Why every office should have a dog
Since our dog Ellie came into our lives 12 months ago, she’s been a regular fixture here at the Marketeam office. While she still hasn’t quite got the hang of how to design a website or how to write good SEO copy, she’s still in training. She’s great at letting us know when our clients have arrived for a meeting and will sometimes bark when we’re on the phone, which is why she’s earned the title “Head of Security”.
Ellie – our office dog is "Head of Security"Around the country, pet-friendly offices are becoming more common – especially when a lot of work is being done “from home” due to the pandemic and isolation/quarantine, so naturally our furry friends are spending time with us whilst we work.
Having a dog in your office provides so many benefits – here’s why we think every office should have a dog!
Pets are great for mental health
Work can be stressful, let’s face it – we all have days when we’re mentallly exhausted and drained by the day’s tasks. Having a dog in the office to spend 5 minutes with playing or cuddling can help alleviate stress and promote feelings of general happiness, helping us with our mental health.
Studies have shown that patting a dog will help calm nerves and reduce stress – and has even been shown to reduce blood pressure. Therapy dogs are quite often used in retirement homes and some hospitals as a way to lift people’s spirits.
Some offices will have a ‘bring your dog to work day’ once a week or once a month, and the employees look forward to it immensely – particularly in highly stressful jobs.
And let’s face it, dogs will often do things to make us laugh – and there’s nothing quite like a good cackling session in the middle of a work day.
They boost morale within the team
Having an office dog means staff will have a central point of focus to talk about – particularly between team members that wouldn’t necessarily have much in common. More communication between staff will naturally create a stronger bond and boost morale within the team.
Just by their physical presence a dog can provide comfort and support within a working environment, and who can resist walking past a dog without giving them a pat. An office dog will bring joy all round!
Having an office dog promotes exercise
Having a dog within an office setting means you need to regularly take them outside for the toilet. This is a perfect opportunity for staff to get some exercise and take small breaks throughout the day.
It’s been proven that exercise promotes productivity within the workplace, so even though activities like taking the dog for a walk seems like a time waster, getting the blood flowing will increase concentration and focus, so when your staff are back inside sitting at their desk they’re likely to be more productive.
We all know it’s a good idea to take regular ‘movement’ breaks instead of sitting down all day, but it’s much easier when you have a furry beast to remind you to get up and move outside for a few minutes.
For some reason, Ellie knows exactly when we’re in the middle of editing code on a website development (really concentrated stuff!) and chooses that time to let us know she needs to go outside. Lucky she’s cute!
Not only are you getting exercise to break up your work day, but you’ll more often than not get to have some social interaction too… your team members will be chomping at the bit to take turns to take your office dog outside.
More convenient for your employees
In a lot of cases, it’s probably easier for your employee to bring their dog to work with them rather than leave them at home (depending on the age of the dog and how well behaved they are of course).
Having their pet at work can also mean an employee’s hours are more flexible. They’re not always having to rush home to walk their dog or feed them, and are more likely to do overtime when required.
Because we work from our home office, Ellie has us around most of the time which helps promote great behaviour and she’s a much calmer dog.
It’s great for our pets and separation anxiety
It’s hard leaving your dog at home sometimes, knowing they’ll be spending 8-10 hours away from you. It’s even more difficult if you know your pet gets bored easily and you’ll have to deal with damage/mess when you get home, or you have to look at doggy daycare which can cost a lot of money each year.
If an employee has the ability to bring their dog to the office – even if it’s only once a week, it can do wonders for the dog’s separation anxiety, and it provides much relief for your staff member too.
It’s also another opportunity to socialise your dog with other people – they’re guaranteed to get lots of attention from your work colleagues, and a happy pup means a well-behaved pup.
Clients love dogs!
It’s always such a treat when we go to a website design meeting with a client and they have an office dog! It always brightens up our day, and helps to create a bonding moment between all the meeting attendees.
If you have an office dog, your clients will love coming to meetings at your premises. Ellie has been to many meetings at our home office, and she loves appearing on Zoom meetings – quite often other people on the call will show their pets too. Happy smiles from everyone is usually the result.
Things to consider
There’s a few things to consider before you decide to get an office dog or allow employees to bring their dogs into work. The RSPCA recommends the following:-
- Check if anyone at your workplace is allergic to dogs
- Make sure your pet is trained
- Have your pet microchipped
- Consult with your staff and make sure everyone’s on board
It’s crucial that your dog is well socialised and will pose no threat to your colleagues or clients. Having a calm, chilled temperament is a good idea too – it will be too disruptive to your team if the office dog is constantly chewing things, barking or getting into mischief.
We thoroughly recommend having an office dog here at Marketeam – it’s so good for team morale, so we think every office should have a dog!