My husband is being deployed, what can I do with my dogs?


I work 3 12 hour days (6 am to 6:30 pm) three days a week, and with my husband’s schedule my dogs are never left home by themselves more than 3 hours a week. My husband is being deployed to Afghanistan and I don’t know what to do about my dogs.

I live in a very rural area so I don’t have neighbors that can come let my dogs out, I can’t afford to board the dogs three days a week (I have to send my horse to a boarding facility already which is expensive) and no one will watch the dogs for a variety of reasons (that have nothing to do with the dogs). Giving them up is not an option!

I don’t think leaving them locked in their crate for 14 hours a day or more for three days a week is acceptable by any stretch of the imagination, but I am not sure what else I can do? How can they be happy and safe while I’m gone? I do have a big yard but I don’t have dog fencing.
As for Dax O, I took on the responsibility with my dogs only being alone 3 hours a week. The deployment was pretty random. I AM taking care of my responsibility, trying to figure out HOW. Read the question.
1. I have no family

2. Rural area means no teenage kid is going to be able to make it up here without a driver’s license. I am also not in the habit of giving keys to people I don’t know

3. Of of my dogs is still a young puppy and will destroy my house if left out

4. My husband is not assigned to a military installation as he’s ARNG. Giving up the dogs is not an option.

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9 Responses to “My husband is being deployed, what can I do with my dogs?”

  1. christine sss says:

    Could you build dog runs with kennels? It really depends if you own your property or rent, but that is the first thing that comes to my mind. You can also purchase portable fences, but I doubt they are well made.

    Try to think outside the square, what is cheap, easily available in your area and can be used even in the short term while you build a better structure. Things to consider would be
    Bird cages (obviously large ones, one for each dog) purchase secondhand; we went to a salvage yard and purchased some pool fencing which was marvelous and cheap and enclosed our carport with it so our dogs have more shelter. Each dog also has its own kennel. If you can build the fence against your house/shed etc, then this will cut costs down. Instead of kennels, you could purchase or make one large kennel/shed large enough for all the dogs.

    If your husband is not leaving immediately, you should have time to get the runs built before he goes. The top website gives you ideas, the 2nd site would only be useful if it is not your property and they would not be happy with you building a fence.

    The last idea would be you may find someone who lives near where you work who would agree to have the dogs in their yard on the days you work. If you provide all food they may be willing to do it for a much cheaper fee than a normal boarding facility, so long as they have good fences, no cats or young children it may work well for both of you.- think pensioner who stays home and would like a little cash money.

  2. I Dont Bark... I YODEL says:

    How old are the dogs? Is there any way you could confine them to a "dog proof" place in the house- such as a kitchen, laundry room? Even a basement works, as long as it’s dry and has good ventilation.

    Someplace with easily cleaned floors, so they could potty if they absolutely had to….and nothing hazardous or easily damaged if they have a tendency to chew.

    May not be a perfect, permanent solution, but it could be workable while you save up money to put up a good fence? Once you have a secure, escape-proof fence up, you could install a doggy door & give them the freedom to come and go as they please. You can even set up an X-Pen around the doggy door or use baby gates to limit their access to a certain part of the house when they come inside if you need to.

    As long as they get plenty of love & exercise when you are home….those 3 days being alone for a long time isn’t so bad, especially since they have each other’s company.

    I live in a rural area too….but you’d be suprised at the number of stay-at-home moms & farmer’s wives in some rural communities who don’t mind helping a neighbor out, especially if you make a reasonable pay offer that would cover gas expenses- nothing outrageous. If they’re adult dogs, they should be able to get by with just one "potty break" in the middle of the day….so even if your neighbors are 5- 10 miles away, it’s not too much time out of their day to come by once a day for 3 days.

    Especially considering your husband is military- at least where I live, a lot of the farmers are older military vets & most everybody is "conservative" leaning…and so they all have a lot of respect for soldiers and their families. People are willing to go a long way to help out when you’re in need!

    So, it might be worth a shot to post a "help wanted" flyer at any area gas/service stations, farmer’s co-ops, grain elevators, sale barns, etc….don’t overlook any business where local residents & farmers gather. And don’t be afraid to make a point that your husband is a soldier & is deploying…’re not trying to milk pity out of people, you have a genuine need for help and you are being responsible by not dumping or neglecting your pets. Anybody should respect that.

    Good luck 🙂

  3. eliz says:

    you don’t have family maybe to watch them while he is gone? my husband will be deployed for his third time to iraq in january. just ask around his unit for help. i know you can’t afford to board them, maybe you could find dog sitting companhy. ones out of ppls houses usually aren’t awfully priced and give you discounts for multiple dogs. i really think dog fencing would be the best. with like an automatic feeder and adequate shelter. and i know you don’t want to give them away i hate when ppl do that!!! "we’re pcsing, must sell!" argh. try to go to the bookoo pages for your installation. i dunno your base but go to and click more bookoos! and a map will pop up. you can place a wanted ad for free for what you need. or you can browse in pets and see if anyone is a sitter. hope this helps!

  4. Loki ❆ Wolfchild says:

    Are portable kennel runs, set up inside the yard, a possibility?

  5. Dax O says:

    How about you deal with the responsibility you took on and quite bothering the rest of us!

  6. rescue member says:

    Why do you have to crate them all that time – put them in a safe area like a porch or a room with no carpet, leave food and water and newspaper to potty on.
    It’s not ideal, but beats getting rid of your poor dogs.’
    I should think you would be happy to have dogs if you are going to be isolated in a rural area without your husband around.

    If you feel you MUST get rid of the dogs, contact the armed forces services at your husband’s base – there are some organizations that will hold dogs for soldiers when they are deployed.

  7. *Sombra* says:

    Place an ad on Craigslist saying that you’ll pay someone a few bucks a day to come and let your dogs out.

    Some teenager will probably jump at it.

  8. KHAYOS-nice 2 ANIMALS not people says:

    Is there an teenager in your family you could hire to come and let them out an hour a day or something? We hire my boyfriends younger brother to do random stuff we don’t want to lol He’s 15 and he’ll do a lot of yard work for $.

  9. DeeDawg says:

    go to local scrap yard and buy some used chain link fencing- you can easily build a kennel run- they’ll be much happier there while you’re gone.

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