Working from home and with new four-legged colleagues

Birmingham Dogs Home

Like many of you, we are also having to adapt to the current lockdown circumstances that we find ourselves in.

As a charity that helps to support stray and abandoned dogs in the West Midlands and South Staffordshire areas, our team are working hard to provide the highest level of care to the dogs currently in our centres behind closed doors. Dogs are continuing to need our help through the COVID-19 crisis and have a steady stream of strays coming into our centres in Solihull and Wolverhampton. It is a challenge for us all and we are very thankful of all the support we are getting from the local community.

Many of you may have found your work environment change dramatically, no longer are you getting up ready for the commute to the office or face to face meetings, instead, you are carrying out meetings via conference call or have new colleagues in the form of your four-legged friends. Those of you who have been able to adapt your work at home and have animals, it can be a whirlwind at first but it soon settles down.

Have you struggled with zoom calls where dogs start barking? Your dogs trying to sit on your lap? We have all been there…we are here to give you a few tips and to also help you enjoy working from home with your new colleagues.

Now we might not be able to give you advice on the children front but dogs is our specialty so we will do our best to give you some top tips on how you can all work from home in harmony.

Use your daily exercise early

Dogs settle down easier once they have had a bit of exercise. Get yourself into a routine and walk your dog before you start work. If it is not too early, you could always involve the children too!


Routine is key for dogs if they know what they have to do at certain points of the day they will adapt very quickly and relax. Have a set routine for your days at work and your weekend too.

Keep them occupied

Once they’ve had their morning walk, been fed breakfast and had a little nap they might then start to get a little fidgety or trying to get your attention! To keep them busy it might be worth giving them a reward toy such as a stuffed KONG, a ball that dispenses treats or have a little break from your screen and play a game of fetch for 10 minutes in the garden.

Move your workspace

If you can, try to move your workspace to somewhere out of the way of busy areas. If you can’t, keep any distractions out of your dogs sight that could be shutting the blinds if they bark at passers-by or keeping the radio on to help relax them.

Keep Separation Anxiety on your mind

Dogs are used to having their own time during the day when you leave for work and all of a sudden, their usual routine has vanished. To help prevent separation anxiety go back to the basics, try to leave your dog on their own during different intervals throughout the day, start at 10 minutes and then build it up longer when you know you will be going back to the office soon.

Your dog will appreciate it when things eventually get back to normal.

Overall, working from home with your dog should be enjoyable. They are part of our family and we always love to be in their presence. We have this opportunity to enjoy quality time with our dogs and help build a stronger relationship.

We hope these tips will help and we would love to see your photos of working from home with pets.

For more information on Birmingham Dogs Home click here.