Take Your Dog To Work Day – 26 June 2009
Veterinarian Approved on June 23, 2009 by Dr. Janice Huntingford
This Friday will mark the 10th Anniversary of Take Your Dog To Work Day.
This internationally celebrated event was first sponsored in 1999 by Pet Sitters International. A mere 300 businesses participated in that event by encouraging the adoption of dogs from local animal shelters.
Take Your Dog To Work Day was initially designed to honor dogs and the great companionship roles that they play in people’s lives. It was also created to help encourage more people to adopt dogs from their local humane societies, animal rescues, animal shelters and breed rescue clubs.
This annual event has the added benefit of allowing employees to take their dogs to work with them for one day, and, in so doing, demonstrates to their employers how valuable pets can be in the workplace.
The American Pet Products Manufacturers Association conducted a survey that showed nearly one in five companies in the United States actually allow pets in their workplace. Most of these companies allow their employees to bring their pet into work every day, whilst a few companies allow pets once per week.
There are many benefits to both employers and employees to allowing pets in the work place. Among such benefits include employees being more productive and creative, and more inclined to work longer hours with a decrease in the absenteeism rate, and improving the relationships with their co-workers and managers.
This year the theme for Take Your Dog To Work Day is “Secondhand Dogs” Offer First Rate Love and is being presented by BringPetsHome.org, a charity that is committed to pet care for animals in need, as well as FetchDog, an online dog supply store.
Claire Fisher, Head of Marketing for BringPetsHome.org was quoted as saying: “BringPetsHome.org is pleased to co-partner with FetchDog for Take Your Dog To Work Day by promoting dog-friendly work environments and helping shelters care for homeless pets by leveraging every day purchases at pet lovers’ favorite retail stores.’
Other sponsors of 2009’s Take Your Dog To Work Day are Dog Fancy Magazine, PetFinder.com, and Esser Vineyards, a family owned and operated Californian winery.
Manfred Esser, the proprietor of Esser Vineyards, has created a nationwide list of restaurants that are dog-friendly that will hold Esser Wine Dinners for restaurant diners and their dogs. A portion of each of the dinners will be donated to local animal shelters and animal rescue organizations. The wines will also be donated by Esser Vineyards, made by renowned winemaker Paul Moser, whilst their dogs will dine on food that is donated by Weruva Pet Foods.
There are many ways of becoming involved with this year’s Take Your Dog To Work Day.Organize your own event by talking to your employer or human resources personnel and asking them to host a Take Your Dog To Work Day event on Friday, 26 June 2009.
When planning such an event, you should take into consideration other co-workers and find out if anyone has any objection to dogs in the workplace. Some people may have severe allergies or are afraid of dogs that would make bringing dogs to work unacceptable. In this situation, employees can bring photos of their dog’s to work instead.
Another great way to get involved is to partner with your local animal shelter or rescue organization and have them bring in adoptable pets during your company’s lunch hour. Hold a fundraising in honor of such an organization, such as a hot dog lunch.
If the company that you work for is participating in Take Your Dog To Work Day, there are a few things that you should do before bringing your dog to work with you:
* Be sure to puppy-proof your work area and hide electrical cords, wires and other toxic substances. Anything that could be potentially harmful to your dog should be placed out of your dog’s reach.
* Check that your dog has had all of his vaccinations and be sure to give him a bath before taking him to work with you.
* Always consider your dog’s personality. If your dog is shy or aggressive, neither of you will be comfortable with your dog accompanying you to work.
* Pack a doggie bag that includes your dog’s food and water dish, food, treats, favorite toys, baggies and a pet-safe disinfectant. If you know that you will be frequently stepping out of your cubicle or office during the day, perhaps bring a crate for your dog to stay in whilst you are out of sight. Keep your dog on a feeding and relieving schedule so that you can still get your work done.
* Be prepared to either leave work early or have someone come and pick up your dog if he is being unruly or withdrawn.
Photo Credit: Wyscan
Janice Huntingford, DVM, has been in veterinary practice for 28 years and has founded two veterinary clinics since receiving her Doctor of Veterinary Medicine at the Ontario Veterinary College, University of Guelph. She has studied extensively in both conventional and holistic modalities. Ask Dr. Jan