Whenever you need to leave your Dachshund alone, it’s important to consider how long you’ll be gone and how they will cope with it.
This article explains how dachshunds handle being left alone and provides valuable tips to keep them happy while you’re out.
Dachshunds tolerate being left alone for around 4 to 5 hours. Anything more than this can cause them excess stress, boredom, frustration, and anxiety. Dachshunds are highly sociable and crave human company.
Can Your Dachshund Be Left Home Alone?
Dachshunds, like most breeds, don’t do well when left home alone for many hours at a time.
Breeds with strong pack instincts like the dachshund typically rely on having canine and human company to be content and stress-free.
If you are routinely out of the house for many hours, it’s important to consider adjusting your routine or getting some help that allows your Dachshund to have company. This will be covered later.
How Long Can Your Dachshund Be Left Alone?
Unfortunately, one answer doesn’t fit all…
How long one Dachshund tolerates being left alone will vary from another.
For some, 1 hour will be their maximum tolerance before they start showing signs of boredom, frustration, or stress. For others, 5 hours might be a breeze!
The Longer It Gets, The Worse It Gets
In most cases, 4-5 hours is the upper end for most Dachshunds before they start experiencing negative effects.
But even this can change on a daily basis.
- Some days your Dachshund will handle being left alone better than others, and there can be many reasons for this, including how she’s generally feeling that day, the events leading up to your departure, or even the environment (new smells, noises, temperature, etc).
So now you know that if you’re currently working 8-10 hours straight leaving her home alone, this situation really needs to be changed as soon as possible to avoid a wide range of negative mental health issues.
Interesting Read: Are dachshunds good with kids? What parents should know…
Why Your Dachshund Shouldn’t Be Left Alone For Too Long
If your Dachshund spends too much time alone, the risk of developing one of the following behavioral or mental health issues increases.
Let’s take a look at some of the short and long term effects of being left alone:
● Destructive behavior (frustration and boredom)
● Isolation distress (anxiety)
● Separation anxiety
● Temperament changes including increased aloofness or aggression.
These are all serious issues that can be very hard to overcome once developed.
Aside from the obvious issues above, one of the saddest things about dogs who are left alone is just their discontent and lower quality of life. Dogs are social animals and NEED human (and canine) interaction in order to be happy.
Let’s move on to solutions and what you can do.
This is original content produced and published by The Puppy Mag | www.thepuppymag.com
5 Tips To Keep Your Dachshund Happy When Home Alone
Below are 5 ideas that will help your Dachshund feel happier and more content when left alone.
1. Hire a dog sitter or ask friends or family
This is by far the best tip on the list and it’s the most important to consider. The only true way to keep your Dachshund happy is to not leave her alone, or at least reduce the time she does spend alone.
The first approach is to ask friends or family members if they would be willing to help out occasionally by visiting your home.
They can help by letting her out for a potty break, giving her some playtime, attention, exercise, and topping up her water. Even 30-40 minutes, is a good start and will help break up the time she spends alone.
If you’re unable to ask friends or family members, then there’s a service that you can use. Dog sitting/dog walking is a really common service nowadays and there are many awesome companies out there that do an excellent job.
You can hire a dog sitter who will come to your house and sit inside with your dog or take them out for a walk.
I know, at first, the sound of “a stranger” coming to stay in your house with your dog is scary.
But these people are true dog lovers, and the companies vet all candidates who apply for the position.
Not only that, but each candidate will have individual reviews left by the previous people they have worked with.
A simple Google search will bring up the services closest to you.
2. Give your Dachshund plenty of exercise before leaving
If your Dachshund gets left alone with all of her energy pent up, it’s not going to be long before she becomes bored, frustrated, and stressed.
It’s crucial to exercise her thoroughly before you leave the house. Even if this means waking up painfully early, it must be done.
By doing this you are giving her the best chance of feeling calm and relaxed when you leave. Any dog who has just received plenty of exercises will be happy to lay down and rest. This is exactly how you should be leaving her on a daily basis.
P.S. don’t forget potty breaks! Encourage your Dachshund to pee & poop MULTIPLE times before you leave.
3. Leave the radio, TV or a recording of your voice playing
Let’s start with the first two. Leaving the TV or radio playing is a good idea and very easy to do.
By leaving some background noise playing, you help to drown out outside noises that would otherwise keep her on edge and anxious.
People walking by, cars, other animals or building works are all unwelcomed noises that can be limited with some good old radio or daytime TV.
