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Should I Get A Dog If I Work All Day?

Dogs are sociable pack animals, and you and your family are the rest of the pack! This means if you only have one dog, they will fret if left alone. Or, at best, they will become very bored and dejected. Ideally they would like to be with you every minute of the day.

So, if you have a 9 to 5 job, there needs to be plenty of time in the mornings and evenings to interact with the dog. If there are other people in the household, you can cover the time between you. If you are alone, or if your 9 to 5 involves a long commute and an early night, the dog may suffer from lack of attention.

Mixed breed Old English Sheepdog Golden Retriever mix
Some dogs cope better than others with being home alone. This Golden Retriever-Old English Sheepdog cross is quite chilled.

Weekends are a great time to spend time playing and bonding with the dog, and for taking those slightly-longer-than-usual walks. There’s training to be done, too, so you really do need to have more than just the occasional spare half an hour.

Buy a Low-Maintenance Dog

Some breeds just aren’t going to settle into a lifestyle with too much isolation and downtime. This is probably the most important thing to consider when choosing your pet.

If you work all day, avoid buying an easily-bored breed such as an Australian Shepherd Dog, a Collie, a Border Collie, a King Charles Spaniel, a Cocker Spaniel, a German Shorthaired Pointer, a Jack Russell Terrier a Poodle, or – probably the most high-maintenance of them all – a Husky.

Breeds that cope better with being left alone include the Basset Hound, the Chihuahua, the French Bulldog, the Greyhound, the Maltese, the Shar Pei, the Sussex Spaniel and the Whippet.

NOTE: all dogs, even the more chilled ones, need plenty of exercise and social time.

Breeds Airedale Terrier
An Airedale Terrier will let you know when he's feeling restless and in need of some action

Fulfilling Your Dog's Basic Needs

Dogs also have basic daily needs like feeding, grooming and training. You also need to make sure that your dog is able to go outside to the toilet and get the exercise that he needs, so leaving him home alone for 10 hours isn’t the right thing to do. This doesn’t mean you can’t own a dog if you work full time but you need to make sure that these requirements are fulfilled so that your dog is both physically and mentally healthy.

An Australian Shepherd Dog on a sofa
Home alone is okay - in moderation

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