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Old 04-17-2007, 04:08 AM   #1
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Default I work 9 AM-5 PM. Can I still own a dog?

I'm thinking of getting a little miniture schnauzer girl puppy in June. Obviously I would take a couple of weeks off work when I get her but then after that one of my concerns is that I work 9 am-5 pm and she will be left in the house while I'm out. My dad will call in at lunch time and take her out, I'm still concerned that she'll be lonely. I would take her for out for a walk before I go to work and after I get home, and she would have weekend with me.

The breeder says that his daughter has a pup and she's fine when her daughter works all day. What does anyone else think? Do you guys leave your dogs unattended when your at work?

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Old 04-17-2007, 11:34 AM   #2
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Boy I do not like to be a wet blanket, but I can't say I recommend it. When they are very young, puppies need a tremendous amount of attention. This is so that they are trained properly. Puppies need to pee and poo every two hours or so so it is not a good diea to leave them alone all day. When they are older they can hold it longer.

You may get differing opinions, and I guess it can be done, but it is much much harder than getting an adult dog. Even with an adult, you really need to come home at lunchtime or have someone else stop by and let them out for a short break.

At any rate, good luck whatever you decide!
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Old 04-17-2007, 11:39 AM   #3
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Welcome to the forum
Working 9-5 doesn't leave a lot of time to spend with your pup. The pup needs training everyday...and taking off a few weeks wouldn't be enough. As skunkstripe said, the pup will need to go business quite often, every couple of hours. I don't think any pup would be too happy spending most of its days in a crate while you are gone.
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Old 04-17-2007, 11:41 AM   #4
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Is your dad's schedule flexible so that he can spend some time with your pup in the middle of the day? If so, I would think that a good walk, some play time & some extra attention while you're gone when she is very young would work out OK.

In the beginning, if you can take some time off work to get your pup into a schedule & crate trained, I wouldn't necessarily advise against getting a pup if your dad has lots of free time on his hands mid-day for the first couple of months.

It isn't the ideal situation but as long as you're willing to spend lots of your time in the evenings & weekends, you could overcome lots of the downfalls of having a young pup with so much time being confined.

If your dad will only have time for a quick in & out & pat on the head; however, I recommend you consider rescuing an older dog.
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Old 04-17-2007, 11:43 AM   #5
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Have to say I am with Skunkstripe on this one sorry. Not saying it can't be done,but just saying it is a long time to leave a young puppy. Can you not get someone to puppy sit as Skunkstripe says puppies need fed evry 2 or 3 hours as well as their potty needs. An older dog would be better suited to be left fot his amount of time, but I would not recommend it for a puppy and even for an older dog it is a long time . Your dad would still have to go in lunch times. Sorry if this is not what you wanted to hear.
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Old 04-17-2007, 11:58 AM   #6
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gonna sound very "on the moral high ground " here but,
to leave a puppy for eight hours a day seems very unfair to me, even with someone calling in at lunch,

i got my dog at 5 weeks old but i was on long term sick leave so spent the first 16 weeks of his life with him , he was toilet trained by 8 weeks but . once he was 16 weeks (he is now 16 mths) i went back to part time work but my partner works in vehicle recovery so my dog mostly went out with him in the truck from 8.30am till 12 noon ( he had a walk before work ) then he would bring him home and get another walk , by this time its 1pm. Saffi is the on his own for about an hour , but we have a puppy flap in the back door so he can get in and out as he needs to and yes the garden is very secure and high fenced with locked gates. i finish work at quater to 2 and i am home by 2...this is saffi`s playtime.... then if i go anywhere saffi comes with me,(whenever possible ) and he has another long walk and playtime after tea ( about 7.30pm.
Ok i agree saffi is a much bigger dog than what you are planning to get but dogs are social animals.
my friends dog (same age as saffi ) suffers with seperation anxiety as my friend leaves him for far too long and comes home and finds her home and furniture torn . I ahve told her many times this is not the dogs fault and now she agrees that her lifestyle does not have room for a dog and she is having to re home him .......and with his history she is having a problem doing that. With saffi we have no problem with him on the very rare occasion he is left at home when it has been impossible to take him with us and im sure that is because he feels secure and confident though i must add he has never been left for more than four hours and that has only happened a couple of times all the time we have had him. I know it can work for some people and thier dogs but I personally think a dog needs /deserves company to be a confident secure and happy little chappie
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Old 04-17-2007, 01:00 PM   #7
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I agree with Katz in that it is possible to be done. My wife and I both work full time (she is a nurse so has different shifts to what I work) and Shankly is left on his own for up to 6 hours and he has turned out to be a perfectly rounded dog who does not have any seperation issues (Doesn't cry or bark when left alone and also doesn't chew anything). The advantage we had was that my wife was off for a while when we first got him so he was not left alone when he first arrived as a puppy.
If your dad could spend some time with him in the day then I don't see to big of a problem.

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Old 04-17-2007, 01:01 PM   #8
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Well personally I'm going to take the moral "low ground" (just messin' with ya saffsma ). For a very young puppy (8 weeks-ish), I agree that's probably too long to leave her, just from a toilet-training standpoint. If you were looking at an older puppy (4+ months), I think she'd be fine. LOTS of people have regular, 9-5 jobs and raise happy, healthy dogs. It just takes a little flexibility, and a lot of time and energy in your off-hours. It would definitely be better if your dad could spend a little time with her at lunch.

Your dog may indeed end up lonely - it sort of depends on the dog. Some dogs are fine as long as they can still smell you, they just wait for you to get back. Others suffer seperation anxiety. A lot of it would have to do with your training and attitude (read up on how to prevent seperation anxiety, do a lot of research - speaking as someone who did practically NONE prior to getting a dog, it can really help you out).

Personally I think that just because you don't have an 'ideal' dog situation, that it should deny you the joys of having a dog companion. Good luck
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Old 04-17-2007, 01:13 PM   #9
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There's been some great comments here.

Millions of pet owners have dogs and manage to hold down full time jobs.

Millions of dogs and puppies taken in under these circumstances also wind up in shelters every year. The average age of abandoned or dumped dogs is 6 months. The biggest excuse is destructive behavior, trouble housebreaking, seperation anxiety and the realization that the owner doesn't have enough time to spend with the dog to address these problems.

My daughters miniature Schnauzer is a rescue from a loving but busy owner. He came with some serious behavioral issues including, lack of socialization leading to an intolerance for children, seperation anxiety, and other problems which it's taken a long time to correct.

All of the issues that come with working and having a dog can be worked out with time, dedication and much forethought before making the decision to get a puppy.

It's not only the fact that the puppy will be alone for most of the day that needs to be considered. It's also important to consider how much time you have to devote to training and socializing a puppy when you're not at work.

Puppies need exercise, play, lots of attention and consistent training. If you're fully prepared to make this commitment and accept the frustrations that go along with it. You can make it work!

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Old 04-17-2007, 01:22 PM   #10
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My wife and I both work full time, and we got Ellie when she was 9 weeks old. Yes, it was rough getting up in the middle of the night to let her take care of business, and it was tiresome having to come home in the middle of the day to feed her and spend time with her, but she's now a happy, well behaved adult pup. The important thing is to see to the puppy's physical needs and to shower them with all of the attention (and training) as you can.

It definitely will take a lot of dedication on your part to make an arrangement like this work, particularly for the first 16+ weeks, but it's well worth it to bring a pup into your life if you are willing to put in the time and effort.
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