Most people will be away from home for a long, so a good question to ask is whether or not you can leave a Rottie alone. After doing some comprehensive research, I have the answer to your problem with some helpful tips.
Can Rottweilers be left alone? A well-trained Rottie can be left alone for up to 6 hours comfortably; after that, they should be walked, taken outside, and fed.
In this article, we will share some tips on how you can help your dog in your absence and some tips on choosing a Rottweiler if you don’t have one already.
Can Rottweilers Be Left Alone?
A well-trained full-grown Rottweiler can be left alone for up to 6 hours. After that, they will grow restless as their needs like going to the bathroom, eating, exercising, and drinking water becomes direr.
Imagine having to go to the bathroom, but having to wait 8 hours for someone to come home and open the door to the bathroom for you. That’s one way to imagine what it’s like to be a dog.
Can you leave a Rottweiler pup alone?
The most important part of a puppy’s education is potty training, and the little ones need to use the bathroom quite often.
The younger ones need to pee every 60 minutes, as they have small bladders and cannot hold it for long. This means taking the dog outside every hour or so, and this pretty much answers your question.
For the first few weeks, somebody will have to be there to take care of the dog’s needs, basically round the clock.
That’s true of any dog, not just Rottweilers, so if you’re serious about getting yourself a pet, you’ll have to consider that.
Unfortunately, teaching the dog to use some sort of litter box while you’re not at home is not such a good idea as it will only confuse the dog as to what constitutes proper manners.
On a practical level, a little pup spraying the corner of the carpet is not much of a problem, but a grown-up Rottweiler making a puddle in the middle of the living room, that’s quite a mess.
If you want to avoid problems further down the line, teach the puppy that the bathroom is outside.
How to prepare your Rottweiler for your absence
Let’s get back to the training part. Among the basic commands, you need to teach your Rottie is Stay. This will be most useful when it comes to making him understand that you need to leave the house and he needs to stay. Don’t expect to be able to teach him that in one go. It’s not like you can tell your dog, ‘I’m off to work now, bye!’ Take it slowly and start with short periods of absence.
Your dog might be disappointed to see you getting dressed to go out and not taking him with you.
Ignore the hurt look in his eyes and tell him he needs to stay. You’re going to want to start with a 10-15 minute absence, which will get progressively longer.
An essential part of this stage is how you behave when you come back or, better said, how the dog behaves.
You need to strike the right balance between being reassuring and acknowledging his outrage at being left alone.
Just say ‘I’m back’ and try to act naturally. Excessive petting and reaching out for a treat might reinforce the dog’s belief that you leaving him alone like that was a terrible thing, and he was right to be upset. You don’t want that.
You need to drive home the point that you leaving the house to go about your business is perfectly normal, and this is how it’s going to be. If you don’t make such a big deal of it, the dog won’t either.
If you do it right, you will be able to leave the dog alone for several hours, but that doesn’t mean going home early and returning after dusk.
Experts say that leaving the dog alone for up to six hours is quite doable. For more extended periods, you risk finding that puddle in the living room we talked about even if your dog is house trained.
If you need to leave for long periods, it is advisable to find someone to come round the house and take the dog out for a short walk and a potty break.
How to keep your dog from getting bored
Remember the part about Rottweilers being brilliant dogs? Well, this means they need a lot of mental stimulation. A bored dog might resort to destructive behavior just to entertain himself. Here’s how you can avoid that.
Take him for a walk
If you want your dog to be comfortable with being on his own, you must make sure he gets plenty of exercise and pleasant walks.
Wake up early and take the dog out for a walk, allowing him to greet his friends and sniff a few butts or lampposts, as this will provide some mental stimulation. For a dog, this counts as checking his social media and finding out what’s new.
Buy a puzzle feeder
Another thing you should try is getting your dog some toys and a puzzle feeder.
There are plenty of those on the market, and they provide mental stimulation as the dog has to work his brains to reach the last piece of food.
A snuffle mat can keep the dog busy for a good 30 minutes leaving him tired enough to want to take a nap, which is an excellent way to pass the time while you’re out.
Leave the music on
Many pet owners leave the music on while they’re out so the dog won’t feel alone. Of course, you can leave the radio on, or you could look up special music compilations created especially for dogs.
You can find many of those for free on YouTube, or you can even order special music CDs for dogs. The dog won’t be fooled into believing you’re there, but carefully chosen music can soothe his separation anxiety and keep him entertained.
Just make sure to change it from time to time if you don’t want to drive the poor dog mad!
Enroll the dog in daycare
Doggie daycare is an excellent opportunity for socialization, and your Rottweiler would greatly benefit from one even if you’re not planning to leave him alone for more extended periods.
Rottweilers need to be well-socialized from a young age and exposed to many different faces, places, and situations if you want them to behave well when meeting a stranger or going someplace new. It doesn’t have to be every day.
Taking him to daycare for a few hours twice a week should work just fine.
How to choose a Rottweiler
Ideally, you should always get a dog from a trustworthy breeder. If anything, you need to make sure your puppy is free of disease.
When we’re talking about Rotties, you should observe the puppy and how he behaves in the litter.
You don’t want an aggressive little devil, nor a little runt that acts more like a scaredy-cat than a dog.
Also, remember that females are more manageable than male Rotties when you choose your puppy.
Ask to meet the dog’s parents if possible. At least, the mother should be around, and it is worth watching how she interacts with people.
Since you’re probably going for a puppy rather than an adult Rott, you must know that the little ones are a bundle of energy.
They do calm down as they grow up, but that first year of their lives can be quite challenging.
On the other hand, getting yourself a pup allows you to train him as you want, and this is the key to having a dog that can be trusted to be left alone in the house.
How to train your Rottweiler
Rotties are smart, no doubt about that. They are in the top 10 most intelligent dog breeds, and this is excellent news for you, as this means that they learn fast and can be easily trained. If you know what you’re doing, that is.
Not to put you off or anything, but you must keep in mind that Rottweilers are not the most suitable dogs for first-time pet owners. If this is the case, you should consider enlisting the help of a professional trainer.
As intelligent as they are, Rotties can also be very stubborn, and they will be if they sense any weakness in you.
That’s what being the top dog in the house refers to. If you want to have a comfortable life with your new Rottweiler, you have to assume the role of top dog for yourself.
You’re the boss. Otherwise, the dog will simply ignore you and your special orders, including the ‘Now you be quiet and don’t tear up the house while I’m out working so I can buy you food.’
Rottweilers can be left alone for more extended periods, but try to keep that to less than six hours.
Train your dog that being on his own for a while is part of life, and don’t let him make a big deal out of it.
Be firm when you say goodbye, and don’t let him see you hesitate, as he will try to speculate your perceived weakness.
Provide enough exercise and mental stimulation for your dog. Remember that pent-up energy can lead to destructive behavior.
For the sake of your neighbors, teach your dog that excessive barking is not OK, and he should keep that for outside when he meets other dogs!