Working from Home with the Paws & Claws Team

It can be challenging to work remotely, but pets can actually deliver benefits to help lighten your load

The recent state regulations have asked all Ohioans to stay home to help prevent the spread of the COVID-19 virus. As a result, more Americans are working from home than usual. While this may be a welcome change to some, others may find that there are some things that require getting used to. Schedules and mindsets can be difficult to carry over from the office environment into the home, and that transition can be made worse for pet owners. While we love our pets, they may also serve as roadblocks when it comes to concentration.

Here are some things to remember

It’s probably as weird for them as it is for you. When pets are home alone, they have their own schedules they’re used to adhering to. Most of that probably involves sleep, but when you’re home, that serves as a new and exciting thing for them to be happy about. Your pets may see fit to “bother you” more. Try not to punish them for that. Instead, keep them occupied with bones and toys elsewhere (as long as they can be trusted with such things on their own), and don’t be afraid to separate yourself. Set up a work space that is animal-free or, if you worry about your pet getting into things they shouldn’t when you’re not around, arrange a pet bed or a cozy space for them somewhere close to your workspace. Do your best to adhere to the schedules they have in place when you’re usually gone throughout the day. If you know your pet can go eight hours without a bathroom break, don’t be swayed when they’re lingering by the door at 2 p.m.

On the reverse side of that, however, it’s okay to take some breaks for yourself. Pets are known to increase happiness and reduce stress, anxiety, and depression in their owners. Working from home due to the restrictions of the coronavirus has caused stress for many of us. Take some time to enjoy those ear scratches and be thankful for your situation. Being home means you aren’t worried about accidents in the house. It can also mean saving on pet care costs like animal boarding and pet sitters. The lack of commuting means you have more time for things like walks, grooming, appointments and, most importantly, hugs.

Working from home may pose an adjustment period for both you and your pets. Remember not to expect perfection. Work towards progress, and be flexible. Practice good time management, but don’t overlook the benefits that being at home with your pet can provide. The reduced stress can mean increased happiness and productivity, and that’s definitely something to wag your tail about!