June 23rd is Take Your Dog to Work Day, one of our favorite days of the year! Who doesn’t want to watch their coworkers fawning over their precious pup? However, before you pack up your dog to join you on your daily commute, here are five ways to make sure it is enjoyable for both you, your dog and your colleagues.
Is Your Workplace Dog-Friendly?
Take Your Dog to Work Day was started by Pet Sitters International in 1999 as a way to show off the companionship of dogs and promote pet adoption. However, this day is not a legally binding agreement for all employers, so please check with your company to ensure you are allowed to bring your dog into the office.
You should also check with your co-workers and ensure no one has serious allergies or a fear of dogs before deciding to participate.
Your dog’s briefcase for the day should include the following:
- A leash – For walking your dog as they will need frequent outdoor breaks.
- Dog food – Preferably dry dog food as it has less of a smell than the wet kind.
- Dog bowls – You should have two bowls on hand for your pup: one for their food and one for their water.
- Healthy dog treats – You will want to have treats on hand when your co-workers want to introduce themselves to your pup. A healthy treat is always a good ice-breaker.
- Toys – Does your dog have a noiseless toy that keeps them occupied and happy? Bring it for them to enjoy when that mid-afternoon boredom starts to set in.
- Pillow – If your office space has enough room, bring your pup’s regular dog bed or pillow so they will feel comfortable if they want to nap during the day.
- Cleaning supplies – In case your dog has an accident, be sure to have a spot cleaner with you to ensure the mess is taken care of right away.
Clean Them Up
Get them ready the night before with a bath to ensure they smell nice, a brush-out to remove excess hair and reduce the amount of shedding, and a tooth brushing to help reduce the doggy breath smell that your co-workers may not be used to.
If your dog is showing any symptoms of being sick such as sneezing, displaying lethargy or not eating, do not bring them to work. The last thing an office needs is a dog that transfers a sickness to other dogs that may be there for the day. Plus, an unfamiliar environment may add further stress to a sick dog.
Schedule Your Day
As cute as your dog may be, you still have a responsibility to get your work done. Try to schedule your breaks and lunch as a time to take care of your pup’s feeding and bathroom breaks outside.
Keep in mind that some offices may feature recycled air that could be drier than what your dog is used to. This may require them to need more water, which in turn may mean more bathroom breaks. Keep an eye on them and take them out when necessary.
It’s possible that Take Your Dog to Work Day may not be an event your dog will like. They may not enjoy hanging around your work, meeting many strangers or the new environment. If your dog is clearly uncomfortable, try to leave early. There is no point in causing your pup the undue stress of a situation that is unpleasant for them.
No matter what time you leave the office with your dog, the key is to leave it as clean as it was before you arrived. Take home any of their leftover belongings and clean up any messes they may have made. The day should be as successful for your office and co-workers as it is for you and your pup!