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tgrover
9th August 2007, 09:57 AM
Dont flame me from the start.

I know that a dog should never be left alone but i was wondering what temperament this dog has if on the occasion its left on its own for long periods of time.

My girlfriend generally would come home every lunch time to let it out and feed. So the dog would not be left alone longer than 4 hours during the week which i dont see as a problem seeing as all my other dogs have been ok for this time scale. But what i was wondering was more about the few occasions.... like 2-3times a month where the dog may have to be left up to 8 hours a day totally on its own. I would provide a dog flap so it can get out to the garden.

Any opinions would be appreciated.

Nicki
9th August 2007, 10:09 AM
Not going to flame you, but please don't have a Cavalier for this situation - they need a lot of contact with you, and generally are not happy to be left for periods of time, especially a single Cavalier {and we wouldn't recommend getting two together, for a puppy, you need time to train it and it needs to be at least 9 months old and fully trained before you have a 2nd. }

Cavaliers are very different from other breeds of dog, they have been bred for hundreds of years to be a companion {amongst other things!}.

Sorry but better to wait until your circumstances change - kinder to the Cavalier and to you...

Good luck in your search...

Barbara Nixon
9th August 2007, 11:53 AM
I agree with Nicki. I have three, but even they don't like being left, even with my husband, who says they take ages to settle when I'm out.

A dog flap is not a good idea, as dog thieves target this breed, so being out, unsupervised is very risky.

There are horses for courses and your best bet would be to go for an older dog (certainly not a puppy , as toilet training would be a problem)who is quite happy to snooze while you are away. A good rescue that has it's dogs home fostered, so knows their individual needs, would be delighted to help you.

If your're in the UK, have a look on the Dogpages site, where can see dogs and get advice, if this is the way you choose to go.

tgrover
9th August 2007, 12:10 PM
fair enough thanks for the replies.

I am just desperate to get a dog again. After losing my black lab and then moving out of the family home i am just lost without a dog there when i come home!

And the situation will never change in regards to anyone being home all day with it as mortgages these days mean we both will always have to work.

damm it :(

Scouty girl
9th August 2007, 12:18 PM
I'm single and I have two dogs. My Mom, who lives two doors away, comes over in the middle of the day and let's them out. Sometimes she takes Scout over to her house. Before I lived near my Mom there was no one to let her (Breeze) out. I only had one dog at that time. She seemed fine. I did feel guilty about leaving her for long periods, but I didn't have a choice. She was always happy to see me and that's the only life she knew. She's 10 now and still very happy, or at least I think she's happy. LOL

It's not the ideal situation to be gone all day, but I really don't know many people that own dogs that are home all day or even have the opportunity to come home during the day. Of course on my days off I mostly stay home or take the dogs with me. In the US a lot of people work and aren't home all day, i'm talking about two income homes. I can't imagine how many dogs would miss out in having a good, loving home if these working people didn't own them. Just my opinion.

Kelly
9th August 2007, 12:24 PM
This subject always brings such different views so here we go.......

Chester is a year old and from the start has been on his own during the days whilst we are out at work. Someone always goes home at lunch time to let him out & play with him.

Granted he would probably love us to be around all of the time, but as much as I'd like to it is not possible. The guilt at first was horrendous and still I dont like leaving him but he has never known any different & is well adjusted to his routine.

We leave him lots of toys, water & kibble in his treat ball. Somedays when I get home I am pretty sure he's had other dogs round as the kitchen is turned upside down but more so than most, he sleeps (as he does when we are around at the weekends!). He always gets a really long run off his lead in the evening and is of course the centre of our attention when we are around.

It's not perfect but it works for us. He is a great little fella & has a wonderful temperment.

DaveD
9th August 2007, 12:45 PM
We are in the same boat with Holly. Shes 9 months old now and since day one she has spent a bit of time on her own as we both have full time jobs. During her first few months someone called into her every day to let her out and feed her but as of late there has been days where she'd be on her own for the day. She has plenty of toys and every day when we come home her toys are everywhere so we know shes been playing ! I gotta admit we do feel guilty leaving her on her own but we give her all the love and attention we can when we're home and she gets out for a good run every evening.

