How Long Can a Dog Stay in a Kennel?

Like most dog parents, you may use commercial dog kennels for your pup while you’re away. A well-run kennel offers a safe and comfortable place for your dog to rest when you can’t be there. However, if your office hours tend to run late, you might need to do more than just lock the cage and go.

Dogs can only last so long in a kennel without potty breaks, interaction, and exercise. No dog should ever be left in their crate for longer than 9 hours without breaks, but many dogs’ limits may be less. Just how long your dog can last will depend on a variety of factors.


If you have a puppy, you can expect frequent potty breaks and short crate times. Puppies generally need to use the bathroom roughly every 3 to 5 hours. Being left alone for longer than they can handle usually means they’ll relieve themselves in the cage. This can cause big messes and be uncomfortable for the puppy. It can also make potty training more difficult later on. Equally, as a dog ages, their potty breaks may begin to increase in frequency.


Some breeds are more active than others. If you have a sleeper who likes to spend their days lazing around the apartment anyway, 6 or 7 hours in its cozy cage might sound ideal. However, if you have a large, active pup, long stretches in commercial dog kennels without interaction can be painfully boring. You may try to introduce mentally stimulating toys that keep them occupied and content.

Medical conditions

Certain medical conditions can cause a dog to eliminate more often than usual. Talking to your vet about the condition should help to give you an indication of how long you should leave your sick dog alone or locked up.


Smaller dogs naturally have smaller bladders, which means they may need to leave the kennel more often than their larger friends.

What to do if you need more time

Leaving your puppy or dog in their kennel cage or home crate for excessively long stretches of time can cause your dog stress, create undesirable behavioral issues, and may even lead to bladder problems and other health issues. If your day lasts longer than your pup’s max crate time, you can consider a doggy daycare service – which has the bonus option of having a professional pet stylist wash and primp your pooch in a grooming tub. Or you could simply seek out a trusted friend or neighbor to pay daily visits that give your dog a well-needed break.

If you run a professional pet boarding facility, contact Direct Animal today for affordable, easy-to-clean commercial kennel products that are designed to last for the life of your business.

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