We all know the benefits of being able to take your dog to work and for those of us who don’t yet work in a dog-friendly office, it’s probably high on the list of the criteria our ideal job would have. Companies large and small are realising the benefits of having dogs in the workplace but for it to work well, you do need to be prepared. Central London based video production company TopLine Film has been a dog-friendly office for years and today we have a guest blog from Managing Director Jamie and his dog Devon, who’ll share their ‘Top 10 tips for taking your dog to work in London’ from their experience over the years.
Jamie told us “We started bringing in Devon, our black Labrador, to the office in Central London when she was 3 months old. Now 7 years old, she’s part of the furniture and spends her day warming my feet under my desk.” As well as experienced office dog Devon, Jamie and the TopLine team have several other regular office dogs including a 4-month-old Golden Retriever that’s currently struggling with toilet training under the desks!
So what are Jamie’s and Devon’s top tips for taking your dog to work? Let’s hand over to Jamie and Devon to find out…
10 Top Tips for Taking Your Dog to Work in London from TopLine Film
Whether you’ve landed yourself a job at a dog-friendly company or you’ve somehow managed to convince your employer to let you bring your fur-baby to work with you, you’ll probably find that taking your pup into your workplace comes with some additional responsibilities. It’s worth thinking about these in advance and getting prepared – as you want your dog’s introduction to working life to run as smoothly as possible. I’ve been taking my dog into work at TopLine for the last seven years, and here’s what I’ve learned…
Adjust your commute
If you travel to work on a packed train, you might find it challenging to start commuting with your dog. You don’t want to annoy other passengers, and you certainly don’t want your precious pet to get stepped on or squashed. If you’re not fortunate enough to be able to walk to work, then consider cycling with your dog in a carrier or simply adjusting your working hours so that you don’t need to travel in peak times.
Check-in with colleagues
You most likely share an office with other people, who may or may not be dog lovers. Do them the courtesy of checking how they feel about having your pup in their space daily. This is more than good manners – it’s a good way to identify who you can ask for help if you ever need it.
House train first
Even the most enthusiastic dog lover doesn’t want your pooch relieving himself under their desk. Make sure your dog is fully house trained before you start taking him into work with you.
Stock up on essentials
Your dog will need a bed, a water bowl, spare food, some toys and possibly even a spare leash at your office.
Stock up on cleaning supplies
I like to keep poo bags, spray and sponges at my desk, just in case my dog (who is fully house trained) does something that needs cleaning up (like vomiting all over the floor).
Keep an eye on water
Make sure that your dog’s water bowl is always filled up. This is essential both for keeping your pet hydrated and for preventing your dog from licking the tap on the water cooler (a lesson from actual experience).
Look out for hazards
Delicious chewy cables. Chocolate muffins and grapes on the (low) reception coffee table. Anything in a wastepaper basket. These are all fair game from your dog’s perspective! Do what you can to tidy them away to keep them (and your dog) safe.
Have a safe space to keep your pet
Not every new client who arrives at your office wants to be greeted by a snout to the crotch. It’s therefore important to have a spot where your dog can be kept away from unwilling potential friends. I tie my dog’s lead to the desk if I know we have a client coming in who isn’t keen on dogs.
Communicate with colleagues
It’s important that you educate your colleagues on how to treat your dog. What should they do when she jumps up? Are they allowed to feed her? Would you prefer no aggressive play? People won’t know if you don’t tell them.
Enjoy every moment
My dog is my best friend ever and I love having her in the office with me, keeping my feet warm in winter and getting me out to the park every lunchtime.