10 Tips For Working From Home With a Pet


Working From Home with a Pet

4 min read
May 15, 2023

Congratulations! You've just started working from home, or you're a long-time remote worker who's just added a four-legged friend to the family — and that's cause for celebration.

Amid all the excitement, though, you're a bit nervous that working from home with a pet in tow might be difficult. You'll certainly have an adorable potential distraction, but these 10 tips will help make the situation ideal for both of you.

1. Start With Exercise 

When you work from home with a dog by your side, you should start your day together with some exercise. A half-hour walk should do the trick and expend some of your pup's I-just-woke-up energy. As for you, you'll reap the benefits of early-morning exercise: those who do it report a drop in grogginess, as well as boosted productivity. 

2. Keep It Varied 

Many people who work at home have the right to set up their own schedules. And, for freelancers, workloads come in heavy one day and light the next. As such, it's hard to set up a stable routine. 

Therefore, you shouldn't get your pet used to a rigid daily agenda if you can't stick with it. Always carve out time to walk, play with, feed and cuddle with your four-legged friend, but mix it up so that they, too, understand that working from home doesn't always mean working from 9-to-5. 

3. Create a (Temporary) Divider 

Yes, this might be the toughest step of all, but it's one of the most crucial, as far as productivity goes. Your pet can be distracting, so make sure you can close off your workspace and focus when you need to. Then, when it's time for a conference call, open the door and let your cat sit in your lap. We won't tell. 

4. Prep For Important Calls 

To that end, you might want to make sure your pet stays quiet while you're on a business call. If you have a divider, but you should take extra steps to keep them occupied. Plenty of toys exist that will have your pet solving a puzzle before it dispenses a treat. That should keep them busy while you need them to keep mum. 

5. Don't Cave to Crying 

You've shut the door, and now you hear your pup crying or your cat meowing outside of it. It can be so heartbreaking to hear, but you have to stay strong during your workday — otherwise, your pet will learn that, if they cry, they get to come in. Grab some noise-canceling headphones if you have trouble ignoring the whimpers. 

6. Let Them Meet the Neighbors 

Once again, we have to think about barking interrupting your workflow. This time, though, let's talk about the neighbors, delivery men, post office workers, etc., who make their way by your window every day. If this sends your pup into a barking fit, then you should take time to introduce your dog to these people — if they're willing to meet the pooch, of course.

With more familiarity, your dog might not get so excited every time they walk by. You can't account for everyone or everything, but accounting for a regular passerby is a good start.

7. Take a Midday Break 

This is as much a note for you as it is for your pet. Your lunch break can help you refresh, boost your memory, increase your creativity, refresh your energy... the list goes on. Therefore, if you take your free time outside with your pet, you'll both reap the benefits. While you'll return to your desk feeling ready to finish the day, your pet will once again be worn out from a burst of exercise. As they nap, you can power through your to-dos.

8. Have Plenty of Stimuli 

Older pets tend to snooze most of the day, but younger dogs and cats will look to you to entertain them. Rather than stepping into that role, supply them with the toys they need to keep themselves busy until you can break for a play session. Otherwise, they might resort to chewing, scratching or other boredom- and anxiety-based behaviors because you're not paying attention, and they have nothing else to do. 

9. Don't Beat Yourself Up

Whether you work from home or in an office, distractions will get the best of you. As such, some days you'll conquer your entire to-do list, and, on others, you'll feel completely distracted and unable to complete anything. This shouldn't make you feel guilty, nor does it have a reflection on your pet as a co-working buddy. Let yourself take a break, hang out with your four-legged friend, and see if you can get refreshed and restarted on your to-dos.

10. Enjoy It 

Not everyone gets to work from home, and not everyone has the joy of doing so with their pet by their side. It will take some getting used to, but you will find the balance of doing your job and caring for your dog or cat.

So, smile even on the tough days — you've got a lifestyle many people would love, at home or in the office, and you have an animal who loves being along for the ride.


Protect your Pets

Enroll in 3 Easy Steps

Nothing in this article should be construed as financial, legal or veterinary advice. Please consult your own advisors for questions relating to your and your pet’s specific circumstances.

1 Pet Insurance offered by MetLife Pet Insurance Solutions LLC is underwritten by Independence American Insurance Company (“IAIC”), a Delaware insurance company, headquartered at 485 Madison Avenue, NY, NY 10022, and Metropolitan General Insurance Company (“MetGen”), a Rhode Island insurance company, headquartered at 700 Quaker Lane, Warwick, RI 02886, in those states where MetGen’s policies are available. MetLife Pet Insurance Solutions LLC is the policy administrator authorized by IAIC and MetGen to offer and administer pet insurance policies. MetLife Pet Insurance Solutions LLC was previously known as PetFirst Healthcare, LLC and in some states continues to operate under that name pending approval of its application for a name change. The entity may operate under an alternate, assumed, and/or fictitious name in certain jurisdictions as approved, including MetLife Pet Insurance Services LLC (New York and Minnesota), MetLife Pet Insurance Solutions Agency LLC (Illinois), and such other alternate, assumed, or fictitious names approved by certain jurisdictions.

2 Provided all terms of the policy are met. Application is subject to underwriting review and approval. Like most insurance policies, insurance policies issued by IAIC and MetGen contain certain deductibles, co-insurance, exclusions, exceptions, reductions, limitations, and terms for keeping them in force. For costs, complete details of coverage and exclusions, and a listing of approved states, please contact MetLife Pet Insurance Solutions LLC.