We were in the same situation as you when we were thinking about getting a Cavalier but once there is someone who can call by every few hours i think they'll be fine.

We are thinking of getting a second now though to keep her company.

Emma n Renco
9th August 2007, 12:48 PM
This is a good post, our situation at the moment is good and Renco comes home at lunch everyday to let him out and Harvey is fine with that. The problem we are going to have is that we are moving to our first bought house in Jan where there are going to be no options to go home at lunch time. He would be a year then and so thought that it wouldn't be a problem to leave him that long. Now concerned by the replies you are having to this post. The other option suggested about getting 2 dogs - would that solve this? Is it the lonlieness and boredom that would be a problem for them? If another dog would help then prob wise to get another, in our case we would then get an older rescue dog to keep Harvey company... maybe an option for you as well if that is a good idea? Interested to hear more about this from people in the know...

loveisokay
9th August 2007, 02:01 PM
Four hours alone is not that great a deal, for any breed. Obviously, with this breed, a dog would be a bit more agitated, but who here hasn't been out for a few hours here & there each week even when not working?

I think if you are contemplating coming home at lunch or letting someone else come over, that you are more than responsible & capable.

Sue.k
9th August 2007, 02:08 PM
Myself and my o/h work full time jobs so the dogs are left on their own for 8 hours a day and they seem fine. When we moved into the house at first I felt really guilty leaving Prince on his own (I hadnt got Lucy then) but he really seemed fine. I am sure it will be hard for a little puppy, maybe if you get an older dog, a rescue or something, at least the dog would be used to a routine and might not be so bad. I cant understand you totally about being lost without a dog, hopefully you will find one that will be happy enough to sleep during the day and be spoilt rotten when you get home :)

Karlin
9th August 2007, 02:30 PM
Four hours isn't really an issue, but daily stretches of eight hours is very long. This isn't a breed I would recommend owning as a single dog if it is to spend long hours alone, day after day. I regularly rehome cavaliers through rescue, and would not be inclined to place a dog in a home where it will be alone daily, with no animal companion, for eight hour stretches or longer unless people could demonstrate a very serious level of commitment to resolve that issue so the dog won't actually be alone for so long.

I also would not use a dog flap -- this breed is a key target for thieves and opportunists as they are easy to grab and run, easy to sell on to unscrupulous breeders, and expensive to buy in the first place in many countries making them very attractive to thieves. Regularly on the international cavalier lists, and in the lost and found listings here in Ireland, you see posts for stolen cavaliers taken from back gardens even while people are home. :(

I do think with animal ownership there are two sets of needs and desires -- on the one hand, there's a person who would sometimes dearly love a dog -- but may hardly be at home during most of the life of their dog. On the other side, you have a dog that is a highy social animal, but may be left on its own for most of its life.

A balance can be found, but it takes a serious effort on the human's side. The dog's needs will NOT change; but the human's will HAVE to change significantly to accommodate the dog in a way that gives a decent quality of life to the dog. That may mean arranging midday walkers, getting a companion dog, paying to place the dog in a doggie daycare situation (especially on those 8 hour workdays, especially so if they become regular), and certainly will mean giving a lot of time to your dog when you are at home (eg you can't just arrive in, feed the dog, then head out with friends all evening).

I think a lot of people want a dog to bring back many of the pleasures they had with one when they were a child, for example, but forget that at that time, the dog was probably rarely on its own longer than 3-4 hours a day. That situation has changed now for most people, adding a greater level of active responsibility to taking on a dog. Or else, for some, perhaps realising this isn't the right time for dog ownership (I waited a long time in my adult life even to make the commitment to cats, which are far more capable on their own for long stretches, but made sure to get two).

