Getting a puppy when you work 9-5 can be stressful. Not only are you adding a furry new family member but you are also both getting used to each other. You’re also learning how to parent a puppy if you haven’t done that before and learning your puppy’s habits and cues. Having a puppy when you work a 9-5 is possible though with a little help and a lot of caffeine. 🙂
Creating a schedule.
This is priority #1 with a pup! Creating a schedule will make both you and your puppy’s lives a lot easier. If you have a partner, you can split puppy duties and take turns getting up throughout the night also.
When we got Sassy, my husband was on 2nd shift. Admittedly, that actually worked in our favor. He was able to be home with her during the day and I got up with her at night. It was hard at first to get up with her, but it got easier. However, he switched shifts a few months in so we had to make some schedule adjustments early on!
At the time, we didn’t have a fenced-in yard so I had to take her out to potty on a leash. (I highly recommend a fenced yard after your puppy has started to get down the routine of potty training! It is a game-changer.)
Dealing with overnights.
The hardest part of having a puppy for me was getting up throughout the night for puppy potty breaks. When Sassy was a puppy, we crate trained her so she stayed in her crate at night.
The key to making nights easier was wearing her down plenty right before bedtime. This meant extra playtime inside or outside and a walk before bed. This helped make her tired so she wasn’t so hyper.
The good news is the long nights WILL end one day though and your pup will eventually sleep through the night. 🙂 Grab yourself a Starbucks or energy drink to help power through!
Asking for help or hiring help!
Asking a friend, family or neighbor to check in on your puppy while you are at work is a great option. Your puppy can only hold her bladder for an hour for each month of her age. 4 months = 4 hours. You’ll want to make sure you have someone check on your pup 3-4 times while you are gone if you are not coming home on a lunch hour.
Another option is to hire a dog walker or dog sitter through Rover.com. Rover does background checks on everyone who cares for dogs through their website. I’ve heard nothing but great things!
Use your lunch hour.
If you can, pop in on your lunch hour to play with your puppy and let her out. I did this daily for months with Sassy. It was a nice break in her day and mine. (Now that I commute there is just no way this would be possible, so we would have to figure out something else. I understand if it doesn’t work for commuters!)
Enroll your puppy in daycare.
If you’ve been around here a minute, you know we LOVE doggie daycare! 🙂 Some daycares have an age requirement in order to start your pup there, but others have puppy rooms. Call your local daycare and consider enrolling your puppy in daycare to give your family or friends (or even yourself!) a break.
These are just a few of the things we did when we brought our puppy home. Got some more ideas? Drop them in the comments below for our new puppy parent friends! 🙂