As we all have work, family and social commitments, the amount of time dog owners are able to spend with their beloved pooches is not always as much as they would like. If this sounds like a position you find yourself in, have you considered taking your dog to work?
Today is Bring Your Dog to Work Day, which is an effort to improve canine welfare, boost workplace morale and bring dogs and humans closer together. It has a charitable focus too, with All Dogs Matter and Animals Asia benefiting from donations made by businesses and individuals.
Reasons to take part in Bring Your Dog to Work Day are manifold, but some business owners are not so keen on the idea, imagining dogs in the workplace to be disruptive and distracting. On the contrary, a canine presence in the office can actually boost productivity. Here are three examples of how:
1. Reduces stress
Almost all jobs come with a degree of stress from time to time, and any steps you can take to keep it to a minimum will help you work more effectively.
Several studies, like this one published in 2001, have shown that petting and caring for animals can reduce blood pressure and improve heart health. Meanwhile, the presence of therapy dogs is on the rise in mental health sectors too.
If work is getting on top of you, don’t bash your keyboard with rage – simply pet your dog!
2. Improves workplace morale
Conversation in an office or workplace can often feel forced and awkward. Sometimes, people who work together have little in common apart from the room or building in which they make a living.
A dog in the workplace is something of a novelty, and a great conversation starter. That person who sits with his head down and rarely talks might come out of his shell with an animal presence, making the whole team strike more of a common bond.
3. Encourages breaks
Even the most well-behaved of dogs is unlikely to be happy to mope around an office from 9 to 5, so you may have to take him for walks, toilet trips and other little diversions throughout the day.
This is a good thing, though. We have a tendency to think that the best way to be productive is to sit there and churn through work for several hours without being distracted, but studies like this one show that taking breaks helps us work better. If you find it hard to treat yourself to a break, your dog will remind you that a brief one will benefit you both.
Dogs love to spend time with their owners and explore new surroundings, so a visit to your workplace should be an exciting experience for him. For more ways to get the most out of your relationship with your dog, take a look at our new Canine Nutrition and Canine Behaviour Training diploma courses.