Today is a very special day in the calendar. This is the one day (if you have a great boss!) when you may not have to leave your four-legged friend behind while you go to work. Today is #BringYourDogToWorkDay. (Don’t know about you, but we can already hear the celebratory horns and see the party streamers in the air!) To celebrate we were invited by our friends, Purina Pet Care, to spend the day with them and their office dogs as part of their incredible Pets At Work programme! What could be better?!! Join us today as we revisit Purina HQ and experience firsthand what it’s really like to have a dog in the office (Ted just had to come along and join the fun this time and we’ve even made a video of our day! Exciting!!)) We also interviewed the lovely Sarah and Shanida from Purina about their everyday experience of bringing a dog to work. So what are we waiting for?!! Let’s go!!
BEST DAY EVER!!
If you’re a regular reader of our blog, you may recall we visited Purina last November to celebrate their first official anniversary of their Pets At Work programme. What is the Pets At Work (PAW) programme you may ask? Take a little peek HERE to read our previous blog all about it! Today’s blog is different though; we actually experienced what it’s like to have a dog in such a large office environment (Purina has approximately 1,000 staff) and it is the first Global Nestle Headquarters to allow dogs. So what is it like to have your dog with you in such an environment? How does the experience make you feel? Let’s hear from Sarah and Shanida from Purina about their experience…
INTRODUCING SARAH & BROOKE
Sarah has worked for Purina for nine years and Brooke has been coming to work with her for two and half years now. We spoke to her about her experience…
HOW OFTEN DO YOU BRING BROOKE TO WORK?
Brooke tends to come to the office approximately two to three times a week. We actually have five dogs and one other has passed the PAWS programme, so we try to alternate between the two. If it’s particularly hot, Brooke tends to stay at home with my husband so she can enjoy the sunshine even more.
DO YOU THINK HAVING A DOG AT WORK REDUCES PRODUCTIVITY?
People in the office who don’t own a dog, tend to have their favourites so when they’re in the office, they often pop by to say hello but once that’s done, the office quietens down, the dogs lie down in their beds and everyone gets on with their work as normal. In terms of productivity, I find having a dog in the office increases it as everyone is happy. The dogs raise morale.
DO NON-DOG OWNERS FEEL LEFT OUT?
We always try to include the non-dog owners in the office and encourage them to join us. For example, if we go for a lunchtime dog walk, often you’ll find a mix of dog and non-dog owners coming too! In such a large office like this, people could often come in from their long train journeys and sit at their desk all day then go home. So in terms of team dynamics, it’s actually an advantage having the dogs here as everyone talks to each other and takes time to spend time with one another.
WHY DOES BRINGING YOUR DOG TO THE OFFICE WORK WELL?
All the dog owners are very respectful of everyone else in the office. There are clear boundaries with ‘dog friendly’ signage in designated areas so we all know where dogs can and can’t go and all dog owners respect this.
THERE ARE A LOT OF GREAT FACILITIES FOR DOGS HERE. WHICH IS YOUR FAVOURITE?
Out of all the things we have at Purina, the Pets Corner (Pop Up Surgery) facility on site is fantastic. It really allows and encourages owners to talk about their dogs. You can book an appointment, pop downstairs on your lunch break and you have a qualified veterinary nurse waiting. What could be better than that??
INTRODUCING SHANIDA & BENJI
Benji has been coming to Purina’s offices for the last year and a half. This is what Shanida had to say about her experience…
HAS BENJI ALWAYS COME TO WORK WITH YOU?
Benji has been coming to work with me since he was about six months old. Having the Pets At Work (PAW) programme in place meant I was able to get a dog. It actually cemented my decision to get Benji. He really enjoys coming in to work as he gets cuddles every time someone walks past our desk!
HOW OFTEN DOES BENJI COME TO WORK WITH YOU?
Benji tends to come to the office about two to three times a week depending on what meetings I have etc. If I have a busy day and he’s in the office, he then sits with one of my colleagues, enjoys a few treats and relaxes while I’m in the meeting.
ALL DOGS COMING TO THE OFFICE HAVE TO UNDERGO AN ASSESSMENT BEFORE THEY JOIN. HOW WAS THE EXPERIENCE FOR YOU?
There’s a clear programme in place so you know what to expect, which is really helpful. It was a really smooth process. The aim is to make sure each dog is well socialised and trained before coming to join the team. This helps ensure the dogs enjoy the work environment. All the dogs in the office are all really well behaved. Once they’ve been assessed by a dog trainer and spent some time in the office, they then even receive their own ‘Passpawt’ to show they’re part of the team!
WHAT’S THE BEST PART OF BRINGING BENJI TO THE OFFICE?
By having Benji in the office, it means I actually leave my desk during the day! A quick walk to ‘Scentral Bark’ or a walk by the river really helps with stress levels.
WHAT HAPPENED WHEN TED VISITED PURINA?
Now you’ve heard from Purina employees, take a peek at our video to see what happened when Ted made his way into their offices. Were they ready for him?!! Of course!!
We have always been passionate about the benefits of taking your dog to work and it’s safe to say our opinion hasn’t changed at all. If anything, we’re even more passionate having spent the day with Purina. Everyone we spoke to and saw had smiles on their faces (which says a lot considering how many people are there!) Goes to show how a little bit of planning can mean it’s perfectly feasible (and HUGELY beneficial) to allow dogs in office environments. #BringYourDogToWorkDay can happen every day. Now wouldn’t that be fantastic if everyone thought so? Let’s face it, as Purina says ‘Life is Better with Pets’…we couldn’t agree more!
HUGE Thank You goes to Sarah & Brooke, Shanida & Benji, Gemma & Max, Emma H, Rose, Gemma and Emma & Alfie who we all spent time with. We had the best day!! xxx
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