animal rights, animal welfare, dogs, office, PETA , NESTLE, Purina
Bailey is the ideal companion. He is energetic, knows how to handle bullies, and has some serious people skills. He also hates staying at home alone and would much rather come with his owner to her workplace./ Picture source: DoggyVibe Magazine

The Freedom Correspondent: Who let the dogs…in? Pets in the office

A few days ago a good friend of mine broke the exciting news. She said she is in love and this time it is not just another guy she’s fallen for…

The object of her affection is her new puppy Bailey.

Bailey is the ideal companion. He is energetic, knows how to handle bullies, and has some serious people skills. He also hates staying at home alone and would much rather come with his owner to her workplace.

While I have no problem with pets in the office, my dear friend is strongly against it. She says bringing Bailey to work would be a complete disaster. She may have a point.

I love dogs, but many of my colleagues don’t. Some say they have bad breath, are noisy and cause too much distraction.

Bailey, would, of course be on his best behavior at all times, but the same can’t be said for all pets. We have all seen dogs who believe they ‘re the boss of absolutely everything.

Saying this, a lot of companies worldwide allow their employees to bring pets into the workplace. Not just cats and dogs, some bosses welcome anything from rabbits to lizards.

Since 1996 the 24th of June each year is known as “Bring Your Dog to Work” day, an annual event that permit employees to bring their beloved pets to the office.

It might seem like a novel concept to most (myself included), but some people see it as a fun way to enlighten their mood. It’s their freedom of choice and should be considered by others in much the same way as dress-down Fridays (which I don’t do either).

Imagine how awesome it would be if your beloved animal could come to work with you.

You’d de-stress by petting it, it would entertain you by walking across your keyboard and you’d have something to talk about with that nasty co-worker you don’t get along with…

I would also assume people would get more friendly and approachable when a pet is present in the office.

But on the other hand- wouldn’t it cause a distraction?

Personally, I think I would never get any work done if there was a pup looking at me with its soppy eyes. I’d be too tempted to romp around the office with my new four-legged friend… As Bob Dylan sings:” If dogs run free, why not we?”

Interestingly, psychologists at Central Michigan University would disagree with me. Their study found that pets are “more likely to increase cooperation and other positive behaviors among members of work groups.” Researchers believe pets make a “warmer and more sociable” atmosphere among employees.

Multi-billion corporations such as Nestle and Purina are of the same opinion. Nestle has even launched the Pets at Work (PaW) Alliance to support more companies worldwide in becoming pet-friendly.

It’s ultimate goal is to help 200 organisations across Europe to welcome more pets into their workplaces by 2020.

Sounds great, but surely there are reasons to why this hasn’t happened yet.

For example, animals get sick and carry diseases (depending on how frequently they visit the vet) not to mention their less than perfect record of hygiene. I am pretty sure businesses would rather avoid increasing a risk of the potential health and safety complications however cute pets may be.

Also, most jobs already come with a long list of responsibilities. Why would someone willingly want to take on more?

I might be wrong, but a lack of concentration can cost you time and money.

It breaks my heart to say it, but to me bringing a pet to work is barking mad.

Or am I wrong? Should we take our pets to work? Please let me know your opinion in the comments.

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