If you can’t directly supervise the puppy (especially during the first few months), put the puppy in a safe place—whether that is a puppy-proof room or a large crate. To determine the right size crate consider both the size of the dog and the amount of time he will be in the crate. If your puppy will be in the crate for less than two hours at a time or overnight to sleep, choose a crate that is big enough for the puppy to easily stand upright with head erect and to stretch out when lying down.
If your puppy will be in the crate for longer periods, the crate needs to be at least two sizes larger than a sleeping crate. He will need space to walk and move around. The puppies pictured here are in an exercise or X-pen and have lots of room to stretch. Currently, there is pressure to not use crates at all with any animal. Unfortunately, most new dog owners may have only a few vacation days to help their dog adjust. Keeping the puppy home alone often means restricting his access in the house to keep him safe.
Photo by David Fisher on Flickr