Even better? If you have the necessary equipment to record yourself having a conversation (with yourself) and then leave it playing on a loop, you’ve got yourself the golden ticket. (sounds crazy, but honestly, nothing beats it)
By playing your own voice out loud, your Dachshund will feel significantly calmer and more relaxed. It may even get to the point where your Dachshund thinks you are still in the house. Yep, really…
This technique has been used to cure severe separation anxiety where one dog couldn’t go 30 seconds without thinking their owner was close by. After playing a recording of the owner’s voice from another room, the anxious dog laid down by the door calmly.
4. Provide interactive toys (puzzle toys)
Interactive toys, otherwise known as puzzle toys are made to provide mental stimulation to dogs.
Mental stimulation keeps dogs challenged and their brains working and as a result, this makes them feel useful and valuable to the pack.
A good interactive toy can significantly reduce boredom, frustration, and may keep your Dachshund thoroughly entertained while you are out of the house.
For the entire duration? Likely not, but an extra 40 minutes – 1 hour is certainly worth it!
Recommended interactive puzzle toy: The Star Mark Bob-A-Lot.
This toy has received thousands of 5-star reviews, it’s durable and simple to use. It’s one of the most basic puzzle toys out there, but it’s very effective at keeping dogs entertained.
All you do is pop some dry kibble or treats inside the ball, and your Dachshund will use his muzzle to roll the ball in the correct position for the treat to fall out.
5. Create a dedicated space for your Dachshund
Creating a special place for your Dachshund to reside in while you are gone is simple, yet very effective.
This can be part of your house or a certain room ideally away from wherever the most outside noises come from.
The space can include your Dachshund’s crate, water bowl, toys, comfort item (like your unwashed t-shirt), and blankets. The idea of this area is to act like a “comfort den” where she can feel safe and secure.
Dogs, coming from the wild, are very sensitive to their environment, so this can be a powerful technique if you get it right.
To establish the place as somewhere she feels comfortable in, you can start playing with her and spending more time with her directly in this location.
Again, it can be a certain room in your house or even a certain corner of one room.
Will Getting Another Dog Help My Dachshund When Alone?
Although it makes sense, the answer is no, getting another dog will not help keep your Dachshund happy when left alone.
It’s commonly thought that two dogs keep each other company, and while that statement is true, it’s only to some extent. Here’s why…
A second dog will never be a replacement for you.
This is just how it goes, and if you get another dog, all you’re doing is doubling your problem. You will then have TWO dogs who are longing for you to come back the moment you leave.
Two dogs are happier together than one, that’s been proven already, but when it comes to leaving them alone, this isn’t the answer.
If you are thinking of getting another dog, it shouldn’t be for this reason, and it’s only fair that this issue gets resolved before getting the second.
Join Dachshund Facebook Groups or Forums
Something I have personally tried (with my Labrador) is joining local Facebook groups with other Labrador owners. And you could do the same with your Dachshund.
Not only do we occasionally meet up for joint walks and excursions, but some even offer to look after your dog when you need to go away or leave the house for a significant amount of time.
Can you rely on this every day? Definitely not! but it is an extra life-line if you ever find yourself in a position where friends or family arent’ able to help.
It’s best to establish a relationship first and even go on joint walks and meetups before you leave your dog with someone else. It goes without saying take extreme caution with who you leave your dog with.
Invest In a Pet Camera To View Your Dachshund When Left Alone
Pet cameras (essentially indoor CCTV) are awesome. You can get ones with two-way audio, and some may even have a separate monitor that your dog can see you back in. This will require you to mount the monitor in a safe place in your home.
After a little setting up, with the help of your smartphone, you will only ever be a few seconds away from seeing and hearing your Dachshund in real-time.
This is incredibly valuable and you can see instantly whether your Dachshund is doing ok, or stressing out. You can then take necessary action like a quick break from work or call a friend or family for immediate help.
You can get a highly reviewed camera for an affordable price. This one has over 3000 positive reviews and is used by thousands of pet owners for this exact reason. Conico 2-Way Audio Pet Camera (Amazon)
Leaving your Dachshund alone for many hours on end is not recommended, and as a responsible dog owner, it’s in your best interest to adjust your own schedule or hire a dog sitter to help look after your Dachshund.
Dogs who spend a lot of time alone will eventually suffer some form of stress, anxiety, depression, and/or behavioral problems.
Remember that every dog is different and some will be able to tolerate more time alone than others. Always do your best to make arrangements for your dog.