During the lockdown we have seen a huge surge in people buying puppies. The BBC reported that Households ‘buy 3.2 million pets in lockdown’. With so many more people working from home and spending more time at home than ever before it has been a bit of a no brainer to get that dog that you have wanted for so long but couldn’t previously look after fully due to other commitments that involved, well, not being in lockdown.
I have been one of those people. My kids had been asking me for a dog for ages and even though I did actually work from home, I had refused. When we went into lockdown though it seemed like such a good idea and when they continued to ask I warmed to the idea a bit more.
My students will tell you about my dog snoring and grunting whilst on my training sessions, which thankfully is a bit of fun and just part of having my dog with me whilst working from home. I opted for our frenchie, Copper. Who keeps me company while I work from home.
When we got Cooper we didn’t really take into consideration all of the other factors and benefits of having the dog at home with us whilst working from home and the mental health benefits of having him around.
I thought that he would be a great companion for my young children who are 3 and 6 and he has been. But when they go off to school and nursery we are left at home with our companion and his quirky ways.
I didn’t truly take into consideration the mental health benefits of having him here and how my thinking about having a dog would change. We opted for a frenchie, he has such a big personality and he is really fun to be around, although sometimes tiering. He is like having another child.
The main benefits I’ve discovered from having him around, and the things to consider if you are thinking about getting a dog to keep you company whilst working at home are:
- He is always there.
I no longer feel lonely when being at home alone. Cooper is always there to keep me company and when I speak to him he actually grunts back at me like in conversation. It is so funny but also very calming and cute.
- Nipping out for a quick walk has huge benefits to my mindset
Taking the dog out for a walk at different times of the day really helps to clear my mind and have the breaks between working, calls and training sessions.
- It is comforting
It is comforting to know he is always there and he sits under my chair whilst I work and deliver my training. I never feel alone and previously when I worked from home alone I would feel a bit lonely sometimes.
Although there have been occasions where he has planted himself in the middle view of my online zoom calls and training sessions, legs spread and very noisily scratching or licking himself. It has been a bit distracting whilst working, and thankfully my students don’t seem to mind too much. Overall the benefits of having our four legged companions are incredible and so much more than I first considered. He really is our best friend and having him around the place is so beneficial to my mental health, mindset and he keeps me company so I’m never alone.