Following government advice in light of COVID-19, a lot of people who would generally be out and about at work will now be in an unfamiliar position of working from home, potentially for the first time! Your pup is likely to be delighted that they get to spend more time with you – but how can you help them understand that you’re still at work even though you’re not “at work”.
We’ve put together 6 helpful tips detailing how to handle things with your dog whilst your working routine has changed, so that they can stay settled and you can still get stuff done!
ONE – Take your dog for a big walk BEFORE you start work
Make sure that your first priority that day is to show your dog some love and help them let off some steam – working from home may have an appeal of getting some extra sleep, rolling straight out of bed to your desk, but making the effort to get up early or at your usual time to burn off some of your dogs’ energy will hugely benefit you for the rest of the day (not to mention help you get some fresh air and into a good mind frame for work too). Be sensible and take into account the guidance around social distancing, so try and choose a remote area or large park for your morning walk. Let your pooch have a great morning adventure so that they are more relaxed when you start your working day.
TWO – Put the TV or radio on in another room
Don’t make the space you’re working in the only interesting place in the house (that’s a recipe for the dog not wanting to leave your side), try putting on a soothing radio station such as Classic FM or something on the television that will pique your dog’s attention like a wildlife or nature show – anything by David Attenborough always has our vote! This will give your dog something to focus on more than just you and the background noise might help you adjust from being in a busy office to being at home.
THREE – Give them new, durable, entertaining toys
Provide your pooch with something irresistibly exciting to help them keep themselves entertained whilst you’re hard at work, it’s best to select something tough and long-lasting so that your workday isn’t disrupted by a teddy stuffing snowstorm or surgical squeaker removal…
Our QuattroBones and TrioBones are perfect for keeping your pooch busy as they have a variety of textures and shapes for your dog to chomp on as well as delicious flavours right through to the core.
FOUR – Provide a variety of comfortable spaces for them around the house
It’s worth giving your dog a comfy spot in the room that you’re working in so that they can be near you without pestering, but give them some desirable spaces elsewhere too – you might find that the first couple of days they’re favouring your office space but that they start to venture to other spots when they’re used to you being around more often. It’s important to remember that if your work from home routine is temporary, your dog will have to get used to you not being there again soon, so try to encourage them to not rely on you all day throughout the day.
FIVE – Take regular breaks and show them bursts of attention
For your own wellbeing, it’s important to take regular breaks. When you are taking a break use this time to have some fun with your dog – have a cuddle, play tug of war or throw the ball around for 5-10 minutes. Doing this at various points in the day will help your dog understand that you aren’t ignoring them, you will show them attention and they don’t need to beg for it, but you’re the boss of when playtime is!
SIX – Set clear time boundaries
At the end of the working day, clear away all of your work, turn off your computer and spend some quality time with your dog as you normally would in an evening. Make a big deal of being ‘reunited’ so that they’ll learn when is playtime and when is work time. Keeping your home working hours similar to your office working hours will help keep your dogs routine as normal as possible and help them adjust at the start and end of your changing working habits.