Are you having trouble figuring out a way to keep your pet entertained while you’re away at work? Leaving your pet alone for the day can be stressful for the both of you. Your pet might get anxious, bored, or lonely and as an owner you can’t stop thinking about your poor baby being home all alone… probably tearing up the house. I’ve had a total of 8 dogs and 7 cats throughout my life so I think it’s safe to say I’ve got the whole animal-mom thing figured out. Here are some words of wisdom to help you keep your fur baby busy while you’re away from the house.
Stuffed Kong If you’re a dog owner, I’m almost positive you know what a Kong is; they’re so awesome! They’re a great way to keep your pup busy, however, they don’t last a very long time (it takes my dog about 20 minutes to clean one out). One way you can lengthen the time it takes for your dogs to finish it is by freezing it for a couple hours. Click here for some scrumptious recipes that your dog will love. (Note: If you don’t have a Kong, but have a hollow bone from a pet store, you can stuff the bone instead; it works just as well!)
Interactive or Puzzle Toys If your dog is a little smarty pants, then interactive toys and puzzle toys are a great way to keep them entertained. With some toys, you can even change the difficulty level depending on how well your dog can figure out the game. These toys can get pricey, but they’re cheaper than having to pay for that $3,000 emergency vet bill because your dog ate something they weren’t supposed to.
Doggy daycare, pet sitters, and dog walkers are lifesavers! If your pet is locked up inside all day while you’re at work, then you might want to consider having a pet sitter or dog walker swing by your house to let your pet outside or take them for a walk (especially for dogs that have to be crated). If you have an extremely long work day, consider doggy daycare; there are some seriously awesome daycares out there!
Some will be a traditional kennel setting where your dog can get out 2-3 times a day to use the bathroom and maybe play (you usually have to pay more for extra play time), and others might allow your dog to be out all day in monitored play groups. Keep in mind that these options can get fairly pricey, so if you’re living on a budget you might want to limit these to once a week or maybe make them plan b. Make sure you do your research to find the best suitable option for both you and, most importantly, your pet.
Exercise Though all these ideas are great ways to keep your pet entertained, the number one most essential thing in a dog or cat’s life is EXERCISE. Before work, take your dog out for as long as it takes to wear him out; trust me, it makes a huge difference! I usually exercise my dog twice a day; an hour in the morning and an hour in the evening (walk, run, dog park, hikes, beach, etc. Switch up your routines or they will get bored). And for you cat lovers, your kitties need exercise too! Take them out for a walk (yes, that’s actually a thing… and it’s especially great for those indoor cats to get some quality outdoor time) or grab their favorite toy and play with them.