15 Dog Breeds That Can Be Left Alone

Medically Reviewed

If you work a lot but would like to share your life with a dog, choosing the right breed is essential.

And guess what?

We’ve created a list of dog breeds that are potentially more suited to being left alone during the day, making them an excellent choice for busy people.

However, it is important to remember that dogs are naturally social animals, and they love to spend time with us. We understand that sometimes it is not possible to spend all day with our dogs, as much as we would love to be able to! We have work, college, gym time, family obligations, commuting (traffic!) and everything else which eats up our precious time.

If you don’t have a lot of free time to spend with your dog, due to other life commitments, then you may need to consider if getting a dog right now is the right decision? Your dog needs at least one walk a day, play time, feeding times, multiple toilet breaks throughout the day and a lot of love and attention!

Generally, puppies will crave more attention and need more time and effort in order to learn good social and life skills. Some dogs will worry and fret if left alone, and potentially have destructive behavior in the house such as chewing or ripping toys or the sofa! There are also some breeds that when left alone can suffer from separation anxiety too. But, after some time most dogs will need to learn how to be alone for long periods of time.

However, there are some dog breeds that can be left alone for 8 hours (and no more than 8 hours). That is why we have created this helpful list of dog breeds, that may be more suitable to leave during the daytime.

So let’s discover these dogs that tolerate being alone ranked from least to most tolerant to extended alone time.

Dogs That Can Be Left Alone:

Click on the desired breed, or scroll to read the whole list.

15. Basset Hound

Basset-Hound

Tolerate being alone score: 3/5

It may come as a surprise, given the hunting background of the breed, but Bassets are an easy-going type of dog that can easily turn into couch potatoes if given a chance to.

More importantly, the Basset hound is stable and not prone to mood swings or anxiety.

So, if you are in the mood to go for a hike – the Basset will be cool with that, and if some alone-time daily is what has to be done – it`s cool with that as well.

14. Boston Terrier

Boston-Terrier

Tolerate being alone score: 3/5

Many pick the Boston Terrier as a pet for its small size and resemblance to the Boxer.

These even-tempered, intelligent and energetic dogs will not find it too hard to stay at home alone, as long as you provide them with toys of some sort to amuse themselves with.

13. Dachshund

dachshund

Tolerate being alone score: 3/5

The comical Dachshunds are confident, intelligent dogs that make a wonderful addition to any family. They reached the peak of their popularity in the 1950s and remained among the most popular dogs ever since.

Being bred to dig and hunt on badgers and other animals, these dogs are great listeners and are very smart and brave. However they can often have a too independent spirit and be stubborn. While this might cause some issues when it comes to training, it can also be a benefit when it comes to people that can’t spend a lot of their time at home.

A dachshund will enjoy his alone time without crying and howling for you.

12. Scottish Terrier

Tolerate being alone score: 3/5

The Scottish Terrier is known for his role of the Lady’s loyal friend from Lady and the Tramp. This short-legged dog is bred to hunt badgers and foxes which is why he is a very intelligent and independent. The Scottie is a naturally aloof dog that might ignore you when he needs his own time and space.

Scottish Terriers are wonderful companions for families with kids, but can be difficult to train because of their genes telling them they should work (hunt) separately from his owners.

11. Goldador

Tolerate being alone score: 4/5

Goldador is a cross breed of a Golden Retriever and a Labrador Retriever. The idea was to create a working dog that is sensitive as a goldie and tolerant as a lab. Goldadors are active dogs that need regular exercise.

They are also a popular choice among people that work fulltime hours, because of their tolerance of some alone time. Goldadors are quick-learners, good friends and have easygoing personas. You just have to love them! Plus, if you provide him with enough toys, he won’t barely notice you’re not around. Goldadors love playing and making up new activities.

10. Labradoodle

Tolerate being alone score: 4/5

Yet another crossbreed on the list. This time it’s the famous “designer” breed called Labradoodle. Not only is this dog suitable for owners that are away from home for longer hours, but Labradoodles also work great as therapy dogs. However, there’s another trait that makes them a popular choice for many new dog-owners, their hypoallergenic coat.

