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What To Do With German Shepherd While at Work? 10 Ideas

What To Do With German Shepherd While at Work

Leaving a German Shepherd at home while you’re at work can be a challenge. Known for their high energy and intelligence, German Shepherds require adequate physical exercise, mental stimulation, and social interaction to stay healthy and happy.

Without proper planning and care, these loyal and active dogs may develop undesirable behaviors due to boredom or anxiety.

In this comprehensive guide, we will explore various strategies and tips to ensure that your German Shepherd is well cared for while you’re away from home.

RELATED: How I Fixed My German Shepherd’s Separation Anxiety

What to do With Your German Shepherd While at Work

If you don’t know how to keep your German Shepherd busy while you’re at work, here is a list of 10 different activities you can try:

  1. Create a comfortable setup at home
  2. Provide interactive toys and games
  3. Hire a dog walker
  4. Enroll in a doggy daycare
  5. Arrange social playdates
  6. Use chew toys
  7. Dog-friendly entertainment (TV/music)
  8. Engage your GSD with scent games
  9. Professional training classes
  10. Use technology (Cameras/smart toys)

1. Creating a Safe Space

Set up a dedicated area for your German Shepherd at home with cozy bedding and familiar toys. This space should provide comfort and familiarity for your pet while you’re away.

Ensure that the designated area is secure, and free from any potential hazards that could harm your German Shepherd. Remove any sharp objects, toxic plants, or small items that could be ingested.

Consider using baby gates or crates to confine your German Shepherd in a safe and comfortable space. This will prevent them from roaming around the house and getting into mischief.

RELATED: Can German Shepherds Be Left Alone?

2. Provide Interactive Toys and Games

Introduce puzzle toys to engage your German Shepherd’s mind, providing mental stimulation throughout the day. These toys challenge their intelligence and keep them entertained.

Rotate these toys regularly to maintain their interest levels and prevent boredom. This variety ensures that your furry friend stays engaged with different tasks and activities.

Incorporate interactive games such as hide-and-seek or fetch to provide physical exercise for your German Shepherd.

Treat-dispensing toys can be a great way to keep your dog physically active while you are at work. These toys dispense treats when manipulated correctly, encouraging play and movement.

The mental challenges presented by these toys can also help alleviate any emotional stress or anxiety your dog may experience when left alone.

RELATED: German Shepherd Behavior Stages By Age

3. Hire a Dog Walker

When hiring a dog walker, look for someone who understands the unique needs and behaviors of large breeds.

What To Do With German Shepherd While at Work

A knowledgeable walker can ensure your dog receives appropriate exercise and care while you’re at work.

Discuss specific walking routes with the dog walker to ensure your German Shepherd gets enough physical activity.

Different routes can provide mental stimulation and prevent boredom. Consider areas with interesting scents or sights to engage your dog during walks.

Provide the dog walker with any special instructions regarding your German Shepherd’s dietary restrictions, preferred walking pace, or specific commands your dog responds to.

RELATED: How Much Exercise Does a German Shepherd Need?

4. Enroll in a Doggy Daycare

Doggy daycare can be a fantastic solution for German Shepherds, providing them with a day filled with activity, socialization, and supervision. Here’s what to consider when choosing a daycare:

  • Facilities: Look for daycares with ample space for playing, both indoors and outdoors. Check that the facility is clean, secure, and well-maintained.
  • Staff: Ensure that the staff is knowledgeable about dogs, specifically about handling large and active breeds like German Shepherds. They should be trained in canine behavior, first aid, and emergency procedures.
  • Group Socialization: Verify that the daycare conducts temperament testing and groups dogs according to their size and play style to ensure safety and compatibility.

5. Arranging Social Playdates

When organizing social playdates for your German Shepherd, select playmates that match their size and energy level. This ensures a harmonious interaction.

Consider organizing playdates in safe, enclosed spaces like dog parks or fenced yards. These environments offer ample space for dogs to run around and play freely.

Ensure that all dogs participating in the playdate are up-to-date on their vaccinations to prevent the spread of diseases. This is essential for maintaining the health of all dogs involved.

Rotate different playmates for your German Shepherd to introduce them to a variety of dogs with different personalities. This exposure can help in developing their social skills further.

RELATED: How to Navigate a German Shepherd’s Energy Levels?

6. Use Chew Toys

Choose durable chew toys for your German Shepherd to prevent destructive chewing behaviors. Look for toys made of tough materials like rubber or nylon.

German Shepherds have strong jaws, so opt for toys that can withstand their powerful chewing. Ensure the toys are non-toxic and free from small parts that could be swallowed.

Consider toys with ridges, bumps, or even treat-dispensing features to keep your German Shepherd engaged throughout the day.

RELATED: 7 Ways to Tire Out a German Shepherd

7. Dog-Friendly Entertainment (TV/music)

To enrich your pup’s environment while he/she is alone, consider leaving on dog-friendly TV channels or playing music specifically designed for dogs.

These can help soothe and entertain them, providing comforting background noise.

Playing TV shows or music can keep your German Shepherd entertained and mentally stimulated while you’re at work.

The variety of sounds and voices can capture their interest, ward off boredom, and keep them mentally occupied during your absence.

8. Engage Your GSD With Scent Games

Engage your German Shepherd in scent games like hide-and-seek with treats. This activity taps into their innate sense of smell and provides mental stimulation.

Hide treats in different spots around the house and let your dog use their natural instincts to search for them.

Create scent trails by rubbing a treat along the floor or carpet. Your German Shepherd will enjoy following the trail to find the hidden treasure at the end.

This not only keeps them entertained but also helps strengthen their bond with you through shared activities.

Consider enrolling in scent training classes to further develop your dog’s ability to seek out scents. These classes are designed to enhance your German Shepherd’s natural skills and provide structured learning environments.

9. Professional Training Sessions

When considering professional training sessions for your German Shepherd while you’re at work, it’s crucial to find a certified trainer.

Look for someone with experience specifically working with this breed. A specialist in German Shepherds will understand their unique needs and behaviors.

Engage in discussions with the trainer about your goals and any specific concerns you have regarding your dog.

This communication is essential to ensure the training program is tailored to address your German Shepherd’s requirements.

10. Use Technology

In today’s connected world, various technologies can help you interact with your dog from afar:

  • Cameras: Install cameras in your home to monitor your dog’s behavior while you’re away. Some cameras come with features like two-way audio, allowing you to speak to your dog and offer comfort remotely.
  • Smart Toys: Consider smart toys that can be controlled via smartphone apps. These toys can provide interactive play sessions even when you’re not home.


Leaving your German Shepherd at home while you work can pose a significant challenge, but with the right preparations and strategies, it can also be a rewarding experience that enhances the bond between you and your pet. From creating a secure space to hiring a dog walker or enrolling them in daycare, there are solutions to ensure your furry friend stays happy and active throughout the day. Interactive toys, social playdates, chew toys, and scent training can also provide mental stimulation and prevent boredom.

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