In general, cavaliers are not a breed that does well left entirely alone for long days but there are ways to work around tis if you are really commited. A midday walk or break is good but still not great for the nature of this breed in particular. Therefore if you are considering a cavalier, I would strongly recommend getting a second dog of whatever breed or mix; and figuring out a way to deal with those 8 hour stretches -- maybe exchanging dogs with another dog owner, doggie daycare, etc. There are more independent breeds who do better left alone, which is also something to consider. I regularly get cavaliers into rescue that are handed over because people have left the dog alone all day and it is clearly deeply unhappy and/or has picked up anxious behaviours like barking all day, chewing, trying to escape, pottying inside, etc. Indeed, the number one reason people turn dogs over to rescue is they don't have enough time for the dog and it has become a problem as a result, and they no longer want or can cope with the cavalier. Just another perspective to consider -- it is often very painful for the people who fall into the latter category to have to surrender their dog so it is much better to be truly honest about what you can offer a dog (rather than vice versa) and make a careful decision about what you can and cannot manage, afford, accommodate. :thmbsup:

sramirez
9th August 2007, 02:40 PM
My reply will probably echo a number of other cav owners here as well. With the exception of my first cavalier (taken on as a puppy) all my other cavs have all been "older" than the puppy stage. My current foster boy is 1 1/2 years old and I feel guilty every day that i'm not around to keep him better company - hence I'm dligently looking for a home for him that can meet those needs better.

My last two cavs were a rescue and rehome. Both did fine being along at home for up to 6 hrs - I always make sure somebody comes by if I think I will be gone longer than that. I actually have taken my foster boy to the daycare/kennel a couple times when both my daughter and I were gone longer than 4-6 hrs.

Unless you are absolutely "puppy" bound, I would definitely think of getting a little bit older cav - breeders sometimes have puppies that come back to them, or breeding girls or show dogs they are looking to place in a loving home. And like others have said, they are usually quite content to be home for short periods of time alone - I've been known to leave the TV on for noise background (I'm sure NONE of the rest of you have ever done this :)

Sheri

GudrunTheRed
9th August 2007, 03:08 PM
I'm sorry for the loss of your beloved Lab.

Chester is at home during the day but I usually come home for lunch (I'm lucky to work only 6.5 miles away) AND I have some wonderful neighbors who walk him at least once a day for me. I worked at home until this past April and I was worried about Chester being alone for hours at the time, but he made the transition with no problems and has not showed any anxiety over being left alone. He's 3 now so he is a very mature little boy and I was very careful to bring him to not have any separation anxiety issues. But I thank heaven every day for my lovely neighbors Gavin and Carol for their kindness and love. They're an older retired couple and they simply adore Chester.

So that's my personal experience. I realize all dogs are a bit different, even Cavaliers, so it would all depend on the dog you end up with and how mature he/she is. Have you considered getting an older pup or an adult? If they're already housebroken and well socialized that will make a HUGE difference.

Best of luck to you!

BostonGirl
9th August 2007, 06:23 PM
tgrover - I feel your pain :-) I was in a similar situation as you before I got my little girl and it was a decision I thought through for years. I work full time and my husband works full time as a teacher. He is home during the summer (which Bella is loving!) but during the school year Bella will be home for 4 - 6 hours a day on her own. I arranged that I don't leave for work until 10am and he is usually home by 3pm. We decided after talking to a ton of people that this wouldnt be bad at all and if there were days that we were gone for longer we would hire a dog walker - simple as that right? Not so much..I have learned that you can make any situation work BUT my thoughts before having Bella and what she (and I) could tolerate now that I have her are a lot different. I honestly stress out and feel extremely guilty if I leave her alone for more than 3 hours at a time. I always hire a dog walker if she is home for more than 4 hours which is something I didnt anticipate myself doing. This adds up to be a huge cost to consider come the school year. My point is that I knew it before going into it that a dog would require sacrifice, time, money, stress, etc. but when you actually have that dog that you love so much you realize how much you are willing to sacrifice for them and that all of the sudden your needs don't matter all that much anymore compared to theirs. Just be prepared if you decide to move forward that what you think your dog can deal with might end up being something you and your conscious can't deal with once you go to open that door to leave for the day and see the reaction on thier sweet little face :( If you are willing to spend the money for doggie day care a few times a week or a dog walker to break up the days you can't make it home for lunch then all the power to you! With that said - I wouldnt give Bella for anything in the world. She has brought me more joy over the last few months than I could have ever imagined. No sacrifice is too much to have that face and whirlwind wagging tail there to greet me when I get home :)

laram
9th August 2007, 09:42 PM
When I'm working I leave Sam on his own during the days for up to 6hrs. On the occasional day that it's more, I hire someone to come and take him out for an hour. I leave him in a large shower/utility room, with plenty of toys, a kong , some kibble, and his crate. He has never had separation anxiety - I've actually camcorded him to see what he does and he just sleeps and plays with his toys a little. I taught him when he was a puppy to be alone a bit each day and built up the time. Maybe if he had never gotten used to being alone, he would be anxious. Now, he goes to the shower room of his own accord when I'm going out and is very excited to get the kong. It's his routine.

