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Can I Leave My Maltese Alone at Home? Behavior & FAQ

Written by: Nicole Cosgrove

Last Updated on June 27, 2024 by Dogster Team

maltese dog sitting on the floor and looking up

Can I Leave My Maltese Alone at Home? Behavior & FAQ

As our lives become busier, pet owners are faced with an all-too-common dilemma: Can I leave my dog alone at home? With work, social obligations, and the general hustle and bustle of daily life, it’s essential to know whether your furry friend can handle being alone for extended periods. If you own a Maltese and are wondering if you can leave them alone at home, the answer is yes, you can leave your Maltese alone at home. This comprehensive guide aims to address this question by covering all necessary aspects related to leaving your Maltese at home.

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Leaving Your Maltese Alone

Before diving into the specifics, it’s crucial to understand the fundamental factors that contribute to a Maltese’s ability to stay home alone. These include breed characteristics, temperament, age, and individual personality traits. We’ll explore how these factors influence your dog’s comfort level when left alone and what you can do to ensure their well-being.

Maltese Bow Tie
Image Credit: Nelson Espinoza, Shutterstock

Understanding Your Dog’s Behavior

To determine if your Maltese can handle being alone, it’s essential to have a clear understanding of their behavior. Each Maltese is different and may react differently to being home alone. Pay close attention to how they react when you leave the house and look for signs of stress or anxiety. Although some dogs will eventually grow out of any anxiety when left home alone, some never will.

If your Maltese struggles with being home alone, crate training your Maltese can help them stay home alone more comfortably. It can give your dog a sense of security and help you as the owner know that they can’t get into things, be destructive, or potty in the house while you’re out. Your vet can also offer advice on how to leave your Maltese alone at home safely, especially if they suffer from separation anxiety.

How Long Can a Maltese Stay Home Alone

There isn’t a one-size-fits-all answer to this question, as every dog is different. However, there are general guidelines based on age, temperament, and overall health that can help you gauge how long your Maltese can comfortably stay home alone. However, the general guideline is that dogs shouldn’t be left home alone for more than 4 hours at a time, and 8 hours is the absolute maximum.

Preparing Your Maltese for Alone Time

Helping your Maltese become comfortable with alone time requires patience and consistency. Even if your Maltese can handle being alone, it’s crucial to ensure they remain happy and engaged during their alone time. To keep your Maltese entertained when home alone, create a stimulating environment, provide toys and puzzles, and don’t feel guilty about leaving your dog in a crate if necessary.

Your dog may even be one that chooses to nap the whole time you’re gone, so if this is the case, you won’t have too much to worry about. However, make sure to take your dog out to potty before you leave, and provide them with access to food and water if you’re going to be gone for several hours.

A Maltese puppy playing with a rope toy
Image Credit: Claudia Egger, Shutterstock

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Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

How do I know if my Maltese is comfortable being left alone?

Observe your dog’s behavior when you leave and return home. If they remain calm, don’t engage in destructive behavior, and don’t show signs of distress, your Maltese may be comfortable being left alone.

Are Maltese more prone to separation anxiety than other breeds?

While all dogs can experience separation anxiety, Maltese are known for their strong attachment to their owners, which may make them more susceptible to anxiety when left alone.

Can I use a pet camera to monitor my Maltese while I’m away?

Yes, pet cameras can be an excellent way to keep an eye on your dog and provide peace of mind while you’re away. Some cameras even have two-way communication features, allowing you to interact with your dog remotely.

Is it okay to leave my Maltese in a crate while I’m away?

Crate training can provide a safe and comforting space for your Maltese while you’re away. Ensure the crate is large enough for your dog to stand up, turn around, and lie down comfortably, and provide soft bedding, water, and toys.

Can I hire a dog walker or pet sitter to help care for my Maltese when I’m not home?

Absolutely! Dog walkers and pet sitters can be an excellent resource for providing your Maltese with companionship, exercise, and mental stimulation while you’re away.

White maltese dog walking with his owner
Image Credit: Monika Wisniewska, Shutterstock

How can I make sure my Maltese gets enough exercise when I’m not home?

Schedule regular walks and playtime before and after you leave, and consider hiring a dog walker to provide additional exercise while you’re away.

How do I help my Maltese adjust when I know I’ll be leaving them alone regularly?

Establish a consistent routine, gradually introduce alone time, and provide plenty of mental and physical stimulation. This will help your Maltese adjust to their new environment and feel more comfortable when left alone.

Can I leave my Maltese with another dog for company while I’m away?

If your Maltese gets along well with other dogs and has a compatible playmate, this can be a great way to provide companionship and socialization. Be sure to monitor their interactions closely, especially when first introducing them.

How do I know if my Maltese needs more mental stimulation while home alone?

Signs that your Maltese may need more mental stimulation include excessive barking, destructive behavior, or restlessness. Providing puzzle toys, interactive feeders, and rotating their toys can help keep them engaged and mentally stimulated.

maltese poodle puppy sad laying on couch with tear stains
Image Credit: Rushay, Shutterstock

What should I do if my Maltese becomes destructive when left alone?

Destructive behavior may indicate stress, boredom, or anxiety. Address the root cause by providing additional mental and physical stimulation, maintaining a consistent routine, and seeking professional guidance if necessary.

Is it essential to puppy-proof my home before leaving my Maltese puppy alone?

Yes, puppy-proofing your home is crucial to ensure your Maltese’s safety and prevent accidents. Remove potential hazards, secure loose wires, and provide a safe and comfortable space for your puppy to explore.

How can I help my Maltese cope with separation anxiety?

Consult with a veterinarian or professional dog trainer for guidance on appropriate treatment and management strategies. Gradual desensitization, consistent routines, and positive reinforcement can help alleviate separation anxiety in your Maltese.


By considering all of these aspects, you’ll be well-equipped to make an informed decision about leaving your Maltese alone at home. With proper preparation, understanding, and attention to your dog’s needs, you can ensure their happiness and well-being even when you can’t be by their side.

Featured Image Credit: Pezibear, Pixabay

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