There's no question that COVID-19 has been a time of immense change, and for many people, one of the more positive changes has been the opportunity to work from home either more or full time. It's opened the door for so many who have long wanted to welcome a dog into their lives. But what is it really like working from home with a puppy?!
Having a puppy brings immense happiness, but it is certainly not easy. In fact, raising a puppy can feel like a full-time job in itself! From toilet training to socialisation, ensuring they receive the mental stimulation and rest they need, there is a lot to juggle with a young puppy, and sometimes you need a helping hand.
Life with a puppy is hard going; we all know they are adorable bundles of ever-changing mischief. Just as you feel you have cracked one aspect of life with your puppy, another issue appears!
While parents of calm adult dogs may find working from home with them a breeze, it's a slightly different story with an energetic puppy who may demand a lot of attention.
If you're trying to undertake conference calls with your delightful bundle biting at your ankles, barking for attention, or weeing in the corner, then you are not alone. It can feel like you're being pulled in two different directions as you try to meet your puppy's needs while also performing well at work. A dog walker or daycare may be just what you need.
Some puppy owners may feel some guilt about sending their pup off out for the day if they are at home. It's perhaps not what you envisaged, and you may feel that you should be able to do it all yourself. But puppies are babies, and they are full-on! We would completely agree that a new human parent who needs to get some work done could do with a helping hand, and it's exactly the same for puppy parents.
Developing a relationship with a pet sitter, dog walker, or daycare provider can be a huge help, not just through puppyhood but for the whole of your dog's life.
Having the opportunity for your puppy to form a bond with a carer early on will mean that you both have someone you trust and can turn to when you need help. Generally, even adult dogs shouldn't be left for more than four to five hours, so having someone you can call on for days out and to take care of your dog when you go on holiday is a real advantage.
Having a professional pet carer as part of your extended family means that you can hand your pup over with complete trust and confidence that they will be well looked after and having a great time when you cannot be with them.
Many puppy owners who brought home their bundle of joy during the pandemic are worried about the reduced socialisation their puppy may experience in their early life.
Socialisation is about so much more than just a rough and tumble in the park with other dogs; it includes exposure to new experiences, people, sights, sounds, and places. There are several services that pet sitters offer, which can help you socialise your puppy.
Doggy daycare is not just for owners who work long hours or are out of the house all day. The benefits of a good doggy daycare can be positive for dogs who would otherwise be with their owners all day too.
Your puppy will get the chance to spend time with other dogs of varying ages, another trusted human for variety, and will spend time in a different environment. All of this is socialisation and enriches their lives, making for a happier dog and a happier you!
Joining a group dog walk is usually cheaper than attending a full day at daycare, and for some owners who are at home, this may be a happy middle ground. Your dog can go out with their dog walker for an hour or two, explore new places, and spend time in the company of friends, both human and canine.
It breaks up your puppy's day, gives them the chance to visit new places, and they get their exercise taken care of. When your pup returns home, they will be ready for a treat and a snooze, giving you a decent block of time to focus on work or other tasks, guilt-free.
Socialisation isn't just about mingling with other dogs, and for some puppies, a group environment may be too overstimulating. Your puppy may need a bit more attention and a calm potter with their dog walker.
1-2-1 walks are often overlooked for puppies, but they can be hugely beneficial to both pup and owner. This one on one time early on can really strengthen the bond that forms between your pet carer and your dog, making their future transition into daycare, group dog walks, or holiday stays so much smoother.
Routine is so important for dogs and puppies alike. Having some predictability in their day helps them segment their day and know what's coming next. With a daily dog walk or visit to daycare, they are more relaxed as they begin to understand when their fun-time is coming.
Starting to use a dog daycare or walking service before you need it can help that transition to normal life when it comes. Your puppy will already be used to time with their pet carer and the other dogs they spend time with, making that big change in their life much easier to navigate.
If you'd like to find a trustworthy, professional, reliable pet sitter for your puppy, then have a look at our franchisees to find one near you. We'd love to welcome you and your puppy to the Pets, Homes and Garden's family.