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Jessieca
23rd April 2007, 12:01 AM
Hi! I am a new user, but I had two questions, I will post them separately though...both sort of have to do with the fact that I am a new pet owner. We got our cavalier Bailey in August, and he is now 10 months old. We absolute adore him, he's basically our "baby" hehe. I guess I am wondering how much independence I should give him.

Ok, first question:

Previous to now, he has always stayed in his crate if we were gone at all, even if we just ran out for 30 min. The last 5 times we have gone out, I let him have free reign in the living room/kitchen/entry way area. Today we went to a movie, and when we came home, he was just sleeping on a comfy chair with one of his toys, and everything had been left as it was when we left. He is potty trained to go indoors, so he has a litter box with a pee pad in it in this area so he is able to go in that if he has to go potty. He is fully trained, and never has accidents, so that is not an issue. He also never chews on things like cords, just his toys, and old socks that we let him have. Because he is fairly responsible in that aspect, I am wondering if it is safe to leave him alone, out of his crate if we are gone for a few hours. Normally we are not gone for more than 3 or 4 hours at most when we do go out. Would this be safe? I do make sure everything is clean, and he has no way to get to human food, trash, etc., but I still worry! I am ok with him being in the crate, but I like the idea that he can eat/drink/go potty when he pleases if we are out, and since I am returning to school 5 hours per day in the fall, I feel like this might be the best option.

At what age is it safe to let them roam freely? Do you leave your dog in a crate if you have to run out, or is he/she allowed to be in an open part of the home? Thanks for any and all advice! I want to do what is best for Bailey :paw:

Maxwell&me
23rd April 2007, 03:31 AM
Maxwell was totally trustworthy at 13 months, and had half roam of the house.....Hogan has a different personality...so gosh knows when Ill be able to leave him. I think it has to do ALOT with the personality of the dog....or Pup

Maxwell never touched anything in the house past 5 months...Hogan however feels free to not only eat holes in the wall but eat up my Ethan Allen chair. He gets plenty of chew toys, he just prefers stuff that costs a bit more.....*sigh*

Really, I think the rule of Thumb is one year....but if you feel hes ready....Id start with longer periods of time, and go from there.

molly
23rd April 2007, 04:23 AM
Perhaps you could gate off one room like the kitchen and see how he does with a small area first. Ours have pretty free rein indoors but we still gate them in the kitchen/laundry room when we are going to be away several hours (more for their safety).

Jessieca
23rd April 2007, 04:26 AM
Thanks for your responses!!

I was hoping to block off an area, but our kitchen has a huge opening, as does our living room, so that isn't an option unfortunately. He does have free reign of our apartment when we are home, and isn't ever destructive, so I hope the same will apply when we are out for a bit.

Bailey ate holes in the walls for awhile too, around 4-5 months, but hasn't done it since thankfully! He would get every corner lol, and the corner of the couch. I am SERIOUSLY happy he outgrew that. Since about 8 months or so, he hasn't really done anything bad in the way of chewing things he shouldn't, other than the occasional magazine.

I guess I will start slowly, and at least by the time I am ready to go back to school, he will be over 1, and hopefully ready to be alone for a longer period of time.

Thanks!

luvzcavs
23rd April 2007, 10:55 PM
I agree it would be nice for him to be out of the crate if you are going to be gone a while but............. not wishing to be the voice of doom even the best behaved little doggies get adventurous when left alone and although there have never been any incidents to date you my find he finds something naughty to do when he suddenly has a while of free reign (sp ?).
I would recommend as suggested trying to block off a room and really safegaurd it as much as possible, things like tissue boxes, magazines, blankets all provide for fun cheweing material if bored ? also keep an array of different safe toys and rotate regular to keep him stimulated. Good luck !

*Pauline*
24th April 2007, 01:33 AM
I just read this quickly so don't know if you covered this but please pull out all electric plugs/cables before you go. I leave Dylan in his crate if I go out. Maybe boring but it's safe and he will be happy to sleep there. I give some water before I go and give a Kong if I'll be out for the evening. :D

If I had a safe kitchen that would be better but I don't.

laurenlyn1
24th April 2007, 02:24 AM
i don't think i'll ever be able to trust brady to be alone in the house. his birthday is coming up on wednesday and he'll be a year old. he still gets into troubles when i'm home and he's out of his cage. i realize that part of that is my fault because i have lots of stuff that's not cleaned up that he can get into (i.e. piles of laundry on the floor, newspapers, lint fuzz ext) so i know that he i were to clean up, i might trust him better. i have a whole bunch of painting stuff in the kitchen (who knows when we'll be done painting my house) but if i ever get rid of that i might be able to gate him in there.

anyway, it all depends on the dog, some can be trusted more than others and i know mine cannot.

Sue.k
24th April 2007, 03:31 PM
I have no choice but to leave Prince on his on for 3 days a week, from 8am to 5.30pm. I have to say, he is fine, he hasnt been destructive or even wet the floor, I think he is happy enough just sleeping for the day :) I just bought my own house and had been living with my folks who were home most of the day so I was very worried about him at 1st but he really seems to be fine. I havent noticed any change in him, he is still the happy fur baby he always has been :rah: