How long do you leave your doggy alone? - Havanese Forum : Havanese Forums
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post #1 of 43 (permalink) Old 09-09-2017, 08:50 PM Thread Starter
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How long do you leave your doggy alone?

Hi All, I've spent a lot of time on the forum reading posts on separation anxiety (SA) and how long folks leave their adolescent or adult Havanese alone. I know with puppies time left alone is generally short for many reasons, including as part of an SA prevention protocol. This post is geared more towards the long-term rather than the particulars of raising a puppy. I thought I'd post some questions to maybe get feedback from people who never posted about it before (or if you did post previously, it'd be nice to hear from you here and maybe help with the questions below!) it might also be a guide to anyone considering a Havanese is concerned about being able to meet the social needs of their dog.

1. If you only have one Havanese, how long is he/she alone on a daily basis?
2. If you work full time, or even 5-6 hours a day outside the home, what has your experience been with SA or was there any? Importantly, if there wasn't any SA, is it because you followed a protocol with your puppy to prevent it?
3. Did your dog ever have SA and did it go away? If so, what did you do to make that happen, if anything?
4. Related to #3: Did you ever get a second Havanese or other pet to deal with the first dog's SA? If so, how did it work out?

If anyone can think of any other questions to add that would be wonderful!

Thanks so much for any feedback given
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post #2 of 43 (permalink) Old 09-10-2017, 07:10 AM
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Truthfully, my separation anxiety causes me much anguish. I find key lime pie and banana pudding both offer some solace.
I work out of home, and my puppies notice and make exasperated noises when I stare at a screen. Just Kosmo meant I put him in crate for 9:30 to 12:30 nap (they both still do long morning naps) to run out and buy supplies. They both come along and ride in the cart at Home Depot and Lowes so that they can be admired while I am destructed by paint color choices and trying to scroll through puppy pictures and find window measurements. The havanese separation anxiety is real, no joke. They want to be with their people. Lots of things to chew while crated, especially stuffed kongs, would be my best air head suggestion.
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post #3 of 43 (permalink) Old 09-10-2017, 08:05 AM
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1. If you only have one Havanese, how long is he/she alone on a daily basis? During the school year, we leave our house at 6 AM. Our dog "walker" comes at 11 AM to take Shama into the back yard to potty and play. They also play inside. They don't ever actually go for a walk. My DH returns home around 4 PM, and I return home around 5 PM. During the summer, we are both home with Shama most of the time as we are high school teachers. Sometimes in the summer, we put Shama in her 2x6-foot ex pen, because we find that she naps best when she is in her pen. She tends to be a bit restless outside her pen.

2. If you work full time, or even 5-6 hours a day outside the home, what has your experience been with SA or was there any? Importantly, if there wasn't any SA, is it because you followed a protocol with your puppy to prevent it? We had two breeders refuse to sell us puppies because of our work schedule because they said that this breed, the Havanese, really needs its people. We really wanted a Havanese, however, because my DH would get an allergic reaction (hives) when he touched any other breed of dog, including many so-called "hypoallergenic" breeds. Finally, a breeder who was a retired kindergarten teacher was willing to sell us our sweet baby. From the beginning, therefore, we were paranoid about SA. We followed a protocol to prevent it. We make our comings and goings as low-key as possible. Before leaving the house, we ignore her for about 10 minutes then exit without saying goodbye. Upon returning to the house, we ignore her for about 10 minutes before calmly greeting her then taking her outside to potty. The party begins after she potties. She is quiet when we come and go, and she's quiet when our dog walker (who also ignores her for a bit after arriving and before leaving) comes and goes. The only exception is when Shama senses we're going on a big trip because we keep going up and down the steps with loads of stuff. Then she barks, but it's a bit silly, because we always take her with us on big trips! (Whenever we're out of the house, Shama is in her 2x6-foot Pupperton ex pen.)

3. Did your dog ever have SA and did it go away? If so, what did you do to make that happen, if anything? She's never had it.

4. Related to #3: Did you ever get a second Havanese or other pet to deal with the first dog's SA? If so, how did it work out? At first, we considered getting a second dog, but then we read some posts about how nice it really is to just have one dog, and we decided having only Shama is right for us. We do wish she had more friends for play dates, however.

