“What?! You guys bring your dogs to work? That is soooo cool!” We hear that all the time. It IS cool, but it’s also a tactic to a healthier culture.
The Humane Society reports from a study out of Central Michigan University that dogs in the workplace can lead to more trust between coworkers, which leads to more collaboration among team members. Moreover, dogs in the workplace increase morale and productivity, lower absenteeism rates and put smiles on faces of even the grumpiest visitors.
A survey by the American Pet Products Association Manufacturers found that 20% of US companies have adopted pet-friendly policies. Many of these are smaller companies, but dog culture is doable and beneficial at any size. Google, Amazon and Ben & Jerry’s have had a dog-friendly workplace for years and Clif Bar & Company attributes its spot on Outside magazine’s Best Places to Work list to its dog-friendly culture.
Having dogs at work is awesome, but I didn’t realize how much it actually improved lives until we got our Mousse. My husband and I decided that, given the right temperament and care, we could raise a dog that not only could come to work, but could go to work visiting hospitals, giving friendship, courage and smiles to those who really need it. So we went on the hunt for “the dog that will make a difference.” Enter the Mousse. He’s got the look but only time will tell if he’s up for the job! UPDATE: In the gallery below, from 8 weeks old, to 8 years old, he’s making us proud.
If you feel like owning a dog just makes you a better person, you’re not alone. A recent Breeder.com survey reveals that 93% of pup parents say their dogs have made them better people. Read their list of beautiful benefits of owning a dog.
Lastly, the Pet Partners, the largest organization devoted to promoting animal-assisted therapy, agrees, the dog-human companionship has many benefits:
- Visits with a therapy dog, helps heart and lung functions by lowering pressures, diminishing release of harmful hormones and decreasing anxiety with hospitalized heart failure patients.
- Animal-assisted therapy can effectively reduce the loneliness of residents in long-term care facilities.
- People with borderline hypertension had lower blood pressure on days they took their dogs to work.
- Pet owners have lower blood pressure, triglyceride and cholesterol levels than non-owners.
- Having a pet may decrease heart attack mortality by 3%. This translates into 30,000 lives saved annually.