Dogs at work

New Romney, 18th May 2010

Over the years, it has been proven that allowing dogs at work improves the working atmosphere and help companies achieving better results. Accepting dogs at work reduces stress at work and gives employees constant companionship. Some American companies, by allowing their employees to bring their dog at work, have managed to decrease their absenteeism rate and have noticed that their employees were more likely to work overtime with their companions nearby. In the UK, however, a limited number of companies accept dogs in working premises. The companies which do accept dogs are generally small companies or care homes.

Adopting a dog is probably an easier decision to take for small companies than for big ones as their number of employees is lower and they are not subject to the same regulations. Moreover, nowadays, a lot of company directors work directly from home, which give them much more freedom in their way of operating a business. At work, the companionship of a dog is often appreciated by employees as dogs contribute in creating a much more friendly working atmosphere and help in developing friendship among staff members. In addition, owning a dog can be considered as crime deterrent as the presence of a dog will discourage thieves.

A few companies in the UK referred to their dogs as mascots.

So far, introducing dog mascots in the working environment has proven a good experience for the companies which have benefited from having a faithful companion around the office. By giving people boundless love and affection, mascots help in creating a more friendly and homely atmosphere at work. Having an impact on the level of stress at work, mascots help improving the working conditions of the staff who is often more motivated to come to work.

In care homes, dogs are often considered as part of patients' therapy as they help in improving their living conditions by offering them companionship and by creating a more pleasant atmosphere. Even though, assistance dogs are often chosen by care homes, we sometimes find great tempered and balanced rescue dogs living in care homes as both can help patients to a certain extend. Assistance dogs, having been trained to assist people, are far more efficient in obeying orders and in helping people in everyday's life however, well balanced rescue dogs are appreciated both by staff members and older patients in care homes.

Having a dog at work should be a positive experience for all the team also, before bringing a dog to the company's office, the company director should carefully select the dog according to his behaviour. It is highly recommended to seek professional advices before introducing a dog to a working environment. In addition, all staff members should be consulted to ensure they are comfortable with such decision. For a better success with a dog at work, it is also highly recommended to give proper dog training sessions to all the staff members. In doing so, the managerial team will encourage interactions between the team and encourage a closer bond between dog and humans.

Vidushi Latchayya


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