Training my puppy was … interesting. First of all I had a fenced yard he could be in all day. He may have been a little lonely but he managed just fine. He did find his way out and started eating things I wish he hadn’t, but once I got the fence fixed, that was problem solved. (some of his pukes though… oh my lord) We also took daily walks when I got home from work and after a few weeks, joined a couple of friends and their dogs – the older dog helped train mine to walk with the group. Other dogs in the neighborhood trained him to climb fences and chase cows (I lived on a reservation at the time – pet rules were pretty lax) so you definitely have to watch who their influences are.
Indoors I kept an eye on him, so generally he was in the same room as I was at all times. As soon as he started wandering, I put him out (and went with) and we didn’t come back unless he used the bathroom. At night I had him leashed to my bed so again, the moment he moved, I was up and out with him until he was house trained. Training for things like sit and lie down were easy. At this point my husband has trained him to hand gestures as well, though I used words only as a puppy.
After the neighbors trained him in fence jumping, keeping him home was harder. He went to his buddy’s house daily. I gave up and just started walking him there every morning instead (they were cool with it) so he had plenty of company and was doing so with permission instead of as a rogue dog. When I moved, I had to make sure I had a pretty high, unscalable fence. Now we have an electric one, which works like a charm.
Agree with poster above about dogs being pack animals. If he is able, mine leaves to hang with others all day (people or pets). I feel bad now that he’s behind wires as he can’t get away with that, though he gets the occasional visitor from the neighborhood. We’ve got a big property now, so we slacked on walks, too and it’s obvious sometimes. I’d never give my guy up, but if it’s possible to get him companionship, do so. If it’s possible to walk him daily, do so. If committing to play time and training isn’t your cup of tea, then pass for the time being.
Make sure you research varieties so you don’t get something neurotic, unhealthy and weird. Ours is the muttiest mutt the world has ever spawned but he’s got an amazing personality and is only unhealthy when he makes stupid choices (like attacking a porcupine or drinking stagnant water). He’s basically chill with anything we do, be it leave him in the house for a couple of hours, sleeping until 10 because we are, or going on 14 hour drives to visit family. He’s a total ass about wild animals and has had some issues with skunks, squirrels, porcupines, ground squirrels, prairie dogs, etc. Even caught a lizard once and I think he’d do a cat if he could catch one (except ours, which he knows is off limits). So that’s one more thing to make sure you’re okay with – discovering your dog likes hunting several years after you get him!
Honestly if you’re on opposite shifts, it’s probably the best time of all for puppy training – always someone at home to deal.