Are you searching the answer to the question of Is it cruel to crate a dog while at work? Well, you are in the right place. Actually, getting a dog is probably one of the best decisions you will ever make.
But if you are a dog lover who works throughout the day, you are very likely to face one of the most difficult dilemmas of your life. People may want dogs for different reasons.
Some may want them for protection and security, while others just want them because they are loyal, and are great creatures to spend time with.
While getting a dog will make your mood more cheerful, you must take your dog’s happiness and comfort into account too.
How to Take Care of Your Dog When You are Out?
Animals need someone to take care of them and supervise them so that they do not end up injuring themselves. Leaving them alone unsupervised may result in dangerous and sometimes fatal accidents for your dog.
If you work all day, then it is very risky to leave your dog alone at home. Causing discomfort to your dog for the sake of your own happiness does not make any sense.
In such cases, you can use crates to train your dog the way you want. A crate is a small, enclosed space usually made of plastic, that is large enough for the dog to only turn around, sit, and stand.
When to Use A Dog Crate?
The narrow area sets boundaries for your dog and helps you train them according to your wish. Now, another question is, When to Use A Dog Crate?
Honestly, there is no single straight answer to this question. It all depends on certain factors that are exclusive to every individual such as the duration of the work, the kind of dog you own, the age of the dog, or the atmosphere you have at home.
If you want to know how to analyze these factors, then search no more. You are in the right place because this article addresses several factors and discusses the issue of is it cruel to crate your dog while at work or not.
Is It A Wise Decision for A Working Person to Get A Dog?
First and foremost, the decision that will perplex you is the question of whether you should get a dog or not. This decision depends on a lot of things.
For instance, if the duration of your shift is short, then you can get a dog without even thinking twice. Dogs are very well capable of being left alone in their crate for a couple of hours by themselves.
If your workplace is nearby, then you can manage to pay a short visit to your dog during your lunch break and check on him.
Try to Hire Dog Sitter for Your Buddy
In contrast, if you work on a long shift, but have people at home to take care of your dog while you are gone, you can still decide on getting a dog.
The people at home that are mentioned here do not necessarily have to be family members. You can hire a dog sitter for your dog if you can afford one.
If you don’t have anyone at home to look after your dog while you are working, then the presence of a dog sitter will make the task of taking care of your dog very easy.
Therefore, if the condition of your financial status allows you to hire a dog sitter, you can get a dog without any sort of confusion.
Why You Should Take Help from A Dog Sitter?
A dog sitter will be the best option for you if you work all day. Because in that case, you will have to leave your dog in his crate all day for up to 12 hours without anyone taking care of him.
It is immensely dangerous to leave an adult dog in a crate for 12 hours or more, let alone a young puppy. You should never do that. Animals have the right to be comfortable in their surroundings, and leaving a dog in his crate for a whole day is nothing short of animal abuse.
Having a dog sitter will solve all of those problems because even in your absence, your dog will have someone to take care of him, to feed him on time and take him to the park for walks.
How to Hire a Dog Sitter?
If you decide to hire a dog sitter, then you can choose from several different types of services. For example, you can hire a person that will come to your house to take care of your dog, or just simply drop your dog off with the dog sitter for the rest of the day until you finish work.
Or, you can also plan in such a way, that your dog is out with the dog sitter for half the duration of your work, and spend the other half in their crate. In all cases, you have to talk to your sitter, tell them your schedule, ask them about their time limitations, finalize a plan convenient for the both of you and your dog, and then pay accordingly.
In other cases, if you don’t work regularly or work remotely from home and hence don’t go out of the house very often, it is much easier for you to have a dog.
How Long Can A Dog Stay in A Crate?
A fully-grown adult dog should not be left in a crate for any longer than 8 hours. Training your dog with the help of a crate is no child’s play. You have to be considerate towards your dog.
They have the ability to feel pain too. Being trapped in a crate with limited space for movement will mean that the dog is, in other words, cut off from any ties with the outside world. It gets very painful for them to be left alone for such a long time without any interaction with other living creatures.
