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How to Take Care of a Puppy While at Work

| Updated September 26, 2017

Just because you work full time does not mean you can't bring a puppy into your life. However, you must take extra steps to ensure that your puppy is comfortable and has plenty to do while you're gone. She still needs to be exercised and have a place to use the bathroom.

Provide a Safe Area

If left alone in the whole house, your puppy can make lots of mistakes, such as chewing on furniture and peeing in the house. Provide a safe place for your dog, such as a crate or a part of the kitchen or bathroom. Make sure there is enough room for your puppy to turn around and lie down. Fill the area with interactive toys, a water dish and a comfortable bed.

Potty Training Needs

Your puppy can only hold his bladder for a few hours, depending on the size of the puppy, so they can't hold it for a full work day. The ideal situation would be to hire a pet sitter or dog walker to check on your puppy two or three times per day. Most cities have these professionals that will walk your puppy or just let her out in the yard. However, this can be expensive. If you can't afford that, provide an area in your puppy's space where she can relieve herself. This can be newspaper, sod, turf or potty pads. Keep this area away from the dog's bed and food and water, but don't provide too much space where she can make a mistake.

Proper Exercise

Your puppy will need frequent exercise, which will reduce behavior problems when you are gone. When he is young, this may require getting up earlier for a morning walk. Because young dogs have so much energy, an evening walk might not be enough. If you don't have time for this, play a game with your dog, such as tug or fetch, so that he can burn off some energy before you leave.

Interactive Toys and Games

Your puppy won't sleep all day like your adult dog, so provide activities for her both before you leave and while you are gone. Instead of leaving stuffed toys in the cage, provide Kongs or other interactive toys that can be stuffed with food for your puppy to hunt. Instead of feeding him from a food bowl, scatter his food across the house or yard and make him hunt for it. You could hide food and treats throughout his space so he can search for them during the day. Using food will keep your puppy motivated to play and use up some extra energy.