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post #4 of 43 (permalink) Old 09-10-2017, 09:01 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by ShamaMama View Post
1. If you only have one Havanese, how long is he/she alone on a daily basis? During the school year, we leave our house at 6 AM. Our dog "walker" comes at 11 AM to take Shama into the back yard to potty and play. They also play inside. They don't ever actually go for a walk. My DH returns home around 4 PM, and I return home around 5 PM. During the summer, we are both home with Shama most of the time as we are high school teachers. Sometimes in the summer, we put Shama in her 2x6-foot ex pen, because we find that she naps best when she is in her pen. She tends to be a bit restless outside her pen.

2. If you work full time, or even 5-6 hours a day outside the home, what has your experience been with SA or was there any? Importantly, if there wasn't any SA, is it because you followed a protocol with your puppy to prevent it? We had two breeders refuse to sell us puppies because of our work schedule because they said that this breed, the Havanese, really needs its people. We really wanted a Havanese, however, because my DH would get an allergic reaction (hives) when he touched any other breed of dog, including many so-called "hypoallergenic" breeds. Finally, a breeder who was a retired kindergarten teacher was willing to sell us our sweet baby. From the beginning, therefore, we were paranoid about SA. We followed a protocol to prevent it. We make our comings and goings as low-key as possible. Before leaving the house, we ignore her for about 10 minutes then exit without saying goodbye. Upon returning to the house, we ignore her for about 10 minutes before calmly greeting her then taking her outside to potty. The party begins after she potties. She is quiet when we come and go, and she's quiet when our dog walker (who also ignores her for a bit after arriving and before leaving) comes and goes. The only exception is when Shama senses we're going on a big trip because we keep going up and down the steps with loads of stuff. Then she barks, but it's a bit silly, because we always take her with us on big trips! (Whenever we're out of the house, Shama is in her 2x6-foot Pupperton ex pen.)

3. Did your dog ever have SA and did it go away? If so, what did you do to make that happen, if anything? She's never had it.

4. Related to #3: Did you ever get a second Havanese or other pet to deal with the first dog's SA? If so, how did it work out? At first, we considered getting a second dog, but then we read some posts about how nice it really is to just have one dog, and we decided having only Shama is right for us. We do wish she had more friends for play dates, however.
Thanks for your awesome post! I'll be working from home when I get my pup but I'm going to work on preventing SA right away as I will be working part-time outside the home when puppy is an adolescent/adult and I don't want SA to develop. Did you follow a special protocol when she was a pup to get her more acclimated to you being away?
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post #5 of 43 (permalink) Old 09-10-2017, 09:06 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Marni View Post
Truthfully, my separation anxiety causes me much anguish. I find key lime pie and banana pudding both offer some solace.
I work out of home, and my puppies notice and make exasperated noises when I stare at a screen. Just Kosmo meant I put him in crate for 9:30 to 12:30 nap (they both still do long morning naps) to run out and buy supplies. They both come along and ride in the cart at Home Depot and Lowes so that they can be admired while I am destructed by paint color choices and trying to scroll through puppy pictures and find window measurements. The havanese separation anxiety is real, no joke. They want to be with their people. Lots of things to chew while crated, especially stuffed kongs, would be my best air head suggestion.
I love your post!! I will follow your chew toy suggestion when I get my pup.
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post #6 of 43 (permalink) Old 09-10-2017, 10:17 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by ShamaMama View Post
1. If you only have one Havanese, how long is he/she alone on a daily basis? (Whenever we're out of the house, Shama is in her 2x6-foot Pupperton ex pen.)
A question about your Pupperton pen: how old was Shama when you got her? Are the spaces between the bars small enough that a 9-wk old puppy won't get her head stuck anywhere? I looked it up and it looks like a beautiful pen!
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post #7 of 43 (permalink) Old 09-10-2017, 11:21 AM
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I work out of my house, but I do have to be out of the house for up to 5 hours from time to time. I also think it is wrong NOT to teach tour dog to be comfortable by themselves. Sooner or later, they all have to deal with it for some reason or another. It can be quite stressful if they have not learned.

While separation anxiety is a real "thing", and can happen with a dog of any breed, I do NOT believe that Havanese are more prone to it than any other companion breed. REAL spearation anxiety is a serious disorder, that often requires the help of a trained behaviorist, and sometime medication to deal with. What I see and hear about most in Havanese is dogs where the owner has not taught them to be on their own at all, and then are TOTALLY surprised that the dog gets so upset when they do need to leave them.

