As of 2015, entrepreneurship was at an all-time high and over 27 million Americans were running their own businesses. Many of these entrepreneurs were working from home, allowing them a sense of flexibility that traditional office workers often miss.
If you’re one of the millions of entrepreneurs in the world today, you may be able to rework your schedule to spend more time with your family, your children, and your beloved pets. However, if you’re part of the majority of people who do not run a business, you may be trying to determine how you’ll balance your full-time job with caring for a pet. If this sounds familiar, keep reading for some advice on caring for a pet even while you continue working full-time.
Dogs in the Workplace
As of 2015, only 8% of employers were dog-friendly - defined as allowing dogs in the workplace. The good news is that this number nearly doubled from 2013 through 2015. In addition to health insurance for humans, some companies like Google are even offering pet health insurance to their employees these days. If your office is pet-friendly, why not bring Fido with you to work?
If, like the vast majority of Americans, your office has a strict “no pets” policy, don’t worry; you still have options. If your work day has a flexible schedule and the hours are not too long, you could try running home during your breaks to check on your dog. This would enable you to spend your lunch break with your pet and even save some cash if you’re not eating out. Of course, this only works if you can rearrange your work schedule - and if you don’t live too far from the office.
It might also be a good idea to look into hiring a professional dog walker to care for your dog while you are at work. There are most likely several different reputable professionals in your area. Another option would be a doggie daycare, which would allow you to drop off your faithful companion to play with other dogs (and get lots of food, water and outdoor activities) while you’re working. Keep in mind doggie daycare rates can vary, with many offering only half-day rates. In addition, consider sharing a pet sitter with another animal lover. This can help cut costs and ensures you have someone you trust checking on your four-legged friend.
There are plenty of products on the market you can find to help keep your dog entertained while you’re at work. But what if you could talk to your pet AND give her a treat even when you’re at the office? Enter Furbo. This sleek gadget allows you to remotely see, talk to and treat your pet. Not only will you have a little piece of mind seeing how things go during the day, but you can also reward Fido for making good choices.
Bonding with Your Pet
They don’t call them “man’s best friend” for nothing. The relationship between a human and a dog provides a sense of companionship and loyalty unlike any other. In fact, science has recently shown that humans and dogs both experience surges of oxytocin - the “love” hormone - when they look into each other’s eyes.
To assist with building the human-dog bond, you may want to consider obedience training. If you’re adopting a dog, you might also want to bring your new pet along with you while you run errands. These days, many local businesses are dog-friendly. Starbucks and other coffee shops have pet-friendly seating areas outdoors, and may even offer treats for your pups!
One final note of advice when it comes to caring for your dog while you are at work: check with your employer. Some employers, such as Mars, will actually pay for pet feeding, pet boarding, and other pet care services while employees are away on business travel. If you have any big trips coming up, it is certainly a question worth asking.