IVC has allowed employees to bring their dogs to work since it opened its doors in 2011 and Vets Now, one of the sponsors of Bring Your Dog to Work Day, have had canine colleagues in their offices for nearly two decades.
Vets Now has drawn up a blueprint that other firms looking at following suit can download for free. Mark Ross, chief executive of Vets Now said,
“I’d encourage any company considering a dog-friendly office to give it a go
“We’re proud to have pioneered this and it’s proven to be a real boon for our staff. The whole experience has been overwhelmingly positive for us.
“Studies show they help increase cooperation and people who have dogs at their feet are perceived as more friendly and approachable.
“It also gets people on their feet, away from their desks, helping foster discussion and collaboration.”
Both companies feel the benefits of dog-friendly offices are clear. Natasha Laver, HR Manager at IVC says,
“Bringing your dog to work, improves morale, reduces stress and supports employees by having a good work/life balance.
“Why would companies not do it? It’s an awesome perk and provides us with an enjoyable working environment. It still makes me smile, seeing dogs in lifts or with their owner walking to the printer!”
Vets Now has compiled the benefits of having pooches a regular feature of your workplace:
1. You’ll have a healthier workforce: Employers are likely to be rewarded by healthier workforce with fewer sick days. Studies have shown that petting a dog lowers a person’s heart rate and dog owners have lower cholesterol and fewer trips to the doctors. Dog owners walk on average 79% further than non-dog owners. Some research has shown that dog owners are much more likely to survive a heart attack compared to non-dog owners.
2. You’ll have a more positive workforce: Caring for a dog helps relieve symptoms of depression and encourages people to be more positive. They’re also likely to worry less. A number of studies have proven that petting a dog reduces stress and increases people’s happy hormones. Dogs give people cheerful attention which make people feel good at work.
3. You’ll have a more productive workforce: Short regular breaks to walk dogs will help employees’ state of mind and productivity during their working days, which means higher performing teams. Pets are really good at inspiring people, some of the best ideas are born when dogs are there to help encourage discussion.
4. You’d be fostering work-life balance: Colleagues are able to pass long work hours more happily, and less worried about the dog left at home. Dogs in the office also remind staff to take necessary breaks, which busy professionals may not have as much time for when out-of-the-office. Have a dog-friendly office is seen as a big employment perk as well, which encourages retention.
5. Increased colleague interaction: Having dogs in the office keeps spirits high and there’s nothing like a little puppy love to add some comic relief. Without a doubt, having dogs around the office fosters more discussion and collaboration between colleagues during dog walks.
Aimee Richardson, Vets Now’s learning and development administrator said,
“Having dogs in the office makes it a more enjoyable place to work and helps to relieve stress. It’s also a good reason to get away from your desk now and again and to get some fresh air. I love the fact they’re always beside you for a cuddle and a play. They truly do become part of the team.”
To get involved in the fun of Bring Your Dog to Work Day on 21 June 2019, follow the hashtag #BringYourDogToWorkDay or visit www.bringyourdogtoworkday.co.uk.
For more information contact: Trudi Purdy on firstname.lastname@example.org or Gail Chalmers on email@example.com