Working from home has its perks.
Your commute is now a matter of seconds instead of hours. Pants? What are those? Best of all, you have a new team member: your dog!
As much fun as it might be to have your pup as a co-worker, it isn’t always easy. There are moments of muting yourself when the mailman shows up and your dog starts barking. Or, you’re in the middle of a big meeting when their furry little head pops up for attention.
Don’t worry, there are a few “best practices” you can do to keep your dog busy indoors while you work from home!*
- Work-From-Home Tip 1: Add Exercise to the Agenda
- Work-From-Home Tip 2: Leverage Toys
- Work-From-Home Tip 3: Touch Base with Occasional Play Time
- Work-From-Home Tip 4: Take it Offline with Dog Training
- Work-From-Home Tip 5: A Comfy Place to Relax is a Win-Win
*We apologize in advance for using work jargon. We thought we would make our dads proud and complement the work-from-homeness.
Work-From-Home Tip 1: Add Exercise to the Agenda
Before you spend the day at your desk, rise and shine a little earlier to exercise your dog.
Starting a day off with exercise is a great way to get out some of your dog’s energy immediately so they’re more inclined to relax. The type of exercise depends on your dog’s breed.
The type of dog you have heavily influences the level of physical activity it needs, says the American Kennel Club (AKC). The age of the dog also plays a role. Puppies, for example, need more exercise than senior dogs.
Plus, it helps you! According to Healthline, “Early exercise will help you start the day with more energy, focus, and optimism.”
Not an early riser? Cut out time in your day to exercise your dog.
You can exercise indoors with stair running, catch, and even makeshift obstacle courses.
If you can’t or don’t want to head outside, this is the perfect opportunity to get your dog used to a new harness so when the day comes to take to the sidewalk or park, they’re already familiar with it.
Not sure which harness is best for your BFF (best furry friend)? Use our Fit Finder to find the right size harness for your fur baby’s comfort and safety.
Work-From-Home Tip 2: Leverage Toys
If there’s one thing your dog might love more than you, it’s its favorite toy.
Toys are the answer to keeping your dog occupied, much like books, movies, and social media for us humans.
There are a variety of great challenge toys, like puzzles, to keep your dog mentally stimulated.
Did you know that dogs prefer new toys to old ones? Science says it’s true. However, by keeping old toys out of sight and reintroducing them, your dog can get excited about them again.
The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA) has tips for all sorts of DIY enrichment at home!
Work-From-Home Tip 3: Touch Base with Occasional Play Time
A benefit of working from home is flexibility. You can take time when needed to let out the dog, take a moment to yourself, or actually eat lunch.
With that comes the option to sprinkle in play time with your pup. Mix toys with exercise by:
- Engaging in a game of tug of war
- Playing hide and seek
- Throwing a ball to catch or fetch
This gets the built-up energy out of your dog so it spends less time begging for attention. It’s also a great chance for you to get away from your desk and recharge your brain too!
Work-From-Home Tip 4: Take it Offline with Dog Training
One of the best ways to stop begging, reduce whining and whimpering, and provide structure to activities is to train your dog.
Training your dog can teach it to listen to you, including less barking during Zoom calls. It can make it easier for you or anyone to walk them, socialize them, feed them, and keep them entertained. In short: a trained dog is a happy one!
Dogs will do what gets them rewarded, so remember to reinforce good behaviors with positivity.
And you don’t need a lot of time to do it, either. The AKC has a list of training guidelines for busy people. Even a small chunk of time every day spent training your dog will make a difference.
Work-From-Home Tip 5: A Comfy Place to Relax is a Win-Win
A great spot where your dog can rest means less time they’ll want to spend on your lap or under your chair. Somewhere your dog will be content on its own so you’re less distracted. It’s a win-win.
Create a safe, comfortable space for your dog near you that they’ll want to spend time in. Like humans when we need to recharge, sometimes your dog does too.
This can be a bed, its crate, a piece of furniture, or, if you have the space, even a whole room or area just for your dog.
Wherever you choose, consider the things your dogs love and filling this space with their favorite toys and treats!
In a Nutshell…
While you may miss the office at times, working from home is an opportunity to improve your dog’s life and yours!
Interested in more tips? See our 10 great life hacks to enrich your lives even further.For more doggie photos and pup-related fun, follow us on Instagram at @joyrideharness. And for a more detailed blog post about finding the best size dog harness for your pup, check out this blog post!