How to keep your dog entertained while at work

Balancing work and pet care can be challenging, especially for pet parents wanting to keep their dog entertained and their dog mentally stimulated. With the rise of working from home or leaving your pooch alone for several hours, it’s essential to find effective ways on how to keep your dog entertained while at work.

Working from home and keeping your furry baby happy and healthy all while making you feel less guilty is key. Here are some tips to to ensuring your dog remains engaged, from interactive toys, to the support of technology and the help of dog walkers.

How to Keep Your Dog Entertained while at work

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Creative Ways to Keep Your Dog Busy and Happy During Work Hours

Create a comfortable space

Designate a safe space where your dog can relax, sleep, and play. This area should have their favorite toys, a comfy bed, and access to fresh water. Small dogs and puppies particularly benefit from a space that feels secure and cozy.

How to Keep Your Dog Entertained while at work

Setting up virtual playdates for your dog

Virtual playdates are a creative solution for socializing your dog while maintaining social distancing. Through video calls, your dog can see and hear other dogs and humans, providing sensory stimulation and social interaction most dogs, even from a distance

Each heading here opens a new door to exploring how to keep your dog stimulated, content, and well-cared for while you manage your work life and commitments. By applying these practices, you’re not only contributing to your pet’s happiness but also bolstering the bond between you and your furry friend.

How to Keep Your Dog Entertained while at work

Use tech to get your dog's tail wagging

Technology, such as pet cameras and the Furbo dog camera, allows pet parents to monitor and interact with their dogs remotely. These devices can dispense treats, play music, or even allow you to talk to your pet, offering reassurance and reducing separation anxiety.

How do you mentally tire a dog? Mental stimulation = Solution to boredom

Mentally tiring your dog is an effective solution to boredom. Brain games that dogs love such as hide-and-seek with treats or new toys can significantly drain their energy and keep them sharp. Teaching tricks or setting up obstacle courses for your dog to navigate also promotes mental exhaustion. Puzzle toys are beneficial since they require dogs to figure out how to retrieve treats, keeping their brains active and satisfied.

Pretty Cool Toy - if I were a dog, I'd love it.
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Verified Purchase Bought this on a whim because of pretty drawings of a prancing puppy with a dog. First vendor - before Xmas at a significantly higher price never delivered - so I decided to try Amazon. I got it on time and charged it before showing it to my 6-month-old puppy. The puppy has a great love-hate relationship with it. When it runs from her, she'll attack and jump on it. When, suddenly, it rolls at her, she'll scurry away. But ti keeps her well entertained for quite some time. If I turn in the "crazy mode," it scares the living daylights out of her, and she hides someplace safe. I haven;t had this thing long enough to make a real review. Right now, the puppy - who should be called "Karnak the Destroyer" because she can chew through anything, hasn't been able to dent the ball or remove the charging cover. The battery lasts long enough with her normal attention span not to be charging all the time. And it looks pretty sanitary, And she's a medium-sized (40 lb) dog, so she can't get her mouth around it completely to do he Karnak but. I liked it enough to buy a second one to give to my kids who have a dog like her.
Best Dog Toy I Ever Bought!
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Verified Purchase Oh my gosh, my dog LOVES this ball! He's kind of timid with new things, so I was a little concerned that he would be put off by it at first, but he was fascinated by it and went right for it when it was turned on. At first I thought the little tether on the cover was a great idea, but he soon learned to hold onto that and swing the ball back and forth, hitting himself and everything else in the way. If that hadn't ripped off the 2nd day, I would have cut it off because I thought he'd end up hurting himself, or me, swinging it like that because the ball itself is hard! The cover is nice, seems durable so far (other than the tether coming off), and it's washable. However, it doesn't do any good to try to keep track of where the On/Off button is when you put the cover on because it slides around on the ball, making it difficult to locate the button when you want to. I charge it off my lap top, although it takes a several hours. The directions say to use only a 5V output adopter, so I don't use my fast charging phone adopter. We have had this for a while now and the dog shows no loss of interest in it at all yet. In fact, I have to take it away occasionally so he can rest because he just never stops playing with it! Definitely money well spent!

3rd Generation Dog Balls

This interactive toy, different than a puzzle toy, but sure to keep your dog busy. It features two selectable modes for varied play. In Irregular Rolling Mode, activated by pressing the button once (blue light), it automatically rolls and rotates for 25 seconds, pauses for 5 seconds, and repeats this cycle over 2 minutes before entering standby.

Crazy Bouncing Mode, initiated by a second press (red light), sees the toy bouncing for 10 seconds, pausing for 5, in a cycle lasting 1 minute before standby. Touch activation via a built-in motion sensor triggers either rolling and rotating for 2 minutes or wild bouncing for 1 minute upon interaction from your dog, then shifts to standby. Equipped with multi-color flashing lights to captivate your dog’s attention, this toy is designed for fun and engagement.

The Irregular Rolling Mode is best for hard floors and not suited for excessive chewers, while the Crazy Bouncing Mode, compatible with a tennis ball cover, is ideal for mild chewers and works well on thin carpets or outdoors, offering a quieter, engaging experience for your pet.