All in all, labradoodles are dogs of a poodle-intelligence and labrador-friendliness that won’t leave anyone indifferent. These pups are also very easy to train. If you’re looking for a great pal that will enjoy learning new commands and won’t suffer from separation anxiety, labradoodle is the right choice for you!

9. Small Munsterlander Pointer

Tolerate being alone score: 4/5

Don’t let this breed’s name fool you, Small Munsterland Pointers are actually medium-sized dogs. They are sporting dogs that were bred for hunting which is why they became very popular across Europe.

The Small Munsterland is an affectionate dog of great water-retrieving skills. Training him will be a real breeze, but he will need a lot of daily exercise. A Munsterland Pointer will enjoy running, jogging, swimming and playing flyball. Being such an intelligent pup, he will also find it quite easy to entertain himself while being left alone at home. Just provide some toys and he’ll be fine.

8. English Foxhound

Tolerate being alone score: 4/5

Movies, books, and cartoons have been made about this tricolor dog and his hot pursuit of a red fox. English Foxhounds are strong and graceful dogs that love staying active. They will be a great companion for jogging, running or even horseback riding. English Foxhounds are very intelligent and will know exactly how to spend their alone time.

However, the time you don’t spend with an English Foxhound throughout the day, you’ll have to spend on daily exercise and various activities. If you’re a runner, this dog is a perfect choice for you!

7. Basenji

Basenji

Tolerate being alone score: 4/5

The Basenji was originally bred in Africa to hunt and exterminate rat nests. What remained of that is the ever-awake and active explorer`s mind.

The Basenji is not as independent as the Chow, but displays affection in far more obvious ways. The Basenji equally enjoys your company and the time alone that he dedicates to exploring and figuring out new ways to amuse himself.

6. Chinese Shar-Pei

sharpei

Tolerate being alone score: 4/5

This unusual dog of loose wrinkles, purple tongue and a bristle-like coat is definitely among most interesting-looking dogs out there. But it’s not only his rare looks that set him apart, Shar-Pei is an independent dog that can even sometimes be aloof.

Thanks to this traits in his personality, a Shar-Pei handles some alone time much better than most other breeds. They are very devoted dogs, but they have to be properly trained at early age because they can be often stubborn, just like any other independent dog breed.

5. Lhasa Apso

Lhasa-Apso

Tolerate being alone score: 4/5

Lhasa Apso is sometimes referred to as the biggest small dog, due to its strong and dominant character, an unusual sort of intelligence and absolute absence of the sense of its own tiny size.

Unlike many small lap dogs, Lhasa Apso probably won`t spend its time alone squealing in fear but rather hoping to catch the burglar.

4. Otterhound

Tolerate being alone score: 5/5

Otterhound is a very rare and old breed that has been developed in England. It is believed that there are fewer than 1,000 Otterhounds today, and that they’ve been around for more than 5 centuries.

This rare breed has a sweet, soft personality and is type of a dog that doesn’t require a lot of attention. Being so independent, he will enjoy having his alone time. Otterhounds are very friendly dogs that do well with kids.

If you’re planning to get one, you should be prepared for difficulties in finding Otterhound breeders.

3. Shiba Inu

Shiba-Inu

Tolerate being alone score: 5/5

Although they are strong-willed, even the stubborn Shiba Inu is an exceptionally intelligent breed that is capable of learning pretty much anything – as long as he believes that the idea is one of his own.

Shiba is not a breed that will react well to the conventional training tactics, yet if approached properly, this independent, witty and spirited dog will not have any trouble staying at home alone.

2. Miniature Schnauzer

Miniature-schnauzer

Tolerate being alone score: 5/5

Miniature Schnauzers are intelligent, affectionate and energetic little creatures, quite unaware of their small size.

