When owning a dog, one of your primary considerations will be around leaving them on their own. We all have busy schedules, commitments and jobs; so it is important to be aware of how a particular breed would respond to time on their own. But what about the dachshund? Can you leave them on their own and what amount of time is advised until you should return? Here is what you need to know.
So, can Dachshunds be left alone? Dachshunds can be left alone, but it is recommended to do so no longer than 4 hours at a time. This breed commonly suffers from separation anxiety, loneliness, and even bouts of depression without sufficient attention from their owners. Barking, howling, chewing, and other destructive behaviors are clear signs they are being left for too long.
Most dog breeds can be left alone anywhere between 5 and 6 hours – this is not the case for the Dachshund breed.
Generally speaking, the younger the dog the more they will require your attention and care.
So, for this reason if you have recently adopted a young dachshund puppy; you, a family member, neighbor or a friend is going to need to be nearby throughout the day.
Let us now take a closer look at how this breed responds to being alone before turning to some effective strategies that you can use to support your dog if you did need to leave them on their own for some time during the day.
Can You Leave A Dachshund Alone All Day?
It is not advisable to leave a Dachshund alone all day.
Dachshunds as a breed are more prone to being on the sensitive side and typically do not handle being alone. While all breeds of dog do not enjoying being on their own, for the Dachshund, it is a particular struggle.
Of course, it all depends on a number of factors. What is your definition of all day, how old is your dog and what kind of environment are they set up in?
Do they have space and the ability to roam and explore or will they be locked away in a crate? What about going to the toilet?
These factors or play a significant role in how long you can afford to leave your dog without mishap. But just because you ‘can’ does not always mean you should. As we will learn in the next section.
This is why, dog experts and vets recommend that your dachshund is never left on their own for 4 hours or more. But this is of course an average.
Generally, the younger they are, with less things to do, and less space to roam around and be active, the less time they can be left on their own.
But equally, if your dog has any health issues or concerns, the same rings true. Less time away is advised. You must be able to support your dog and care for them in their time of need.
If for some reason you must leave your dog home alone for more than four hours (e.g. you must work) you will need to make some arrangements.
Getting a friend, family member, trusted neighbor or a dog walker are some of your options here. This will enable them to let your dog out, do their business and get some much needed attention.
Aside from feeling sad when you leave, dachshunds are known to become bored very quickly.
Dachshunds are high energy and curious breed, and they require a lot of frequent mental stimulation.
If your doxie is stuck all day indoors with nothing to do, they will find ways to keep themselves busy; this usually results in making a lot of noise and chewing on your furniture, shoes etc.
Do Dachshunds Have Separation Anxiety?
Most Dachshunds experience separation anxiety when their owners leave; they exhibit certain behaviors when they feel lonely.
These dogs get bored when they are alone, and they are likely to act out in the following ways:
Barking And Howling
This is your dogs way of calling out for you when you are absent. They will howl and bark to attract attention, in the hope that you will come running back.
While this type of behavior is not harmful in itself, it is likely to make you unpopular with your neighbors very quickly.
You cannot stop your dog from making noise entirely, but there are steps you can take to minimize it and reduce separation anxiety. Keep reading to find out how!
Chewing Shoes And Furniture
Doxies deal with boredom by chewing objects, preferably sofas and shoes.
If you must leave your pet for any length of time, it is a good idea to leave some chew toys lying around the house or within their enclosed space. The Kong Chew Toy from Amazon is a popular favorite.
This way they get to release stress and expend energy without damaging your personal belongings. It also gives them a chance to stimulate their minds and keep the distracted from your absence.
Aside from giving your dog chew toys for them to play with in your absence, you should also hide all your valuables away.
If possible, consider creating a space for them to stay while you are out of your home. Dedicate a room in which you can leave them. Of course, ensure this is not the best room in your house, or one in which they can get up to mischief.
Ensure all doors and windows are closed when you leave, and make sure there are no loose wires etc for them to chew on.
You can even consider getting baby gates installed in your home to create such a place if you do not have doors or a suitable area.
Equally, you can get playpens, like this highly reviewed one on Amazon, that works great for dachshunds.
The benefit of using a playpen is that you can afford your dog extra space to roam while you are out, but you can keep them confined to one space or area in your home.
Place the chew toys in then pen and you’ll have made their environment a lot more optimal in the circumstances.
Do Dachshunds Get Lonely?
Dachshunds are very friendly and social dog breeds that crave constant attention from their owners.
These dogs can feel lonely and depressed if they are left on their own for too long.
Dachshund puppies get especially upset and naturally require more care and attention than adult Dachshunds.
For this reason, you should not leave puppies alone for long until they are old enough and house-trained. Pups do not understand that they cannot go to the toilet in the house and will make a mess on the floor.
While this will of course ruin your home and you’ll need to clear it up – it also is not nice for your doxie to have to be around it until you return home.
Equally it does not teach them when and how to go to the toilet.
