About two months ago, I purchased a cavalier king charles spaniel pup. She was 5 months old at the time, (now about 7 mos) and she's a great pup. Because both my spouse and I work F/T, roughly the same hours, she has to be crated while we're gone. She's in her crate from 8am to 5pm every day (except the weekends).
We went out of town last weekend, and a friend of ours watched her for us. He works from home, so she was able to be out of her crate all day for each of the days that we were gone.
What a difference that it made between staying with our friend to when she's home with us.
With him, she was much more playful, more content, took naps on her bed, seemed much happier while she was there. When she's home with us, even out of the crate, she's nothing like that.
It made me realize that I think we made a mistake in getting her. We love her to death, but, for us, her happiness is more important. I read up on the breed (unfortunately AFTER we got her) and found out that this breed is not good with being alone for a long period of time and is in much need of having a lot of interaction.
We're not sure what to do at this point. Like I said, we're attached to her, however, her happiness is most important. We've talked about finding a home for her where someone is there more often, or even works from home to where she'd have more interaction with someone. (Unfortunately, my friend can't take her due to apartment rules)
I'm looking for some sound advice. When we talk to friends/family, their advice is pretty much "whatever you think is best" or "you'll make the right decision". I don't want this pup to grow up in a home where she's not happy, and somehow, you can just tell that's she's not happy. I refuse to take her to a shelter, the only option if we do decide to find her a new home, is someone that can take care of her, love her, and do what's best for her.
What do we do?!
Having been a Cavalier owner for 14 years, I know how unhappy they are when they are left alone. These dogs need to have their humans nearby nearly all the time, and need to be able to have physical contact with them as well. My Cavvie is fortunate because I am disabled and am almost always home with her. No matter what room I'm in, she's there. She also likes short walks 2 or 3 times during the day.
Unless one of you is prepared to spend more time at home, I would suggest that you find a home for your puppy where she will not be alone and will have a lot more human contact. I know it will be hard, but if you love your dog, you will do whatever you must to keep the dog happy and healthy. Then look for another breed that doesn't mind the alone time. Good luck.