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Pros & Cons of Pets in the Workplace: What’s Best for Your Company?

ex_posts_2016_november_v2_1There was a time when jeans were off limits in the office. Fast forward to today, for some companies, casual attire is standard, video game breaks are welcomed and pets eagerly greet clients at the door. As the trend grows, companies begin to embrace less rigid atmospheres, the conversation of pets in the workplace can work its way to the forefront.

Many companies welcome pets while others are on the fence or prefer a pet-free office. What’s best for your company? Keep reading to see our list of pros and cons.

Why You Should Consider Pets in the Workplace

The thought of having your furry best friend by your side during the day might be enough for you to try and persuade your boss into bringing your dog to work, but did you know there are a lot more pros to having pets in the workplace?

  • Lower Stress Levels
    It’s been shown that employees have reduced stress levels with pets in the workplace. When your furry buddy is with you at work, you’re forced to take the necessary breaks and walk around.
  • Better Communication
    When employees bring their pets, it’s an automatic ice breaker. Coworkers who rarely talk or see each other in the office will now be forced to say hello and initiate new conversations about work. This could be beneficial to breaking down internal silos and working more efficiently.
  • Perk for Potential Employees
    The cost of doggy daycare or dog walkers can add up, but with a pet policy in play, cost can be lowered. This is can lower turnover rates as well as attract new employees.
  • Perks for Pooches
    Not only are stress levels lowered, new conversations started, but pets benefit too. People can move forward with an adoption, giving more dogs a home, and pets with separation anxiety can feel less stressed by being with their human all day.

Perhaps Pets Won’t Work

As much as everyone would love a puppy break throughout the day, for some companies, pets don’t mesh well. There are other factors to consider before implementing a pet policy at your company.

  • Not Enough Space
    For companies with limited work space or little outdoor space, pets in the office is not always a practical option.
  • Allergies & Accidents
    Before letting the dogs out, or in, it’s important to know if all employees are on board. Some employees might be allergic to pet dander. There is also the very real possibility pets will make a mess or two in the office. While some companies are very specific with policy, some have decided to do without allergies and accidents.
  • Distraction
    Although the though of pets in the workplace seems wonderful, dogs can also be a distraction and potentially slow productivity. Again, this could be worked into a pet policy but some offices have chosen to do without.
  • Liability
    We like to assume our pets would never hurt us or others. However, the reality is having pets in the workplace does open the door to minor injuries for both humans and pets alike.