Dog Club Life is reader-supported. When you buy through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission. Learn more
It’s normal to feel a little anxious about leaving your puppy home alone for the first time. After all, they’re still just babies and you want to make sure they’re safe and comfortable.
But with a little preparation, you can help your puppy adjust to being home alone and prevent any accidents or separation anxiety.
19 Tips When You’re Leaving your Puppy Home Alone
Here are some tips to help your puppy get used to being left alone:
1. Start slowly
If you have a new puppy, give them time to adjust to their new home before you leave them alone. Begin by leaving them for brief periods of time, such as going out to get the mail or checking in on them every hour.
2. Create a comfortable space for your puppy
Make sure your puppy has a cozy place to rest, like a blanket-lined crate or kennel. Then, give your puppy plenty of toys and chew bones to keep themselves occupied while they wait for you to come back.
3. Be patient and set schedules
When it’ time to leave your puppy at home alone, try not to rush or make too much noise heading out so that they don’t become anxious right away. You can also help ease separation anxiety by setting regular times for when you will return.
4. Train your puppy to be home alone
If you’re leaving your puppy home alone all day, it’s a good idea to train them how to use the bathroom outside rather than inside. This will help prevent accidents and make cleanup easier when you come back.
5. Monitor your puppy
Buy a dog monitoring camera so you can check in on your puppy while you’re away. This way, you can keep tabs on them and make sure they’re acting normal without needing to stress yourself out by constantly checking up on them.
6. Keep your puppy busy
Leave some puzzles and toys. Kongs stuffed with their favorite treats are a great way to keep them occupied.
7. Avoid coddling
When you come home, resist the urge to coddle your puppy too much. This will only make them more anxious when you leave again. Instead, act like everything is normal and give them a calm greeting.
8. Praise your puppy
Make sure to praise your puppy when they do well while you’re away. This positive reinforcement will help them feel more comfortable when you’re not around.
9. Use a crate
If your puppy is having trouble adjusting to being left alone, try using a crate. This will give them a safe space to stay in while you’re away. And, if you’re gone for long periods of time, make sure to give them a potty break before crating them so they don’t have to hold it in all day.
10. Leave music on
Playing some calming music or white noise can help soothe your puppy while you’re gone. You can even find dog-specific music that’s designed to help reduce anxiety.
11. Give your puppy plenty of exercise
A tired puppy is a good puppy. Make sure to give your puppy plenty of exercise before you leave so they’re too exhausted to get into mischief. A long walk or run in the morning should do the trick.
12. Provide lots of water and food
Make sure to leave your puppy with plenty of food and water before you head out. Puppies need a lot of constant nutrition and hydration, so it’s good to make sure they’re taken care of while you’re gone.
13. Make sure there’s a dog bed or blanket in the crate
Dogs need a comfortable place to relax when they’re home alone, and a dog bed or blanket will help your puppy stay cozy while you’re gone. Make sure that it’s also small enough to fit in their crate so they can comfortably lay down while they wait for you to come back.
14. Don’t feel bad about leaving them
At the end of the day, it’s important not to feel guilty about leaving your puppy alone. Just make sure you do so in a way that’s safe and stress-free. By following these tips, you can help make sure they’re happy while you’re gone.
15. Leave some worn clothes
If you’re gone for an extended period of time, leave out a piece of your clothing with your scent on it. This will help your puppy feel comforted and less anxious while you’re gone. Dogs can smell and recognize their owners through scent, so this will help them feel more secure.
16. Invest in pee pads
If you’re gone for long periods of time, consider investing in pee pads or dog diapers. This will give your puppy a place to go while they’re home alone and relieve themselves.
17. Don’t make it a big deal
When you come back home, try not to make too much noise or fuss over your puppy. Your reunion should be calm and low-key. This will help them stay relaxed and not get too excited, which can lead to accidents.
18. Do a test run
If you’re going to be gone for a long period of time, it’s a good idea to do a test run ahead of time. This will help your puppy get used to being home alone for longer periods of time and make the transition easier. Just leave them at home for a little while and come back periodically to check on them.
19. Get a pet sitter
If you’re going to be gone for an extended period of time, consider hiring a pet sitter to come over and check on your puppy. This way, they’ll have someone to interact with and won’t be left alone for too long.
Puppies can be left home alone for short periods of time, but they will need someone to check on them frequently. As your puppy gets older, they will be able to handle longer periods of time alone.
Leaving your puppy at home alone for the first time can seem scary, but if you are patient and set up a proper routine, your puppy will adjust to it just fine.
You can make the process easier on yourself by creating a comfortable space for them to rest in, training them how to use the bathroom outside, and giving them plenty of exercise before you leave.
Additionally, be sure to provide plenty of food and water and leave some of your clothes out so they can smell your scent. With a little bit of preparation, you can rest assured knowing that your puppy will be just fine while you’re gone.
Are you getting ready to leave your puppy home alone for the first time? What tips do you have for helping puppies adjust to being left alone? Share with us in the comments below!