I really think it's a rare dog these days that never has to be on its own. Sam gets a good walk in the morning and another when I come home. There's never been a problem, but perhaps I've been lucky. If I had to be away 8 hours everyday with no help (i.e. not just 2-3 times a month), I would be concerned - but from what you described, the situation sounds quite ok to me.

lb0024
9th August 2007, 09:43 PM
tgrover - I feel your pain :-) I was in a similar situation as you before I got my little girl and it was a decision I thought through for years. I work full time and my husband works full time as a teacher. He is home during the summer (which Bella is loving!) but during the school year Bella will be home for 4 - 6 hours a day on her own. I arranged that I don't leave for work until 10am and he is usually home by 3pm. We decided after talking to a ton of people that this wouldnt be bad at all and if there were days that we were gone for longer we would hire a dog walker - simple as that right? Not so much..I have learned that you can make any situation work BUT my thoughts before having Bella and what she (and I) could tolerate now that I have her are a lot different. I honestly stress out and feel extremely guilty if I leave her alone for more than 3 hours at a time. I always hire a dog walker if she is home for more than 4 hours which is something I didnt anticipate myself doing. This adds up to be a huge cost to consider come the school year. My point is that I knew it before going into it that a dog would require sacrifice, time, money, stress, etc. but when you actually have that dog that you love so much you realize how much you are willing to sacrifice for them and that all of the sudden your needs don't matter all that much anymore compared to theirs. Just be prepared if you decide to move forward that what you think your dog can deal with might end up being something you and your conscious can't deal with once you go to open that door to leave for the day and see the reaction on thier sweet little face :( If you are willing to spend the money for doggie day care a few times a week or a dog walker to break up the days you can't make it home for lunch then all the power to you! With that said - I wouldnt give Bella for anything in the world. She has brought me more joy over the last few months than I could have ever imagined. No sacrifice is too much to have that face and whirlwind wagging tail there to greet me when I get home :)


I had just typed up a whole response to tgrover's original post, but when I clicked on the MORE link (for more smiley faces), the response ended up getting deleted somehow! I was bummed (and :mad:) ! Didn't feel like typing it all over again.

BUT... after I lost that response, I noticed BostonGirl (which I am also, by the way :) ) had posted her response and has amazingly expressed my sentiments perfectly... in particular, the parts I bolded and italicized in the quote. In fact, I started a thread on this same subject about three weeks ago (http://board.cavaliertalk.com/showthread.php?t=19527) and I believe I expressed some of the same feelings there.

But the way BostonGirl described her feelings is exactly how I am feeling now that I have my little girl - stressed and guilty, not wanting to give Molly up for anything and willing to sacrifice so that she can have the best life I can give her. Before I had her, I had totally different ideas about how I would go about doing that.

I did start Molly at daycare... today was her first day! I can't wait to go pick her up and see how she did. (Of course I called and they said she's doing great. There are 2 other CKCSs there too.) For right now, it's only going to be once a week, but as soon as I get my next raise, I'll add another day. She deserves it. :)

-laura

Remali
9th August 2007, 11:00 PM
Well, I am single and I have two dogs....my Cavalier Bentley, and my Poodle Bailey. So, being single and living alone, and working 8 hours a day, they are alone while I'm at work. I would say go for it, get the dog of your dreams, and you will find a way to make it work....but I must also say I would hate to see a young dog, especially a sensitive Cavalier, being alone all day long (I am glad I have my Poodle, he is great company for Bentley). I have puppy pads down for them, and they are free to roam the house, and I leave them lots of toys and chewies. I also leave the radio on for them. I come home ASAP after work, and spend a lot of time with them to make up for when I was gone at work all day. Also, if you (or someone else) could go home during lunch, that would be nice too. Or have a trusted friend or neighbor check in on your dog for you. I think you should get your Cavalier!!