I have three Havanese, from two different breeders. NONE of them have a problem staying alone. But I have to say, we have worked on that. And it is VERY hard, when you have multiples, to make sure that they ALL have turns staying home alone, and, likewise, all have turns going out in public with us alone. We used no "special protocol" to avoid SA. We just were cognizant of the need to train independence, just as you need to train your puppy in so many other ways.

We don't ROUTINELY leave our dogs alone for more than 4-5 hours. In fact, even that isn't really "routine", as it happens periodically. When we know ahead of time that we won't be home all day, we arrange for someone to come in and play with them and let them potty, like Shama. However, when my husband had a major heart attack and was hospitalized for 10 days, Kodi (he was an "only dog" at the time) did fine left home alone gated in my office with water, some chews and his litter box for 10 hours a day. Did he enjoy it? I doubt it. But we weren't exactly enjoying ourselves either... we were in crisis mode! He survived with no ill effects, and while he sure was happy to see me when I got home each day, he didn't seem particularly stressed.
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post #8 of 43 (permalink) Old 09-10-2017, 01:15 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by krandall View Post
I work out of my house, but I do have to be out of the house for up to 5 hours from time to time. I also think it is wrong NOT to teach tour dog to be comfortable by themselves. Sooner or later, they all have to deal with it for some reason or another. It can be quite stressful if they have not learned.

While separation anxiety is a real "thing", and can happen with a dog of any breed, I do NOT believe that Havanese are more prone to it than any other companion breed. REAL spearation anxiety is a serious disorder, that often requires the help of a trained behaviorist, and sometime medication
It is "good" to hear that--that you feel Havanese are likely not more prone than any other companion breed. And that the true disorder is not necessarily what is observed when Havanese get upset at their owners leaving (if they haven't been trained to being OK on their own)

Thanks so much for your post--it was really helpful to me!
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post #9 of 43 (permalink) Old 09-10-2017, 03:28 PM
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What Karen said. (I often feel like I don't even need to reply to these posts. I can just say, "Listen to Karen.")

We didn't follow a special protocol when she was little. We just always made sure to ignore her for a while before leaving (without saying goodbye) and upon returning home. It still KILLS me to not love her up and say goodbye to her when I leave, but I try to stay strong for her sake.

We also taught her to be happy sleeping the dining room (in her ex pen in tucked under the island - see photos in post below) while we sleep in our bedroom down the hall. We camped in the living room with her the first three nights, sneaking away the second and third night and never sleeping out there again.

To answer your other question, we picked up Shama on a Tuesday, and our pen didn't arrive until Friday. When we were "camping," she was just in her crate. Starting that Friday, she was in her crate within her pen.

http://www.havaneseforum.com/8-puppy...er-ex-pen.html

We LOVE our Pupperton. We were never worried about her getting her head stuck between the bars. We like how the Pupperton looks, and we like how portable it is when we go to our relatives' homes overnight. It was an investment, but we figured we'd be looking at it for YEARS.

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post #10 of 43 (permalink) Old 09-10-2017, 04:03 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by ShamaMama View Post
What Karen said. (I often feel like I don't even need to reply to these posts. I can just say, "Listen to Karen.")

We didn't follow a special protocol when she was little. We just always made sure to ignore her for a while before leaving (without saying goodbye) and upon returning home. It still KILLS me to not love her up and say goodbye to her when I leave, but I try to stay strong for her sake.

We also taught her to be happy sleeping the dining room (in her ex pen in tucked under the island - see photos in post below) while we sleep in our bedroom down the hall. We camped in the living room with her the first three nights, sneaking away the second and third night and never sleeping out there again.

To answer your other question, we picked up Shama on a Tuesday, and our pen didn't arrive until Friday. When we were "camping," she was just in her crate. Starting that Friday, she was in her crate within her pen.

http://www.havaneseforum.com/8-puppy...er-ex-pen.html

We LOVE our Pupperton. We were never worried about her getting her head stuck between the bars. We like how the Pupperton looks, and we like how portable it is when we go to our relatives' homes overnight. It was an investment, but we figured we'd be looking at it for YEARS.
Thanks--your post is really helpful too! I'm thinking about a Pupperton also, I'm just not sure whether the 2x6 or 4x4 is what I would go with. When you were potty training, did you use potty pads or a litter box or anything in the pupperton? Along with her crate?
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