Just because you may have missed Take Your Dog to Work Day (June 23rd), doesn’t mean that you and your dog have to miss out. Create your own Take Your Dog to Work Day on a day that suits your office and your co-workers best—and what better time than summertime to do this? You might want to coordinate it with an afternoon company picnic, or on a day when a somewhat shorter workday is planned.
So, instead of heading off to the office and feeling guilty as you walk away, your pal can don her favorite harness and leash and come along. She will be able to spend the day at your desk, meeting your co-workers and socializing with other dogs. The idea is to celebrate our wonderful canine companions and to encourage adoptions from animal shelters and breed rescue clubs nationwide. “People bringing their dogs to work for one day can make a huge difference in pet adoptions.” says PSI President Patti Moran. “It’s amazing what a difference a day makes.”
The Stamp of Approval
Psychologists say that instead of being disruptive in an office environment, pets actually have a positive effect, boosting employee morale and thereby increasing productivity and sales and improving communication between staff members. Keep this factoid handy when you approach your boss for his or her stamp of approval!
And before you introduce your best pal to your coworkers, check to make sure that no one in your immediate environment has any dog-related allergies. If you work for a large organization, you should also check to ensure that there are no lease restraints that prevent animals from entering the building.
Dogs pick up on the excitement of a new environment and if your pal is joining the workforce for a day, you will have to be comfortable knowing that all that doggy training has paid off and that she will listen to your commands. Here’s a quick checklist:
– She must be trained to sit quietly and not bark when you are out of sight.
– She must never jump on someone or sniff inappropriately.
– And, of course, she must be house trained and let you know if she needs a potty break.
It’s a good idea to give your dog a bath and a good grooming right before the work day outing to prevent extra shedding on the office carpet and make sure her flea treatments are current. Don’t forget to put her collar with identification tags back on after the bath!
When you pack your briefcase for the day, double-check that you have a water bowl, a bag of non-messy treats (enough to pass around for other dogs to enjoy), her favorite toy, and possibly even a bed or fold-up mattress that you can place under your desk.
Take a poll to find out in advance how many of your coworkers are planning to bring their pooches to work; perhaps you can all get together at lunchtime and go for a walk or even picnic somewhere close by. Consider even joining together and paying to have a professional pet sitter on hand in case things go awry with your workload and you need someone to step in to help with the pack of pets.
For the past several years, the Human Resources and Security Department at Boeing’s Florida operations based at the Kennedy Space Center has allowed volunteers from local animal shelters to bring adoptable pets into their offices on a monthly basis to introduce them to those working there. This is another great way to introduce your coworkers to some wonderful pets and possibly even help get them adopted. Boeing employees also collect food and toys for donation to various shelters on an ongoing basis.
If bringing your dog to your workplace is something that would never fly, send out a flyer around the office asking people to bring toys or food to work instead and make a donation to an animal shelter. You will still be putting dogs and dog related issues into the spotlight. Another option, particularly during the balmy days of summer, is to plan an after work get together with some coworkers and their pals and hang out at a dog-friendly restaurant or head to a dog park for a good workout. Or you could do something special on the next official Take Your Dog to Work Day which is Friday, June 22, 2007.