Take Your Dog To Work Day - The Do’s & Don’ts
They are indeed man’s best friend. It has long been known that the interaction with dogs can bring many health benefits: Studies have found that playing with a pet can elevate levels of serotonin and dopamine, which calm and relax. It was also found that people who own pets have lower blood pressure in stressful situations. This doesn't apply only to dogs and cats; simply watching fishes in an aquarium can reduce muscle tension and lower pulse rate.
In that light, having dogs in the office can indeed boost morale among employees. Major companies such as Amazon, Ben & Jerry’s and Google recognise this, and are famous for allowing staff to bring their pets to work.
To ensure the event is enjoyable for all concerned, we've come up with a list of Do’s and Don’ts:
Do all the checks
As exciting as this may be, you can’t just show up at work with your pooch. Check if your employer / HR department has a dog-friendly policy. You will also need to double-check if your co-workers are comfortable with the idea of bringing your dog in. It’s important to take the time to speak with them personally, they might be allergic to, or afraid of dogs.
Also check Dog free zones. There might be places where your dog is not allowed (e.g. restrooms, eating areas, corporate boardrooms). Even if your workplace does not have such rules, it is still wise to speak with management and with co-workers to establish boundaries.
Dog-proof your workspace
This can’t be emphasised enough. To avoid any major mishaps, dog-proof your workplace as much as possible. That ought to keep your furry one from chewing on cords, tipping over the bin, or swallowing any USB sticks.
You must come fully prepared to provide for your dog’s every need. This includes more than just food and water dishes. They will need practically everything they are used to having at home: toys, treats, a bed, etc. This ensures they are comfortable in the new environment. And for everybody’s sake, don’t forget the poop bags.
Give them a bath, you might be used to their natural smell, but your co-workers most likely won’t approve of it. It’s also a good idea to brush their teeth so they can have a nice minty breath. Hygiene is guaranteed to enhance the experience for all parties involved.
Good manners and house-training
This might seem obvious, but if your dog isn't behaved and well socialised, then it’s best not to bring them in. Will they be barking every time the phone rings? Or jumping up on clients? The experience needs to run smoothly so that it has a chance of happening again in the future.
Don’t bring your dog to the office if they are sick. If what your dog has is contagious, other employees could unknowingly carry it home to their dogs. A digestive disturbance in the middle of the office won’t be pretty either.
Don’t let them off the leash
You should know where your dog is at all times, and where and when they should be under your control.
Remember that there are certain foods that dogs cannot eat, so make sure co-workers are not feeding your dog without your permission.