Scouty girl
10th August 2007, 02:45 PM
I agree with laram words..."it's his routine". That's all they know and are used to it.

Also I agree with Remali, get your cavalier puppy. We would all love to stay home with our puppies (dogs) all day long. There are thousands of dogs that stay alone for hours a day. They are loved and well taken care of. My cousin and her husband who both work eight hours a day have an american bull dog. She (like all of us) felt guilty leaving Foster alone all day.

She worried about him all the time. Wondering what he was doing. So one day she was home sick. Thinking that Foster would hang out with her and keep her company. Although she didn't want be sick, she was happy to be home all day 'with her boy'. She told he all he did was sleep all day,and not by her, he slept in his crate until 5p, which is the time they usually got home. It was his routine, that's what is knew.

We would all love to stay home, but in a world where you pay $300,00 to $400,00 for a medium size single family home and $3.00 or more for a gallon of milk we all simply cannot. That goes double for us singles!!!!

ClaireH
10th August 2007, 04:44 PM
i hav 2 agree... i work 7 nd a half hours a day nd goin home at lunch is jst not possible. bonnie is quite content 2 spend d day playin wit mya nd sleeping. more often than not i come home 2 find d 2 of them cuddled in d basket! my o/h works 3 days nd 2 nites nd on d days he's at home-neither of them want 2 know.

nursejess80
10th August 2007, 08:20 PM
I just started another thread about this, but we're now looking into getting a pet sitter for Ruby to come and let her out at least once, maybe twice a day. Until now, my husband has been able to come home at lunch and stay with her for about 45 min-1hr to play, potty, etc. It's worked out fine for us. She's THRILLED when we get home, but isn't agitated or anything. My sister was our back-up, but she just had a new baby, and I can't rely on her right now to help us out. I work 3 days/wk, 12 hour days, but my hubby is usually home by 5, so she's not by herself for more than 5 hours at a time. On my days off (and I have alot), I spend most of the day with her to make up for being gone. I'm about to start school, so I may be cutting back on work. But now my husband will be gone at least 2, maybe 3 days a week out of town on business. No daycare is open when I go to work or when I get off because my hours are so weird, so that's just not an option for us right now. We're wanting to get her a companion in the next 6 months or so to keep her from being lonely, but now is just not the time. Basically, I think that as long as you can provide human contact at least once during the day, it'll work out. It'll have to be much more to start out, especially with a tiny puppy, but it's so worth it in the end. Ruby is very well-rounded and LOVES everyone she meets. She's not bitter or aggressive or anything because she stays by herself. She is just used to how things are, and is completely spoiled when we're at home. Good luck with your decision!! I hope everything works out!

Battie4
13th August 2007, 04:25 AM
Ive left Waffles alone before but not for extended periods of time maybe for like 2-3 hours. I was so intrigued by what she does when I am gone I had a camera set up and basically she grabbed her toy elephant and slept by it on the carpet for the entire time I was gone, but the minute I got home her tail was wagging and her butt was shaking all excited to see me!! But yeah like everyone else says if you work a 9-5 job your cav is gonna be darn lonely

Azriel
13th August 2007, 03:07 PM
i think working all day every day is definitely not ideal but like many have said, for many people it is necessary. if someone can stop by mid-day for some playtime (not just a quick potty but some actual interaction) and if you are commited to being at home whenever you're not at work, you can make it work. if you are involved in lots of other things after work or like to go out a lot... it wouldn't be fair to the dog to just stop in to potty and feed them after work before heading back out. if you're non-work related activities involve the dog (walks, going to the park, dog classes, training sessions, etc) and if you are totally committed to the fact that the dog's needs MUST come before your own....you can make it work.

that being said, unless you are totally set on getting a CKCS, i would also consider looking into other breeds to see if there are any more independent breeds (or mutts) that you would like to have. CKCS really were bred for the sole purpose of being companions and keeping people's laps warm in drafty castles. other breeds can be equally loving when you come home but may also be happier to have some alone time during the day.

good luck with the decision making process!