Bringing your pet to the workplace is increasingly seen as a win-win by companies. It provides a more pleasant work atmosphere and increases the productivity of the employees. One in five companies in the United States allow their employees to bring along their pets to work. However, if you are planning to take your pet to the office, you should prepare in advance and have contingencies for potentially problematic situations so that you have a safe and successful experience. If it is done right, it can improve the visit of your pet and boost your reputation in the workplace. Here are some useful tips when bringing your pet to work:
- Permission – Most of the companies allow only dogs in the workplace. You should check in with your employer beforehand to find out the animals that you are allowed to bring to work.
- Anxiety – Your office can turn out to be a very anxious environment for your pet. Ensure that you make the place more “homey” by bringing your pet's favorite blanket, toy, or snack to make it feel more comfortable.
- Food and water – A thirsty or hungry pet can be a huge distraction in your workplace. To keep your pet in line, make sure that you bring along plenty of water and food.
- Avoid conflict – Make sure that you keep your pet isolated from the pets of other employees.
- Watch out for other pets – While it may be easy for you to read the mood of your animal, it is not so easy to gauge the mood of an animal you are unfamiliar with. Keep your ears and eyes open for any sign of aggressiveness from the other pets. For instance, if another dog has its hackles up and is staring with its ears turned forward, or growls aggressively, it indicates adrenaline in the system and is a sign that the dog is ready to attack.
- Conflict resolution – Even with the utmost care, it is not possible to avoid conflict between pets. If your pet gets into a fight with another animal at work, keep calm and have a blanket nearby. Throw the blanket over the quarreling pets to distract them and remove your animal from the scene.
- Authority – Ensure that your pet understands that you are the boss at home and in the workplace. Pets are prone to challenging the authority of the owners in unfamiliar environments. Your pet should understand that you are the leader. Ignore your pet's requests for attention and keep eye contact to a bare minimum. Once the pet tires of the attention seeking tactics, call him/her for a little play session.
- Grooming – Ensure that your animal is groomed and cleaned before you take him/her to the workplace. It takes only one complaint from an allergic coworker to cause a problem.