As a nation of dog lovers, it is becoming increasingly popular for our four-legged friends to accompany us not only at home but also in the workplace. There has been a significant rise in companies who opt for creating a dog-friendly office, inviting their pampered pooches to join their corporate team.
While we adore the idea of bringing along our trusted companions to the office, it does mean that a few additional rules must be implemented. The most significant change must be to your cleaning schedule. From mucky paws to a bed of hairs, pets do come alongside a considerable amount of additional mess. For a dog friendly office to work effectively, while still maintaining a professional environment, your cleaning habits must be adapted. Here we run through several tips on not only how to keep your office in immaculate condition, but also how to accommodate for your furry friends.
Tips For A Successful Dog Friendly Office
Opting to invite dogs to the workplace comes alongside a plethora of fantastic benefits, including the following:
- Encourages Exercises – Particularly when working in an office, employees can often find themselves sitting in the same position for up to 8 hours. In bringing their pet to work, individuals are forced to venture into the outdoor to take them for a walk. Not only does this encourage exercise but also give them well-needed fresh air.
- Reduces Stress – It has been proven that stroking a dog releases tension and reduces stress. Your physiological state adapts to a more relaxed mode, creating a more tranquil working environment.
- Boosts Morale – Many offices are filled with individuals who opt for keeping themselves to themselves. While this isn’t necessarily bad, communication is vital in maintaining high morale. Dogs are incredibly social, which means that introducing them to the workplace can work as a bonding resource, helping to break the ice between employees.
- Increased Productivity – While many assume that dogs in the office would cause distraction, it is actually a great way to increase productivity. In taking short breaks every few hours to give your pet some TLC, you have a moment to clear your mind. Therefore, returning to tasks with a fresh mindset and ready to smash through the remainder of the day.
- Dogs Are Spoilt With Attention – While we are basing our benefits on how pets can improve the workplace, we must also consider our treasured furry friends. Dogs deserve to be showered with love and bringing them along to the office will achieve just that. As opposed to being cooped up alone in the home all day, your dog will be given company and attention all day.
For more information on the benefits of a dog-friendly workplace, take a look at Life Learn.
If you were yet to be won over by the idea of inviting your pups to the office, it is almost guaranteed that you now will be ready to pitch the idea to your teammates. So, with this in mind, continue reading to find out how you can create and clean the perfect dog friendly workplace!
Establish Ground Rules
First and foremost, before drafting a cleaning schedule, you must establish a set of ground rules. Every employee who wishes to invite their dog to the workplace must ensure that they are aware of the rules and comply with each. In doing so, you can avoid complete chaos and maintain a professional, corporate environment. Regardless of whether are a pet friendly business or not, your reputation remains of utmost importance. You must remain presentable to all clients, customer and visitors to ensure that your company remains successful.
Always ensure that you have set out strict expectations from the beginning, creating a detailed ‘Pet Policy’ document, including the responsibilities of the owner. Each individual who would like to start bringing the dog to the office must read and sign all paperwork in order to gain permission. Some of the most critical aspects of your policy should be the following:
- All pets must be adequately house-trained. Although puppies are adorable, they may not be best suited to a corporate environment until they are a little older.
- Pets must have up-to-date vaccinations. You can find a full guide to pet vaccinations on the RSPCA Pet Insurance website.
- Pets must be friendly, able to socialise with both humans and other dogs. Keep in mind that your office will regularly be filled with visitors, so pets must be able to feel comfortable with this.
- Pets must not excessively bark or show aggressive behaviour. Dogs must be able to handle a high-paced environment without becoming stressed.
Keep The Air Clean
Keeping office air as fresh, clean and pure as possible is vital in boosting employee health. Dust and debris can quickly begin to build-up due to many people working in one environment, but this is multiplied when dogs are in the office. Anything from moulting coats to the renowned ‘wet dog smell’ can linger in the air, causing a polluted atmosphere.
Although it may be a little trickier during the colder months, aim to open windows in the office as often as possible. Opening windows is ideal for allowing fresh air to circulate to purify the surroundings.
