Like any dog owner, we were a bit unsure (not to mention nervous) of leaving our pup at home alone for the first time. Maybe we should wait till he’s a bit older, what if he destroys the house, what if cries the whole time, there is a ton of what ifs. Some of them will definitely happen at one point or another. But alas you cannot bend your life totally around a dog. Winston is about 3 months old now, and completely cool on his own for a few hours.
Here’s a little breakdown of how we did it:
- Take them out for a walk beforehand (tire them out)
- Make sure if you’re leaving them in a room to dog proof it (hide your unmentionables if it’s in a bedroom)
- Side track them before you leave – treats & toys work excellently
- Leave quick without a fuss & make a huge deal when you return! (This will reinforce the fact the you will return always)
- Take them for a walk when you get home
Also a huge tip that still continues to get the most use is being able to monitor Winston while we aren’t in the house.
We use an app that basically acts as a baby monitor with a camera. It’s called Dog Monitor, it’s 6.99CAD and worth every penny. All you need is an extra device with a camera on it and you’re ready to go. The monitor gives you a live view of your pet anywhere you have service, it gives you notifications if there is any noise going on, and the ability to speak through your phone.
Also shout out to Thoby the Frenchie’s parents for telling us about dog monitor.
And no we are not sponsored or anything like that to say good things about this app. We were just worried parents and this let us be at ease while away from home and our pup.
Now there’s a few things you must take into consideration before leaving your pup for the first time.
First what kind of temperament does your dog have, if you don’t know do some research. Weimaraners in general are very attached, so when the rest of the pack goes out they become destructive. Or so we read.
Another factor that comes into play is crating your dog. We had a crate for Winston for a while and he was definitely not stoked on it at all. So we took a chance when we left the first time and let him have free range of a single room and shut the door to the exit. He did superb, not a sound. So consider that maybe your dog will be just fine out of that crate, but be careful and dog proof that room!
We live in Toronto, so that being said it gets fairly noisy at times. We also live in a low rise apartment, meaning we have neighbours that are pretty close by. This was a huge factor for me when leaving Winston alone, if he starts to make noise our neighbours are going to start to hate us. This is where keeping him occupied comes into play, leave him some toys and let him chew on a rawhide or something when you leave. Thus bringing me to my next point.
Start off slow, if they’ve never been away from you they might miss you quick. Go to the corner store & come back. Maybe just go outside your front door for five minutes to see if they make any noise. Start to pick tasks, and try to keep a schedule or routine. Dogs like routine. So everyday at the same time you leave, they will start to care less and occupy themselves more.
Also remember they are just dogs, don’t get too butthurt about stuff going wrong.