When Doxies are left alone for too long, they can become quite a nuisance. Its not their fault – it is their way of keeping themselves sane and entertained.
As mentioned above, they are likely to howl, and bark and will look to chew any item that they can and come accross.
Sadly, extended periods of loneliness can give way to longer term depression. When your dog feels particularly sad and down, they may lose their appetite and lose interest in his regular activities. Even when you are back in their company.
If your Doxie is depressed, they are more likely to cause trouble, but it is heartbreaking to think about what they may be going through.
Any loving dog owner wants to know what they can do to help their dog overcome loneliness.
Some behaviors cannot be stopped – especially if you have a new pup.
There is an element for a young dog that they need to learn that there will be some time on their own and they will need to get used to their new environment and surroundings.
Which will be a big thing for them at first.
Thanfully, you can support your dog and reduce feelings of isolation by doing certain things.
The following should at least lessen some of the bad behaviors and ensure that your dogs needs are being met.
#1 Train Your Dachshund As A Puppy
To combat social anxiety, it is crucial to train your Dachshund as a puppy. This will help them to get used to your absence from a young age and will less likely lead to issues later in life.
You can begin by leaving your puppy for only a few minutes at a time, followed by 15 minutes at a time, then an hour.
You want to let your absence increase each time gradually.
When you leave your pup for only a few minutes at the start, they will soon realize that you always return. This will ease their anxiety and help them to get used to time away.
Of course, this should only ever reach a maximum of four hours. Even into adulthood.
#2 Have A Consistent Routine
Dogs are creatures of habit, and they do not like the unexpected.
Having a stable routine is crucial to dog ownership.
If you must leave every day, try to do so at the same time and try to come home at the same time every day too. This will enable your dog to set their expectations and will also help with potty training too.
Shift work is not ideal when you have a dog.
#3 Get Another Dog
One Dachshund can be enough to take on at once let alone two. These dogs are highly active and quite dependent on you as their owner. Then of course there is the cost.
However, if you can get two Doxies – and get them to coexist peacefully, then you’re going to really support their emotional well being and keeping them social throughout the day .
Looking after two Dachshunds is not easy, and you’ll need to take on a lot and consider many things. For example, you need to socialize them together, break up any potential initial fighting and you’ll need to spend time and energy fostering a relationship between them.
But, it can be done for any owner and will be worth the effort. They are great company for each other and this can afford you longer periods of time away knowing your dogs are not suffering from isolation.
#4 Family, Trusted Neighbor, Friend or Dog Walker
We have already mentioned this, but this is a really effective strategy for those of you who have to go to work and need to leave your dog at home for extended periods.
This is also an effective strategy in an emergency, or when you must take unexpected time away.
You can always get a family member, trusted neighbor or friend to visit. They can let your dog out, play with them or take them outside.
Equally, you can hire a dog walker to take them out during the day for a walk. This will keep them active and happy.
Just be sure that you introduce your dog to these individuals ahead of time, when you are present. This will enable you to ensure they get along, know how to handle your dog and are naturally good with dogs too.
While it is true that dachshunds can be left alone, the truth is, its best not to for any extended period of time.
These dogs thrive on companionship, particularly that of their owners. They are loyal almost to a fault.
There are always going to be times when you must leave your dachshund alone.
However, try to keep it under 4 hours, as these dogs feel the effects of separation anxiety more deeply and it can really cause issues with behavior and their mental state.
Puppies require more care and attention, so you need to be especially careful during this phase of their life with leaving them alone.
As they are learning, this is the optimum time to train them. Give them time and try not to get angry with your puppy as they learn – there may be some mishaps along the way.
The time you take to train your puppy will pay dividends when you have a confident and well-mannered dog.
It’s also a great idea to really think about your home environment and where you will be leaving them.
Think about how you can reduce boredom, improve their comfort and also think about getting people to visit to minimize loneliness.
Get it right, and you may even find that they sleep most of the time you are away.
Ultimately, the dachshund is an excellent breed for any household. They are intelligent and very affectionate to their owners.
So, if you are yet to adopt a dachshund but were looking for this kind of information before you do, do not let this put you off.
You just need to be aware that this breed has unique characteristics and that they are notorious for wanting things their way. It is important to know ahead of time.
Believe it or not, the coat type of a Dachshund plays a large role in their typical personality – wire-haired Dachshunds have terrier in their genes, so, these are known to be more likely to suffer from behavioral problems.
Long-haired dachshunds, on the other hand, are generally calmer and reserved.
Smooth-haired dachshunds have a temperament that is somewhere in between the two.
With this in mind, you may be able to make a more informed decision as to what is best for you and your own circumstances.
I am an experienced pet owner with decades of experience owning a number of different pets, from traditional pets like dogs and cats, to the more exotic like reptiles and rodents. I currently own a Cockapoo (pictured) called Bailey. I am also the main writer and chief editor here at Pet Educate; a site dedicated to sharing evidence-based insights and guidance, based on my vast pet ownership knowledge, experience, and extensive research.