Dogs at WorkThe American Pet Product Manufacturers Association has just released survey results about the number of employers that now allow pets in the workplace. I was surprised to learn that one in five companies has now implemented policies that allow pets in the workplace. I wish my employer was one of them!

Allowing pets in the workplace has been credited with benefits such as stress relief, improving co-worker relationships, and creating a happier work environment. Here are some of the statistics from the survey on workplace pets:

55 Million Americans believe that having pets in the workplace leads to a more creative environment

50 Million believe having pets in the workplace helps co-workers get along better

37 Million believe that having pets in the workplace helps improve the relationships between managers and employees

32 Million believe that having pets in the workplace decreases smoking at the workplace

53 Million believe that having pets in the workplace decreases absenteeism

38 Million believe that having pets in the workplace creates a more productive work environment

A couple of the high profile employers now allowing pets in the workplace are Google and Chipotle (at headquarters and not their restaurants of course!)

All these pets at work can open up new business opportunities for creative pet care providers. I see a need for dogs to be walked during the work day to relieve boredom and make sure they get their daily exercise. Not all workers may be able to give their pets this break time during their workday. Dog walkers could offer offices their services at group rates to cater to workers in large office buildings.

Groomers could provide a pick up and drop back service to offices where pets are part of the workforce. They could also set up a grooming salon at the office location one day a week. This offers workers great convenience and could be a great regular client group for the groomer.

For the pampered pooch dog massages could be offered as an in-office service one day per week. Supplying gourmet dog treats to offices for purchase by workers to spoil their pets could also make a great business. Why not even have dog treat vending machines next to the Coke machine?

These are just a few ideas on ways that pet business owners can make the most of this new trend to bring pets into the workplace. With so many pets in one location for 7-8 hours per day there are many opportunities to service these pet communities.

These type of working environments excite me but I’m not so sure that the survey participants have met my Lab Tanner! He is quite a handful. I wonder if employers that allow pets in the workplace have strict conduct policies for pets that come to work? If you are one of the lucky ones who does bring their pet to work please leave a comment and tell us about your experience.