Question for dog owners who work full time

(36 Posts)
Pennies Wed 23-Apr-14 16:44:21

What do you do with your dog whilst you're at work?

i have a labrador who is now 6 months old. She is still in her cage but getting too big for it. Once she grows out of it she will be in the utility room but she's still chewing like mad and I am worried she'll trash the room which is quite a new room.

Anyhoo. I will be chaining my hours soon to full time, 2 x days per week, part time on the other three. I am wondering how to manage doggy daycare.

My garden is enclosed but she because we have loads of deliveries etc I'm not confident about people closing the gate so i'm not sure how secure she will be if I got a kennel and left her in the garden.

I don't have room for a large dog run.

Floralnomad Wed 23-Apr-14 17:02:29

Don't leave the dog in the garden ,even with locked gates ,dogs get stolen from gardens everyday and dog theft is a growing crime in some areas.

SpicyPear Wed 23-Apr-14 17:55:06

Absolutely do not leave a dog in a garden that people have access to! Theft and escape are very real possibilities. It would be utterly irresponsible.

Pointeshoes Wed 23-Apr-14 18:03:05

I think it very much depends on where you live to have your dog outside and how secure your garden is. Next door neighbours have three dogs who have a secure solid fence and locked gate and a shed for shelter. Or you could get a kennel with a run attached or make one which is larger enough and so the dog can't dig out. I've seen kennels on ebay although they are pricey.
I think the best thing to do would be to make sure the dog have things to do , like kong toys and ropes to prevent boredom and to let her have a chew. Leave her for a short time in the utility with bed, water and new toys for 10mins if necessary and build up longer stretches. Give her treats of food or a walk / play on your return.

Lonecatwithkitten Wed 23-Apr-14 18:57:15

I take him to work with me a minimum of two days a week and up to four days. The others I get home at lunchtime and work split shifts he is never home alone for more than four hours.
He just hangs out on my bed while I'm gone.

Nunyabiz Wed 23-Apr-14 19:04:25

We used to live very close to work and dropped home for lunch every day. Now days I'm at home but heavily pregnant with a toddler so I can't walk them so DH takes them to the office (self employed) sorry probably not helpful! There was an intermittent stage where we hired a dog walker to drop in every day for 2 hours.

Pennies Thu 24-Apr-14 10:40:57

Hmmm, well it would seem a dog run is probably the best bet. They are very expensive though aren't they.

PurpleFrog Thu 24-Apr-14 13:42:31

Can you find the space to put a bigger crate?

punter Thu 24-Apr-14 14:53:51

As a lab owner (19 months old) I would be wary of putting a 6 month old in a crate however large. Especially if you are working f/t during 2 days. The dog will be missing out on social stuff and exercise. A stuffed kong won't last that long. We book ours into doggy daycare at least once a week, leaves him worn out for at least 24 hours afterwards! They will have a key and put him back in the house if we cannot be there to receive him.

We have a ridgeback staffie x and although I don't work, she goes to daycare once a week. She absolutely loves it, comes home shattered and it's great for socializing with other dogs, it means I don't have to come home every 4 hours which is especially great if I want to take the kids out for a day during the holidays etc. She's 9 months old but I wouldn't leave her for longer than that.

Why not build a dog run? We did this in our back garden, fenced off a section with a gate (all about 6ft high) and with a kennel and a 'lean to' for shading from the sun.

on the days she doesn't to to work with DP my mad spaniel goes in her run and is happy as larry - we leave her food and water, she has fresh air, space to stretch her legs, patch of sunshine to lie in and she is free to toilet as she needs.

I don't have any concerns about her being stolen, but we do live in the middle of the countryside in the arse of nowhere.

Definitely a fraction of the cost to build own run rather than buy one, go to a builders merchants for you posts/mesh etc as much cheaper than b&q say.

RhinosAreFatUnicorns Thu 24-Apr-14 15:54:21

We use daycare 3 days a week for our lab. The other two days, I'm either home or he's shattered from the previous day's playing with his mates smile

chocolatelime Thu 24-Apr-14 18:36:49

Please don't shut your dog in a crate for hours on end! Definitely look into the option of doggy daycare, or even a dog walking service. Some dog walkers offer a 'let out' service where they come in and just let your dog into the garden for 20 minutes and this is a much cheaper option. A labrador is a very social dog and she will not enjoy being on her own for long stretches of time.

You can stuff a kong with Chappie or something similar and then freeze it as this then lasts a bit longer. Labs will definitely chew if they are bored (they will chew if they are not bored!) so you will need to make sure that there is nothing in your utility room that could potentially harm her if she does chew it.

I have 2 labradors and they have free roaming of the entire house when I am out, but it has taken time to build up to that level of trust. One of my labs would be very happy in an outside run and the other would absolutely hate it - every dog is different! I hope that you manage to work out a solution.

