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Hi everyone, we're newbies here and new to chihuahuas as well. We just got Charlie on Saturday, he is 8 weeks old... and we're forced to leave him home alone for 10 hours due to the fact that we both work.

Currently, he is locked in the bathroom with a crate (which he has not been trained to use as a "den") and a weeweepad (which he has also not been trained to use)...

Our question is if this will cause some sort of a long term devastating trauma to Charlie if we kept leaving him alone at home for long periods of time. And if it will create a sort of incurable behaviorial problem later on.

We do know that he cries the whole entire time because we keep him in the crate at night as well. When we come home and let him out of the bathroom, he continues to cry and whine (even if we're holding him) for about 5 more minutes until he forgets about it...

Do you guys have any suggestion on a better set up for lil Charlie, ruling out the possibility of a pet sitter or kennels?

Thanks.
 

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I don't know what to tell you. You may try leaving him with a kong when you leave - fill it with food and treats - so he's got something to occupy his time. Also some chew toys might help.

Try putting a wind-up alarm clock under his bedding so he can hear the muffled ticking noise - that might intice him to stay in bed more, and since puppies sleep a lot, it probably won't cause a problem with him not sleeping while you are.

Also, walking dogs before leaving them for long periods of time is really good for them. It gets all their energy out first thing in the mornings before they are left. I understand he's young but you might start walking him once he's had all his shots and has been cleared for ground contact by the vet for about 15-20 minutes every morning. Also, giving him a good walk either after you get home or before bed wouldn't hurt either.

The doctor tells me it's good for the human too... maybe that's why I don't do it. LOL
 

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Do they have doggie daycare in your area? I have no idea how expensive it is...others on the board may know.

Ten hours is a long time, especially for a young puppy. I use to leave my Keeshond alone for about 8 hours, but we had taken two weeks off when we got her and she was completely potty trained by the time we went back to work (she was a fast learner, and we had a doggy door). She also had a cat for company. Now I only work part time, so it is not a problem, but I also find that my dogs keep each other company. Mo doesn't seem to have any separation anxiety, but he always has two dogs and a cat around (although he is physically separated right now) He can still see them through the doggy gate.

Best thing would be if you could stagger your work hours so he isn't alone so long...but I know that is not easy to do. You may also consider getting him a friend, but you need to arrange time off to stay with them and train them.
 

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Hi & Welcome!

I know how hard it can be for ppl who work. I am lucky in the fact that I am a stay at home Chi Mom right now. I've read on different sites and such that Chi's should not be left alone for more than 4 hrs at a time. I've left Hershey (7 wks old) for up to 5 hrs at a time. He does really well in his pen though. Maybe you will get some helpful advice from the wonderful folks here. Good luck and congrats on your baby Chi!
 

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10 hours is way to long especially for that young of a puppy hes bored how much playing can he do by himself..hes in a crate to long hes in it all day then all night how many hours is he with someone mabee you can get someone a couple times to go over to your house to play with him you should have gotten a old dog from a shelter
 

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Discussion Starter #6
2pups622 said:
10 hours is way to long especially for that young of a puppy hes bored how much playing can he do by himself..hes in a crate to long hes in it all day then all night how many hours is he with someone mabee you can get someone a couple times to go over to your house to play with him you should have gotten a old dog from a shelter
Thank you for your advice and comments. We do have our preference and when we made a commitment to get a puppy instead of an older dog, we know we would do anything to make it work. That is why we are asking other's opinion on the board, to get different options and ideas that we can try. Giving him away or trading him for an older dog are not things we're considering, so the focus for us right now is how to better the situation.

I believe we will try to adjust our schedules so that we could lessen the hours we are away and I may take some time off to properly train him to use his crate as a den and also paper train him.
We are even considering a doggy sitter for daily visits.

I really do appreciate everyone's suggestions so far and would love to hear more!
 

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that great the daily sitter seems like a good way to go if there someone you trust that much

mabee if you have a bigger room where you can put a xpen so it would be alittle more room and lot and lots of toys theres also the stuff dog called snuggle pup something like that where it has a heartbeat and warmer in it its great for young pups you should look into that
 

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If you're friendly with your neighbors, you might see if a teenager that you trust would come over after school and play with the pup, help train him, etc. That might be cheaper than a dogsitter ... but it would definitely have to be the chess club president or someone you trust in your home. :lol:
 

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Where are you located?? I too have to work long hour days. Right now Pixie lives with another chi that belongs to my roommate and since my pup is litter box trained (most of the time) and we live in a small apt. we are going to leave them home alone while we go to work. I have not been locking her up for short periods at a time and she has been doing really well...not causing any trouble or having accidents. This way they can play all day and have access to their food and toys. I am still nervous about it though and have looked into some doggie daycares. I doubt if you live near me but if you do I can give you the name of the reasonably priced dogsitters I have come across.
 

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I believe that 10 hours is way too long for a little puppy to spend alone. It sounds like he has very little human contact so it's no wonder he cries. I have to work too so i know how hard it is. I would love to stay home with mine but that just isn't possible. I do however, come home around noon, let the grown chis out to potty and let Jolie and Boomer out to play and to cuddle/love on them. After around 30-45 minutes, everyone is ready for another nap. This is what is working for me right now. It may not be possible for you to come home during the day.
Maybe you could hire someone who lives close by to come in and play with Charlie for a little while during the day. A few years ago i hired a company to come in twice a day to check on, play with,feed and water my chi when i went on vacation. Maybe there's something like that in your area? Good Luck! :)
 

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I know how hard it is to leave them home a lone for so long...when i used to work at a doctor's office, i'd have to leave chico home alone for about 7 hours every day and i hated it...both me and my hubby worked. but, my kitties kept him company, which is why i think he adapted to it so well. but now, i'm a stay at home "chi and kitty mom."

i do agree, maybe you could see if someone you trust can come into your house everyday and play with and walk your chi? that would be the best option if theres no doggy daycare around. i hope you do work something out. :)
 

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Thanks for all the advice everyone, we do have two cats who seem to be taking very well to Charlie so hopefully they will help keep him company when we are away. I also was able to find a friend who works very near by, about 2 minutes, he is very trustworthy and we are working out the details but he has his lunch from 12:00 to 1:00 every day. We both feel horrible leaving him home alone all day and hopefully we will make the best of it. Thanks again, more pictures to come soon...
 

