New GSP puppy - when to start leaving him alone General Chat

Discussion in 'German Shorthaired Pointer' started by HunterCyprus88, Nov 9, 2023.

  1. HunterCyprus88

    HunterCyprus88 New Member

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    New GSP puppy - when to start leaving him alone

    Hello everyone!

    Glad to have found this forum, it has been a life saver.

    I have had my 2 and half month old GSP puppy for 4 days now and I am so in love with him. I cannot believe how super intelligent he is! He has done so well with not toileting in the house, of course we have had a few accidents but apart from that he is doing so well. As I am off work for a while, it has given me the opportunity to start training him however, I will be starting work soon and it would be nice for my husband and I to start going places, therefore could I ask for someone's opinion on how to start this process. Shall I leave him 5 minutes first, 10 mins, 15 mins etc? I would be grateful for any help

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  3. CaroleC

    CaroleC Member

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    What a lovely puppy. Yes, start by gradually increasing your time away from him. First stage, while you are in another room, then maybe while doing something outdoors. This gives you the chance to monitor his response to being alone. It can be a good idea to run your car engine for a couple of minutes while you are outside too. Treat your absences as being completely normal, rather than give him the vibe that there is a test to worry about.
    People have different ideas about returning but I always reward if they have been good, and act, 'Oh dear, never mind', if there are any negative responses - like yapping or wetting.
    Can I ask, how long were you aiming to leave him for as a puppy?
  4. Toedtoes

    Toedtoes Member

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    I agree with all that @CaroleC says.

    I will add that when you are home, let him be with you as much as possible. Don't lock him away in a crate because you are doing chores or eating, etc. Let him know that when you are home, he always has access to you. That can help reduce any stress when you do go out - because he knows when you come home he will have you with him.

    One thing I've always done with my dogs and puppies is use different words to differentiate between my away time. So if you are just running a short errand (under a couple hours), say something like "I'll be back soon". If you are leaving for work, say something like "be a good boy". If you are just getting up for a drink or the restroom or to get the laundry, etc, just tell him what you are doing. Dogs understand a lot more than simple commands. By using different wording, they learn what is about to happen. My dogs would take their cookie and go relax when I left for work - they understood I would be gone for a long time. At the same time, they learned that if I got up to get a drink I wasn't going to disappear on them and be gone for hours so they didn't bother getting up and following me.

    This will take time because puppies by nature are very needy. They will feel the need to follow you everywhere. Just let them and keep using your chosen phrasings and as puppy grows up he will stop following you constantly. And he will settle nicely when you go to work, etc.

    Also, understand your breed and what drives them. I always had shepherd mixes and shepherds want to please you more than anything. So as long as I gave them praise when I got home, they were happy to stay home while I worked. With my jack russell terrier mix, he is driven by fun. He hates being "left home" simply because he thinks I'm out having fun without him. So I have to find ways to make staying home alone fun for him.
  5. HunterCyprus88

    HunterCyprus88 New Member

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    CaroleC likes this.

    Hello,

    Thanks for your reply

    He is generally quite good, he loves to sunbathe so he will go and sit outside and sunbathe until he gets up to mischief and finds something to chew. At the moment he just chews everything! I have bought him some chewy bones and a rope toy with rubber to help with his teething.

    I am blessed in the sense that I don't start work till January, so I am able to start leaving him gradually. My partner will be taking him to work with him, but it will only be days/weekends where we may want to go out. 2-3 hours tops but this won't happen until we think he is ready for that.
  6. HunterCyprus88

    HunterCyprus88 New Member

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    Hello,

    Thank you so much for your indepth reply! Breath of fresh air knowing people who research and know their stuff!

    He has access to us all the times, there are times where we will be in the kitchen cooking and we leave him sleeping in the living room, he will come and check on us and then go back to bed.

    I absolutely love the phrase tips, what a good idea!! Thank you, I shall start trying this with him.

    As we haven't got a crate, to be honest we generally don't have much space for one but we intend on buying him a lovely kennel for outside, only for when my partner and I are out as he sleeps on the landing near us at night. Would it be wise to start the process by leaving him I.e. in the kitchen first for 5 mins first, (not carpeted) then gradually increase time and then start with the kennel inside?

    Sorry for the amount of questions, I have never owned a pup. I had a samoyed rescue and I brought her home when she was 2 and she was so good. She sadly passed away 2 years ago.
  7. Toedtoes

    Toedtoes Member

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    Personally, if he is doing well now without a crate, I would skip a kennel inside completely. I've never used one. Baby gates work great and are moveable. The kitchen is a great spot - just make sure the garbage is out of reach. If it doesn't have a door to close, use a baby gate to keep him in there.

    That he feels confident enough to go back to the living room is wonderful. Keep encouraging that.

    Start with 5 minutes and if he does well for several days, take it to 10 minutes. After a couple days, keep increasing the time if he does well. If he gets stressed, drop it back to the prior amount for a few more days.

    Interactive toys like a kong work great. They will provide him with something to focus on and something to chew.

    If you have an indoor camera, you can watch him while you're out and see how he does. When I first left my Tornado-dog, he would give a single howl every 5-20 minutes. Other than that, he just moped around. Not stressed, just upset at being left behind. Seeing that, I felt better about leaving him home when necessary.

    For keeping him outside when you are out, I would go slow. I would start with only letting him out when you are home while you stay inside- so you can see how he handles it. A barking or crying or howling puppy outside can bother neighbors, a stressed out puppy can get loose, a bored puppy can dig under fences, etc. So you really want to make sure he is going to stay secure if kept outside.

    You mention kennel versus crate. Outside, you want a kennel to be big enough for a shelter, water bowl and space for him to move around freely. You don't want to confine him in a small space outside where he can't move around freely.
  8. HunterCyprus88

    HunterCyprus88 New Member

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    Chris B and Toedtoes like this.

    Thanks again for reply . He is so good actually, he loves being outside and will go on his own to be outside to chew on sticks or his toys, however, I do have to keep an eye on him as he is always up to mischief lol. Digging, trying to chew the gravel, pulling weeds up. He has his very energetic 1 hour moods and then sleeps without a care in the world. I could probably leave the house and he wouldn't care at that point.

    My partner is making a big kennel out of palletes, he will even make him his own decking

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