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How long can you leave a dog alone?

As much as you'd love to stay home and cuddle with your adorable dog all day, sometimes you can't due to having to go to work, school or run errands. That said, you're probably wondering how long you can leave your dog alone and what they do all day while you're gone. Our Southborough vets answer these questions today.

How long can you leave a dog at home alone?

As a parent of a dog, you likely want to spend quality time with your canine companion. Who wouldn't take pleasure in being in the company of a furry, four-legged friend always excited to see them? Having said that, you most likely have to occasionally leave them alone in order to go to work, run errands, or attend school yourself. How long can you go without feeding your dog, and what will they do while waiting for you to return?

The responses to these questions will vary according to the general temperament of your dog, as well as his age and breed. Due to the increased risk of separation anxiety and issues with bladder control, young puppies under six months old should not be left alone for more than two or three hours at a time. When you do need to leave your young puppy alone, keep them in a puppy-proof room or crate for their safety, where they won't break anything or get into too much mischief.

You may choose to gradually lengthen the amount of time that you spend away from your puppy as they mature into adulthood. The average amount of time that an adult dog can spend alone safely each day is between four and six hours. On the other hand, many dogs adapt well to being left home alone for eight to nine hours while their owners are at work, provided that they have sufficient room to move around in comfort.

What will my dog do while home alone?

Your dog may take a long, relaxing nap while you're gone from the house. A calm dog may even relax by curling up with your favorite sweater or sitting on the sofa. Others might practice their "counter surfing" skills by climbing up onto your kitchen counter and gnawing on an item that they normally wouldn't be permitted to have, or swiping a treat without your knowledge.

On the other hand, dogs suffering from separation anxiety who do not have another outlet for the anxious energy may develop destructive behaviors, such as destroying furniture or breaking expensive valuables. If your dog does have this problem, you can help curb this by leaving them alone for brief periods of time and then work your way up to longer and longer stretches.

What can I do with my dog while I am at work?

Some dogs can tolerate being left alone for brief periods of time during the day, but this does not mean they enjoy the experience. As pack animals, dogs require the company of their owners to feel secure and content in their environment. While away from home, you can help your dog in a few different ways by doing the following:

Provide Them With Entertainment

Before you leave, make sure your pup has a toy to keep them busy and occupied, such as their favorite stuffed animal or a puzzle toy to give them with a fun challenge.

Communicate With Them

Because of technological advancements, you can maintain contact with your dog even when away from home. You can communicate with your canine companion through the use of pet cameras, which enables you to either lull your dog to sleep with your soothing voice or monitor their behavior so that you can reward them with an abundance of tasty treats.

Help Them Feel Safe

If you want to give your dog a feeling of safety and security, you can swaddle them in a jacket or keep them in their crate as long as there's enough room for them to move around and play. Even though at first your puppy might be reluctant, doing so could end up saving both of their lives.

Pet Boarding

If you need to leave your dog overnight, you can opt for a boarding service. At Southborough Veterinary Hospital, we offer overnight and medical boarding for dogs. We can provide your pooch with the care and companionship they need when you are away. We make sure they get lots of exercise, socialization, and fun! With medical boarding, we can give your dog with medications on a schedule. Our caring Southborough vets love spending time with the pets that board with us and treat them like their own.

Note: The advice provided in this post is intended for informational purposes and does not constitute medical advice regarding pets. For an accurate diagnosis of your pet's condition, please make an appointment with your vet.

Do you need to leave your dog overnight? Contact our Southborough animal hospital today to book your dog's stay in our boarding facility. We look forward to meeting you and your pooch!

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