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Hi there,
I have just got a new puppy, a Bichon Frise who is 7 weeks old, and I am getting confused, as the more I read on the internet, the more people contradict each other with how to train.
I have the puppy in a crate in the living room, and he sleeps there really well during the night (I get up on schedule 3 times to take him out to potty), and this is working really well for us.
During the day, he hangs out in the living room, which is puppy proof and will sometimes go into his crate for a nap, sometimes not.
I left him today for the first time for 2 hours and put him in the crate with the door locked. When I got back he seemed distressed and had obviously been thrashing around in the crate, he had also poo'd in his water bowl.
Is this normal/okay? Should I just let him have free reign of the living room when I am out, with the crate door open? Or am I doing the correct thing?
Thank you in advance, any advice is very welcome.
 

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I think you are on the right track. Keeping him crated while you are out will keep him and your house safe. It might help if you play more crate games and do crate training with him so he gets used to being left alone for small periods and gradually increasing. Giving him something to do while you're gone might also help. A frozen stuffed Kong can keep a pup busy for a while.
 

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Maybe start with leaving him for shorter amounts of time and see if he reacts better? Do you ever lock him in the crate while you're home? I would start with leaving him in his crate and "leaving" - even if you just go outside or in another room for a bit - for just 10-15 minutes and then slowly building up.

With a puppy that young I wouldn't give him free roam of the room, but that's really up to you. And that really is a bit young for him to be away from his mother and littermates, which probably makes him even more upset when he's alone.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thanks for your help. Yes, I have been leaving in the crate with the door shut whilst out the room, for smaller intervals. I will buy him a puppy kong, and try to get him to enjoy being in there more whilst playing instead of just sleeping.
 

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At this young age, 2 hours may be a bit young to leave alone... Did you take him out before leaving? Altho the General rule of thumb is roughly 1 hour of holding it for every month of age, the total time can vary by an hour either way. Less when younger, more when older.

Keep up what you're doing, clean the crate with good enzyme cleaner, and keep the door shut when you can't watch him.
 
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