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post #1 of 4 (permalink) Old 03-15-2012, 09:42 AM Thread Starter
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New puppy and confinement

When you get the a 4 months old puppy home for the first time, do you let him roam around the house to explore everything, or do you keep them in confinement like a crate or cage for the first few weeks, and only let them out to go potty every hour or two?
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post #2 of 4 (permalink) Old 03-15-2012, 09:58 AM
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I would give him play time where he is free to play around an open area (not the entire house, pups can get their teeth on electric cords, furniture, etc), then after some playtime, he can get back to his expen area. Make sure you take him potty before and after the play session.

We did this with Toby when we got him at 12 wks and gradually added more freedom as he became more consistent with the use of the potty. Now at 6 months he has complete freedom of the house when we are there, when we are not, he is back on his enclosure (expen/crate/litter box/ water & toys). Let me mention that even when we are home and he is free, I always keep him within my sight-and the bedroom & bathroom doors closed, is very easy for pups to get into trouble, even if you try to make the house as pet friendly as possible.


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post #3 of 4 (permalink) Old 03-15-2012, 11:38 AM
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The key is to not let him have so much freedom there is a chance for him to make a mistake without you there to catch it. Always supervise when free at first so you can grab him if he has an accident and teach him what he's not allowed to chew. At the beginning this means only short periods of freedom when you can watch. As you get to know your puppy and he you, and he begins to be more trustworthy, longer free periods without 100% supervision will be fine. But these should be in a confined area of one room or several, where you are in the vicinity and can check up on him often.

Our puppy is nearly 5 months and at this point she can be free for the entire evening in the front rooms when we are eating, watching tv, etc. But during the day when we are in and out of the house, I'm working in my home office, etc., she is still mostly in her ex pen. I don't expect she'll have free roam during the day without supervision for another few months, until I'm 100% confident she is potty trained, and she will be confined in her ex-pen when we leave the house for the foreseeable future (our lab graduated from being crated when we left at 2 yrs old).
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post #4 of 4 (permalink) Old 03-15-2012, 06:24 PM
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They get a small space, especially as it pertains to his safety. As he gets older and understands boundaries and you have had a chance to make the entire safe, he gets more freedom, but it takes some time.
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