You may also want to consider investing in a diffuser. While in the past, air fresheners were the most common option to rid a room of bad odours; they, unfortunately, are not the best for your health. In order to create pleasant fragrances, they utilise an array of chemicals and perfumes. Diffusers, on the other hand, use pure essential oils, which support both health and wellbeing. Start Living Natural has put together a helpful article on why you should choose diffusers over air fresheners.
Invest In A Quality Hoover
Particularly if your office has carpets, flooring will become the biggest culprits for harbouring dog hairs. This means that it is imperative to invest in a high-quality hoover that will successfully capture and remove any fallen fur.
When shortlisting hoover options, it is vital to focus on those that are designed specifically for pet owners. While conventional models will promise the ability to remove all manner of dirt, many struggle to get to the root of the carpet where fur begins to accumulate. In fact, most fail to pick up the hair and instead, create a furball. To start your search, we suggest taking a look at Spotless Vacuum for a guide to the best-reviewed vacuum cleaners for pet hair.
If your team struggle to schedule cleaning time to their daily schedule, why not consider hiring a professional company to handle cleaning tasks? As vetted experts in office cleaning in Milton Keynes and commercial carpet cleaning in Northampton, our team are always more than happy to lend a helping hand. A bespoke maintenance package can be created tailored to your requirements to ensure that your pet friendly workplace remains pristine at all times.
Invest In ‘Accident’ Cleaning Materials
Regardless of how well-trained your four-legged friend may be, accidents happen and unfortunately, you can never quite anticipate when they may occur. Due to this, it is crucial to provide all pet owners with their own set of cleaning materials to deal with the situation promptly. Accidents should always be tackled quickly and calmly as making a fuss will only cause pets to become stressed. An accident kit should include the following items:
- Rubber gloves
- Plastic disposal bags
- Poop shovel
- Antibacterial cleaning spray
- Cleaning brush
All of the above items can be picked up for a low price from Pets At Home.
Keep Onsite Amenities
For pets to behave, they must feel comfortable, which means that you should invest in amenities before inviting dogs to the office.
As dogs sleep, on average, for around 12-14 hours a day, each pet must most definitely have their own bed. Many different considerations contribute towards your final choice in a dog bed, the first of which should always be the size. Beds should allow plenty of room for pets to relax comfortably in a natural position, with no restrictions of movement. To maximise comfort, materials should be soft, padded and easy to wash. The shape of bed you opt for will depend on whether the dog mostly curls up to sleep or likes to stretch out. A generous selection of dog bed types and styles can be found on Fetch.
Next, are items for eating and drinking. Dog bowls are incredibly low-cost to buy and will last for many years before replacement is required. As offices can often become busy environments, we suggest opting for a self-filling water fountain. Although you will have to supply water for the fountains when you arrive at the workplace, they will continue to refill throughout the day. It means that on even the most hectic of days, you can be reassured that your pet is has a continuous source of fresh drinking water.
Establish A ‘Dogs Only Zone’
Even our most hyperactive of pets need downtime. Creating a ‘dogs only zone’ will provide an allocate space for dogs to relax in their own environment, away from the hustle and bustle of the office. Establishing a space specifically for pets to relax will reduce the likelihood of accidents. They will have a peaceful retreat to go to when they start to become agitated or stressed.
Designing a room or area of the office for your furry members of the team will also make cleaning a more straightforward task. If you know that pets have spent a considerable percentage of their day in this spot, your focus will be on cleaning and hoovering this area.
Regularly Replace Accessories
If you notice that items such as dog beds are beginning to look a little worse for wear or it is growing trickier to remove bad odours, then it is time for a replacement. As opposed to trying to continuously clean accessories, you will save both time and money investing in fresh alternatives. It will also avoid your office from looking untidy due to old, scruffy pet accessories.
An Inviting Office For Furry Friends
Transforming your workplace into a dog friendly environment only requires a few small adaptations. Before going ahead with the transition, we recommend asking the whole team whether they would be happy with introducing pets to the office. There will be individuals who will have allergies or are not comfortable around dogs, so creating a ‘pet-free zone’ for non-pet owners would be a recommended route.
If you have recently started to invite pets to the workplace and searching for a reputable cleaning company to maintain aesthetics, Facilities Company are always more than happy to help. Our experience and knowledge in commercial cleaning in Milton Keynes will keep your workplace sparkling clean!