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We got Sawyer the second last week of June and, as a teacher, I was almost finished work. We had no students that week so I was able to come home to feed him and let him out for a bit of a play and potty. I am off now and return to work on Sept. 1 at which point he will be 5 months old.

What do people who work do with their young dogs during the time they are away? We only get 1/2 hour for lunch and while I work close to home there wouldn't be enough time most days for me to get home, feed him and let him out to potty and then be back by the end of lunch.

Currently he is crated at night and during times when we can't be at home...but it's never been a solid 8 hours (well, at night...). I will have to leave around 8am and won't be able to be home until 3:30-4. I know that sounds like a long time and I'm starting to really worry about it.

Should I set up some area other than the crate where he has more room to move around? Like where or what..examples? Right now we have a large size PetPorter style crate and although it's fairly roomy it doesn't leave a lot of room for him to move around, have some water/food in there, toys, etc. Also, do you think it will set back his housetraining (he's pretty much there now except for the odd accident)? Any suggestions from those with experience? I'm just not sure what to expect from a 5 mo. old puppy.

thanks!
 

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Leaving him in the crate is 100% fine. It protects him from getting into trouble or eating something he shouldn't and it protects your house.

Find a pet sitter that is bonded (re: insured) and get references from them. Once you've found the right person or company have them come at the half way point so the pup doesn't regress with housetraining.
 

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He'll be old enough at that point not to need a noon meal, just a potty break. Maybe you'd have enough time for that? Or could find someone to let him out?
 

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Misty & Holly's Mom :)
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I had a neighborhood girl come after high school (230) to let Holly out to potty when I had to work when Holly was younger...and she loves dogs so she would stay and play with both dogs! Its worked out great..she wants to still come even though at 7 months I dont think Holly needs to go out....but since she wants to come still I let her!!
I have the XL wire crate and theres plenty of room for Holly to move around and I have two water bowls attached to the side so she always has water. When I leave I do give her a bone with some PB wiped inside and some food tossed in there and I always leave on the TV or a radio for them.
Im sure Sawyer will be ok! :)
 

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Chester's Mommy
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Is there anyone who can come over? Even if it's just for about an hour?

When we first brought Chester home, he was never home alone. Either me or DH would work from home, or his mom or my sister would be there with him.

Now that he's getting older, we can leave him for a couple hours in his crate by himself. DH and I work Monday - Friday jobs. He leaves last at around 8 am. And I get home first at about 4:45pm. He's still too young to be left home that long by himself, but we don't need someone with him 24/7. So now MIL will come like 11 - 2 if one of us isn't working from home. That way, he isn't by himself for more than 3-4 hours.
 

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The park is a good place to ask other dogowners in your area about a good, reliable walker. A good walker will want to meet you and your dog before agreeing to take you on as a client - and you'll want to make sure you feel confident about leaving your precious pup in his/her care. Rates vary - you can probably google around to see what the going rate is in your area. Where I am, it's $16 a day - well worth it.

Crate - totally agree with everyone. Crating is the best way to keep your pup safe when you're out. I also had the XL size I think - when my dog went in and turned around and lay down, she filled up about half of it. So she could shift around and lie at the other end to get comfy if she needed to. But she loved her crate - she felt safe and I felt good knowing she was safe.
 

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Do you have a retired neighbor or a stay at home mom who could come by and let him out for a a few minutes. With tough economic times I bet they would be happy to do it for $5 or so a day for a few months. When I went back to work with my first Golden he was 6 months old and I could come home for lunch. I did that for about a year, by then we didn't use the crate anymore.
 

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Knife Swallower
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Definitely try to find a walker. The gal I use for Ranger also offers puppy-sitting and day-time potty breaks and walks for dogs (not just puppies). Or check with a neighbour you trust and see if they'd come over and let puppy out and do quick play session in the yard or something.

Another place to check for a good walker is your vet clinic. Ask the people working there if they'd recommend anyone.
 

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I am in the same boat as you. I have an 8mth and I will be going back to work part time teaching in Sept. I will be back home at 2.45p.m. and considering finding someone to take him for a toilet and leg stretch at 12.00 every day. I'm fortunate in that I don't need to crate him, he's never been crated and I toilet/house trained him very quickly ( he was a fast learner) without the need for a crate. He's a chewer ( but he chews the right things 'his toys') but I'm worried about his chewing potential once I change our daily routine :uhoh:

Your pup is younger than mine, and when he was little we used 'chew stopper' on anything we saw potentially hazardous or something he may have enjoyed getting his teeth around (i.e. furniture, chair legs)...very quickly he knew not to go near electrical cables and furniture was a no no too. I am very confident leaving him in the house with access to all rooms now. He actually won't go near to wiring of any kind and if a toy goes near it he will either leave it or come to me to get it for him :)

How is he/she if you leave him/her in the house out of the crate? He/she may be far more relaxed not spending the afternoons in a crate. At 8mths my dog has got so much energy and know he would freak out in a crate. I love it if I've been out with friends for the afternoon and when I return I see his toys and chew things spread out from one end of the house to the other. He looks happy to see me but I know he's been having fun. :)
 
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