How to Establish a Dog-Friendly Office

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establish a dog-friendly office
December 17 2018

How to Establish a Dog-Friendly Office

Studies have shown that having dogs in an office space can actually reduce stress and build stronger bonds among employees. Not only that, but it can also increase employee retention, boost engagement and attitude, and improve work-life balance. Perhaps it’s time that you unleash some dogs into your work environment. Before you do that, however, it is important to consider how to establish a dog-friendly office:

First Things First: Get Approval from Employees

It’s a tough pill to swallow, but not everyone is a dog person. Moreover, there’s a chance that someone in the office is allergic to them. That’s why it is extremely vital to hold a meeting prior to making your office dog-friendly. See what everyone in the office thinks of the idea, and if they have any concerns. If the vote isn’t unanimous, you can suggest a few alternative options, such as:

  1. Dog-friendly day once a week, such as on Fridays – this would be a great way to finish out the week strong
  2. Create a dog-friendly area of the office – this way people can do their work without being distracted
  3. Install air purifiers – this could help alleviate the symptoms felt by those with dog allergies

Create Guidelines

Before you let your employees bring just any pet they want to the office, you should write up a list of rules that must be followed. For example, you could say that only dogs are allowed, no other types of pets. You could then say that each dog must be up to date on all shots/vaccinations, clean, trained, non-aggressive, quiet, and potty trained. Otherwise, you could find yourself creating a disastrous environment for your employees. No one wants to come to work and find a dog relieving themselves on the office floor.

Consider Your Office Space Setup

Without doing a complete overhaul of your office’s design, you should take time to consider how you can make your office more dog-friendly. First, you should ensure that there is enough space in your office for dogs. If you are already in a tight space, adding dogs could just make it worse. Second, see how easy it would be to take the dogs outside. If you are on the top floor of a tall building, it may be inconvenient to have employees periodically walk their dogs throughout the day. Third, check to see if there is space available to contain the dogs. This is important for when guests come in, or when people simply need a break from the dogs. Lastly, do a walk-through of your office and make sure there isn’t anything accessible at a dog-level that could potentially be a danger to them. You should additionally cover any wastebaskets and secure any electrical wires.

Take inspiration from companies like Amazon. Their office was built to support dogs, as it is complete with a “doggie deck,” dog park, dog-only water fountains, bathroom areas for dogs, and even a dog treat truck.

Stock Up on Supplies!

The final step you should take to establish a dog-friendly office is to stock up on supplies. Doing so will benefit both you and your coworkers, making it easier to have their dogs occupy the office space. It is also an easy fix to making any type of office design more dog-friendly! Here are some of the supplies you should definitely have in your office:

  • Water Bowls
  • Food Bowls
  • Dog Waste Bags
  • Hand Sanitizer
  • Dog Gates
  • Dog Beds
  • Toys
  • Dog Treats
  • Lint Rollers
  • Carpet Cleaner/Stain Removes
  • Potty Pads

Choose Service West for Innovation & Sustainability

The Service West team has successfully helped numerous clients improve their office spaces. If you’re interested in making office improvements, renovating your office, or if you’re planning to relocate your office in the near future, give us a call at 510-746-3700 or email us at