With more time working from home, more time is now spent with family and furry friends. Managed badly, this can drive you mad. Managed well, you can start to enjoy the moment more. We’re not the experts on managing the kids or family, but we do know a thing or two about how to juggle work and keep your dog(s) entertained, without losing your biscuits.
Have you been on a video call and been red-faced because your dog barks like a lunatic at the post being delivered? Or because he decides to lunge across you for a cat that he has seen through a window?
We’ve all been there. By managing your working with dog (WWD) time smartly, you will not only avoid those cringey situations, but you can also enjoy a great working day filled with the fun and joyfulness that only dogs can bring.
3 pawsome tips to WWD
Just as we all need a routine to make positive choices and get the best out of ourselves, dogs need familiar patterns every day. If you know you’re going to be busy and focused on your work, make sure you set a routine for entertaining your dog first. When they are happy and tired, they are more likely to snooze while you focus on your work.
Each morning, before you start work, take your dog for a walk. With fresh air, exercise and mental stimulation, your dog has had the opportunity to explore and do their business… making them much calmer and more relaxed.
During the day, plan for regular breaks to check on your dog. That way they are less likely to interrupt you. Make sure when you check on them, that you see if they need to go out to relieve themselves. Most stressful behaviour is because of stresses like needing to go or being cooped up without mental stimulation.
2. Quality Time
It might seem like you need to do less with your dog when you’re at home all day. But being around you isn’t enough – they still need quality time with you.
This time doesn’t need to be taxing for you. You can give your dog a puzzle or toy to entertain themselves, while you enjoy a cuppa and recognise them by calling their name, petting them or throwing the toy.
And if you are needing a break from your desk or the phone, take a moment to have fun with your dog by playing a game of fetch or tug of war. This will give you a breather from the seriousness of work and these strange times, whilst keeping them mentally stimulated and entertained. In your breaks, try and teach your dog a new trick or a new game to play – just make sure you don’t overdo it with the treats!
3. Space for you and your dog
It can be comforting for your dog to place their bed near to you… and nice for you because you can pat and cuddle them. And when they want to sleep or take a nap, they are close by for you to keep an eye on.
But it is also important that you still practise leaving your dog alone so that when you do go back to work, they aren’t too upset that you are gone. Try making sure that your dog also has an area by themselves with some of their toys, so they can continue to be happy by themselves, and can entertain and play by themselves.
Make the most of your WWD days!
Now is the perfect time to make the most of your loved ones and your four-legged friend. A happy, exercised and engaged dog will be wonderful company during these crazy times. We’re all hoping that this experience sees a shift away from a dog eat dog world to a kinder, gentler one where we think more like our furry friends and enjoy the moment more often.
How is your dog entertaining you while you work from home? How are you entertaining your dog while you work from home? Tag us in your working with dog (WWD) stories and pictures on our social media. #WorkingWithDog
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