Eager to learn, they will have no trouble at all staying at home alone, as long as they are provided with something to keep their minds busy; whether a toy or the role of the guard dog. Miniature Schnauzers are perfect for people that are looking for low-shedding dog breeds that are also hypoallergenic.

A word of caution:

Some of them may cause some trouble though, since minies tend to bark a lot if they really get into the guard dog role.

1. Chow Chow

Chow-Chow

Tolerate being alone score: 5/5

The Chow Chow is a type of dog with a sense of independence and self-dignity like no other. Chows aren’t normally cuddly, nor do they display affection in the usual way, but that does not mean that they aren’t affectionate or loving – in their own sophisticated way.

In fact:

Living with a Chow is more like living with a flat mate than living with a pet that depends on your presence. Being like that, Chow will do well if left home alone.

Check out our video of 10 independent dog breeds that won’t cry or squeal when left home alone.

How Long Can A Dog Be Left Alone?

It’s important not to forget that dogs are social animals and they love spending time with us, so leaving them alone all day really isn’t the best idea if you want a happy, well adjusted dog.

According to this study, dogs are affected by the duration of time at home alone.

That said, if you don’t work particularly long hours (say, 5-6 hours a day, 8 at an absolute maximum) then you can consider adopting an adult dog, who is already known (by its previous owners and/or shelter staff) to be comfortable being left alone. Puppies will need much more time and effort and generally don’t like being left alone for long periods of time.

Read next: 17 Ways To Keep Dog Busy While At Work

What Do Dogs Do When They Are Alone?

Have you wondered what your dog does when it’s alone?

We’ve all wondered about it, so let’s get started.

Sleep

Fact:

The average dog sleeps for about 14 hours a day (including at night).

Can this really be true?

Yes!

In fact, puppies and senior dogs can sleep even more.

If taken for exercise, dogs will sleep more during the day, so it could be a great idea to take your dog for a long walk before going to work or school.

Play

Dogs love to play, especially with toys filled with dog treats. When alone, be sure your dog has it’s favorite toy to pass the time.

If you have two dogs, they can have great fun playing together even when they are alone.

Guard The House

If you have a guard dog, it’s very likely that it will wake up and guard at any suspicious sound.

Hope you found this article interesting. If so, feel free to spread the word!

This article has been medically reviewed by Dr Margarita Boyd, BVSc MRCVS.

Margarita graduated from the University of Liverpool, earning a Bachelor in Veterinary Science with distinction. She worked in small animal and equine practice for a few years, before choosing to focus solely on companion animals. She has developed a special interest in internal medicine and ophthalmology.

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44 comments

  • SUNNY

    If you need to read this article perhaps you should rethink your need to have a dog………

    • Kristina - Barking Royalty Team

      While I understand your concern, and you’re completely right that dogs should spend an adequate amount of time with their owners, there are still a lot of people ready to give their love to a new pet, but they work fulltime jobs. Therefore, this article is for those that are ready to dedicate their free time to dogs in a proper manner while working an 8-hour job.

  • Chris

    My comment is to “Derek” If you dont frikken like dogs the last thing on earth you should ever do is get a dog!

  • Varun Shanbhag

    Good info

    • Kristina - Barking Royalty Team

      Thanks!

  • Hayley

    Hello,

    Please can you tell me if Goldadors are okay with being left alone, also miniature dashunds.

    Many Thanks

  • Gchilly

    I work 8 hour days what dog is good for this as I need s companion 

  • Kim

    Do you reply to any of the comments? I’ve seen a post from Jo Roy about the picture of number one being a staffordshire bull terrier and not a bull terrier. Suggestion made to change photo and here we are some 2 months later and still wrong. Sort it out.

    • Kristina - Barking Royalty Team

      Hey Kim,
      Oops, we really overlooked Jo Roy’s comment! Thank you for bringing that up.
      The issue is fixed now.
      High paw!
      Barking Royalty

  • Ram

    I want to take a pet dog and I go to work for 8 hours so which dog should I take which can live alone at home for 8 hours

  • Derek

    hi, i want a dog but i dont like dogs ,what should i do?

