A Puppy When You Work Full-Time?

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Firefly's picture
Joined: 2017-02-10

Hi there,

I am planning to get my first doberman puppy next year; I've been doing a lot of reading online, books, etc. just trying to get a good sense of what my puppy will need from me to grow up to be a happy and respectful member of my family (which will just be us, haha).

Something I keep coming across in what I've been reading is that if you work full time, you should not get a puppy, and maybe not even get a dog.

To me, that seemed a little black and white and severe. While I absolutely understand that a puppy, or even a full-grown dog, cannot be left alone for long periods of time, I had intended and budgeted for my puppy to spend at least half the day in a really nice, local doggy day-care when I am at work, so he would never be alone for more than four hours at a time. This would be his continued routine when he's grown up. I never want him to be bored and unhappy, spending my workdays alone- so this seemed like a good solution.

However, I also understand that consistency is really important in training your puppy; showing him the same place to go, using the same words to mean the same things, and so on. So I wanted to ask advice from people who actually have had Doberman puppies- I'd like to know honestly if this is a bad idea.

Although I would take an initial two weeks off after bringing him home, after that time, my puppy would have to spend some of the day in doggy day care. Do you think this could make his training more difficult, or be utterly disastrous? Would having those other influences on his puppy-hood confuse the messages?

Just for further context- outside of my work hours, my puppy/ dog will be very much part of my life, and I have solid routines/ training schedules that I'm working out for us. I'm very active, living in a natural woodsy sort of environment near an awesome lake, and love to get outside and run around, go camping, go swimming, hiking, etc. So outside of these times during daycare, he'll be very included in my days and have a lot of fun companionship with me.

Will that be enough to create the happy family member I hope for, and help him become the best dog he can? Or are they right when they say if you are working, you shouldn't have a pup?

I'd really appreciate some perspective on this.

Joined: 2012-10-28

Pet Profiles


And Welcome!

 It sounds like your situation is better than a lot of new dog owners and could work out. It all depends on the quality of the dog daycare provider and if they are on the same boat as you re: training, and training style.

Your puppy would likely bond with that person, but especially if you take care of his feeding he would get your higher importance to him. Read about same sex aggression and if you think the daycare situation may affect your choice of male or female.

Will you have a fenced in yard? We fenced in our yard for Bella. 1/2 acre, which she loves, as before she was on a long tether. Don't expect your dog to respect an electric fence, or want to stay outside much by himself, without getting into trouble. It's safer to get them to respect inside home boundaries like no stealing or chewing on your stuff.

We adopted Bella at 10 months and never looked back, our lives changed dramatically, but she is priceless. She is 5 now and can be left alone inside the house since 20 months, now for as long as 11 hours, but that happens very rarely, as my husband works from our garage space up the road. I would also suggest getting dog health insurance if available, when puppy is young.


Good Luck

Firefly's picture
Joined: 2017-02-10

Thank you so much! 

I will definitely have health insurance beforehand, and yes, I have a fenced yard. 
I will make sure I do my diligence on selecting the right daycare; it definitely helps knowing that it is possible and I'm not crazy for thinking I could do it! 


Firefly's picture
Joined: 2017-02-10

Hi there! 
So I have been looking more into same sex aggression as you mentioned it in your post. I had originally wanted a male dog, but this does concern me. However, I haven't been able to get much clarity on how commonly this issue happens with females as well? 
Is basically possible between either sex, but more likely with males? 
From what I'm reading on the forums, it seems like there's no real way to train it or socialize the tendency out.... That's a bit worriesome, because my dog will need to spend time with other dogs.
How common is this?