View Full Version : At what age to give more freedom?

14th July 2006, 04:25 AM
Hi everyone,
So Riley is now 7 1/2 months old and i am wondering if it's time to give him more freedom around the house. Right now he is allowed only the living room (where we spend most of our time) and part of the kitchen. He does sleep in the bedroom with us, but in his crate. I know he wants to be able to follow us from room to room, but we only allow him to go into the other rooms on leash or when totally supervised. He is still in that phase where he eats whatever he can pick up and he still chews up things, inside or outside. :roll: Also he isn't real good about letting us know when he needs to go out to potty, although he hasn't had any accidents since he was about 5 months. So we haven't been giving him unsupervised free time all alone. Is he ready for more freedom?
When did all of you allow your dogs access to the rest of the house? I would love to hear your stories.

14th July 2006, 07:18 AM
I think your little fella would love to be able to stretch his legs and follow you around the house!

I never really kept any restrictions on mine but always just kept an eye for things like the toilet and chewing and stairs etc. Distraction when chewing worked wonders and you must teach him what he can chew like his toys and chews but never your furniture/carpets etc. you might still like to take him out for his toilet on a regular basis still as youngsters never mean to make a mess they just forget I think with all the excitement of everything else going on around them, especially when things are new and exciting.

It might also be a good idea to find a training club so that you will learn how to correctly use recalls so that he can have his freedom outside and also some very basic manners so that he will be a pleasure to take out when you visit other homes/shops/places.
Training clubs area good place where you will be able to share any worries or achievements that you have with others in the same position, as well as meeting people that love their dogs! later on he might like to try agaility so give yourself a goal to achieve. I'm sure you will love it together!

Keep relaxed when you do and try new things with him, praise lots when he gets it right, quietly without shouting remove him from situations that you are not happy with (like a toilet accident or chewing) Dogs are clever animals and read us and our feelings like a book, you would be surprised how much they read our body language and use our tone of voive, so keep it happy, confident and lots of praise!

Hope some of this helps.

Alison, wilts, U.K.

14th July 2006, 11:52 AM
I think you are at the phase when you can allow more freedom but why not just let him out every couple of hours rather than wait for him to tell you he wants to go out? Some dogs never really do this (mine don't) but they go out for walks to relieve themselves on a regular basis -- about 4 times daily -- so they never go in the house.

I can't see any reason not to be able to let him off lead while also keeping a close eye on him. :)

14th July 2006, 01:15 PM
In the beginning Bono was onley allowed to be in the corridore downstairs where we sleep. When he was ca. two months old he might go upstairs, and when he had perfectly learnd how to go up and down the stairs, he just walked around the hous like he wanted. But he spends most of his time up in the living room and kitchen, or downstairs in this small room that the dogs have just for them self.

But, when we got Bono, we really didn't get a puppy like we expected. He was just wonderfull, he learned very soon after he came to us to do his buisness outside, the onley thing he gnawed was one flex, thats all. He didn't, and don't, bark and he learned to sit, lie down and things like that very quick.
But when we had Nóra, she was like the puppy we had read about! :lol:

14th July 2006, 02:41 PM
We're in that same stage with our pup. Keeping him on a lead that just drags on the floor--rather than us holidng it, is working for us as he's quick to get into things still and it's just easier to have an extra 5 feet on him to grab when he's darting all over thinking it's funny!! :roll:

For the most part, he's now out when we're home, rather than before when we'd let him out on more of a schedule for short periods. Sometimes too much freedom ends up in him acting pretty obnoxious, then it's back in the x-pen for a time out.

14th July 2006, 02:50 PM
If you're not completely comfortable with giving him full access yet, can you simply expand his territory? That's what we did with Cedar: we added one room at time, blocking off restricted spaces. We used an ex-pen to block some space, but we also found that a fitted bedsheet stretched between two chairs worked just as well for larger spaces (and it is easier for humans to step over!).