  • Jo Roy

    No 1 shows a picture of a Staffordshire Bull Terrier, not a Bull Terrier. Staffordhsire Bull terriers are not suited to being on their own as they thrive on human company. You should consider changing this photo as it’s misleading.

    • Kristina - Barking Royalty Team

      Hey Jo Roy,
      You’re totally right, we accidentally put the wrong photo. However, thanks for bringing that up!
      We have fixed the issue now.
      Cheers,
      Barking Royalty

  • Jordan

    Replying to Jay. I have a 7.5 month old Weizsla (Weimaraner-Vizsla Breed). I have had him since he was 8 weeks old. I work full time and he is well adjusted to my schedule. He is crate trained and house trained. Exercise is the key. We go out and play fetch for 30-60 minutes before work in the morning. He is let out around mid day to relive himself and run around for about 20 minutes, and gets another good hour of running in the evening. The more exercise your dog gets the more content they will be to sleep all day when alone. I do recommend easing the dog into being left alone for long periods. I worked from home when I Fort got him and slowly weaned my hours spent with him during the day until he was ok with spending two 4 hour chunks at home alone. 

  • Jupiter

    I’m getting a dog and my mum is working and comes home in the day and I’m at school from 7:30/3:00 so what should I do cause I don’t want the dog to feel neglected 

  • Daisy

    I’m getting a dog for my birthday I would like a small dog that is obedient and loving but I’m still in school and it will be left alone for 6 hours but I want to send it to doggie day care so it not locked up alone do you have any suggestions?

  • Kuhu

    I am a school going girl and i need a dog which can stay alone at home while i am away at school an needs less grooming . Please recomend .

  • Yash Joshi

    I am planing for buy a boxer puppy in india he is a 4 month old and i am working guy so the boxer is right option ?

  • kedktl

    If you’re looking for a pup that is easy-on-the-ears, we’ve got the top 15 dog breeds that don’t bark excessively.

  • Angelys cintron

    How do you get your Chihuahua to stop pooping in the carpet all the time?

  • Jay

    We have done a lot of research and have fallen in love with the Weimaraner breed. My hesitation is that due to working schedules, the dog may be left at home 4-5 hours each day. From researching it seems that some suffer from separation anxiety, and others become very destructive out of sheer boredom.
    We can meet the exercise needs, love the personality traits, but wanted to know if anyone in this forum has experience/hands on knowledge with this breed and can confirm any of this? In addition, what other comparable large breeds do you recommend for a young moderately active family in the suburbs, that will be away a few hours each day? An easy-to-train large family dog with flexibility/adaptability would be ideal.
    Thanks!

  • Mara

    Why does my puppy, pitbull cry when I leave the room for 3-5 mins. ?

  • Bex

    Okay people, the ‘I’m gone 65467hrs. a day, can I get a dog’ questions are out of control. Can you get a dog? Well, if you live in a house, yeah. Get a Bull Mastiff, Bull Terrier, or Kuvasz.
    Also get a dog walker, or a dog door and security camera. Believe it will take a serious burglar to try a dog door with a camera on it and a Bull Mastiff eyeballing him. If a burglar is that serious, I doubt your window glass was keeping him out.
    So get your dog, work you job, and be happy.

  • khushbu

    i am fulltime working 23year old girl im wanting to have small pappie but i dnt knw which one is suitble for my worktime nd which one can stay home byself im more happy to go for walk eveningtime everyday pleass suggest breed who they quite cute small to medium nd i cN leave her in home for 7-8hours during day?

  • Paula

    I want to get a puppy for our family. I have 2 girls aged 11 and 3 and I work full time but am only 10 mins walk from my home. I will be able to walk the dog every morning before work, will be coming home everyday at lunchtime (around 12) to walk the dog and my oldest daughter gets home from school at 2:55pm so will be in the house after that. I want to get a bred of dog that would be ok with this, can you make any suggestions please? Thanks.

