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Discussion Starter #1
This is my first post and I hope to be an active participant. I lost my 15 year old Jack Russell 'Coach' a month ago and my daughter was heart broken. I really tried to wait until next summer to get a puppy but she seemed to need a new focus so I broke down and got a puppy this week ... And boy is she a sweetie.

Kate, my ten year old daughter, and I went to the library, she did additional research on the Internet and she gave me a list of 5 dog breeds she was interested in.

We brought home a runt female Australian Shepard two days ago and we couldn't be happier. 'Little Bear' named after the tv show character that my 4 year old likes, as well as the fact that we had a mother Black Bear in our front yard the day we brought her home, is trying so hard to be a good puppy. She has not had an accident in the house and has slept through the night in her crate.

I know this message is too long so in the future when I have questions I will stay on point ... Here is my concern and where I am seeking advice.

1. I know about the demands of this breed, high energy, intelligent, herder, etc... So I really am looking for advice in keeping her busy when we start school.

2. She really seems to like being outside ... I have a fenced in area with an in the ground swimming pool, grass, and deck ... I would like to leave her outside on days when the weather is not an issue but I am concerned about her being by a pool unsupervised. I do have a large garage where she could stay and a play house shed if
the first option is considered too dangerous. I'm looking for advice.

3. Little Bear will be home by herself from 8 until 3:30. She already travels with the family to soccer games and I plan to take her to nearly every evening event. I certainly wish I could have had the whole summer to train her but I am well aware of what I face (it was 15 years ago that I worked with a high energy Jack). I anticipate the help that members are willing to supply on the forum.

sincerely,
Doug
 

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Welcome! So sorry to hear about your Coach.

A puppy being alone for almost 8 hrs a day is going to be a challenge. I lucked out with Bella because I had a stay-at-home friend/neighbor who would check in on her when we were gone during the day. Do you have anyone you would trust to let Little Bear out at least once or twice a day? You can think about daycare when he is older and is fixed & has shots. But right now it's gonna be tough.

That pool would scare me. I would not suggest letting the pup anywhere near it unless someone were RIGHT there until he becomes a very good swimmer and can get out of the pool without any help. Even then I would not leave a dog unattended around water anymore than I would a child.

Good luck! Oh - puppy pics never hurt either. =)
 

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I wouldn't leave a puppy outside alone and I especially wouldn't leave them around a pool.

Puppies can't regulate their body heat as well as adults (and all dogs are more sensitive to heat than humans) so a climate controlled area is best. A garage can get very hot on a summer's day plus there are a lot of dangerous chemicals and items in most garages. Outside, if she's small, there is also the danger of animals like hawks or foxes or even just other dogs (if your fence is only 4 ft).

I would probably set up a crate + ex-pen in the kitchen or another room with tile or vinyl flooring. If possible, have someone stop by midday to take her out.

If you decide you really need to keep her outside during the day, I would get a welded wire kennel with a roof and put it in a shady, breezy spot along with a tip-proof water bowl.
 

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First of all, welcome! I'm sorry for your loss and happy for your new addition. I hope you become an active participant, too.

So . . . the pool scares me. Some dogs love water, some dogs don't. I wouldn't trust an adult dog near a pool unless I had established they could swim and knew how to get out of the pool. (By established, I mean carefully trained them to get out of the pool with dozens of repetitions.) A puppy is an absolute no to me on that. Puppies tire easily, can't regulate body temperature and are just small.

The above applies to being outside unattended for any length of time. Puppies are prey for hawks, snakes and stray dogs, as well as humans who steal puppies and either keep them or sell them. Puppies get stuck in fencing and boxes and eat stuff that kills them. (Adult dogs will do this stuff, too, but puppies are more likely to.) The garage contains chemicals, the playhouse isn't climate controlled. (Unless that is the nicest playhouse of all time, in which case please adopt me.)

So, you got any rooms with linoleum flooring? Either set up an ex pen in the kitchen or puppy proof a small bathroom and keep the puppy in there during the day. He'll be peeing a lot while you're gone, so you either need a dog walker or you could set up a kitty litter box with fake grass to encourage going "outside", or at least not on linoleum. I'm not a fan of puppy pads, in that (a) lots of puppies shred them, and (b) how is a puppy to sell a puppy pad from a towel or rug?

Also, if this thread doesn't include a cute puppy picture soon, I will report you for violating the Give Amaryllis Cute Pictures of Your Puppy Rule of this forum. ;)
 

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Discussion Starter #5
I will get my kids to post a picture.

I am ruling out the pool ... Until we put the elephant cover on it, I will not leave her in that area. We do live in a very rural area ... I have 6 acres of property.

I picked up two people who will check in on her during the day ... My mother-in-law and son in law agreed to help today.

Is it better to change the puppy's area half way through the day or is a consistent area more appropriate?
 

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I would say keep a consistent area. They are so much creatures of habit so the more routine you have, the easier training will be.
 
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