How to Take Care of a Puppy When you Work
Plenty of people work full-time and still manage to care for a new puppy. However, there are many reasons why they cope so this article will explain all the aspects you need to consider when caring for your new puppy.
For the purpose of this article, we’ll assume you have weighed up the pros and cons of getting a puppy and have decided to make that commitment. Plan on taking holidays from work so you can be at home when you first bring your puppy home.
Remember that while your home is very familiar to you, it will be a strange environment for your new puppy.
Prior to Pomeranian Puppy's Arrival
Before you collect your new puppy, you need to spend time puppy-proofing your home to help keep your new, very inquisitive, puppy safe as he starts to wander around. This means removing anything from the floor and near floor level that could potentially be hazardous to his health if he eats it or even touches it.
Crawl around on your hands and knees and lay on your stomach and look underneath lounge chairs and beds to ensure nothing dangerous is hidden from your normal view but not from your puppy’s line of sight.
Is it Practical to Own a Puppy if you Work all Day?
Yes, it’s practical BUT it’s a HUGE COMMITMENT. You can’t buy a puppy on a whim and then get rid of it a week later because you hadn’t thought it all through properly. You need to think about the trouble your puppy may get up to at home while you’re working.
He’ll need to be properly trained, which takes a great deal of your time. You need to think about housetraining, possible barking and/or howling, digging, chewing things that aren’t toys, feeding him and training him to adapt to being home during the day on his own. Let’s address these issues and find solutions.
It’s common that if your puppy is left alone all day, he’ll wet his bed. He has a small bladder capacity and may urinate wherever he happens to be. In the early days, he may not even last 20 minutes and an average capacity for a puppy that’s 8-10 weeks old is only up to one hour. So if left alone for the day, you can’t scold him for wetting himself because he has no control.
Does it really matter if your puppy wets his bed? YES! It really DOES matter because if he does it a few times, he may then stop caring about having wet his bed. Then he won’t try to last longer and it will be harder to train him not to wet his bed.
If you’re out at work all day, you need to decide where you’ll leave your puppy. You can’t simply keep him in a crate. You can’t let him run around your whole house or you’ll find he poops and pees in every room, in places you wouldn’t expect or find easily…remember, he’s smaller than you. So you have two choices. You either set up a playpen or you puppy-proof a room for him to stay in.
Puppy-Proofing a Room
The kitchen is the most logical choice because the floor can easily be mopped. However, even your kitchen may not be safe.
When puppies are on their own for hours, they become bored quickly and look for things to occupy themselves. They may chew a towel hanging down, the power cable of the fridge or other power leads accessible to them. Mats, loose skirting boards, floor coverings and much more are all possible chewing targets. If your puppy is clever enough, he may be able to get onto your table and that would give him lots of other fun (destructive) things to do.
Barriers and Puppy Playpens
An easier solution to your problem is a puppy pen. They’re versatile and can be set up almost anywhere. Choose something solid or puppy may be able to escape and cause havoc. There’s plenty of space for your puppy to sleep, eat and drink at one end, and an area for him to do his business at the other end.
Using this method will teach him to develop natural instincts to keep his space clean. Once he gets a little older, your home becomes his den and he’ll still have this same instinct.
Barking and Howling Problems
It’s natural for some puppies to feel lonely when left alone all day, especially when their home is still very new to them. Barking and howling are ways to attract attention and they can certainly be loud when doing so. If your neighbours are home, they won’t like the constant noise so you need to think about how much time you can be away from home in those early days. You also must ensure he has plenty of things to keep himself entertained.
It can be hard to know if your puppy is making a nuisance of himself and/or annoying the neighbours so one way to find out is to buy a monitoring system.
The better systems can let you watch and interact with your puppy through the use of Wi-Fi, where video images are sent either to your computer or phone. You can see what your puppy is doing and ensure he’s ok. Some types only activate when the dog is moving.
The top range monitors have a two-way microphone so you can talk to your pet. Others offer treat dispensers and a variety of games.
The Initial Few Weeks Are The Hardest.
When you first get your puppy, that’s the hardest time in every way. He needs to be toilet trained and learn how to socialise. If he’s alone for long periods, he may feel isolated and distressed. This separation anxiety is tough to handle initially so your puppy needs you to spend as much time with him as possible in the early stages so you can both get used to each other. If you can’t be home as much as necessary, consider enlisting the help of family, neighbours or friends.
