Leaving Your Boston Terrier Alone For The First Time: Guide

If you are leaving your Boston Terrier alone for the first time, you are going to want to follow these steps to ensure you return to a happy Boston and a clean house. When Bella was a puppy, my biggest concern leaving her alone was her happiness and hopefully coming home to no poop.

Now that Bella is ten years old, my biggest concern is pee, poop, food, trash, and happiness. Here is your step by step guide to leaving your Boston home by itself.

Leaving Your Boston Terrier Alone For The First Time: Guide. Boston Terrier Society.
Bella loves to lay around when we leave for the day.

Can Boston Terriers be left alone?

Yes, you can leave your Boston Terrier home alone. You will need to provide the following before you go: entertainment, a place to potty, comfy place to sleep, and of course food & water. Do not leave your Boston alone for more than 12 hours.

Bella being bad when left her home alone.

Bella’s Story

Emily and I had left Bella, our Boston, alone for twelve hours before when Emily and I were both working. Leaving a Boston home by her self for this long is not ideal, but when it is your only choice, it works.

Separation Anxiety

Boston’s do have separation anxiety. One thing I never knew until I came home unexpectedly one day was Bella would howl when Emily and I would leave. You Boston will NOT do this in front of you, you will need to check by coming home unexpectedly and be very sneaky.

What we do to combat this separation anxiety is to provide background noise of humans by leaving the television on. We tried to use Benadryl for a few months, and it did work. But after using Benadryl for a while, we decided to stop drugging her. Instead, we stuck to the nine steps outlined in this article.


Kennelling Bella proved to be an impossible task. She not only hated the kennel but nearly lost all her teeth in the process. Also, she ended up tearing a hole in the wall of our home one day when she was left in the Kennell.

Bella nearly lost all her teeth when we switched from a cloth kennel to a metal kennel. We turned the cloth kennel into her private bedroom after she made a hole in it. We thought buying a metal crate would keep her contained. After months of having the metal crate, I came home one day and found Bella’s teeth laying on the floor. She tried to escape to the point of losing nearly all her teeth.

I DO NOT recommend crating your Boston Terrier. Bella, now as an older dog, has been crate free for nearly five years and things are fine. However, if you decide to crate your Boston still, I have written an article on how to do it properly.


Bella at times has not only peed on our couch but pooped on it as well. I think the main reason for disasters like this is defiance and a little resentment. Bella only had accidents of this magnitude three times, and each time had a cause. Emily and I were working a lot, or we had just come back from vacation.

To avoid accidents like this be sure to truly reconnect with your Boston after being away for an extended period. Be sure to reconnect before you leave again even if you are only leaving for an hour. Because your Boston will remember you had left her then go on a defiance spree with poop and pee.

You can quickly reconnect with your Boston by going on a long walk, followed by a belly rub.

9 Step Guide To Leaving Your Boston Home Alone

These are the nine steps you need to follow before leaving your Boston Terrier alone for the first time or the hundredth time.

1. Walk your Boston Terrier

Be sure to take you Boston for a walk of at least three minutes before you leave your home. This walk will allow your dog to go to the bathroom as well as serve as a little connection time with mom and dad before you leave.

2. Pick up all human food

You will need to pick up any food within reach of your Boston or she WILL eat it. Even if the food is on the kitchen table, your Boston will use the chairs as a step stool.

I came home one day, and Bella had eaten a whole tub of Crisco! Her poop was shiny and glistening for a week. Not a great experience.

I had also come home to whole jars of almond butter being eaten by Bella.

3. Pick up the trashcan

Bostons will get into trashcans. While tipping over the trashcan and devouring what is in it is not an everyday occurrence, removing the trashcan from Bella’s reach has become part of our routine. Emily and I simply place the trashcan on the counter in order not to tempt Bella with it.

4. Puppy pads

We place puppy pads in the areas we know Bella likes to pee, not in the areas we would like her to pee.

5. Entertainment

Leaving the television on gives Bella background noise of humans talking as well as something to look at. Also, we make sure she has her toys close by.

When Bella was a puppy, we would leave a Kong with her, filled with peanut butter. I think leaving a Kong helped with her separation anxiety at a young age because she was so focused on getting the peanut butter, rather than worrying about us leaving.

6. Confine to smaller space

Confining your dog to a smaller area helps to minimize your house being in a total mess when you return. We shut all doors in our home and placed a baby gate to the stairs. This gives Bella approximately a 300 square foot space to run around in.

However, if you do place a baby gate in your home don’t be surprised if your Boston jumps it the moment you leave. Bella will jump over the gate heading down the stairs the moment we leave. This only happens about 2% of the time we leave, so be prepared.

7. Place to sleep

Make sure your Boston has somewhere to rest and burrow while you are away.

8. Food & Water

This is a given. But make sure your dog’s water bowl is full. And if it is time to eat, be sure to feed your Boston or give her a treat.

9. Say Goodbye

Saying goodbye and kissing or petting your dog before leaving is a good habit to create. This habit helps your Boston know precisely what is going to happen, rather than an abrupt exit.

Final thoughts…

Yes, you can leave your Boston Terrier home alone. But you will want to follow the nine steps to help alleviate your Boston’s separation anxiety and to ensure you come back to a clean home.

What ritual do you have in place when leaving your home? Please leave a comment below.

Donnie Gardner

Donnie Gardner is the owner of the Boston Terrier Society. He has been raising Bella the Boston since 2010. He resides in Kansas with his wife, daughter, and Bella. His favorite activities are hanging out with family, traveling, running (but has bad knees), and reading non-fiction books.

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