Friday is “Take Your Dog to Work Day,” and if you have a cool, animal-loving employer, perhaps they’ll allow you to bring your dog to work!
The event marks its 16th anniversary. Pet Sitters International began the tradition in 1999 to “celebrate the great companions dogs make and encourage their adoptions.”
Less than 300 companies took place in the inaugural event, but many more are participating now. Procter & Gamble, Amazon, and Google are just a couple of the largest companies who allow their employees to work with their dogs not just on this day, but every day of the year.
“Having pets in the office boosts morale,” said Julie Franklin, P&G Communications specialist. “It’s a definite stress reliever. It makes our employees healthier and calmer, which means they’re much more productive.”
Studies have demonstrated that dogs reduce blood pressure and minimize heart health issues. Other research has shown that dogs in the workplace can make for better work relationships between coworkers.
Though only about 12 percent of dog owners are allowed to bring their buddies with them, nearly 50 percent would if they could.
“It’s an enhancement of the total benefit that pets bring to our lives,” said veterinarian Al Townshend.
Elizabeth Bellanti of Tito’s Handmade Vodka helped begin the dog trend there 11 years ago, and says having her dog by her side is “a huge comfort.”
“It’s in our DNA – we’re meant to be together,” she said.
Townshend says the key to keeping the workplace productive is to make sure dog owners are prepared with leashes, treats, and dishes for food and water.