Stuck at home?
Sadly, as is the case for the majority of the world, especially dog parents in NY and across the U.S., quarantining ourselves remains necessary to mitigate the spread of novel coronavirus. This can lead to you and your fur babies feeling seriously bored, so we’ve come up with 6 neat ways of keeping you both stimulated while strengthening that beautiful bond you share. Whether you’re getting your blood pumping or stretching your creative muscles, or just working on some “tuff” training and commands, these suggestions can make staying indoors a lot more fun!
1) Work From Home Together!
Ok, we’ll admit, this one might seem obvious. However, if you’re a pup parent who hasn’t let your pup in your workspace, give it a shot. If s/he isn’t disruptive and you can still get your work done, why not allow them to be with you. After all, that’s all our dogs want from us — love and attention! Plus, they could really liven up that 9:45 am video conference call you find yourself dreading every morning (we won’t tell). They might even help you be more productive by relieving stress and tension. We’re talking some fuzzy/fluffy snuggles and unlimited kisses, people! Makes any KPI/OKR feel achievable.
Coming up with new games to burn some energy is great for keeping your pup stimulated, and also helps them learn new tricks/commands to follow. Scent games, hide-and-seek, and even building a homemade obstacle course are some of the ideas Jaymi Heimbuch suggests for rainy day activities. Maybe some old boxes laying around can be constructed into an exploratory tunnel. Or, if you’re not one to get apprehensive about your pup going on furniture, a little game of ‘The Floor is Lava’ could be exciting for him/her, i.e. some gentle hops from couch to chair to ottoman to bed (the last one especially if you live in a NYC studio apartment).
3) A Waggy Workout!
Yes, you can absolutely workout with your pup! A lunge while they lie down, one-armed planks while receiving a paw, a sit-up while they, well, sit! These are just some of the ways you can make your fitness routine pup inclusive. You can find other suggestions for moves from Shape. And let’s not forget, for all of you yogis who need a partner, make your dog your dogi! Doga is a great integration of dogs and yoga that can help melt away stress and tension through meditation and stretching. And no, you don’t have to stick to Downward Dog; according to Mahny Djahanguiri, Warrior, Child’s and Camel poses are some of the types of stretches you can do alongside your pup. Of course, never force your dog into a yoga stretch or workout pose — the main focus is strengthening the connection between you both.
Maybe you have a new pup, or just adopted/started fostering a dog from your local shelter/rescue (kudos to you!). Either way, they could probably use some training. If you haven’t been able to take them to doggy daycare or their usual trainer for lessons, at-home lessons are a must. Keeping training consistent and regimented is what strengthens your dog’s understanding of what you want from him/her, and what will lead to him/her obeying a command without fail (we hope!). There are thousands of videos and literature online for dog training — I’ve used Wag.com’s library since they have dozens of training guides for different types of learning. Research the training resources that work for you, and remember not to overwork your pup!
5) Volunteer Together!
Other than boredom, one of the biggest issues isolation can lead to is loneliness. Why not brighten someone's day together with your pupperino? CHD Living is asking virtual volunteers to “Adopt a Grandparent” in an effort to fight quarantine related loneliness. Video calls would be coordinated by the staff to match residents with volunteers with whom they share similar interests. For those residents who have a love of dogs, seeing one live on-screen would surely be a delight!
6) Pamper Yourself and Your Pooch!
So you’re not really leaving the house except for occasional walkies. That doesn’t mean you should let self-care slip! Sticking to self-care routines can be useful in relieving the stress/anxiety you may feel during isolation. Treat yourself (and your fur baby, if s/he likes baths) to a bubble bath. Give yourselves a mani-pedi to up the bow-WOW factor (nail polish optional). Cucumber slices: great for putting over your eyes with a face mask; crunchy, yummy treat for pups. You can even step it up a notch and host a photo shoot for you and your fur baby! Getting all dolled up/dapper and letting the good times roll; you’ll have great photos to look back on and to share with others (nothing boosts my day like seeing photos of pups, believe me).
For those Dog Moms that feel especially fabulous after opting for that last suggestion, why not go the extra mile and audition for Chase & Papi’s Miss Dog Mom Pageant: a charitable event aimed at highlighting the true beauty of dog moms, both inside and out. All eligible pup parents (please check eligibility/ FAQ pages) are welcome to apply and submit a video audition to firstname.lastname@example.org or tag us on Instagram @chasepapi1.
Sam Mistretta (email@example.com) is a native Brooklyn girl and dog mom to Jake the Dog (yes, that is his full name). Sam writes about Chase &Papi’s upcoming events and is an avid dog, ice cream, and pizza lover. Chase & Papi is an innovative dog event planning company located in New York.