We know that running an online business from home can be very trying. Things can get quite lonely running a business from home, and for this reason, many people choose to get pets if they don’t already have one. They are great companions that can keep you company while you run an online business.
Generally speaking, when people talk about managing an online business with pets in the house, they're talking about something like a dog, a pet that requires attention, exercise, quality time, playtime, and feeding. This article discusses tips on keeping you and your pets happy, safe, healthy, and balanced while you work from home.
Tips for Working From Home With Pets
Maintain a Solid Route
Your life with Fido will be much easier if you maintain a solid routine. Humans are creatures of habit, and we love having a set schedule. But with that said, so are dogs. Like humans, dogs can suffer from anxiety and boredom, but having a routine can help combat both conditions.
If your dog knows that 10 a.m. and 5 p.m. are when you go for walks, while you may get harassed when it comes close to walking time, it should help prevent the pet from harassing during the rest of the day. If you and your pet can follow a set routine, your lives will be a lot easier.
Both pets and humans need structure in their lives. A structured life keeps us busy; it keeps us happy, and it provides us with minor goals that we can accomplish each day, which also goes for dogs. Create a routine, always keep time in mind, and then go from there when working from home with pets.
Establish a Dedicated Area for Your Pet
A dedicated area for the pet is something you will need, as an online business owner working from home with pets. If you have a dog, they’re never going to want to be alone.
Often they exhibit separation anxiety and other such behavior. If you are trying to get work done, having a dog constantly bothering you and never leaving you alone can make working difficult.
Therefore, you need to establish an area that your dog will be in for most of the day.
Set up a doghouse or at a doggy bed along with some toys, a water dish, and other things that will keep them busy and happy. This will take a bit of training to ensure that your dog doesn't constantly leave its dedicated area to come to you. It might take a bit of training to overcome that separation anxiety, but it should be doable with a few toys and activities and some good treats. Separation anxiety can occur from one room to the next, not just if you leave the house.
This is a lot simpler if you have a cat as they tend to find a cosy spot anywhere they like in the home and curl up for a long sleep.
Establish a So-Called No-Play Zone
Another way to manage behavior while working at home with pets is to create a so-called ‘no play’ zone – you need to ban playtime in your office. Playtime and quality time are crucial for your dog, but you don't have the time to constantly play with your pet when you're running an online business.
You don't want your dog constantly coming into your office and harassing you to play and asking for attention. Therefore, with a little bit of training and repetition, you should establish that your office is off-limits to play.
You can choose to let your dog into the office or not, but you should ban playing in your office. If you don't play with your dog in your home office, it should prevent your dog from coming in there to bother you in the first place. Moreover, if your dog does come into your office, if it knows that it's not allowed to play, it will probably just lay down, be quiet, and let you work.
Get Plenty of Exercise
When it comes to any pet, particularly dogs, you must ensure that your pet gets plenty of exercises. This will depend on the breed, as some breeds require more exercise than others. However, all dog breeds need at least some exercise, not to mention that you need exercise too.
Sitting at your computer desk all day and running an online business, while it may be profitable, is not good for your muscles or for your cardiovascular health. As a human, it's recommended that you get at least an hour of exercise per day, and this goes double for dogs.
To help burn off some of your dog’s energy and spend some quality time with them, going for a half-hour to an hour walk in the morning and at night is recommended. If you burn a lot of that energy, your dog will lay down and sleep for a couple of hours after the walk, letting you get work done.
Exercise is beneficial for both you and your pets, so there is really no point in avoiding it. This will also help prevent your dog from harassing you for bathroom breaks while you are keeping your online business afloat.
Quality Time and Playtime
While it’s true that you need time to work, which means time away from your pet, you also need to remember that your pet needs attention. In general, dogs like attention from their humans, and if possible, they want it 24/7. You can provide them with toys and activities to keep them busy by themselves, but you will also have to spend some time with your dog.
To prevent behavior like separation anxiety and general harassment throughout the day, set aside at least an hour per day for playtime and a bit of quality time. If your dog knows they will get some attention from you no matter what, at some point in the day, they’ll be a lot more willing to leave you alone when you need to work.
This comes back to the routine. If you have a dedicated hour at the same time each day, your dog will know they are definitely going to get attention then, and this will help prevent them from harassing you throughout the day.
Various Stimulating Activities and Toys
Even if you create a dedicated area for your dog and give them plenty of exercise and playtime, chances are they’re still going to get bored. Dogs require constant stimulation. Therefore, find creative and stimulating toys and puzzles for your dog.
Squeaky toys and balls are fine, but do you want to listen to that noise while working? If you really want to keep your dog busy, look for puzzle toys such as puzzle feeders.
Food is an excellent motivator for dogs, so toys that require them to use their brains to dispense treats will not only keep them busy but will keep their minds stimulated as well.
You Can Always Try Doggy Daycare
If you are really worried about your dog not getting enough stimulation or attention during the day, you can take your dog to doggy daycare. If you find the right daycare facility, your dog will have friends to play with.
That being said, doggy daycare centers are not cheap. Moreover, quite honestly, if you have a dog and you don't have enough time for it, to the point where you have to bring it to a daycare every day, you might just be better off getting a goldfish.
How Do I Keep My Dog Occupied While Working From Home?
Plush toys, balls, squeaky toys, puzzle toys, and puzzle feeders all work well to keep your dog’s behavior in check while you try to work.
What Do You Do With a Puppy When You Work From Home?
The unfortunate reality is that puppies need constant care and attention. If you have a puppy, you have no choice but to take it out for potty breaks every 30 minutes and to give it plenty of attention. That said, puppies grow pretty quickly, so this phase won’t last forever.
Should I Crate My Dog While Working From Home?
Unless your dog is misbehaving and shredding your furniture, there is no reason to keep your dog locked in a confined space such as a crate.
Working from home with pets is achievable. What it really all comes down to is providing your dog with plenty of stimuli. Give your dog plenty of exercise and always set aside some quality time. For those times when you can’t be with your dog, provide plenty of activities such as puzzle feeder toys, balls, and other such things.