Working From Home – Feline Invasion
With the COVID-19 pandemic forcing many people to start working from home, it can be a huge adjustment for not just you but for your cat. After overcoming the initial confusion of why you aren’t leaving your feline friend like you used to, you need to follow some basic guidelines to make your day as normal as possible.
With a bit of discipline and scheduling, both you and your cat can adjust to you working from home.
An Opportunity to Notice Problems
Spending more time at home you’ll have the opportunity to learn your cat’s routine and notice subtle changes that may signify something is wrong.
One such thing to be aware of are cat UTI symptoms. Are you noticing that your furry friend is going to their litter box frequently? If that catches your attention, take note of the amount of time they are spending there and if they are actually doing their business or coming away leaving nothing behind. If that is the case, or you notice any blood in their box, it’s time to pay a visit to the vet.
The first thing you need to do to make sure working from home is a success is try to keep the same schedule. If you’re usually up by 7 a.m. and kitty has their morning dose of wet food by 7:15 a.m., make sure you stick to that.
Pets, especially cats, thrive on routine. It offers a sense of security because what they expect to happen in their normal day happens, even if other details are slightly different.
Cats are naturally curious. Rest assured they will think your office is a new playground to be explored and inevitably “rearranged.” If you want to make sure that your home office is a productive place to work, there are a couple of tips you’ll want to heed.
Before you start your workday, take time to play with your cat. If you try to ignore him because you’re hyper-focused on getting your work done, you’ll end up less productive and you’ll both get frustrated. Your cat won’t understand why he isn’t getting the attention he thinks he deserves and you’ll be annoyed because your pet is being needy when you’re trying to meet a deadline. The key to success in this scenario is balance.
If you can work on less intense tasks at the start of your day, you can fit playtime in while you’re getting your day in order. Cats love chasing a laser pointer and the beauty for you is it’s something you can do without ever leaving your desk.
Expect that your cat will wonder what your fascination with your keyboard is. He will jump up and walk across it and not understand why you are shooing him away. In normal cat fashion, the more you try to shoo him away the quicker he will jump right back up and continue to do what he wants. You have to beat him at his own game. He wants to be near you while you are doing whatever is taking your attention off of him.
To win this battle, set up a spot just for him!
Cardboard boxes usually work a treat! Set up a shallow box next to your computer, place his favorite blanket/toy inside or sprinkle it with some catnip. He will soon snuggle down and learn this is a comfy place to be while you’re working.
Take petting breaks. Fit in five minutes every so often to give your kitty one-on-one affection. Not only will he appreciate the massage but you will also benefit from the stress releasing benefit.
Working from home doesn’t have to be a nightmare because your cat is sharing his daytime space with you. With a little patience and structure, you can find a routine that works well for you both.