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Celebrating National Pet Day at Work: Ideas for pet-friendly offices

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National Pet Day is an opportunity to celebrate the unconditional love and joy your pets bring to your lives. While many people would love to bring their pets to the office occasionally, not all workplaces are pet-friendly.

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However, pet-friendly offices are becoming more popular, which can benefit both employees and their pets.

In this article, we’ll explore how your office can be more pet-friendly and how to celebrate National Pet Day. You can use these ideas to make the workplace a positive and welcoming place for pets, whether you are a business owner or an employee.

6 Ideas for Pet-friendly Offices 

A black man working in the office with his dog lying at his desk.
Image source: Freepik Freepik licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0
A black man working in the office with his dog lying at his desk. Image source: Freepik Freepik licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0 

1. Employee Feedback

The first step in creating a pet-friendly environment is teamwork. If you are an employer, you must ask your employees if they are comfortable bringing their pets to work. You need to listen to everyone, both pet owners and non-pet owners. 

2. Create a Pet Policy for the Office

Once you solicit feedback, compile all the ideas into a pet policy for the office. This will serve as a guide for everyone to celebrate their pets in the office while ensuring a productive environment.

3. Build a Quiet Area for Pets 

Additionally, if everyone agrees that pets should have a home in the office, everyone should collaborate to designate a quiet area for pets. Even if your office has a pet-friendly policy, it’s advisable to build a quiet place for your pet to retreat to if they are overwhelmed by everyone around them. 

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4. Turn Desks into Dens

Besides, you can turn your desk into a den or quiet place if you have a small area for your dog. All you have to do is cover the front and back of your desk with removable wood and create a door and window at the sides. You can keep dog toys in this area to keep the dog busy while you attend meetings. 

5. Get a Canine First Aider

You can’t guarantee everyone’s safety when it comes to bringing your pet to the office in the first few days or weeks. As such, it’s critical to have a canine first responder handy to handle emergencies.

6. Build an Area of Activities

Further, you can designate an area for activities outside the office in the compound where your pet can play on their own or with other pets. You can do this without worrying about their safety by watching them through the window or the open door.

Benefits of a Pet-friendly Office

Over the past decade, the National Institutes of Health (NIH) have collaborated with researchers to identify the psychological and physical benefits of owning a pet. The findings indicate that pets not only win our hearts but also help us stay healthy by reducing cortisol levels, cholesterol levels, and blood pressure.

Reduced Stress for Employees 

A black lady petting a dog at her desk.
 Image source: Freepik licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0
A black lady petting a dog at her desk. Image source: Freepik licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0 

A 9–5 job can be stressful, coupled with heavy traffic some days. However, looking down from your desk and seeing a four-legged friend provides a moment of respite in even the most stressful situations. 

Significantly, the effect a pet can have on employee mental health is even more profound than you might think. Some studies show petting your pet reduces the stress hormone cortisol, increases your levels of the hormone oxytocin, and helps reduce blood pressure. 

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Also, if you bring your pet to work, you’ll avoid rushing home after work, during a break, or at the end of work to care for your pets. Thus, bringing your pets to work will limit your stress levels and help you focus on tasks in the workplace. Maintaining a work-life balance is key to happiness and satisfaction.

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Increased Productivity

A study further confirms that owning a pet is more effective than medication in regulating hypertension while performing demanding cognitive tasks. Additionally, when you take small breaks from cognitively demanding tasks, it’s scientifically proven to increase productivity and improve workflow. 

A More Hospitable Workplace 

Making pets a part of your workplace culture as a business owner makes everyone feel joyful, content, and willing to follow the rules. This hospitable workplace atmosphere, in turn, says a lot about who you are. Additionally, it has a sizable effect on the general performance of your employee.

Improved Team Connections

Two women interact while their dog watches on- National Pet Day.
Image source: Freepik licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0 
Two women interact while their dog watches on. Image source: Freepik licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0 

The presence of pets in the office also helps eliminate the need for team-building sessions by providing a natural topic of conversation for workers. It is common for coworkers to communicate and bond more easily when they have pets at work.

What Can You Do on National Pet Day?

Adopt a Pet

On National Pet Day today, make the effort to adopt a pet. While most people love dogs and cats, other animals are favorable too. Some pets, like birds, will offer to be your companion by sharing a conversation with you.

Spread the Word Through Social Media

Convince your pets to pose, pounce, primp, pout, or play the piano. Post the video on the pet’s account and tag other pet owners. Watch your media go viral!

Pamper Your Pet

A woman pampering her dog- National Pet Day.
Image source: Freepik licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0
A woman pampering her dog. Image source: Freepik licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0 

What interests your pet dog? A teddy bear or a new play bone? Is it a pleasant belly rub? Get on the ground and show that dog some affection! 

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The Bottom Line

Employers and employees can both benefit from creating a pet-friendly office. As established, allowing pets in the workplace can increase your satisfaction, reduce stress, and improve the overall well-being of everyone.

It can also improve employee relationships and create a positive work environment. Making an office pet-friendly, though, requires careful planning and accounting for potential problems like allergies, security issues, and distractions. 

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As an employer, you’ll need to create clear pet-related policies and guidelines through feedback and effectively communicate them to all staff members. You can create a friendly and effective environment that caters to both pet owners and non-pet owners by taking these measures.

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Sedi Djentuh
Sedi Djentuh
Hey, Sedi here, a content writer. She's fascinated by the interplay between people, lifestyle, relationships, tech and communication dedicated to empowering and spreading positive messages about humanity. She's an avid reader and a student of personal weekly workouts. When she's not writing, Sedi is busy advocating for plastic-free earth with her local NGO.

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