Fitness and health 16.7.2018 01:14 pm

Why having pets in the workplace is beneficial

Picture: iStock

Picture: iStock

Dogs at work can offer a sense of comfort, relieve stress, increase physical activity and even improve productivity.

It’s no secret that owning a pet enriches your life and offers many benefits. People with pets are shown to be happier, live longer, and have fewer health problems like heart disease.

But why not take these benefits to work as well?

At the end of last month Mars, manufacturer and distributor of pet foods like Pedigree, Whiskas, Royal Canin, Eukanuba and Vets Choice, started an activation week to ask people to take their pets to work.

The aim was to encourage South African corporates to allow employees to bring their furry family to work. The reason? The health benefits it has for humans.

“During Take Your Dog to Work Week, we upped the ante by having pet-friendly activations that truly celebrated and highlighted the benefits of having dogs in the workplace. We want the rest of corporate South Africa to join us in the fun,” says Tumi Masekela, director of corporate affairs at Mars Multisales Africa.

Research from Mars Petcare has shown that seven in 10 employees and HR departments agree that allowing pets in the workplace has a positive impact on employees.

Most millennials (employees aged 18 to 35) support pet-related policies and 60% say they are more likely to keep working at a company that implements pet-friendly policies.

“Even if the dog is in the work place for one day or just a few hours, we know people will begin to see the benefits. Dogs at work can offer a sense of comfort, relieve stress, increase physical activity and even improve productivity,” says Masekela.

“It’s very easy to host a dog in the workplace – as long as they have a place to rest, and access to some grass, they are happy. And they make your employees happy too.”

The top five areas of improvements as a result of implementing pet-friendly policies include:

  • employee morale
  • reduced stress among employees
  • work-life balance
  • greater loyalty to the company
  • reduced guilt among pet owners about leaving their pets at home

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