What to Do with Dogs While at Work? A Guide For the Busy Parents

Most of us spend most of the day at work. This is why we’re forced to leave our dogs behind. Some are lucky to have company, while some pooches will have to endure the loneliness for at least 8 hours. Worse, these doggos will experience intense separation anxiety that will lead to destructive behavior and intense vocalization. This makes us wonder what to do with dogs while at work.

Instead of letting your dog wallow in SepAnx while you’re busy with the daily grind, you can keep them busy with the following. Some are free, while most are paid services.

For pawrents with the extra budget:

For those who have the extra budget to pay for a service or purchase some stuff, this list will suit you well. These solutions are also ideal for dogs with intense separation anxiety and pawrents who are tired of going home to shredded items.

what to do with dogs while at work

1.      Doggy daycare

For dogs that hate being alone, doggy daycares are the best solution. Instead of leaving your Fido all alone at home, you can drop them off to the nearest dog daycare.

Just like a daycare for kids, this facility will keep your pooch busy with playtime and other activities. Most importantly, they’ll get to socialize with other dogs and humans. That’s added benefit aside from keeping them away from their destructive behavior.

In addition, doggy daycares are available for long-term services. You can avail a monthly membership, or if it’s just for special days, some daycares will offer daily rates.

Moreover, doggy daycares are great solutions, especially if you keep spending extra time in the office. The personnel will ensure that your pooch is fed, though you will be charged an additional fee as well.

How much are doggy daycare services, you ask? Well, it ranges around $10 to $38 per day depending on how many hours your dog is spending on the facility.

2.      Dog walkers

If doggy daycares are splurgy, you can hire dog walkers instead. There’s a myriad of mobile apps for this purpose. There’s Wag!, Rover, PetBacker, and Care. Each one offers dog walking for up to an hour.

Aside from that, you can also avail from them additional services like dog boarding on which your pooch stays in the house of the walker. From what we know, both Wag! and Rover offers such services.

For the walking services, you’ll pay $20 to $26 depending on the time and duration. For pick up, you can either wait for the pooch or give access to the walker on your home. Wag! has this special lockbox where you can secure your door key.

However, since it’s just a dog walking service, the person can’t accompany your dog all day long. Nevertheless, your pooch will surely have a good snooze after the fulfilling walk.

3.      Dog sitting

If you really need someone to accompany your dog, dog sitting is your best bet. Unlike doggy daycares or dog boarding, your pooch will be accompanied within your home. This is ideal since your dog won’t have to deal with the stress of adapting to a new environment.

Again, this will cost a fee. For whole day dog sitting, you’ll be charged around $26 to $40 depending on where you’re going to avail the service.

Also, dog sitting varies in setup. Some will accompany your dog continuously while others will just pay several visits during the day. You can also avail overnight dog sitting if you’ll be out for a special errand. Just note that this will be more expensive than day sitting.

Again, Wag! and Rover offers this service. Anyway, you can explore other platforms that you deem more trustworthy.

4.      Get another dog

If you don’t want to entrust your dog to other people, then you can get another furry friend to keep them accompanied. Just make sure that the new doggo suits the personality of your current pet. Also, it might be better to get an opposite sex dog, as some breeds don’t usually thrive in the presence of same-sex canines (territory thing).

However, getting another dog is a long-term commitment. That also means you’ll have to spend more on food, healthcare, accessories, toys, and so on. But if money and effort aren’t a problem, there’s no reason not to consider this option.

Having another dog around usually dampens destructive behavior, but you shouldn’t be too complacent. As much as you want the two canines to bond, you don’t want them to become accomplices on their chewing crime.

5.      Purchase an interactive webcam

Technology doesn’t just connect people; it also connects hoomans and their furry babies. An interactive webcam allows you to monitor your pooch while at work. Also, you can get one with speakers so you can talk to your pooch and prevent any destructive behavior they’re about to unleash.

Some interactive webcams even come with special equipment that dispenses treats. This way, you can keep your pooch busy while preventing them from succumbing to separation anxiety.

Some of these webcams can have a lavish price tag, but it’s a worthy investment. Some are even compatible with Alexa devices which make it even more enjoyable to use.

Anyway, make sure that you mount it somewhere that your dog can’t reach. As you know, a talking voice from a box may trigger their curiosity.

6.      Get some new toys

If your pooch’s old toys don’t appeal to them anymore, it’s time to shop for new ones. Also, we recommend those that can be gnawed for hours without ripping to pieces.

We personally love the KONG Extreme Dog Toy. It’s super sturdy plus you can stuff the hollow center with peanut butter and other treats. This will surely keep your pooch busy for long.

