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Should Your Office Adopt A Pet?

04 July 2022

Introduction

During the pandemic, many remote workers realised the joy of working with animals. Pet shelters saw record numbers of adoptions, as many felt alone in the home office. Plus, having a furry friend in your life will always be a joyful experience.

However, adopting a cat or dog during a lockdown isn’t the same as keeping a pet in the office. For one thing, dogs and cats can be highly distracting. While they’re great for home life, their nature doesn’t gel so well with corporate environments.

But, an animal in the office can raise team spirit, leaving employees feeling happier and more excited to visit the office. There are many pros and cons to office pets, so let’s investigate whether animals can thrive in the office.

Keep reading to find out more.

The Case For Office Pets

Adopting an office pet isn’t as simple as it may sound. Employers will have to mull over whether it’s safe to house an animal, whether the animal will be friendly to workers, and if it’s a generally good idea.

Animals and offices don’t naturally fit together. Unlike office desks, these pets aren’t a natural fit. However, adding a pet into the office can work with careful thought and discussion.

More and more employees are asking for office mascots, especially since covid. While this wouldn’t have been a consideration pre-2019, many managers have difficulty asking employees to work from the office again. Since we’ve all had a taste of work-from-home life, many don’t want to go back. Could office-based pets be the answer managers have been looking for?

Regardless, we’re going to explore the pros and cons of pets, plus we’ll examine which pets are the best fit for an office. Scroll for more.

Benefits

First, we’re going to focus on the benefits. Having pets is a positive thing! Whether you’re an animal lover or not, there are tonnes of reasons why a pet can benefit your office.

Can boost general morale.

Pets provide mental health benefits. Time spent petting an animal can provide anxiety and stress relief.

Pets can bring people together. Your team may become closer and friendlier, leaving you with a great office atmosphere.

Having a pet in the office will increase the time employees spend there.

Pets can inspire creativity, which is ideal if you want your team to think outside the box.

Some pets may encourage physical activity, such as walks.

Drawbacks

Unfortunately, having a pet in the office doesn’t always work. Some offices may not be equipped to handle animals, and some might be too busy. Here are the drawbacks of pets in the office.

Too much paperwork. Some spaces may not even allow animals on site.

Some colleagues may not want animals in their workspace.

Various pet furs can cause allergies.

Certain pets might come with unsavoury smells.

Looking after an animal can waste working time, which is not great for fast-paced industries.

Pets might not comply with office health and safety.

Certain animals may require training beforehand.

Employees may not have time to watch a pet from 9-5. Plus, no one is there for the animal once the day is up.

What Are The Best Office Pets?

Some animals are better suited to the office than others. For example, dogs and cats need more attention, so they could interrupt work life. On the other hand, smaller animals won’t need walking, making them great workplace companions.

Here are our office pet suggestions.

Fish

Fish are a classic workplace pet. These pets are easy to care for, plus you don’t have to walk them! If your office is looking for a quiet and relaxed pet, consider installing a tank. There’s nothing more relaxing than watching tropical fish, ideal for taking a break during a stressful day.

Hamsters

Another possible workplace pet is a hamster. These pets can be kept in a cage, like fish, minimising office distractions. While you don’t have to walk these pets, they need more care than fish. From cleaning out the cage to feeding and petting, hamsters are suitable for offices with more time. Plus, hamsters and their wheels are super cute.

Rabbits

Rabbits might be an appropriate option if your office has an abundance of space and a slower work pace. Though these animals demand more time than others on this list, they’re still relatively low-maintenance compared to others. Bring your colleagues together with cute bunnies!

Reptiles

Finally, an alternative option to traditional pets is reptiles. Though not everyone is a fan of these creatures, they’re easy to look after and live in tanks - great for office life. You’ll just have to check that no colleagues have fears, though!

The Bottom Line

Workplace pets won’t be appropriate for all companies. Sadly, this is a fact of life. But, if you work in a flexible space with relaxed co-workers, an office pet may add some excitement to your work life.

Explore more work and life topics on the Flexispot blog here.