Every year in the UK there is a national day dedicated to bringing your furry friend to your workplace. This year, Friday 23 June we were lucky enough to be joined by Harvey, who belongs to Love Hemp Social Media Manager, Rhian. If you want to see the star of the show in our Bring Your Dog to Work Day reel, check out our Instagram video here.
Not only does having a fluffy friend in the office offer a cute and cuddly presence, it actually offers a range of other benefits to the work environment and employees:
Interacting with dogs has been shown to reduce stress levels by creating a more relaxed and enjoyable atmosphere, providing employees with a positive and calming presence. Petting a dog is known to release oxytocin, a hormone associated with stress reduction and increased feelings of well-being. Bring on the dogs!
Increased Employee Morale and Happiness
Dogs have a unique ability to bring joy and happiness to people. Having a dog-friendly office can boost employee morale and create a more positive work environment. The presence of dogs can improve overall job satisfaction and help employees feel more connected and engaged with their work and colleagues.
Enhanced Social Interaction and Team Building
Dogs in the office can act as social catalysts, encouraging interaction and conversation among employees. Dogs provide a common topic of conversation, helping people connect on a more personal level. This can foster stronger relationships, improve teamwork, and enhance overall communication within the workplace. Isn't that just lovely.
Increased Physical Activity
Dogs require regular exercise, which can encourage employees to be more active. Taking breaks to walk the dog or play with them during lunchtime can provide a refreshing break from desk work and promote physical movement. Increased physical activity during a working day has been linked to improved focus, productivity, and overall well-being.
If you are considering taking your dog into your office, it’s important to be aware of a few things:
Get sign-off from your boss! There would be nothing worse than turning up with pooch in toe, only to be told they are not welcome and an extremely awkward moment. So plan ahead and have your pooch’s visit agreed and signed off well in advance.
Let your colleagues know ahead of time that you’re planning on bringing your fur baby in for a day, and make sure there are no objections. Even though you may love your dog as if they were your own flesh and blood, there are many people who have a fear of dogs and/or allergies, and as you can imagine, it wouldn't be a very pleasant day for them! So it’s important to have careful consideration of factors such as allergies, safety, and potential disruptions. It’s essential to create guidelines and protocols that accommodate everyone's needs and ensure a harmonious work environment.
Keep your canine in an agreed, safe area. We made sure that Harvey stayed in the office space only, on a lead for the majority of the day, and we kept the door shut for safety.
- Make sure your dog is friendly and house-trained. The last thing you want is any kind of embarrassing toilet incident, that would of course be left to you to deal with, and even pay for damages!
A ground-breaking 2012 study conducted by researchers at Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU) found that dogs in the workplace helped reduce stress in their owners and made work more satisfying for other employees with whom the dogs came in contact.
A recent study by Nationwide Pet Insurance in partnership with the Human-Animal Bond Research Institute (HABRI) echoed VCU’s findings: More than three times as many employees at pet-friendly workplaces report a positive working relationship with their boss and co-workers—significantly more than those in non-pet-friendly environments.
The Nationwide study also shows that pet-friendly companies are more successful at attracting and retaining employees, in particular millennials! In fact, the study found that 90% of employees in pet-friendly workplaces feel highly connected to their company’s mission, are fully engaged with their work, and are willing to recommend their employer to others. In contrast, less than 65% of employees in non-pet-friendly workplaces made the same claims.
So, if you’re in an office environment that could do with a morale boost, perhaps mention bringing a dog into work could be just the ticket!