Dogs. The most common household pet in the UK, but who would have expected that they could prove so beneficial in the workplace? There are many reasons introducing a pet, specifically a dog, into your office environment can increase productivity and promote good mental health amongst your employees.
Boosting Serotonin and Dopamine
Office dogs require attention as an equal part of your team, so naturally, your employees will take short breaks to play with your new recruit. Studies show that playing with dogs, even for a few minutes a day, increases the levels of serotonin and dopamine that can be found in the body. These hormones calm and relax the nervous system which reduces stress levels and increases feelings of relaxation. When your employees are more relaxed, they will become more productive and therefore more eager to work. Plus, your new office dog will benefit from all the love off your employees.
In addition to attention, dogs require lots of time outside spent exercising, something your team may be lacking. Even if it is only for five minutes on their lunch break, your staff members will need to go on walks with their new best friend. This allows them a well-deserved break from screens and artificial office lighting which can strain their eyes, it can also make them tired which of course will decrease productivity and motivation in the workspace. When your employees return from the outside world, you will find them much more awake and ready to work, which is not only great for their mental health, but also great for your workplace. It can be very easy to spend the entirety of your nine–to– five job surrounded by the same four walls only to emerge hours later feeling too tired to exercise. Walking a dog halfway through the day can prevent this.
Looking forward to coming into work!
Even the most spectacular of jobs can cause significant stress which can decrease motivation to come into work every day. However, knowing that waiting for you once you walk through the doors of your office is a cute, fluffy dog who relies on you for attention, will surely motivate you to get up and go into work every day. The stress caused by your job will also be reduced as being around dogs and playing with them increases oxytocin production which reduces feelings of stress, this will cause your working day to feel much more manageable.
We all know dogs are referred to as “mans best friend”, and the reasons are clear when they can have such beneficial effects to our mental health. In a year when mental health has taken such a great hit, it is more important than ever to care for it in any way we can.
Employee Happiness Officer (EHO)
Meet our office dog, Chilli. She has been coming into our office since she was a tiny puppy. We all love her. You can read Chilli’s bio here.