Teach your New Pom Puppy How to Use His Crate While you’re Working.
You must do the initial crate training as he’s your puppy and you’ll need to be home most of the time to do it properly. Remember your small puppy has a tiny bladder and would wet his bed in the crate over and over again if left alone all day. Your new puppy needs company while you work, especially in his early days.
You generally can’t quit work just to look after a puppy so you need to enlist the services of family, friends and neighbours to spend time with him when you’re not home.
This will improve his crate and toilet training more rapidly. It will help him learn how to cope while alone for lengthier time periods. A puppy gets noisy when he’s bored as well so it’s wise to have a variety of treats and toys to keep him occupied.
Even when your dog has become an adult, it’s unwise to keep him locked in the house alone all day long (unless it’s an emergency). Some dogs handle isolation better than others and some will get into lots of mischief.
It’s unhealthy if your dog can’t relieve himself when he has the urge and is forced to hold it in. If your dog is alone all day, find somebody to take him for a walk and play with him at least once each day
A Dog is Yours for Life
You never should get a dog on a whim. He’s a huge commitment and you make it for the term of his natural life which can be 15 years or more in some cases.
How Long Can You Leave Your New Pomeranian Puppy Alone While You Work?
Here’s a set of guidelines to teach you learn how long you can leave your puppy alone at any given at any stage in his life.
Eight to 10 weeks old: Your Pomeranian puppy must be given lots of attention and company. Your home will initially feel strange as he hasn’t been there before and he may feel isolated and upset if you work all day and he’s left all on his own. You’ll need time off work so you can spend all day with your puppy, getting used to him and letting him get used to you. If this isn’t possible, you must find somebody else to do it for you.
Your tiny Pomeranian is susceptible to hypoglycaemia and requires small meals often. He’ll also need to be taken to the designated toilet area frequently due to his small bladder and the inability to hold it in. The time between visits will gradually increase as he grows and spends more time on his own.
You’ll need to take your puppy out to socialise with others as often as possible and it’s virtually impossible to accomplish this only at night or on the weekends when you’re not working. He’ll easily become distressed if left on his own for lengthy periods.
Ten to 12 weeks old: Your pet’s bladder will have grown a little but it still won’t be big enough to handle being inside for the morning or afternoon while you’re at work.
If you put him in a crate, you’ll need somebody to let him out in the middle of the morning or afternoon so he can do his business. If you intend to leave your pet on his own for more than four hours, a puppy pen is the best solution.
His sleeping area will be at one end with the door open. The opposite end will be his toilet area so it’s not close to his bed.
Three to six months old: At this stage of his life, his bladder generally copes with not being able to urinate for four hours. If he’s in a crate, he may even sleep four hours.
When you work, you also need to factor travel time. You might have a job where you work from 9-5 BUT it takes you 60-90 minutes travel each way so you’re really not at home for 11 hours.
If you can’t get home during lunch, a puppy pen would be the smartest way to keep your Pomeranian puppy safe and still let him do his business.
Consider the height of the pen walls. Some puppies can jump quite high when they get to six months old. At this age, he can become incredibly destructive, particularly if bored so you need to think harder about how you’ll keep puppy penned while you’re out.
Each Dog is Unique
Guidelines are designed to help you make decisions about the care of your puppy. However, each dog is unique so you need to get support from your vet, breeders and other professionals if you have questions or doubts about any aspect of his care.
Always have back-up plans. Dog walkers can be sick, dog crèches may be shut and family and friends may have other commitments of their own. Try to have at least two people who can step in quickly and easily if needed.
Get a second dog. Then they’ll keep each other company and take some of the pressure off your shoulders. If you work and want to be the proud owner of a Pomeranian puppy, it can be done. However, you need to evaluate every aspect of his care and whether you can truly commit to loving a puppy for life, not just for a week.
In many cases a dog doesn’t get enough care if the household gets too busy with other things in their lives. So create a detailed care plan and include all the other people that may be able to help you so you have support and backups for every occasion.
Did you cope?
Have you managed to work a job and devote the necessary care and attention to your Pomeranian puppy? If so, would you like to share your personal tips with others? There are forums and chat sites where you can go for online support 24/7 and the support is offered by people who have been in your situation.
If you don’t have the time and won’t commit to properly caring for a new puppy, then don’t get one! It’s unfair on the puppy if you can’t attend to his needs and you’ll be viewed as selfish.
Copyright Pomeranian.org. All Rights Reserved.