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Hello All,

I am new to the forum and have enjoyed reading the threads. My wife and I are picking up our puppy from a foster home next Saturday and we are very excited about having a dog in our home again. We had to put our 14 year old Weimaraner Shade to sleep about a year ago.

We are adopting an 8 week old Weim/Chocolate lab we named Herman. We live in a good sized 3rd floor condominium in Chicago with a fenced in yard. I have a question about the puppy's schedule when we get him home. While we are at work, the schedule I have contemplated will shake out like this:

Monday, Wedneday, Thursday: Herman out at 5:30, bathroom, back inside crate. 7:00-7:30 play with puppy, 7:30 back out for 20-30 minute walk, back in crate. Dog walker/Sister will come over around 10:30 and 2:00 for 30 minute walk. Home from work around 5:45, take Herman out for bathroom and walk. We will continue this until Herman is old enough and has had all the proper vaccinations to go to doggie day care. We will probably alternate between day care and the dog walker after that.

Tuesday & Friday: My parents are on board to dog sit at their house on Tuesday and Friday, so the Herman will go there. They did a very good job training our dog when I was a kid and don't have a dog right now. Is there any drawback to changing the dogs venue early on like this. My parents live on my way to work and they are home all day - seems like a great opportunity to me.

My main concerns are:
Is there too much time in between walks on Mon, Wed, Fri?
Will bringing him to my parents cause any issues?

Also, we have two flights of outdoor stairs on the back of the building Herman will have to go down to get to his potty area. I think in order to get him down there in a timely manner may require me carrying down at him at first. Is this a bad idea. Should I try to get him to go down on his own right away?
Thanks for the replies.

Dave
 

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Puppies thrive on a regular schedule. I would skip Tues and Friday change up and stick with M,W,T. Otherwise your schedule looks fine as long as your dog can hold it for that long at first. He may or may not since he is only 8 weeks old.
 

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2 hours inbetween bathroom breaks sounds reasonable to me for a dog that size, but each puppy is different, so you may find differently if he doesn't adjust well after a week or two.

I don't necessarily see a problem with the Tuesday/Friday schedule as it will also acclimate the dog to car trips, but make sure you're parents keep up with helping to housebreak. Both households should have the same rules too, for example, if you don't want the dog to be allowed on the sofa, make sure your parents follow suit, otherwise the dog could get very confused.

I'm sure others will contribute their opinion too, but I don't see any harm in at least trying the Tues/Fri. at your parents.

As far as carrying the dog down the stairs, I generally don't like to carry puppies around too much, they need to get around on their own if possible.
 

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In the essence of making it outside "on time" (and keeping the other neighbors who have to use that stairwell happy) I would carry the pup until he is confident with stairs.

Schedule for 8 week old pup...

5:30 outside
6-ish feed breakfast
6-7 outside to pee
7- until you have to leave...out for a long, brisk walk, play
you leave at 7:30 or 8...crate
10:30 - sister comes, eliminate, feed lunch meal, outside to eliminate, play, back to crate
2PM - sister comes, out to eliminate, play a bit, back to crate
5:45 home from work, take the dog out immediately to eliminate
6PM -feed dinner meal
6-7 - outside to eliminate
7-8, good long, brisk walk, play, let dog have a drink after play/walk-then pick up water bowl for the night
9-10PM - last outing before bed, crate for the night
Set alarm for every 2-3 hours to take pup out, do not wait for crying as this will teach pup that crying gets him out of the crate.
5:30AM ...start all over again!

Parents...I would take the dog in the crate in the car (I never let my dogs ride in the car unless they are in a crate, too dangerous for them, and me, if their is an accident), leave the crate at the parents' for the day so dog has some sense of consistency. You could also buy an extra crate for the parents...check out craigslist, freecycle, garage sales for cheap used crates. But if your parents need to leave the house or for whatever reason cannot have both eyes on the dog at all times, they will have the option of crating. I also have an extra crate just for the car so I don't have to keep carrying one in and out of the house as the dogs go to training classes, dog parks, play dates, vet.

Be sure parents are on same page...print out the daily schedule for them. Let them know the absolute rules in your house such as not on furniture, no table food, put food bowl down for 15 minutes and then pick up if dog is not interested in meal, no inbetween treats except for special potty treats, use same command words for potty, same expectations for nice leash walking, if the dog is taken out to perform when you know he most likely has to go and then doesn't perform...be sure to crate the dog and try again in 15-30 minutes...only let the dog have freedom if you know he has emptied his system! (that goes for your house too), give freedom in small doses and must be earned...I would be supplying parents (and yourselves) with safety gates for the kitchen or such so that dog doesn't have to be crated when you are home but can be contained and earn freedom by keeping small area clean (but kitchen floors are usually the easiest to clean if accident occurs) for reasonable period of time. It might also be a good idea to buy the EXACT same food and water bowls for parents' house as pups can be a little weird about what they eat and drink out of. Be sure parents have a supply of same food for midday meal, needed until about 6 months of age.

I like your plan. I think the parent days will be good for both the dog and the parents! Dogs are very maleable, just like children, and I see no reason why the dog won't adjust as long as the rules and routine are the same.

Let us know how things go!
 

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I'm sure others will contribute their opinion too, but I don't see any harm in at least trying the Tues/Fri. at your parents.
I don't see the harm either. My friend/coworker and I adopted dogs from the same shelter at the same time. They are together at my house or hers while we work, and they don't have a problem going back and forth.

Enjoy your puppy!
 
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