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June 21, 2012

The HSUS Encourages Workplaces to Celebrate Pet Sitters International’s Take Your Dog To Work Day®

This Friday, June 22 is Pet Sitters International’s Take Your Dog To Work Day® and The Humane Society of the United States encourages workplaces to celebrate by allowing employees to bring their dogs to work and consider adopting a year-round dogs-at-work policy. The HSUS opened its offices to dogs in 2007, and now nearly 90 happy dogs plus two rats and one guinea pig, accompany HSUS staff to work.

Pet Sitters International created Take Your Dog To Work Day® to celebrate dogs and encourage adoption. Dogs-at-work policies can be beneficial to employees and their canine companions as well as the company’s bottom line. Studies have shown that employees who bring their dogs to work tend to be more efficient, happier and healthier in the workplace.

"We hope that workplaces everywhere get a taste of the wonderful benefits of allowing employees to bring their dogs to work this Take Your Dog To Work Day®," said Inga Fricke, The HSUS’ director of sheltering and pet care issues. "With careful planning, foresight, and attention to employee feedback, companies large and small can enjoy the benefits of having dog-friendly workplaces every day."

The HSUS and other dog-friendly workplaces around the country are highlighted in the book Dogs at Work: A Practical Guide to Creating Dog-Friendly Workplaces. In the book, authors Liz Palika and Jennifer Fearing present the tangible benefits of dog-friendly policies and provide step-by-step advice on obtaining management buy-in, setting fair procedures and protocols and dealing with any concerns about dog-friendly policies in the workplace. The book also includes advice about how to prepare dogs for the office environment, provides sample policies and handouts and provides two comprehensive case studies describing successful dog-friendly workplaces.

Facts

•    According to the American Pet Products Manufacturers Association, there are nearly 78 million dogs living in approximately 46 million American households.
•    Studies show that dogs in the workplace have a positive effect on employee, business and organizational health.
•    According to an Associated Press/Petside.com poll, a third of married women and nearly a fifth of married men consider their pet better listeners than their spouse. Having such a reliable companion in the workplace can greatly increase morale and efficiency.

About The HSUS Dogs in the Workplace Program

•    The HSUS implemented its program in 2007. The program was renamed Pets in the Workplace in 2011, and now welcomes other small pets.
•    Approximately 90 dogs come to work at The HSUS' two offices in the Washington, D.C. area.
•    Dogs must be in good health, altered, up to date on shots and well-mannered.
•    Dogs are kept behind baby gates in each employee's cubicle.
•    Dog-free zones, such as meeting rooms, restrooms and kitchens are clearly marked.
•    The program is a free, mission-based human resources benefit that has increased morale and generated recruitment and retention benefits for the organization.
•    A committee oversees the operation of the program.

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Media Contact: Raul Arce-Contreras, 301.721.6440, rcontreras@humanesociety.org

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