door so badly, and she also peed her bed.
So that was no longer an option, then we tried to crate train her, this went well initially but eventually within a week or two, she had some adverse behaviour to the crate (we think she just associates crate type places with being abandoned, so she becomes extremely anxious). We ended up having to spend many days at home with her and figure out what worked best for her. Luckily we figured out she just needed a larger space and to not physically see us leave the house. She now stays in our garage when we aren’t home, she has a bed in there, lots of toys, and her water. She is really good now, and know when we leave in the morning it’s time to go to the garage, and now she is good in there from 8:30am or so till about 5:30pm (sometimes a little longer).
We also make sure she goes on a long walk in the morning before we leave, and another long walk immediately when we are home. She also goes for another walk before bed. I’m highlighting this because even if you get an older dog it doesn’t mean she or he may be completely potty trained (we had quite a few accidents for a few weeks when she was adapting to a new routine and new home). And that no matter what it is a lot of work, you really need to put in the time to training your dog, and patient with how they adjust to a new home. That said adopting a dog was the best thing my DH and I ever did, we love her to bits, and she is such a sweet and loving dog now that she is settled.
However just to reiterate, it will maybe take some sacrifice if possible (half days at work during the initial adjustment period), puppies especially need a lot of mental stimulation or will become destructive, so leaving them alone for such a long period of time is a bit cruel. If either of you can reduce hours, and then slowly move back up it may be best, especially if you get a puppy.
Post # 15
We have a puppy. We got the puppy about 3 months ago, and he’s just over 5 months now.
Husbeast and I both work, we’re out of the house from 0730 till 1700, which is way too long for dogger to be left in his kennel. So we make it work. Dogger gets two periods of focused activity per day, a walk with fetch or skills/drills in the mornings (30 minutes), and a walk and playtime at the dog park (1 hour) every evening. As well, we ensure that one of us pops home during the day (which is inconvenient, but we’re making it work). A good rule of thumb is to take your puppy’s age in months and add 1 to determine the number of hours that your puppy can be kennelled before you should expect to come home to an accident. So, for our puppy, we’re never away for more than 6 hours (but typically 4-5 hours).
This strategy has worked really well for us, and our dog does amazingly with the routine and structure we’ve provided.
I should add that my husband takes on the bulk of the work with our puppy, I’m currently 31 weeks pregnant and we have a 3 year old, so we’ve agreed that I look after growing and caring for the tiny humans and he’ll be the primary caregiver for the dog. Once I’m on mat leave (7 more weeks), we won’t have as much concern about the dog being left kennelled and nobody will have to come home from work, which will be nice. Husbeast will continue caring for the dog until at least my 6 week checkup (since he’s a bit of a puller on the leash, and I’m not putting my recovery at risk), but I’m excited to help support the puppy training more as I’m feeling more up to it.