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Is this a good idea or a bad idea for tomorrow when dog home all day

(29 Posts)
steppemum Wed 29-Nov-17 13:58:43

So, we have new rescue dog, our first dog shock
He is lovely, very soppy, but young and full of energy. (Springer Spaniel)
He has been with us for only 2 weeks, but we have left him alone for the odd morning etc and he has been fine. He is very settled here.

So, tomorrow dh and I are both out all day - well, school day. 8:30-4:00
My friend is coming in at lunch time to let him out (on a lead, at the front if necessary) and give him some fuss.
I have been wondering if there is anything I can give him to entertain him all day, as he is going to get bored. Dh is going to take him out early for a good 1 hour walk before we go, and he will get another walk when we get home, but still...

In our back garden we have chickens in a large run, and a rabbit who used to free range. At the moment we can't let the dog off the lead in the back garden as we have discovered that we need to seriously reinforce the chicken fence, so he goes out for a wee on his lead. The rabbit has been in his hutch and will move into the new reinforced chicken run once finished. Today, as he had been in for a while and it was a nice day, dh let the rabbit out to free range round the garden.

The dog has spent the WHOLE day sitting in front of the french windows watching the rabbit, totally entranced. The only problem is that when he gets close, onto the patio, the dog goes nuts, running round in circles. I am sitting near the french windows working on the computer.

Now, part of me thinks that when we are out tomorrow, I should just let the rabbit out in the garden and the dog will spend the whole day sitting by the french windows entertained, and the other half of me thinks that if I am not here and the rabbit sits on the patio, the dog might do iteslf an injury from over excitement.

What do you think?

CornflakeHomunculus Wed 29-Nov-17 14:18:32

I wouldn’t, it’s not really good for the dog to potentially be in such a hyped up state for so long. He could quite easily end up damaging either himself or your house if he got wound up enough.

Presumably you also want him to live in reasonable harmony with the rabbit and allowing him to get worked up over it won’t help that in the long run.

You’d be best off leaving him with some like a stuffed Kong if you’ve got one or could get hold of one before tomorrow.

mustbemad17 Wed 29-Nov-17 14:22:59

Frozen stuffed kong or a treat ball. Leaving the rabbit out so the dog can fixate is not a good idea

RitaConnors Wed 29-Nov-17 14:28:07

I reckon our terrier spends a good deal of time looking outside for cats but it’s something I’d rather she wasn’t doing it as I don’t want her to do it when I am home as she barks.

We leave a Kong wobbler when we go out and she knows we are going out then as she doesn’t get it at any other time.

Wolfiefan Wed 29-Nov-17 14:31:42

No. The dog would spend all day worked up and planning how to catch and kill the rabbit.

KinkyAfro Wed 29-Nov-17 14:59:01

I personally wouldn't have got a rescue dog knowing you'd be out of the house for so long

rightsaidfrederickII Wed 29-Nov-17 15:41:41

FWIW I have had issues with the rescue terrier wanting to chase my indoor caged small pets.

The second he does it, he's booted out of the room and the door is shut behind him. He then gets ignored for a good two minutes.

It has been quite effective - he now knows that chasing pets means he gets an immediate and undesirable consequence (boredom, lack of humans). He still chases squirrels (he's never going to catch up with one, so I struggle to be too worried about that), but has all but stopped trying to chase the pets, even though he still watches them sometimes.

It's worth teaching him that bunnies are not entertainment! 🐰

Floralnomad Wed 29-Nov-17 15:46:00

I wouldn’t , do you have blinds / curtains that you could leave drawn . Your neighbours will not be grateful if the dog barks all day at a rabbit .

steppemum Wed 29-Nov-17 16:08:20

Thanks all,
you are right, it would leave him hyped up all day, and train him to see the rabbit as entertainment. Thanks for helping me see it from the dog's perspective.
He used to do the same with the chickens who are right down at the end of the garden, he sat at the window watching them, but over time he has realised that they are out of reach and out of bounds so he doesn't do that any more. Pretty good bearing in mind we have had him for 2 weeks! But the rabbit hasn't been out much, so this is new.

Rabbit will be firmly in hutch.
We have a Kong, but he is totally uninterested in it. I might try it with something different inside tomorrow to see. I have some treats and I might hide some round his bed for him to sniff out too.

Floral - he doesn't bark. At all. I have heard him once do one single bark. He does whine though. Detached house, so neighbours not really an issue, and the neighbours close to us have 2 dogs who bark at all hours of the day and night, so I'm not too worried!

I personally wouldn't have got a rescue dog knowing you'd be out of the house for so long
<sigh> are your judgy pants hurting you?
We both work from home, there is rarely a day when we are both out, it happens maybe once every 3 months. Tomorrow happens to be that day. I have a friend who will come round in the middle and give him attention. We have been fostering dogs and the rescue is very happy with the amount they are left and the attention they get. It just so happens that the latest foster stole our hearts and we are keeping him. Timing is rubbish, we are supposed to be going away for New Year!

Wolfiefan Wed 29-Nov-17 16:10:44

No judging here. This isn't every day, it's not a tiny puppy and you have someone going in.
We used to soak the dried food, stuff Kong and freeze. Or peanut butter and treats (xylitol free!)