The main question here is, how long can a dog stay in a crate? You cannot just leave your dog in a crate for such long durations and expect them to get trained within the span of a few days.
Dog’s Adjustment with the Crate
Everyone needs time to adjust, and a dog is no exception in this either. Your dog needs to be comfortable for the full duration of time that you leave him in a crate. Otherwise, crating your dog even for a short time can be problematic.
In addition to that, you will have to ensure that your dog is well adjusted in the crate. Don’t be misled with the idea that your work is done just because you have bought the best crate available in the market for your dog.
There are many other things that you need to consider so that you can successfully crate train your dog. You have to manage the crate according to your dog’s needs in order for him to be comfortable spending time in there.
Otherwise, even the most expensive crate will not be able to please your dog and satisfy his needs.
Can A Puppy Be Put in A Crate?
The duration that a puppy can be left in a crate depends mainly on its age. But it is fair to say that a puppy most definitely cannot be left in a crate for as long as 8 hours.
However, the amount of time that a puppy can be left in a crate increases proportionally with its age. A young puppy does not have the ability to hold his bladder for very long, which is very understandable.
For example, you can leave a one-month-old puppy in a crate for one hour, and a three-month-old puppy for three hours.
If your puppy is less than a month old, don’t make the mistake of leaving it in the crate for more than thirty minutes. A puppy is not old enough to be potty trained, hence it will pee and poop in the crate.
In addition, puppies may suffer from anxiety due to the isolation in the crate. As a result, when you take them out of the crate, they will act violently, and destroy your belongings.
Keeping Your Dog Relaxed in The Crate
Is it cruel to crate a dog while at work? If the dog is relaxed, then the answer is no. The first step in crate training is to train your dog to sleep according to a specific schedule that you will set.
If you do not get your dog accustomed to a schedule, there will no specific time that they go to sleep and wake up, or get in and out of the crate. The lack of a schedule will make things very difficult for you and it is nearly impossible, not to mention very unhealthily to train a dog for anything else without them having a proper sleep schedule first.
You have to train your dog to sleep and wake up at the same time every day. This applies to the time your dog enters and evacuates the crate as well. Everything has to be exactly on time every single day to kick start crate training your dog. Otherwise, you will end up confusing your dog with an irregular timing of activities, which will never let them be trained properly. This can be achieved by crating a dog while at work and at night.
Make Gradual Changes
A very efficient way to train your dog is to make very little changes to his lifestyle day by day. You may want your dog to sleep in a specific space, away from you. If you find that your dog is afraid to sleep away from you, you can place the crate close to you on the first day and then gradually shift it a little farther away from you until it can be placed in the spot you originally wanted it to be in.
Keep Your Dog Engaged
Taking time out of your work and spending it with your dog is one of the best gifts you can give this loyal companion of yours. If you work nearby, drive yourself to work, or have an efficient transport system in your city which supports your financial condition too, then you can try to pay a visit to your dog during your lunch break.
That means that you can take your dog out of the crate when you come home, and interact with your dog.
Then you can resume the crate time for your dog before you leave for work. Splitting the crate time like this means that you will be able to put younger dogs in the crate. Without causing them much trouble due to spending a large amount of time in the crate without any break in between.
Even if your dog is not very young, this routine can be followed for adult dogs too because this will result in a more happy and playful mood. It will also make the bond that you and your dog share much stronger.
What is the alternative of Leaving your dog at home?
If it is not possible for you to commute from your workplace to your house every day to meet your dog but your work allows you to bring your dog to your office, it could be another alternative to leaving your dog in a crate for the total duration of your work.
In contrast, if you are not allowed to bring your dog to work, then you can look for a place nearby your office where your dog will be able to spend time and perform playful activities without getting bored.
When You Have No Other Option
Don’t worry if none of the options mentioned above goes with your situation. It is perfectly normal if you cannot manage a place near your office to drop your dog off.
