How Having Pets at Work Boosts Morale and Productivity

I consider myself especially lucky to work in a dog-friendly office. Every day I get to spend some quality time with at least one pooch, and I find it makes a huge difference to the office mood. Times have really changed regarding pets in the office, and I could not be happier about it.

If you’re considering opening your office up to allow for some four legged colleagues, perhaps this list of potential benefits will help make that decision easier.

1) Stress reduction (part |) – Petting a friendly animal has ben proven to lower your blood pressure, decreases the stress associated hormone cortisol in your body, and increases the happy feeling hormone serotonin.

2) Stress reduction (part ||) – Lack of separation anxiety. I know from having brought my own pet here to the office, that when she’s here with me, I’m not fretting about her being stuck at home, lonesome, bored etc.  I also admit I stay later, as there isn’t the same need to get home to give the pet some time and attention.

3) Pets can be a great piece of your hiring and marketing efforts. Having a dog-friendly office may be the key differentiator between your job offer, and that of another company. Plus, the office mutt doing something cute or goofy can make for a great (and popular) Facebook post or Tweet.   

4) Office pets can promote a healthy and caring workspace. Need a break from your computer? Take the dog for a little walk. Going to the kitchen? Make sure Rover’s water dish is fresh and full. Looking out for an animal takes you out of your own head, and gives you a chance to chill out.

5) Office pets can be a huge motivator for coming into work. You may be dreading a meeting later in the day, but you can know that there will be at least one tail wagging in greeting that morning. A pet at work also lets staff who cannot afford or are not allowed a pet, to get pet time. With so many of us ling fast-paced, urban lifestyles, this kind of time with a furry friend can be invaluable (see item 1).

6) Animals can be a big source of amusement, and help create a fun corporate culture. An office pet can really become a team member and build on the sense of community within the office setting.

7) How an office dog behaves requires no translation, involves no office politics or insincerity. There’s no hiding our office dog Levis happiness when he trots each of his toys into the morning huddle. It’s a language we all understand, and through him, we all become more comfortable. I’ve seen Levi bring some shyer colleagues out of their shells, as we can all share a smile at his antics. 

8) Office pets can help keep work in perspective. Yes, we’re all busy and stressed and have deadlines, but priorities can shift, and perspective can be gained, when a little someone needs to go outside or drops their toy at your feet.

At fp. headquarters, Levi truly is one of the gang, and our office would not be the same without him.  Do consider letting canine companions into your workspace. They boost morale, keep staff calmer and happier – and happy, calm staff are more productive!

Check out the “Function Pets” album on Facebook!

Emma Lauder | fp. Success Consultant

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