Rather than missing your furry friend all day when you’re stuck in a cubicle, what if you could bring your dog to the office? For at least one day a year, you can! If you want to participate in National Bring Your Pet To Work Day, these tips will be good to keep in mind as you prepare to show off your pooch to your coworkers.
Workplace Petiquette: Tips for Bringing Your Pet to Work
Love having your pooch by your side during your 9-to-5? Be sure to brush up on office-pet protocol in time for National Take Your Dog to Work Day.
When Take Your Dog to Work Day was started in 1999, the organizers asked workplaces and business owners everywhere to become Fido-friendly for one day of the year. But some companies didn’t stop there: According to a recent study by the American Pet Products Manufacturers Association, one in five U.S. companies allows employees to bring their pets to work.
Having pets in the workplace is increasingly seen as a win-win by businesses — it creates a more pleasant work atmosphere for animal lovers and improves productivity and (hopefully) profit margins for management.
“When it comes to taking your dog to the office, the key to a safe and successful experience is to prepare your dog in advance and to recognize potential problem situations before they happen,” said Liam Crowe, president and COO of Englewood, Colo.-based Bark Busters, which has trained more than 350,000 dogs over the past 18 years.
For most of us, having your dog by your side while you work sounds like a dream come true. But you need to make sure the experience is just as good for your pet as it is for you. Keeping safety – both physical and emotional – in mind is vital to making your office trip a success.
Pets at Work: Dos and Don’ts
- Note that most companies only allow dogs in the workplace. Check with your employer to see what animals are allowed at work.
- A workplace can be an anxious environment for your pet. Make it more “homey” by bringing your pet’s favorite snack, blanket, or toy to make them more comfortable.
- A hungry or thirsty pet can be a distraction in the workplace. To keep your dog in line, bring along plenty of food and water.
- To avoid conflict with other pets, keep your dog or other pet isolated from other employees’ pets.
- Your pet must be up-to-date on all medical vaccinations and you should have documentation available before you bring it in the office.
Above all, use common sense — in the workplace, your career comes ahead of your pet. “Pets can bring real energy to the office, and we think that it also improves productivity,” said Karen Macy, human resources manager at Rochester, Mich.-based Leader Dogs for the Blind.
“But employees have to understand that having your pet at work is a privilege — and they have to take responsibility for the pets. When that happens, everybody benefits — especially employees and their pets.”
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Have you ever taken your pet to work? What are some possible advantages or disadvantages you see to having pets in the office?