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when i got my first chi i was also working long hours, and i was single so i know what your going through. she was older, but had always been with someone all day and was misserable home alone. i would consider getting a playpen if charlie doesn't seem like he'd jump out of it, and set it up near a tv or radio that could be left on (on a sleep timer even, so hears voices, and doesn't feel so alone) also, pheobe loved stuffed animals, especially one my sister gave her that was the "taco bell dog" . if your friend can come visit even for an hour it will be a big help. these are things that worked for me. my sister had to come and sit with pheobe for an hour after school every day and trust me, it made a very big difference. luckily now i'm a stay at home mom, so it isn't a problem for us anymore. i'm sure it's difficult for all of you to adjust (who really wants to go to work and leave such a bundle of cute at home? lol) but you sound like you're really willing to do whatever it takes to make it work, i wish you the best of luck!
 

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hello and welcome :)

everybody has to work and there dogs have to be home alone...i know loads of people who work a 9-5 job and leave there dogs home all day...they have there friend or family to pop in at lunch and play and walk them :)

I myself think 10 hours is way to long for any dog or pup to be left alone..
I stress when i have to leave tyke alone for 3hours on wed/fir...
like people are saying if you can find someone you trust to pop in and play and take him for a walk :D

a few things that may help your pup feel more chilled out is leaving the radio on..lots of toys.. and chew chews

when im gone i tape tyke on my webcam :D this way i get to see if he getting stressed out or just chilling!
for the first half hour he goes a bit mad crying etc..then he just chill on his blankie buy the door till i come home! when i get back he gets hyper and crys for a bit!

i dont know anything about having a pup as i got tyke when he was about a year and a half..
i think somebody else said this :? you could get him a bigger like play pen, so hes not always in his crate and his got more space to play..walk around..

isnt a crate just for sleeping in :?

good luck i hope it works out for you :)
have you got any pixs of your pup??????
 

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Hello again everyone! We really appreciate all of your many helpful advise and support. I think the webcam idea is great! Why didn't we think of that? This way we can see how he's doing and have a better idea of how to make best of the situation. Also we love the radio idea and will definitely be leaving one on, so that there are noises around. I can't believe we didn't think of that either.

Another thing we're doing is taking shifts in the middle of the night (2-3am)to let him out and do his business and play with him for an hour until he falls asleep again. Then we wake up at 6am to play with him for another hour and we leave at 7. Hopefully we can make definite arrangements to have someone come over from 12-1pm so that at least he has little human visits every now and then before we return home at 5.

Last night we finally got him crate trained so he voluntarily sleeps in there now, and he's enjoying his peanut butter filled kong very much. He still has a big anxiety issue, so we have to find some way to help he overcome that. I will be taking Monday off to spend a bit more time with him.

We have some pictures but they're sort of blurry! Nevertheless, here's Charile:













Thanks again everyone.
 

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hi and welcome

what a cutie pie he is - I bet it breaks your heart every time you leave him.

For a start I would get rid of the crate, they arent designed to keep dogs confined for that amount of time, if he is in it 10 hours all day then Im presuming 7 8 hours on a night that is 17 hours out of a day he is crated which i bet feels a bit like been an animal at a zoo - he needs socialisation etc, if it was me I would put him in a larger room where he cant get in trouble with pee pads, food , water, toys and blanket .

I had t leave ozzy for a maximum of 8 hours a day when he was younger (12 weeks plus) and I usded to feel so guilty I got another chi lily lol and they keep each other company, play together , sleep together and I dont jhave to worry when they are home alone as they have each other :wave:
 

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Pad or litter training is a must if you don't have a doggy door and fenced in yard.

Also would look into another chi for company, cats are not chis and therefore are not the same as your baby. I give all my babies their shots and worming and it costs just a little more for two and they will benefit each other.

I also leave the TV on for them but I really don't have to becasue there are 3 of them (babies) and two grown one in my room. I would also suggest not locking in crate during the day but at nite if you need to. 3 sleep with me every night two in their pen with the door open.

P.S. Welcome!
 

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Hi! Your baby is so adorable!!

My husband and I both work full time but luckily our schedules allow Corky to be in and out of his crate throughout the day. My husband gets up about 3 am and lets Corky out to play, eat, potty then I let him out about 7 and he is out for about an hour. We crate him from 8-12 then I come home for lunch and he is out from 12-1. Then my husband is home by 2 or 3 in the afternoon and he is out for the rest of the night until about 9-930 when we got to bed. We always leave a radio on for him when we are not home. He also has his cat brothers who talk to him and stick their hands in his house to say hi.

We also have a big crate for him since he is too little to be out in the house without us being home. He has a bed, food and toys with plenty of room to play. I know some would recommend not to give him a big crate but when it is his second home so to speak I want him to be able to play and sleep comfortablely. WHen he gets a little older I think we will babyproof our spare bedroom and let him have that room while we are gone and crate him at night.
 
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