Getting a puppy is one of the best feelings in the whole world. We don’t want to take our eyes off them because they are totally irresistible. Leaving your pup alone is a hard thing to do, but sometimes we don’t have an option.
Most new owners often wonder and ask, “How Long Can I Leave a Puppy Alone?”. Leaving your four-legged beloved is not only hard for us, but it could be terrible for them too. Leaving an untrained puppy alone beyond a certain limit could cause conditions like “Separation anxiety.”
There is no straightforward answer to this question. This depends upon various factors like the mental health and training of the dog. Generally, the amount of time a dog can be left alone depends upon its age.
Stay with us till the end to find out the exact time your puppy can be left alone.
General Perception Of Leaving Puppies Alone At Home
Usually, the amount of time is determined according to the age of the puppy. This is a general perception, but other factors contribute to this. If you want a simple thumb of rule, then you can follow this guide:
Puppy – not more than 2 hours
Adult Dog – 4 to 6 hours
Elder Dog – 2 to 6 hours, depending on health conditions or issues.
When you bring a puppy to your home, they immediately start considering you as their whole world. They are not prepared for spending time alone. If you leave them alone at home, they can fall prey to separation anxiety.
Another reason for not leaving the pup alone for more than 2 hours is that they pee frequently. At a young age, they are not potty trained either. This can cause a lot of trouble for your furry friend, putting you in a confused state.
Adult dogs are much more manageable if they are trained well as a puppy. Most adult dogs are trained to sleep when their owners go out. Moreover, they are also potty trained, which lessens one more thing for you to worry about.
When it comes to elderly dogs, you have to be very cautious and treat them like a puppy. Dogs can develop serious health issues as they become old. Sometimes, these health issues are manageable and sometimes, they need constant care.
The time a dog should spend alone in its old age totally depends upon its mental and physical condition.
Things To Do Before Leaving A Puppy Alone
Here are some things that you can do to ease the situation for you:
Adequate Exercise Before Leaving Your Puppy Alone
Take them on a walk (yes, even on a wet day your dog needs a walk!), play fetch with them or do whatever physical exercise they like. This will make them fall asleep faster as they will feel tired after the exercise. Morning walks are the best exercise for you and your dog before you leave them alone.
They will also be happy to spend quality time with you so it will be easy to cope with the situation.
Keep Your Puppy Confined
This practice is only for training purposes. When you start leaving your dog alone, avoid giving them full freedom. When the dogs are not properly trained, they can damage your property and hurt themselves.
When you feel that they are trained enough, you can leave the whole house open for them.
How To Train A Puppy
With proper training, you can take care of your puppy quite easily. The main purpose of the training is to make them believe that you will come back to them eventually. By following these simple steps, you can train your puppy in real-time:
1. The first step is to make them understand that leaving them alone is a part of life. For this, you have to put on the shoes and move towards the house’s main door. Even if your dog is showing any signs of stress, you have to ignore it. We know this is a hard thing to do, but it is for their wellness.
2. The second step is even harder; you will have to stop showing affection to your puppy upon returning. When you immediately show affection to your dog upon returning, they will consider it a special thing. The goal is to make this whole scenario of leaving and returning home a usual thing.
3. In the third step, you will normally direct your dog to go to their bed. This act will lower their excitement level. Once they have obeyed your command, you can interact with them affectionately. You can warmly welcome them and even offer them treats. It will be safe as the mental state of your dog will be completely changed.
This progress totally depends upon your constituency and the picking power of your puppy. Sooner or later, your pup will get used to this ritual and won’t feel lonely afterwards.
A lot of responsibilities come with owning a puppy. The hardest part of taking care of them is when you are around. By nature, dogs live in packs, and this instinct is also found in domestic dogs. They consider you as their pack, and when you leave them alone, they get scared.
We hate leaving our dogs behind, but sometimes it is inevitable. The biggest question that arises is what amount is appropriate for the dogs to spend alone. The answer to this question depends upon a lot of factors.
If your puppy is not an adult yet, then try checking upon them after every two hours at least. If your dog has entered adulthood and is properly trained, he can stay alone for up to 6 hours. As the dog’s age, they often develop health issues sooner or later and require extra care.
You can do certain things, like taking them on a walk before leaving to ease the process. At the start, you should restrict them to places where they are comfortable before removing all the restrictions.
Training them for this leave and return scenario is a little hard on the heart but doesn’t take long.