Tomorrow is Take Your Dog to Work Day, which means companies across the United States will open their doors to pooches of all shapes and sizes. Founded in 1999 by Pet Sitters International, Take Your Dog to Work Day now involves thousands of employers, celebrating dogs as great companions and helping spread the word about shelter and rescue adoptions.
Lots of Baltimore-area companies welcome dogs every year, and it can be a fun day for pet owners and their co-workers. Pet Sitters International offers a few tips to make it as successful as possible:
Do an office check. Make sure no one is allergic to or afraid of your dog before you bring him to work.
Puppy-proof your work space. Put away toxic plants, hide cords and wires, and lock up potentially dangerous things such as permanent markers and correction fluid.
Bathe and groom your dog ahead of time. Be sure his shots are up-to-date and that he feels well enough for a day of work. If your dog is aggressive or nervous, consider posting his photo in the office and leaving him at home.
Prepare a doggie bag. Pack up food, bowls, leash, toys, clean-up bags, and dog-safe cleaner/disinfectant just in case. Consider taking a crate or dog gate to your office to keep your furry friend safely in your space when you go down the hall.
Plan feeding times, and pick an appropriate area for a puppy bathroom break.
Don’t force your co-workers to play with your dog. Dog lovers will come over for some playtime, but leave others alone. Monitor treats your dog eats, and be careful that no one gives him chocolate, candy, or other people food.
Have an exit strategy. Be ready to head home if your pooch becomes nervous or agitated during the day. If your boss has blessed Take Your Dog to Work Day, he or she is probably prepared to let you bolt if things get too tough.
(And of course, never leave your pet alone in a vehicle.)