In that case, you will have to leave your dog in the crate, but keep him engaged with different activities that you will plan ahead of time. You might wonder, is it cruel to crate your dog while at work? The answer to that is no if you manage to keep him safe and sound and free from any kind of trauma.
Keep an Eye on Your Dog
A very reliable way to make sure that your dog is safe during your office hours is to set up special dog cameras which will help you interact with your dog in spite of the both of you being away from each other. The use of a timed feeder close to the crate will help satisfy your dog’s craving for treats while you are away during the day, keeping him cheerful and satisfied.
Make Sure Your Dog is Happy and Safe
The trick to make your dog happy spend time in the crate is to arrange toys for your dog in the crate so that they look forward to spending time in the crate. But anything you buy for your dog has to be bought with a lot of consideration, just like when you buy things for a baby.
For instance, you cannot leave any type of toy that may be a choking hazard for your dog. Similarly, sharp objects and materials that may be composed of chemicals toxic for your dog must be kept as far away as possible from the crate, let alone inside the crate.
How Do You Make A Dog Feel Comfortable in Its Crate?
The best way to make your dog interested in staying in the crate is to put all of his favorite things into the crate. Stuff the crate with all the things that your dog loves, while keeping enough space for your dog to ensure movement.
These things can be any of the toys your dog spends playing with the most, his favorite blanket, or the most comfortable pillow he loves to rest his head on or cuddle with.
Make Your Dog Feel at Home
You should manage the crate such that your dog feels at home when he is inside the crate. Choosing one of the most tranquil places in your house for the crate is probably the best approach here.
Noise can never help anyone relax and dogs are no exception as well. Some dogs can fall asleep to soothing music, so you can pick a spot where your dog can hear music if you play one.
Entice Your Dog
Lure your dog into the crate with his beloved things, so that he does not feel confined inside the crate. Your dog should feel relaxed and secure inside the crate.
A happy dog does not represent one which has been treated cruelly. Moreover, you can easily balance both your work and the comfort of your dog in this way.
Does This Work?
While the methods mentioned above are supposed to work, every dog can respond differently. The only way you will be able to know if these methods work well. You’ll observe your dog for a few days without any kind of haste.
If your dog sleeps peacefully in the crate during the day by themselves without any whining, then congratulations! You are on the right path. If not, then you will inevitably have to improvise your plan to one that suits your dog’s needs better.
Frequently Asked Questions
Can I Crate My Dog at Night?
Yes, you can do this to your dog at night. Even it will be a great start for building a good habit for your dog.
Can I leave My Dog for Up To 12 Hours in a crate?
Don’t ever do this. Your dog can have depression for this incident. Try to train the dog how to stay in the house without destroying anything.
How long is supposed ‘too long’ to leave a dog in a cage?
Leaving a dog alone in a crate when you are at work should not be too long. The maximum time could be 8 hours for your dog.
How long is it okay to leave a puppy in a cage?
Don’t leave your puppy more than 5 hours. Most of the time puppies get scared if they stay alone. It can ruin puppyhood if you keep him/ her for a long time.
Should I Put A Collar on My Dog Before He Enters the Crate?
Vets always strictly advise people not to do this. Always remove any type of things that may be hazardous before putting your dog in the crate.
Should I Cover the Dog Crate with A Blanket?
The crate is a happy place for your dog. You can cover the top with a blanket but you have to leave some sides uncovered so that your dog does not feel punished.
In The End
As mentioned earlier, answering the question, Is it cruel to crate a dog while at work? is no child’s play. You will have to consider a lot of things before you answer a question like that.
The answer to the question depends on how well your dog is trained. Training your dog will have a directly proportional effect on how your dog feels about being in the crate.
You have to be determined to crate train your dog properly before leaving him alone. Quitting half-way through the training will result in abnormal behavior from your dog.
Therefore, you must complete the training before you leave him unsupervised. Only then, you will be able to be at peace at work, knowing that your dog is happy and safe.