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How to make the most of working from home with pets

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Posted at 9:41 PM, Apr 28, 2020
and last updated 2020-04-28 21:41:44-04

BALTIMORE — While in quarantine, we are going to be spending a lot more time with our furry loved ones!

Rover surveyed pet parents who are now working from home because of the coronavirus outbreak and discovered that 54 percent said they feel less anxious because they have their pet with them!

They also found that the majority of pet parents said working from home helps them get more exercise by walking or playing with their pet.

However, Rover noted that this experience isn't entirely on the positive end as it can sometimes lead owners to be less productive, so the company spoke with Nicole Ellis, a Certified Professional Dog Trainer, American Kennel Club CGC evaluator and APDT trainer for advice on how to keep those pups.

One of those tips? Training. This can not only help your pet learn new tricks, but can also tire them out a bit.

Here's a look at a few of the suggestions Ellis gave to help give your pet the mental and physical exercise they need.

  1. Play some scent games. Start by hiding a treat right in front of your dog and asking him to find it. Slowly add distance between you and your dog while you hide the treat, so your pup will be searching the house for where you hid it, using lots of mental and physical stimulation.
  2. Play a game of hide and seek—put your dog’s good stay to use! This is a great one to do with kids in the home too.
  3. Make the most out of your walks together. Even a short walk can be useful working on heeling, stop and sits, eye contact and more. This will tie your dog out more than just pulling your around the block.
  4. Set up an indoor agility course with household items, from tunnels under chair legs to jumps over mops and buckets.
  5. Mix playtime together with training. A 10-minute play session followed by 5 minutes of focused training can go a long way.
  6. Come up with a dance routine together. If you have kids, get the whole family involved, from picking a song to teaching some new dance moves—spin and high 5 are always good ones!

If you're working from home with a cat, here are a few tips to make sure they're not getting too restless while you're around!

  1. Tire your cat out early.
  2. Take breaks for snuggles.
  3. Provide distractions during important calls.
  4. Give your cat a better place to hang out than your keyboard.
  5. Don’t reward behavior you don’t want to continue.
  6. Close the door…but be ready for protest.

For a look at additional resources on how the coronavirus affects your pets, click here.