WHAT ABOUT WORK

People who work want dogs. Sure, it is nice to have a cat, and they require much less time, but some people are “dog people.” A lot of what was covered in this document was how to manage an efficient and effective training program for your dog when you have a hectic schedule. There are also things you can do to help your dog acclimate to your work schedule.

First, you can get a doggie daycare. Yes, it costs money, but think of it as a preschool. In preschool, children learn how to relate, socialize and build friendships with other children. The same is true of doggie daycare. Your pet will spend time with other dogs all day. Usually he will have multiple play times as a pack in an outdoor area, weather permitting. This is a great time for him to learn social skills among other dogs. Plus, he will get to be around a variety of other-sized dogs and dogs with different temperaments. This is a great training ground and you’ll notice right away how your dog is different when you take him to the dog park. You’ll notice that it is much easier for him to blend into the pack and enjoy himself.

Second, you can have someone stop by your home and play with your dog. This could be a close friend or family member who has a few hours and who lives nearby. This person can come in, let your pet out and then play with your dog for a few hours. This is a great thing for retired family members or for younger members of the family. If you don’t have anyone, you can find services online that come to your house and let your pet out. They can either let your pet out for a few minutes or take them out for a few hours. You don’t have to do this every day but it can be a great treat for your dog a few times a week.

Third, ask your employer if it has a dog-friendly day or would consider it. This is a great way to bring your puppy with you. Again, some employers don’t do this every day, but offer a dog-friendly day on Fridays or every other Friday afternoon. Regardless, this is a great way to bring your dog with you, continue his training and get some additional socialization into his schedule.

Fourth, consider adopting an older dog. Older dogs are usually much calmer than puppies or younger dogs. Plus, they usually have some idea of what is required of them when left alone. Of course, you’ll have to get to know your dog, but it may be the best solution if you’re very busy and don’t have time to shape a young puppy. Older dogs are great companions, and contrary to the “you can’t teach old dogs new tricks” maxim, they can learn just as readily as young dogs can. It may take them longer, but they are just as eager to please.

Finally, use your crate. Always be mindful of how long you leave your dog in his crate and be realistic. For example, if your pet is in his crate for six hours straight, he is likely going to be high-energy for at least a few minutes when you set him free. This is normal. Your dog has been resting quietly and is ready to take on the world. You should also incorporate agility or more intense training if you know that your dog must spend more time in his crate. A bored dog is a potentially destructive dog!