  • Ed

    Seriously?
    Think of your own bladder. Multiply the time by 2.
    That is how long dogs can be left alone. If you are going to be away for longer then get a dog walker, or get a cat with a litterbox. 
    All of you 12 hour shift people? Buy a goldfish.

  • Todd

    I work 12 hrs shifts, I have experience with dogs and live alone. 
    I am wanting a friend dog who is a good guard. Not destructive and not noisy when I am not home. I dont know if my work hours preclude me however I thought it a good idea to get professional advice.

  • Megan Misener

    I want to get a dog for our family but I’m looking for the right fit. I work 8-9 hours a day. I have a daughter who’s 9 and we live in a small townhouse. Some people have suggested a bullmatstiff or a pug. What do you suggest?

  • Stacy

    I am looking into getting a dog as a family pet! I have 2 children (5&7)- however I work half 8 to half 4 (someone is always in house after that), I have looked into dog walkers and I am not sure as they cost a fortune  but I don’t want to be cruel to the dog – is there any breed that would suit our family ? Or any suggestions? 

  • Stephen

    The only time I’m gone for a long period of time is on Saturday & Sunday when I work 12 hours each of those days. What would be the best dog to get?

  • Makenna

    What type of dog should I get since my brothers both play lots of sports and we are gone all but not for a long time maybe an hour or to

  • Abi

    I have two dogs golden retriever and labordor retriever they have grown together from their small age Now it’s 10month old.The problem is from next month I will go for office for 8hours. It’s OK if I leave the dog’s alone for 8 hours

  • Amy

    I would really like a dog, but I live in an apartment and I’m not home during the week that often. I’m not sure what to do. If you could find a suitable breed that would be great

  • Saskia

    I was wondering if you could pick out a well suited dog for me. I’m a mother of a 14 year old who loves dogs but I’m allergic! But I’ve heard that hypoallergenic dogs can prevent my allergies from sparking. But my family are also either at school or work for most of the day and so am I so it would have to be left alone for around 7 hours 3 days a week. If you can pick out a well suited dog I’ll be very grateful. Thank you

  • #G.DogLover

    I’m looking into getting a Husky, but my parents work for 10-13 hrs. Would that work. If not what type of dog should i get.

  • Rikey

    Is it scientifically proven that any type of dog breed gets along with another specific dog breed

  • Isaac Hernandez

    I want a golden or a lab but I don’t know which do get and I work for 8-9 hours 

  • Angela Godfrey

    I want a poodle but I’m not home at 8 hours max every day. Can I still get one?

  • Trinity

    Im wanting to get a pup, a pug to be exact. But I will have collage, thinking of an apartment close or a collage that allows pets? What do you think? Could the pug handle being alone? Would he/she need a friend? Aka another pug?

  • thai fancher

    im looking to get a puppy for me and my two kids. i keep reading articles about what breeds are best when left at home for short periods of time but does this same rule apply to being left alone at night? i work nights but i am home during the day. so essentially the dog would get lots of attention and play time during day hours then be left at home when everyone would be going to sleep. 

  • K.Rahul

    I am a student.i have a farmland and i want to buy a dog.i can only visit on holidays and weekends.what dog should i buy?i have a keeper in the farm

  • Elwood

    I’m a firefighter and work 24hr shifts. I want a pitbull or a Rottweiler will one of them be alright alone for that long?

  • Jamshad Hydross

    Hi , am living in Qatar and my home town is in India , I would like to buy a dog ( maybe 2 ) to guard my home in India and I will be visting india , can say three times in a year , my home care taker will look after the Dogs , which is the best breed , did they will be friendly with me as am not regularly available in home , which is the best breed I should buy in this situation, Thks

  • James

    Can French bulldogs tolerate being alone all day? My job requires me to be at the office by 10 AM and I’m usually home by 6 PM (at best, given the horrible traffic in Manila). I’m a first time pet owner and out of the possible dog breeds out there, I love the Frenchie best. — James