It’s Take Your Dog to Work Day!

Take Your Dog to Work Day is a celebration of the bond between canines and their humans. This first celebration occurred in the United Kingdom in 1996 and the United States in 1999. This day celebrates all dogs and inspires adoptions from shelters and rescue organizations across the globe.

As the Covid-19 pandemic finally begins to slow, many workers are heading back to their office jobs, much to the chagrin of their four-legged family members, who have undoubtedly settled into the new normal of always having their humans nearby. Luckily, many executives have seen the positive impact pets can play in day-to-day productivity and are considering converting their offices into pet-friendly work environments. That’s good news for dogs and their owners around the world.

Major companies such as Amazon, Trupanion, Petsmart, Airbnb, Google, Etsy, and Uber have had dogs in-house for years now, and it’s easy to see the positive effects it has had on the workplace and company culture.

Here are FIVE benefits of a dog-friendly work environment!

#1 Reduces Stress

This benefit may seem like a given, but being able to look down from your desk and see a four-legged friend provides a moment of respite in even the most stressful situations. However, the effect a pet can have on employee mental health is even more profound than you might think. Simply petting a dog is scientifically proven to reduce the stress hormone cortisol, increase levels of the hormone oxytocin, and reduce blood pressure.

Dog sitting at desk during work

#2 Promotes Collaboration

Dogs bring people together. Having dogs in an office help offset the need for team-building sessions by giving workers a built-in topic of conversation. Whether they are sharing their favorite hiking trails, favorite treats, tips on what new toys to buy, or afternoon walks, employees will have plenty to bond over. Not only this, but they will be less concerned about racing home after work or during a break to care for their pet and more focused on tasks within the workplace.

#3 Attracts Top Talent

A dog-friendly work environment is a dream perk for many pet owners. Workers will say get to say goodbye to expensive doggie daycare, dog walkers, or having to leave your pup at home, and hello to spending every day with your four-legged family member! The value employees place on this benefit can’t be understated, as “87% of polled employers saying being dog friendly helps them attract and retain more talent.” Making your office dog-friendly can often be the difference for prospective employees considering a job offer.

dog at office during work

#4 Promotes Higher Productivity

Due to their inherent ability to reduce stress, elevate moods, and bring employees together, dogs promote higher productivity in the workplace. In fact, in a 2008 study, pet ownership was more effective than medication in regulating hypertension while performing demanding cognitive tasks. A mentally and physically relaxed workforce means fewer mistakes, higher productivity, and better focus on the task at hand.

#5 Your Dog Gets Socialized!

Dog-friendly workplaces benefit both owners and dogs. Being around humans other than their owners helps dogs build confidence and develop healthy responses to the anxiety a new situation or setting may present. Regular interaction with other people or pets is a form of positive reinforcement that shows pets that new experiences don’t have to be scary. This will benefit the dog both in and out of the office!

Conclusion

Dog-friendly work environments foster creativity, communication, and productivity. They also provide employees with a built-in stress-reducer that directly benefits their health and well-being, and even provide benefits for the dogs themselves!

While there are certain guidelines you’ll need to set before creating a dog-friendly office, the benefits are well worth the effort. With companies like Amazon, Google, and Etsy being well-documented as dog-friendly, it’s clear today’s business leaders are buying into the benefits of four-legged coworkers.