A lot of us are working from home these days and, as a result, a lot is being written about how to be successful at it. Dress as if you’re going into the office, find a quiet workspace, create and stick to a routine, eliminate distractions as best you can… the list goes on. All good advice.
What people haven’t been talking about is how to put dogs to work. Not pulling sleds or fetching a beer from the fridge – those dumb, menial tasks that are far beneath most breeds – but the kind of work that dogs are truly capable of. A little known truth: A canine co-worker can be a huge help; you just have to understand what they like to do, and what they do best.
Weimaraners, for instance, are great with spreadsheets. Put a “Gray Ghost” in front of an Excel doc and just watch him go. They are highly intelligent, and wizards with facts and figures; left-brain kind of stuff. Thanks to their German heritage and genetic makeup, Weimaraners are meticulous, detail-oriented and highly focused. An added bonus; keeping him busy will give him less time to devote to other activities he loves, such as chewing on your favorite shoes or digging up your garden.
Got some research that needs doing? Bloodhound. The website hillspet.com hits this one right on the snout… the bloodhound is known for his “baying, howling, and (unfortunately) whining.” He will complain a bit about the work, but he’s got a nose for sniffing things out, “a gentle, patient, noble and mild-mannered animal that also exhibits tremendous determination and independence.” In other words, he’s an independent worker… a “self-starter” as HR people like to call them.
Being an agency, we do a lot of work with clients… learning their business, helping them grow it, etc. Those individuals are called Account Managers. It’s almost like sales. Therefore, it’s perfect work for the Miniature Bull Terrier. Why? Petguide.com describes the terrier thusly: “Miniature Bull Terriers are bright dogs, but their attention spans are rather short. Praise and rewards with yummy little treats work better for Mini Bulls than harsh words, yelling or discipline. Consistency is important with this breed. They can become confused if one day he is allowed to lie on the couch and the next day he is not.” The MBT is ideal for working with clients. He often doesn’t really see how small he is, so he can puff himself up pretty well. He’s not particularly skilled at listening, but he does respond well to praise and treats. Lastly, he sure doesn’t care for getting yelled at. In short, the ideal salesperson.
Of course, every office environment needs a bit of comic relief now and then. That’s where the Schnauzer comes in. They are extremely intelligent but, like many jokers, put their intelligence and energy into frivolous pursuits, rather than being focused… and helpful. According to hillspet, because they are so incredibly smart they find themselves easily bored, which is displayed by “running through the house with toys, chasing the kids and being a pest.” Sound like one of your hanging-around-the-water-cooler-annoying-people-co-workers? We’re sure it does.
Lastly, there will be times no doubt, when you need toner ink, stamps, a flash drive, or a large pizza. When going on an errand is involved, call on the Golden Retriever. Goldens are dependable, “trustworthy, serious workers with a joyous and playful approach to life,” according to AKC.org. Imagine, someone who will run any errand for you with a smile on their face and a song in their heart. You won’t find anyone like that in a traditional office setting!
So, if you find yourself working from home and you’re fortunate enough to also enjoy the companionship of a furry friend, don’t worry about trying to set aside time to care for him. Get him to help!