You can also give them some squeaky toys, but avoid those with tiny, protruding parts.

If you’re thinking of giving them chew toys while you’re at work, you should be cautious. Chew toys, especially those made of rawhide, can be choking hazards. These kinds of dog chews are best given under close supervision.

Nevertheless, you don’t have to spend on a lot of dog toys at once. Get one or two new pieces then let your dog get tired of it before buying new ones.

Free solutions:

If you can’t spare some dollars to keep your dog occupied and accompanied, there are still some hacks that you can try. The following are some of our tried and tested tricks:

1.      Leave the TV on

Keeping the television on will let some white noise around the house. This will make your dog feel accompanied, plus they may also enjoy watching.

Tune them to Animal Planet or anything with unique sounds that will keep your dog hooked. However, make sure that your pooch doesn’t like pawing the screen, or you’ll go home to a scratched TV.

However, you have to keep some things in mind if you are to use this method. First, keeping the TV on overnight isn’t ideal. It will surely take a toll on your electric bill, especially if you’re doing it every day.

The key here is to alternate between other methods. Some days, you can leave the TV on while you can also try the succeeding hacks on other days. That way, your dog won’t get bored or tired of staring on the TV screen.

2.      Play an audiobook or music

An excellent alternative to keeping the TV on for the whole day is playing music at home. This has the same effect as the television, but without the visual aspect. You can also opt for audiobooks so your dog will hear a conversational sound, which can be comforting to some extent.

You can alternate this with the television to mix things up and to save some bucks from your energy bill.

Anyway, we recommend that you avoid anything with too much shrieking or shouting as your dog’s strong auditory abilities will surely get overwhelmed.

A calming jazz playlist should do the trick for some. Still, it’s best to check which genre is your dog’s jam.

3.      Don’t pull the blinds

Dogs go neurotic once they feel trapped inside your home with no one else to turn. This is why you should let them peek at the window so they can see the people passing by. Some dogs prefer cozying by the window as they wait for their masters.

For small dogs, place an elevated chair by the window so they can rest on it. Large dogs will usually manage to stand on their hind legs to get a peek.

However, make sure that your windows are made of glass and other materials that your pooch can’t chew. Screen windows can be torn easily with enough chewing enthusiasm. This will allow your escape artist canine to go outdoors. And if you don’t have a fence, you will be searching the neighborhood for a lost dog once you get home.

4.      Stage a scavenger hunt

If your dog loves playtime, you can stage a scavenger hunt in your home. You can hide treats under the furniture or inside their toys. You can also keep a small pile of kibble somewhere so your pooch can smell it and trace it.

Make sure that the treats are stinky so your doggo can sniff its way through it. And when you come back home, check the spots where you hid it to ensure that your pet has succeeded on the hunt. Also, you don’t want to find ants days later due to a hidden and undiscovered treat.

In addition, this is a good way to help your dog associate your absence into something good. When you leave, this means they can find treats somewhere. It may also help prevent your canine from going crazy once you exit the door.

5.      Schedule a play date

If you know someone willing to watch your dog for the day, you can drop your pooch in their home so they won’t be left alone. This is like doggy daycare or dog sitting, but for free.

Also, the advantage here is you know the other pawrent in person. You’ll have peace of mind that your dog is in good hands.

This will also serve as a playdate for your pooch that will allow them to socialize with other doggos and hoomans. If possible, tap the help of a family member or a trusted neighbor if they are willing to watch over your pooch. You can give their dog a bag of treats on your next payday as a token of appreciation.

Also, don’t forget to give the neighbor or family member your phone number and the number of your dog’s vet. So whatever happens, they know who to call.

6.      Bring them to work

If your workplace allows, you can bring your doggo to work in some days. This way, they won’t be lonely while you’re away. It’s also a great way to introduce them to other people and in a new environment.

However, before you do so, make sure that your pooch has been trained for obedience. This way, they won’t be a nuisance to your workmates.

Again, let the management or HR know about it first. This is so they know that a furry visitor is expected. Some modern offices even have a room for pets where the pooches can play or rest while their hoomans work.

Also, your pooch will become an instant office celebrity with everyone wanting to give it a pet or a quick hug. Your doggo will surely love the attention. Just try not to be jealous.

Final words

Knowing what to do with dogs while at work doesn’t have to be brain-racking. There are many ways to keep your pet entertained, both paid and free. Feel free to explore our list and see what works best for your canine. In a few weeks, you will surely figure out a routine that will keep your dog happy while you’re busy working for both of you.