Having a puppy when you’re working full time can be a real challenge for owners.
Especially if you’re not living with family.
Puppies demand lots of time and attention, and can be a challenge for anyone, much less someone who’s at work all day.
But don’t fret!
If you’re someone who fits this description, and are thinking of getting your own puppy, you really can!
There are plenty of ways that you can balance your work schedule with caring for your pup.
Leaving a puppy alone while at work isn’t something as monstrous as you might initially think!
You’ll probably worry about her all day in the beginning.
After all you want to be sure that your puppy is safe, happy and healthy while you’re away.
But don’t worry…
We’ll get into everything you should do, and how to plan things…
That includes how long a puppy can be left alone during the day, your options for puppy care while you are away working full time, and much more!
1. Find the Best Spot for Your Puppy
We all have our favorite “spots” in the house.
The usual places we like to hang out in.
Could be lounging in a particular chair in the living room, a swing on the porch or a more obvious spot in the bedroom.
Well, it’s the same for dogs.
Your dog should have his or her “spot” too.
And if you’re looking to restrict your dog’s movements in the house while you’re gone, naturally it will help that you include one or more of those in that area.
It’s also important then to see that you “puppy proof” the area as much as possible.
What’s that you ask?
Like ensuring there’s nothing your puppy can chew out or otherwise destroy, swallow inadvertently, etc.
And, having an easy to clean floor always helps in case there are “accidents”!
2. Using Crates and Play Pens
If your puppy isn’t going to be left alone for long hours, using a large-sized playpen or crate isn’t a bad idea.
Especially if your puppy has particularly destructive tendencies you haven’t yet managed to train him or her out of.
With the best crate that’s large enough for your puppy to move around a bit in, room for toys, feeding and water bowls you can leave your puppy crated for up to 3-4 hours.
However, that’s provided you have crate-trained your puppy already.
Otherwise, it’s just cruel to leave him or her caged in for hours.
Another thing to make sure of is that the crate or playpen has enough space that your puppy make a “mess” in a corner – away from the sleeping/playing space.
And keep in mind, it’s a horrible idea to leave your pup crated for more than 3-4 hours at a time.
So unless you plan on getting back home within that interval for breaks, or have arranged for a dog-sitter, neighbor or family/friends to drop in to relieve your pup, do NOT try this.
This really isn’t an option if you’re working full time without you or someone else dropping in on your puppy in between.
3. Using Dog Walkers, Dog Sitters and Daycares
Having a trusted dog-walker, sitter or friends or family is arguably the most convenient way to take care of your pup while away working full time.
If the person is well vouched for by a trusted vet and other owners, there’s no harm in giving it a shot.
Also, if all else fails you can always consider doggy daycares.
If you can afford them, and they are well run, they can arguably provide one of the best places for your puppy’s growth and development outside of home.
However, if you end up choosing a daycare, do make sure you have good referrals from veterinarians and other owners.
Also, do check the facilities of the daycare for yourself, and that there is an associated vet on hand or nearby for emergencies.
4. Try to Make Extra Time for Your Puppy When Working Full Time
When you’re away so much, it’s crucial to make up for lost time with your puppy.
You don’t want to lose all that time for bonding!
And whether it’s just for 2 hours or a whole shift of 8, you can bet your puppy will be sad about being home alone.
So what can you do about it?
Plenty, as a matter of fact.
For starters, you can make sure you cover up time by playing and spending extra time with your pup.
Get up an hour early…sleep a little later…schedule some extra play time over weekends.
You can also try things at work, wherever they are possible, like:
- Taking longer breaks in the middle of the day if possible to check-in at home
- Working from home on certain days, or for certain hours of the day
- Taking your dog to work – yes, a lot of places allow that now!
5. Use Puppy Pee Pads!
Lastly, if you have to leave your puppy alone at home for more than an hour or so, you can bet that he or she will leave a mess at some point or the other.
Even the most well trained dogs mess up sometimes.
And so, it’s always good to have insurance…or at least something that makes it easier to clean up later.
Puppy pee pads or training pads can really make your life easier in these situations.
For instance, our own Bulldogology Premium Puppy Pads make for highly absorbent, easy-to-use, pee pads with odor blocking technology.
So you can rest assured in the knowledge that even if your puppy does have an accident, it’s not going to be an evening of scrubbing away at the floor or scouring your carpet.
As long as you have trained your puppy to know he or she has to go on the pee pad, you’re good.
These are virtually essentials when you’re working full time.
We hope you find these tips useful in figuring out how to care for your puppy when you’re working fulltime.
If you have any additional tips or suggestions of your own, do let us know in the comments section below!