Leaving Your Dog Alone At Home

Like many people, you may not be available during the day for your dog. Your days may be very busy! But not your dog’s! And yes, Médor is waiting for you all day long! Maybe he even does a few silly things to keep you busy. What if you could change that? What if your dog’s day finally gets a little bit fuller? Want some clues? Read this article!

1 – Teach him to stay alone

Of course, your dog has to learn how to stay alone. It is not natural for him to be alone, since it is a source of stress, boredom and even danger. An extra canine companion is not always a solution, since two dogs can get bored. Here are the main steps to teach your dog to stay alone.

– Do not ritualize your departures. Change the obvious signs of your departures and trivialize them. In addition, make “false starts”. Take your car keys, put on your coat and sit on your couch to watch TV. Or without warning, without putting on your shoes, get out of the house! The goal being to trivialize your rituals, break them so that they are no longer a source of stress for your dog. You can also ignore your dog before you leave, but also when you come back home. Ignore means not looking at him, not touching him (neither to push him away nor for a caress) and not talking to him. If the dog is excited when you come back, once calmed down, you can call him back to give him attention.

– Fulfill his needs for going out every day! Even if you have a garden. Indeed, a dog needs to go out for a minimum of half an hour a day, every day, in order to fulfill his need for exploration, sniffing, communication. This is what makes him tired and makes him feel good in his paws.

– Give her something to keep her busy all day long! Biting toys of different textures (plush, tug, hard toy), occupancy toys (such as toys that can be stuffed with food/goods, like the Kong brand). These toys should not be available to your dog when you are present, so that they take on greater importance when you are away. It is therefore advisable to leave them available when you leave, and to pick them up when you return.

2 – How Much We Can Leave A Dog Alone In Our Home

Firstly, I think that this time can already vary according to so many criteria, that it is actually difficult to define a time. Indeed, its criteria can vary according to age, whether it is a puppy, an adult, or an old dog. But it will also change according to the emotional state of your dog. Depending on where he comes from, is he used to being alone, or is he used to the environment in which you are going to leave him (when you are on vacation in an unfamiliar place for example). This is why it is important to teach your dog to stay alone, and especially to generalize this learning as much as possible.

In spite of all this, I think a dog should not be left longer than a fork between 4 and 6 hours. You have to think that during all this time, your dog will generally not be able to relieve himself as he wishes. He will need to keep himself busy, to fill his day. Imagine yourself locked up in a house doing nothing for a whole day, without being able to go to relieve yourself, without being able to occupy you and that throughout your life. This is what most of our domestic dogs experience and this until their death. Nevertheless, there are alternative solutions.

3 – Using a Dog-sitter

To avoid leaving your dog bored at home alone, there are solutions such as a dog sitter or pet sitting. A dog-sitter is a person who can come and take care of your dog during your absences, whether during the day or even for several days. This person comes to play with your dog and especially to take him for a walk. Depending on the length of your absence, this person can also feed the dog, take care of him, in short, take care of him as if he were his own dog. The principle is really simple to set up.

The advantages of using a Dog Sitter are numerous, especially for your dog, but also for you. Let’s list these advantages together to see more clearly:

-Your dog won’t be bored during the day.

-A dog that is not bored does not destroy, bark, or defecate in the house.

-This allows to tire him in the best possible way (games, walks).

-You offer him social contact with other humans and sometimes even other dogs.

-If your dog is hyper-attached, he will learn that it is not stressful to see you leave, because during the day he will have company.

-If your dog is comfortable in his paws, you will be relieved for him. Your relationship will be softer and stronger.

A dog sitter can be found in your surroundings, if not, there are professional companies specialized in finding a good pet sitter.

4 – Where can I find a Dog Sitter?

You can find a dog sitter in your surroundings (family, friend, neighbor). This is the simplest way to do it.

But, if you don’t have a charitable soul who can take care of your dog with confidence around you, you can look for this person in professionals.

Either at dog behaviorist trainers who offer this kind of service, often coupled with education. Or thanks to dog sitter societies. The best known is Rover, the European leader in this field, since it regroups experienced, but above all controlled dog sitters. You have the possibility to see the “cv” of your sitter, as if he has passed the entrance evaluation, if the documents justifying his identity have been provided, how many reservations have been made and the comments of the other owners.

5 – My advices

I have plenty of advice to give you so that you put all the chances on your side. Leaving a puppy alone all day is not easy so having had this experience with my dog, here are my tips.

During the learning stage of solitude, if your puppy starts to cry when he is in the famous room, let him go outside, but without talking to him or even looking at him and especially without giving him a treat, because learning is a failure. You have to wait until he has his mind elsewhere to go back into the room and start the exercise again.

Always, in the solitude stage, when you increase the waiting time before coming back, do it gradually. First 5 seconds, then 20 seconds, then 1 min, then 3 and so on.

Initially, your puppy will take this exercise as a game, but the longer he waits, the more he will know that the door will take time to open. As he has learned boredom, he will be patient you will see. Sessions should in any case not last more than 20 minutes. I advise you to do 3 sessions per day of 15/20 min than one of 45 min.

When you start to leave for one hour, then two and so on, when you come back, wait until he is calm and reward your puppy with a treat.

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