LtEveDallas Thu 24-Apr-14 18:40:55

I'm lucky on that the Mutt comes to work with me, but any other day if we expect to be away for more than 3 hours then she would go into Doggy daycare. I think it's cruel to leave a dog longer than that. Maybe google your local area to see if you have that or a dog walking/care service available.

PurpleFrog Fri 25-Apr-14 08:52:50

BTW I wasn't suggesting she shut the dog in a bigger crate all day. In conjunction with a dog walker it would prevent the utility room being trashed, but for a young dog daycare would certainly be the best option.

TheRealThursdayNext Fri 25-Apr-14 09:06:26

Dogs ARE expensive OP, and puppies do chew, sometimes for years! You should have known this before you got her. Obviously your situation has changed so this is unforseen cost, but your longer working hours should help pay for the dog walking/daycare or whatever she needs to get through the day. She certainly shouldn't be left home alone all day, she's still a puppy.
To answer your question though, we got an older rescue dog who didn't chew and wasn't quite as bouncy who was happier to be left, and we sorted out a dog walker before we got the dog.

ThePrisonerOfAzkaban Fri 25-Apr-14 09:27:35

Not too sure on a dog being left on its own all day. We fit our lives around our kids and animals, we wouldn't take a job that ment they suffer, I know not everyone can do this though. Do you have a neighbour who would pop in and let the dog out? Dog kennel/run is fine but what if it gets mega hot or snowing/rain all day etc? Could you pop home in your lunch hour?

haggisaggis Fri 25-Apr-14 12:21:15

I work full time but am fortunate that 2 days I work from home and 1 day a fortnight dh is off. The other days we use doggy daycare (£ 13 per day). But I knew this before we got the dog - and in fact had reserved a daycare place the same time we booked our pup. I am also lucky in that if need be dh or I can be more flexible with our working ours - so dh could if needed arrange to work from home in the morning and ds is back from school around 4. And if really necessary dog can come to work with me (did that before he was old enough for daycare - he just slept at my feet!)

PeanutPatty Fri 25-Apr-14 13:30:45

Why not see if there is a doggy day care facility local to you?

Donki Fri 25-Apr-14 13:35:27

Is £13 a typical cost for doggy day care?

What does doggy day care usually involve?

IrianofWay Fri 25-Apr-14 13:38:22

The chewing will probably a temporary problem. She's only a baby. Try some anti-chew spray for the vitally important must-not-be-chewed things and then give her plenty of toys etc that she can chew.

Our dog was a year old when we got him - rescue - he massacred a sofa, the dining table legs and one leather dining chair as well as several playmobil dinosaurs and a few teddy bears. But annoying as it was it was done with by the time we had had him for a month or so - I am sure it was due to anxiety due to his past and the insecurity he felt, and as soon as he felt happy again he stopped. Now he sticks to sticks!

Ours is left all day on Tuesday (well until about 3.30) and for the morning on Wednesdays. Before September he was alone for school hours Tuesday to Friday. As far as i know he just mooched about with the cats, slept a lot and lay on the window seat and watched what was going on in the street. But as soon as I get home about 6 he gets a long long walk (or run when my knee is up to it) and at the weekend he gets an even longer one.

Artandco Fri 25-Apr-14 13:46:25

I think on the full days he needs a dog walker at least twice or doggy daycare. On the part time day he should be ok with a dog walker coming in once. Ie if your gone 6 hours walk him before you go, he will have 2 hrs alone roughly,2 hours walk with walker , 2hrs alone

RhinosAreFatUnicorns Fri 25-Apr-14 14:29:27

Donki Doggy daycare for us costs £15 but that includes pick up and drop off. £13.50 if you drop off.

What does it involve? At ours, there are walks, training, treasure hunts, sandpits, toys, slides, birthday parties, halloween/Christmas parties, obedience sessions, agility, and snooze time grin. No wonder our dog sulks on the days he is with me.

spinnergeologist Fri 25-Apr-14 14:49:09

I tend to put half our dogs breakfast into various toys which we rotate through so he doesn't get the same toy each day of the week. We have never had a dog walker or a daycare as his previous owners did not treat him well and he now has a problem with other dogs, though if he was ours from a puppy (fingers crossed he would have been more social) I would have probably gone for a combination of dog walker and daycare and getting home at lunch to take him out for a quick walk. Luckily he is also elderly so not so keen now on long walks as before.

Not keen on freezing food as this made my dog sick (chilled stomach) and be careful with things like peanut butter as although dogs love it it can leave sticky marks on the carpets. The maze balls and other toys are better.

ChoudeBruxelles Fri 25-Apr-14 14:52:06

We have 2 spaniels and they have a large shared kennel and a run. If we're out all day we pay a dog walker to come late morning/lunchtime to take them out.

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