Shelby Teigen
Shelby Teigen
Perfect enrichment toy!
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Great puzzle for dogs. I've got two herding dogs so I am always looking for a good enrichment toy that they have to work for. Simple enough to teach with patients for sure. One of mine eventually picked it up, and the other figured it out right away. If I could change one thing. It would be to add a sticky sandpaper like piece to the top to fill down their nails. I ended up ordering circular adhesive sand paper and it did the trick perfectly.
Sara Tanner
Sara Tanner
Dog loves it!
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My dog figured it out in a few minutes, and she loves it! She especially likes where she smacks her paw on it to press out more food. I have to make sure I twist the top in securely, otherwise she just flips the top off. She has fun lifting up the compartments to look for kibble. The description says the puzzle does not scoot, but your dog can scoot it across the floor pretty easily. In the beginning, she scooted it more. Now that she is familiar with the ins and outs of how the puzzle works, she doesn't rly scoot it. A dumb lazy dog would not want to fool with this, but this perfect for a smart working dog who likes to be busy. Also, you wanna make sure you dog is big and strong enough. My 7.5 lb yorkie wouldn't be able to press out more food. Mai is 21 lbs and has no trouble. It's kind of loud, too. The plastic lids are noise when the come down, and the food release button makes racket. It started the dogs at first, but they adjusted quickly. Overall, very happy with it and I feed Mai with it every day. Oh, and it's easy to wash - just swish it around in a clean sink full of hot soapy water. That gets it reasonable clean enough for the dog. 5 stars.

Dog toys and puzzle toys to keep them busy

A great range of dog toys and puzzle toys on the market quite a few toys are designed to keep dogs engaged. Interactive toys, like the Kong Wobbler, ( Or any treat dispensing toys) can keep your dog interested and busy finding tasty treats they can eat or that you can stuff with peanut butter ((avoid peanut butter made with xylitol)) Sometimes adding peanut butter can take hours finding every last drop and licking it clean.

There are even newer designs that challenge dogs to unlock compartments for their treats, these toys can provide hours of fun. The goal is to keep your dog’s brain engaged in the task, slowing down their eating while making them work for their food.

Allowing your dog ample chew toys is also very important for their boredom and it will keep your dog happy.

How to Keep Your Dog Entertained while at work

Create a DIY busy bucket

If you don’t want to spend money on a new toy, for an engaging challenge and entertainment, without breaking the bank on new toys. Use a plastic or aluminum bucket, drop treats at the bottom, then place a toy your dog likes on top, filling the gaps with a hand towel. This setup encourages your dog to solve the puzzle, rewarding them with treats for their cleverness. Boredom can lead dogs to destructive behaviors, but with such interactive activities, it’s understandable why they’d prefer being engaged.

Try calming treats

If your dog tends to be anxious or over-excited, (Great for a new puppy) calming treats are a tasty treat and can be a valuable addition to their daily routine. These are often formulated with natural ingredients like chamomile or tryptophan that promote relaxation. Administer these treats before you leave for work to help create a more peaceful environment for your pup.

Play music or TV

Leaving music or the TV on could provide a comforting background noise for your dog and make them feel less alone. Many dogs enjoy watching other animals, so channels like Animal Planet could be particularly entertaining. Alternatively, many pets appreciate classical music or soft-rock, which has been shown to have a calming effect on dogs.

Schedule mid-day walks with the help of a dog walker

Mid-day walks are crucial for dogs, especially those with high energy levels. Hiring a dog walker ensures that your dog gets their physical exercise and potty breaks even when you can’t be there. It also helps break up the rest of the day for your dog and prevents them from becoming too restless or anxious.

How to Keep Your Dog Entertained while at work

Get Help From Family or Friends

In times when professional services are not feasible, turning to family or friends and ask them come to the house to assist in keeping your dog occupied can be a practical alternative. Not only does it keep your dog engaged, but it also helps in strengthening bonds with familiar faces, which is comforting to pets and helps to alleviate feelings of guilt for the dog owner.

Can a dog be left alone for 8 hours?

Yes, a dog can be left alone for 8 hours, especially if they’re provided with enough mental stimulation and physical activity. Break up the monotony with long-lasting chews, interactive toys that hide treats, and ample space to rest and play. Regular potty breaks are also crucial, either by coming home at lunch or hiring a dog walker


  1. Try Calming Treats: Perfect for anxious dogs, calming treats can help soothe your pet.

  2. Play Music or TV: Background noise can provide comfort and a sense of company.

  3. Hire Someone to Walk Your Dog: A dog walker can provide both exercise and socialization.

  4. Furbo Dog Camera: Stay connected with your pet through live video feeds.

  5. Schedule Mid-Day Walks: Break up the day and reduce boredom with scheduled walks.

  6. Get Help From Family or Friends: A familiar face during the day can be a great comfort.

  7. Offer Different Treats: Keep your dog guessing and engaged with a variety of tasty treats.

  8. Provide a Kong Wobbler: A challenging toy that dispenses treats as your dog plays.

  9. Encourage Fresh Air: Ensure your dog has access to outside or open windows for fresh air.

  10. Engage in Play Fetch and Other Games: Active games keep your dog physically fit and mentally sharp.


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