By September 3, 2012 Read More →

Working from home with pets – healthy body and mind

Working from home with Sparky & Wilson

Working from home with pets - healthy body, healthy mindAlan Williams is back today talking about the benefits of working from home with Sparky and Wilson:

There are those people who would have you believe that working from home is all about skiving and eating cheese. My experience is that there is nothing further from the truth, and that most homeworkers, either on an occasional basis or more regularly, are often more conscientious about the outputs and outcomes of their work than those who work 9 to 5 in an office.

Sadly those home working warriors are often neglectful of themselves, spending long periods at their desks, not taking time off for a break, and mainlining caffeine to keep going. Having a pet however can keep the homeworker healthy in body and mind.

I’ve written about working from home with pets here before, and today I thought I’d write something a little more personal about how my two dogs bring me healthy body (partly, there are limits to all things) and healthy mind when I’m writing.

First things first; most of the time when writing, I’m an arse in the chair, at my desk in front of the computer, no distractions writer. The dogs mostly leave me alone or keep me company by siting at my feet. At the start of the day however I always take them for a walk, whatever the weather. Exercise for them, and exercise for me – that’s the healthy body bit. I repeat that in the middle of the day and at the end of the day, whenever I can.

When I take a break, I’ll often take it with them, go into the garden, play ball, distract myself for a few minutes – healthy mind.

Taking the healthy mind things a bit further, there are often times when I get stuck with my words. Can’t think what comes next in a story or what a character’s going to do. Then it’s time for another walk. I’ve lost count of the number of times a solution has come to me while I’ve been out with my dogs, suddenly the plot is clear or the solution presents itself. Once I even found the perfect site for a murder scene on one of my dog walks, with a little imagination too of course!

Given how the two of them help keep me on track working from home, perhaps I should be giving co-authorship, and sharing the credit with the dogs?

Judy – I think we definitely need to know more about Sparky and Wilson. Sparky is the brown Alsatian cross pictured in Alan’s previous working from home with pets post. He’s fourteen years old and was recently described by another dog walker as a “lovely old gentleman”. He has excellent teeth for his age.

Wilson is pictured above. He’s a Border Collie cross named after the Sergeant in Dad’s Army, and is two years old. A lover of any food, he’s loyal, obedient, and always trying to sleep on the bed with the humans.

You can read more by Alan about his dogs, books and crime fiction on his blog

Posted in: Pets

8 Comments on "Working from home with pets – healthy body and mind"

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  1. Kaitlyn says:

    I agree! I have three cats and during the day they are generally content to sleep and keep to themselves. But I use them as an example for taking care of myself. They remind me to just sit, sometimes, with a book and a cup of tea, even for fifteen minutes. And they are great fun to play with in the back garden. I get a toy mouse on a string to dangle and they help me to relax, laugh and loosen up.

    • Judy says:

      Animals can be a hoot, can’t they? I miss that the most, although I haven’t had cats for years now. They stop you taking yourself too seriously, which is a easy trap to fall into when you spend a lot of time alone.

  2. I would like to borrow a dog to take out for a walk sometimes.

  3. Alan says:

    @rosie Your local dog rescue shelter might be looking for dog walkers to help exercise their residents!

  4. I certainly agree! But if you’ve read my interview on this site today you’ll KNOW what a big help I am!

  5. Judy says:

    And if you haven’t, I’m sure you’ll want to read all about Winnie’s home working life.