How to Balance Working from Home and Being a Dog Owner

Article - How to Balance Working from Home and Being a Dog Owner - Sparky Steps Chicago Pet Sitters

How to Balance Working from Home and Being a Dog Owner

Many people are facing months of working from home. While this means you now have so much more time with your pets in a day, you still need to manage all of your work responsibilities. Our dogs don’t understand the concept of an important video call; they just want to play. What can you do to help both you and your dog manage this new work-from-home routine?

 

Invest in Some New Toys

Back when you left home for the office every day, your dog probably spent most of the day snoozing in the crate or on the couch while waiting for you to come back. Now that you are working from home full-time, your dog has constant access to you. Your presence is usually an indicator that it is playtime.

 

Help your pup get out some of that playful energy with new toys that can be used on a solo basis. Try some tough chew toys, or look into interactive puzzle toys designed to reduce doggy boredom

 

Carve Out Time for Exercise

A tired dog is usually a good dog. With more time at home, you might have the opportunity to increase your dog’s exercise routine. If you have a lunch break, spend part of it going for a walk around the neighborhood. If there is a dog park nearby where you can safely spend time socially distanced, let your dog enjoy some off-leash time. Thirty minutes to two hours of exercise per day, depending on your dog and its breed, can go a long way to keeping your pup happy and you productive during work hours.

 

Separate Work and Play Spaces

Separating work and personal lives become tough when your office is suddenly on your couch or at your kitchen table. If you have the space available, try to make it clear that your work area is a no-play zone. Keep all toys away from your desk or workspace. If your dog likes to be close to you during work (and you can trust him not to be disruptive), place his bed or crate nearby.

 

Try to Introduce Some Daily Structure

Adjusting to a new schedule is tough for both you and your dog. Your daily routine doesn’t have to be exactly the same, and it will probably change depending on your work demands. But, you can try to introduce some structure that will help your dog understand when to expect playtime and when to calm down. Consider committing to a set number of daily walks and/or play breaks, spaced throughout the day.

 

As you and your dog become used to the “new normal,” feel free to reward your dog’s good behavior. While the future is uncertain and there are many downsides to life right now, we can appreciate the extra time we have with our dogs.

 

Written by Carrie Pallardy

 

Sources:

  1. https://www.akc.org/expert-advice/training/bored-dogs-how-to-recognize-doggy-boredom-and-help/
  1. https://www.1800petmeds.com/education/a210006.html#:~:text=A%20general%20rule%20of%20thumb,as%20much%20daily%20physical%20activity.
  1. https://www.preventivevet.com/dogs/does-your-dog-need-daily-routine

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