People love their pets, and they love being allowed to bring their pets to work! When someone brings their pet to work, their stress levels drop right away. Petting a cat or dog, playing with them, feeding them or taking them for a walk can induce a sense of well-being. Additionally, pet guardians love to talk about their pets, and this can help employees to socialize with each other. Even people who don’t have pets can get the benefit of petting or playing with a pet in a pet-friendly workplace.
The disadvantage of a pet-friendly workplace is that it can get dirty pretty quickly. Pets might track in mud, leave a lot of hair on the furniture, relieve themselves in places where they’re not supposed to etc. Plus, if you have staff members who are allergic to pets, then a pet-friendly workplace might not work for them.
Making Your Workplace Pet-Friendly
If you want to become a pet-friendly workplace, make sure that everyone who brings their pets to works understands the rules.
- Noise Level: Make sure everyone knows not to bring very loud and aggressive dogs to the workplace as this will disturb everybody.
- Potty Training: You can make it a rule to bring only potty-trained dogs and cats to the workplace to make sure that they don’t relieve themselves where they’re not supposed to.
- Separate Areas for Pets: Consider separating the office into two areas—one in which pets are allowed and one in which pets are not allowed. This way, people who are allergic to pets can sit in the pet-free area.
- Dogs vs. Cats: If you’re going to allow both, dogs and cats, into the workplace, then you might also need to separate the office into a dog area and a cat area, unless the dogs and cats in question are able to get along.
- Pledges/Applications: The Washington Post also suggests that you get pet guardians to sign a pet pledge or application to indicate that they’ll follow the rules surrounding pets in the workplace. This can get rid of liability issues.
- Walking Dogs: It’s also important to make sure that there’s somewhere where dog guardians can take their dogs for walks, close to the office.
- Vaccinations: You’ll need to make sure that all pets have had their vaccinations, to make sure that they’re safe for people in the office to play with.
Once you’ve covered the basics, there are so many things you can do to create a pet-friendly workplace. Make sure you keep some pet food and pet toys. You can get scratching posts and cat litter for cats. Also keep some cleaning supplies on hand in case the pet ends up making a mess after all.