Amid COVID-19, it appears that work from home culture is getting a considerable boost in popularity. Companies like Facebook, Shopify, and Twitter have given the go-ahead for all of their employees to work from home indefinitely.
Chances are that if you are working a 9-5, returning to the office may be a different culture than before. Many owners are considering the approval to diminish onsite workdays, at least until the end of the year.
While the idea of working from home is daunting to some, there is one special pooch in your life that's over the moon about it. Though keeping them busy while you plug away at your daily duties can be a new routine all on its own. Your pup may be jealous of all the attention you're giving your curious glowing metal pet, but these few tips to keep them entertained and active will work wonders.
While you may feel more sedentary than usual, your dog needs to release all of their pent up energy throughout the day. Consider spending time outside on your lunch breaks, or if you have a fenced-in backyard, take an hour to let them zoom around while you, well, Zoom outdoors.
Indoor activities to keep them moving include:
Chewing is an excellent stimulant for dogs, that'll keep them happy and busy while you crush another day of remote work. To keep your dog interested in their chew toys, try to rotate them every week or so. When you swap them out from time to time with a new one, your dog will always be excited to see them. Investing in chew toys also prevents owners from overfeeding their animals, and keeps their pups entertained throughout the day.
They also keep them out of trouble. Instead of chewing on the garbage or your favorite running shoes, why not introduce them to a healthy and fun product like the Bristly Brushing Stick! Utilizing our daily brushing toy requires only light supervision, so you can work while they brush their pearly whites. As we recommend it to be used for just 5-10 minutes a day, they'll always be excited about their Bristly!
Mental stimulation is another must for pups stuck indoors. While they may get away with lazing all day on the couch while you're away, they crave attention and play while you're around. Use your breaks throughout the day to teach them a new trick.
Positive reinforcement is the easiest, most effective, and most humane way to teach a behavior: you get your dog to do a behavior, you give him a treat/reward, and he learns to repeat the behavior," says Kyra Sundance, California-based stunt dog show performer, and trainer. Her Positive Training Philosophy says that, "positive reinforcement training methods strengthen and enhance the relationship between you and your dog as you work collaboratively toward a mutual goal in an encouraging, stress-free, and fear-free environment."
Whether you're learning the basics like 'sit' or 'stay' or mastering the 'handshake,' be sure that you do not exhaust or frustrate your dog. Spend just 5 minutes on the routine, before moving on to other things. If you're not having fun, they probably aren't either!
On busier days with little downtime, there are also great dog puzzles on the market that will flex those mental muscles, keeping them enticed with hidden treats.
Just because your shower schedule may have gotten a little relaxed, doesn't mean your dogs should. This time can be a calming experience for both of you, so why not make it a routine for a pup-friendly spa day every week or two! If your dog isn't the biggest fan of bath time, consider utilizing another stimulant, like a lick pad spread with peanut butter, to keep them occupied.
Many mobile groomers are available for ear cleaning, nail trimming, and a cut at your home! Search your area for the top reviewed mobile pet spas, and be sure they can adhere to your areas’ COVID-19 standards.
Just like you, your pup needs some R & R. The average dog sleeps for about 12 to 14 hours each day! Set a designated period each day that is strictly for quiet time. This could be after lunch, an afternoon walk, or in the evening. As much as they may protest, they truly don't need stimulation around the clock!
Like most animals, dogs have a polyphasic sleep cycle, meaning that they sleep multiple times around the clock. So if they're skipping naps throughout the day because you're home, it means their sleep schedule will likely be disrupted. This is why routine is so important for your pets, as they'll naturally fall into good habits, as long as you keep your routines on schedule too!
According to National Geographic, "Domestic dogs can perceive images on television similarly to the way we do, and they are intelligent enough to recognize onscreen images of animals as they would in real life—even animals they've never seen before—and to recognize TV dog sounds, like barking." We're sure you can attest to that last point.
When you were younger, you may have noticed that your family pup was not interested in the TV. That's because older, non-digital TVs were not visible to dogs as their eyes function differently than ours. Though with the latest technology, TV can be a source of comfort and entertainment. There are even channels specifically for pups!
Keeping your dog occupied with a movie is a great way to keep them stimulated, without having to do much. Dogs are initially attracted to the television by the sounds they hear, but once they realize there's movement and animals on the screen, they'll be captivated.
Of course, if you have kids, getting them involved is a great way to strengthen the bond between them and their beloved family pet and, luckily for you, keep them both entertained. Kids should treat all dogs considerately and respect the dog's space, especially with their toys and food. This good behavior can be promoted with treats and praise! Some great activities that are dog and kid-friendly are:
As long as your pup is healthy, happy, and relaxed - you'll have a fabulous time working from home. You may even come to like your new co-worker more than your old ones!