Adjusting dogs (and their human) to night shift?


New Member
Hi guys!
I figure there has got to be another dog/doxie mom out there with the same dilemma. I am pretty anxious about leaving her anyway, as I worry. I took a night shift position recently and will start next month and was wondering if any of you have advice for both of us adjusting? So far in her little life, Annie has been able to go to work with me (I am an RN and my bosses have Jack Russell terriers) so she has never had to be left alone more than an hr. or two in her crate. She cries and carries on in her crate, and I know she will have to cry to get used to it little by little. I will be gone for 12 hr. shifts, but it's hard to say whether or not I will get breaks as it depends on the patient load.

Anyway, I was thinking of getting one of those larger open pens, where she has plenty of room to move around but that she can't jump out of and putting it in the kitchen and putting food, water, toys and her little bed in with her.

I have a friend who could come let her out to potty in the evening and would put a potty pad in there as well.

Does anyone have any experience, advice, words of wisdom? Any consolation is appreciated! The upside is, I would have more days off with this schedule so I could spend time with her on those days and she wouldn't need to be penned up.

Thanks in advance, and sorry for my long winded nature!

Sounds like you've developed a pretty good plan.

Nightshift? She should be fine for most of that, sleeping while your working.

12 hours is a little long, though. Having someone come in once or twice while your gone would help. Although, you've got to have some mighty good friends to come in and check on your dog at 3:00 a.m.

Pee Pads might be a good alternative.

Asking your boss about bringing her with you might be another alternative.

Good luck. I'm sorry you and your dog are going to have to go through this adjustment. I suspect she'll do better than you.


New Member
I agree 12 hours is a long time to leave any dog. Will she go on the puppy pads? I know my Noodle will only go outside (unless I leave her and take my other dog then she will poo by the front door) but ya.. it is not good to have a dog hold it for that long, it could result in a UTI.

I like the X-Pen idea, when I am at work Noodle is in a crate but it is ment for a Great Dane so she has lots of room to move around in.