Pets at work? Or Pests at work? [POLL]

Research suggests allowing people to bring pets to work is beneficial for productivity and general harmony.

Allowing workers to bring their animal friends to work could increase workplace productivity rather than prove a distraction, a pet care advisor believes. …

“The benefits are huge, it’s not just the amount of fun we have and the pets have, but there’s really good research to say it reduces the stress of people whose pets are in the office on a regular basis.

“People think it must be chaotic but we know productivity increases…maybe because you’re taking more regular breaks so the time you spend at the desk is more productive.”

Research also showed that employees began to enjoy their jobs more and even liked their bosses more for allowing them to bring their pets in.

But it was important good guidelines were set down, as not every pet and not every workplace would be suitable, she said.

Making sure the animals had regular toilet breaks and even creating a roster if too many people wanted to bring in their pets was a good idea. …

“There’s nothing like having pets in the office, whether it’s a mental health break to play games with them or bringing them to a new business meeting to break the ice, there are a heap of benefits to having some wagging tails around.”

I think to bring your own pet can be beneficial.  Having to put up with other people’s pets – not so much.  And that’s not even taking into account such things as allergies to fur, or the really big No No:  letting pets eat off crockery that is also used by humans.

Where do you sit on the “Pets at the Office” spectrum


– Stuff


THANK YOU for being a subscriber. Because of you Whaleoil is going from strength to strength. It is a little known fact that Whaleoil subscribers are better in bed, good looking and highly intelligent. Sometimes all at once! Please Click Here Now to subscribe to an ad-free Whaleoil.

  • taurangaruru

    Guess it depends what sort of pet you have, cannot say I would be overly comfortable if one of my colleagues came to work with their pet Boa Constrictor draped around their neck. Used to work at a place where the boss had his Scottish Terrier in the office & that provided a bit of light entertainment at times.

  • ex-JAFA

    I worked for a company which had a jack russell terrier there every day. He belonged to one of the senior managers, had his own business cards (“Security Manager”, IIRC), and was very popular around the office. The only off-limits places were the MD’s office and the boardroom. Even when his mummy was away on business, George would still come in to work because mummy always had an underling housesit who brought him in.

  • Jimmie

    Well yeah I can see cows bringing a couple of 2 year old heifers into a business meeting with the bank manager – would work out well.

    I see in this story a product trying to create a market.

    • cows4me

      The bank manager comes to see us Jimmie and usually checks out the stock when she is here.

      • She just mentally tallies it all up going “mine. mine, also mine. And that one…”

      • taurangaruru

        Remember the story about Crafer Farms – apparently he took a number of different bank representatives for a drive across his farm, once out the back & a few kms from home threw out those unwilling to lend to him & made them walk back. No wonder they had little sympathy when it came to winding his enterprise up.

  • Spiker

    My dog (pictured in avatar) comes to work with me every day in the ute. But I am self employed & have no underlings. Most days he’s the only one I have to talk to. He mostly always does as he’s asked, never disagrees with what I have to say though sometimes offers constructive advice. Perfect work mate really.

  • Nic C

    It’s totally dependent on the type of office and the environment obviously, but also on the behaviour and temperament of the pets in question.
    When we first started our business, occasionally I would bring my German Shepherd in with me, rather than have her at home by herself. BUT… my business partner wasn’t a huge fan of pets, so I made a point to respect that and not ‘extract the wees’ so to speak.
    But she was a great ice-breaker, largely because many people unfamiliar with shepherds (or dogs for that matter), assume they’re aggressive, ferocious, police attack-dogs, so were always pleasantly surprised when they met her, one at just how calm, friendly, smart and extremely well behaved (i.e. highly trained) she was and nearly always left our office with a new best-friend and new insight into the breed as well… the tone it set for any ‘business meetings’ etc was glaringly obvious… and apparent too to my business partner! As we grew, more staff started asking to being their dogs in and it was hard to say no to. Unfortunately, not all dog breeds lend themselves to this environment and many are not trained to anywhere near the extent of my shepherd and stupid, yappy, jumpy, uncontrollable lap dogs, weren’t/aren’t appreciated by anyone, let alone clients (even less so, clients not really keen on dogs!), so I had to put a stop to it.
    Good idea in theory… but in practice?? It gets out of hand and rather quickly too.

  • armotur

    What a silly idea! If they are looking at getting greater productivity and people enjoying work more and liking the Boss there are many other very successful methods available. Like Team work, employee involvement, self directed work teams. Goal sharing etc. etc. etc.

    • Or we could really stretch the imagination and just do the job to the best of their abilities that they claimed to have when they took the job?

  • James Growley

    For god’s sake, when will it be OK to have a work break. Productivity is bad enough now with Twitter, Face Book, Trade Me and a myriad of other social media distractions without everyone taking time out for pet breaks.

    • James

      Not forgetting Whale Oil!

    • KatB

      How on earth can we fit in a work break in between the prayer breaks, smoke breaks, breastfeeding breaks and now pet breaks. You’re asking a bit much if you expect people to get some work done. Too stressful.

  • For crying out loud…their pets? Some of the numpties I have to work with would bring a goat in.

    This is beyond stupid…it’s even stupider than bringing your kids to work (unless it’s bring your kids to work day and then I take annual leave and go to the pub cos it’s better for my health!)…which by the way there is the odd entitled one in my office that thinks that’s ok…..It isn’t …even if the kid isn’t a goat….and some are!

  • cows4me

    Our pets are always at work, it’s where they live.

  • Ilovelife

    Good grief! That’s all I can say.

  • McGrath

    Years ago, a work colleague brought his (fairly large) dog into work for the day. I cannot remember why, but it was a strange decision given that I worked in a bank at the time.

    Anyway, the dog was very friendly to everyone except the boss. The charming brown lab proceeded to do everything possible to chew bits off the boss and sabotage his master’s future career path…

  • Charlie

    What else would you expect a “Pet care advisor” to say. They work with pets all day and probably think that they are humans. Wouldn’t it be great to have 10 dogs, 10 cats, 3 or 4 pigs, a few rabbits, and some possums running round in your car repair workshop.
    Think of the lack of stress and the increased productivity this would produce.
    Honestly, what planet are people like this from?