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Hi Everyone,

I just got a golden retriever puppy (Turbo) 2 days ago and the weekend has been great. This is our first dog and I seem to be worrying about everything. I’ve been wanting a golden retriever for years but was waiting until I could provide a big enough space. We just bought our first house so we were finally able to get a puppy.

The breeder we got Turbo from had some unusual circumstances due to a family emergency so she gave us Turbo early (only 6 weeks old). I’m really worried about the puppy’s development because I’ve been reading puppies should stay with their moms and litters up until 7-8 weeks old at least. Any advice on how I should handle this situation? I want Turbo to be healthy both physically and emotionally.

I also work full time which means she has to be alone for 9 hours every weekday. I initially took 1 week off of work for when I thought I was going to get her (2 weeks later) but since we got her early we only had the past weekend to help her adjust. I blocked off a large area for her to hang out at home but it really broke my heart when I left for work this morning hearing her cry. I keep worrying about her being bored or lonely while I’m at work right now. Will she become depressed from being alone for that long each day? What kind of toys should I leave with her? How do dog owners who work full time make it work? I would greatly appreciate any tips from experienced golden retriever owners.

Thanks.
 

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First of all, congratulations! Turbo is a great name- any photos? That is rough, on you and on Turbo, logistically, that you carefully arranged time off and then the breeder changed things. Must have been a big emergency for the breeder to justify that! Can you hire, very temporarily, a dogwalker, to come by mid-day and visit with her and feed her. She should have 3 or 4 meals a day at such a young age. Definitely leave the TV or NPR on for her so she can get exposed to some noises and hear voices, as well as many different kinds of safe toys. Do you have any nice neighbors who can just come visit with her? You will, down the road, want to take her to puppy kindergarden, so maybe you could investigate a nice, friendly dog trainer in your area now to assist you in brainstorming solutions? Or maybe your boss/your workplace might be understanding and let you bring her for a little while? I dont think you can really leave her alone for so long. At six weeks, it would really help her to interact with a very gentle, trustworthy, well-vaccinated older dog. Maybe your vet \'s office could hook you up with a kind soul? Maybe a college student home on summer break or a high school student could be a "dog nanny" just for the first month?
 

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Some of these questions I know others can help you with more. But have you considered hiring a dog walker type person that can come over mid-day to take your pup out and play with it for a while. This will help better train and socialize Turbo, and of course make you feel better while you are at work.
 

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Now Caue's Dad Too!
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Welcome to the forum. 9 hours is a very long time for a puppy. Is there anyway you can have someone let her out at noon time for a quick potty break? Also I think a crate would be a better idea than a small room. Pups prefer the den like atmosphere of a crate better than a big scary room. Good luck to you;.
 

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Two more thoughts: maybe there is an off-chance you live near a GRF member geographically. This group is pretty amazing at helping out! I see you are in Californai- if Maine were closer, I would love to come and chat with Miss Turbo. How about asking the breeder to lend you a gentle older dog/the mother/ or a littermate for a month so it is not so traumatic for little Turbo to stay home so long?
 

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One more thought: maybe there is an off-chance you live near a GRF member geographically. This group is pretty amazing at helping out! I see you are in Californai- if Maine were closer, I would love to come and chat with Miss Turbo.

Good suggestion...I'd love the opportunity to play with a puppy ALL DAY...for free...I love puppies. Alas...Michigan here.

Jan, Seamus, Gracie & Phoebe
 

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Welcome to the forum and congratulations on your puppy. Now Turbo is very young and she really does need someone with her most of the time, I wouldn't leave a puppy that age for longer than an hour or 2 at the very most, there are definitely ways you can make this work but you really need to get somebody looking after her for the long hours she is home alone. Puppies need an awful lot at this age and to be alone for such an extended time it isn't really possible to meet her needs as the situation is at the moment. I really, strongly urge you to put some additional care in place for her...Of course many owners do work full time and it is possible to have a well adjusted, happy dog that is alone for long hours BUT at this fragile age she needs somebody to be with her a lot of the time....maybe just have the additional care in place until she is 6 months or so then she will be much better equipt to deal with the long hours alone...if I were you I would look into doggy day care or pet sitters to fill in the time when you can't be with her.

Im sorry if I seem a bit negative but I don't see a way around it unless there is somebody physically there to take care of her as no amount of toys can make up for human interaction at that age...good luck with her, let us know how you get on...
 

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congratulations on your new baby!

as everyone said, a puppy that young really shouldn't be left alone that long. i would say an hour or two at most, in a crate.
where in california are you? if by chance you are in southern california, near the santa clarita valley area, let me know! i'll come visit with your puppy!!!
 

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Hello and Welcome,
Great suggestions from everone so I wont repeat them. Cant wait to see pictures of her and hope you can find a dog walker or someone to help you with her until she gets alittle older. I love the name Turbo and probably fits her personality.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Thank you to everyone for all your suggestions and help. I really do appreciate it. I ended up leaving work early yesterday because I was so worried. She was a lot more hyper yesterday while I was at home. I'm guessing either from the lack of interaction in the morning or from her becoming more comfortable in our home. For the remainder of the week, I've asked one of my close friends to stop by and play with her for 4 hours or so in between. I will have to figure out what to do next. I like the idea of getting a dog walker/puppy baby sitter. I'll just have to find someone trustworthy.


congratulations on your new baby!

as everyone said, a puppy that young really shouldn't be left alone that long. i would say an hour or two at most, in a crate.
where in california are you? if by chance you are in southern california, near the santa clarita valley area, let me know! i'll come visit with your puppy!!!
I actually live in Lakewood which is near the city Long Beach. It's quite a ways from Santa Clarita...

I'm not sure where else to start for a puppy babysitter.. maybe Petco or Petsmart would know? She's still too young for a pet hotel and the vet said she can't have any interactions with any other dogs yet until she gets all her shots.

I will post pictures soon...
 

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It is nice that your friend is able to help you. I know she cant go to the doggy daycare yet but they may know of some good dogwalkers or ask your vet. Sometimes the vet techs are looking for some side money and can help. Good luck.
Cant wait for the pictures.
 

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Since things came together faster than you were expecting this will feel like a very trying time for you. Once you get things worked out I am sure you are going to enjoy your little pup even more. That is great you already found someone to help out for a couple hours now.
Keep us posted on how it all is going for you and your little girl.
 

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I finally got a chance to move pictures from my camera to the computer last night. Hopefully I uploaded them right here...

I looked up several dog-sitters online yesterday. It seems out of all of them, those that can service my area can only stay a maximum of 2 hours each day. It is better than nothing but I wasn't satisfied with that. Luckily my friend that has been helping me out the past two days mentioned she's looking for a short term job (for the next 3 weeks). So I told her I'd pay her to come to my place and play with Turbo! She offered to be there around noon and stay for 4-5 hours a day so that still leaves Turbo alone for 4-5 hours straight in the morning but I guess it'll have to do for now. Hopefully she doesn't get too lonely during that time. :crossfing I'll ask the vet and pet hotels for a dog sitter I can use after the 3 weeks. Thanks for all your help! :)
 

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What a beauty. Looks a little like my puppy Wallace.
 

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Wow what a cutie-pie!!!! And what a great thing that worked out with your friend... works for all concerned!!! Way to go mama!!!
 

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What a cutie! :) I'm glad your friend is able to help you out, too!
 
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