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Take your dog to work day celebrates its 10th year

TODAY IS the 10th annual Take Your Dog to Work Day, a totally made up holiday, but a fun one. Pet Sitters International started celebrating in 1999, six years after the Ms. Foundation started bringing daughters into the workplace.

The purpose is entirely different. The daughters and sons are supposed to be learning about work world opportunities. On Dog Day, the idea, according to Pet Sitters, is to encourage people to adopt dogs from shelters by showing them how much fun your dog is. Or, as they put it, ‘people without dogs will see the loving bond their co-workers have with their pets and will consider adopting orphaned pets for their own.’

According to the US-based Pet Product Manufacturer's Association, they already do. One in five workplaces allow pets. More than 10,000 participate in the U.S., U.K., Canada, Australia and New Zealand. Different surveys find having a dog around reduces stress and increases creativity and productivity.

On a practical level, dog owners know how hard it to unexpectedly work late, knowing that at home a dog needs to go out. With the dog in the office working late is less of a burden. Dogs will be content and dog parents won't have to feel ‘dog guilt’. Planned or not, working longer hours becomes less of a problem if you can bring your dog in.

OUR DOGS has its own resident canine worker, who accompanies her owner to work every day. Vienna is a 21 month-old Leonberger, owned by Kerry Rushby who works in the Advertising Department. Vienna has been accompanying Kerry to work every day for the past five months and has proved to be a big hit with Kerry’s colleagues.

‘I think taking your dog to work is an excellent idea,’ says Kerry. ‘Vienna is no trouble at all, the office is dog-friendly – I’m allowed a ‘dog break’ to take her for a walk outside to relieve herself - and my fellow workers are very fond of her. I think more offices should do this.’

OUR DOGS’ Chief Reporter Nick Mays commented: ‘I mostly work from home so every day is Take Your Dog to Work Day for me. But if someone wants to take my two lazy beasts, Emma and Megan to work with them, please be my guest.

‘Quite seriously, I think Take Your Dog To Work Day is a great idea and I think it’s very forward looking that some offices are allowing dogs in the workplace. I think we can learn a lot from the way dogs approach daily life, even if it is finding the best place for a nap or pinching all the good biscuits during tea break.!’