PigPigDogDog Wed 29-Nov-17 16:14:24

Kinky Yeah, cause I'm sure the dog would rather be freezing it's ass off in kennels with shitty food and no loving family to give it care and attention hmm

PigPigDogDog Wed 29-Nov-17 16:16:00

Step Don't feel like you have to bother justifying yourself to silly people who think anyone who works can't have a dog.

Floralnomad Wed 29-Nov-17 16:16:53

Some of the attitudes about leaving dogs for the odd longer period are ridiculous , and what makes them more ridiculous is sometimes they are made by people who quite happily lock a dog in a cage for 8+ hours a night and whenever they leave the house .Your dog is lucky he has found a nice family that will work on his issues with him .

sharemyname Wed 29-Nov-17 16:37:11

Some of the attitudes about leaving dogs for the odd longer period are ridiculous , and what makes them more ridiculous is sometimes they are made by people who quite happily lock a dog in a cage for 8+ hours a night and whenever they leave the house

^this.**
Mumsnet seems to be the only place where nobody ever leaves their dog home alone

mustbemad17 Wed 29-Nov-17 17:44:06

Peanut butter works a treat even for the most uninterested. I used to mix the dried food in, stuff then freeze overnight.

Right never say never re squirrels 😂 My mum's cocker is the densest, noisiest dog you could meet - the squirrels used to hear him coming a mile off. He once managed to catch a slow one - thankfully had no clue what to do with it tho 😂

Attitudes about leaving dogs suck. If it's every day, all day, then fine. But stuff happens, things come up. Pretty sure any rescue would rather a dog was left a few hours once in a blue moon than in a kennel or dead

rightsaidfrederickII Wed 29-Nov-17 17:58:38

@Mustbemad - I'll change that to "he's never caught one yet". I regard them as being good exercise and enrichment for him - though I'd take a different attitude if he was catching them

I can't help but feel this holier than thou attitude over dogs being left alone is detrimental in many cases. It leaves people who have a change of circumstances and have to leave their dog more than they would like fearful to ask for advice on how to mitigate issues as they know they're going to get a barrage of criticism for leaving their dog for >4 hours.

I'm in the odd situation of looking after a dog that isn't my own (my flatmate's, though I do a lot of the care) and while I do my best by him by providing extra walks and enrichment (and he is not, ultimately, my responsibility) I don't like to admit that he is left during the working day because I know that I'll get a load of abuse for it.

mustbemad17 Wed 29-Nov-17 18:09:08

Definitely wears them out! He hasn't caught one since, i'll be honest - but it was a mixture of shock, horror & pure puzzlement when he did catch it 😂😂

Yep I agree. I did a lot in dog rescue & we advocate 4 hours tops without a break; the last two months I owned my (failed foster) dog I was leaving the house at 8am & not returning until 6pm three days a week; she had dog walkers & a friend popping in in between. It was unfortunate change in circumstances that the rescue were well aware of & i put things in place - the alternative was moving her into a kennel. I think the ones who should rightly be moaned at are those who don't give a damn enough to try!

ShovellerDuck Wed 29-Nov-17 18:39:06

Dogs left alone usually sleep until their owners return and will have no idea if you’ve been away for ten minutes or four hours. He’ll be fine if you can trust him not to trash the house and to last without a wee until friend goes to take him out.

NewBrian Wed 29-Nov-17 19:32:23

I wouldn’t and I purposely close my curtains so my dog isn’t getting hyped up by things outside/barking. Leave him a kong or a treat that takes ages but I’m sure he’ll be fine. occasionally leaving him indoors for the day (with an opportunity to go to toilet) is fine, only in MN land is it not!

PigPigDogDog Wed 29-Nov-17 20:29:50

I leave for work at 7:40 and don't get home until 5:20.

Dog gets a wee before I leave, I go home on lunch to let him out and say hello to him, then he gets a long walk when I'm home and another wee before bed.

So he's on his own for a big chunk of the day and you know what? That's fine.

He was stuck in a really shitty kennel for 7 months over the winter and was literally skin and bone when I got him. Now he spends his day fast asleep in my warm quiet house, on the sofa with a blanket, he gets home cooked food every single day, goes on lovely walks and is absolutely cherished by us and cuddled every minute that I'm home!

I don't feel guilty for one second about the life he has.

mustbemad17 Wed 29-Nov-17 20:32:57

PigPig can you adopt me???

Wolfiefan Wed 29-Nov-17 20:38:22

That's great for your dog Pig and he sounds really happy. It wouldn't suit every dog. Mine would freak at being left for that long.

mustbemad17 Wed 29-Nov-17 20:42:36

It always comes down to individual dogs. One of mine just slept, all day. One (husky/akita mix) trashed the place the minute I left him. People get to know their own dogs.

Going in to break the day up with a walk & a fuss is definitely more desirable than someone leaving a dog from AM to PM crossing its paws

Wolfiefan Wed 29-Nov-17 21:00:00

I agree Must. Depends on the dogs and what works for that animal. They're all different!

mustbemad17 Wed 29-Nov-17 21:07:14

That's the way we like em 😃

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