How Long Can You Leave a Dog Alone?

how long can you leave a dog alone
Can you leave a dog alone and for how long?

Can you leave a dog alone? How long is too long?

  • Puppies: On average, you must take the pups out to relieve themselves once every 2-3 hours
  • Adult dogs (over 18 months): once every 6-8 hours
  • Senior dogs (age 8 and above): depending on their breed and health, anywhere between 2-6 hours
can you leave a dog alone
Sandy’s exploits: Around the world trip. Image courtesy: Dr C.S.Pramesh

How to help improve your dog’s alone time?

  1. Exercise: Take your pets for a walk or a run so they’ll be tired when you go. Use food-dispensing toys so they don’t get anxious.
  2. If you have to go away from your pet for a long period, you can consider hiring a dog walker, pet sitter, Doggie day-care, kennels, or even a pet hotel to ensure that your pet is well cared for in your absence.
  3. Mental stimulation: A dog needs mental stimulation just like it needs physical exercise, sleep, and healthy food. Dogs who are getting adequate mental stimulation are more likely to be happy, well-behaved dogs. Puppies and young dogs need more mental stimulation than older dogs.
  4. Bladder breaks: Adult dogs usually require a break every 4 to 6 hours a day. Some can handle being left alone for up to nine hours, but most dogs would not be able to sleep for that long without needing to relieve themselves. Generally, you should never leave a dog crated for more than an hour or two at a time unless you absolutely have to.
  5. Music: Many pet parents leave the TV or music on when they go out for short durations to keep their dogs engaged. Podcasts can help too.

See also: Best pet-friendly offices

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