Event creator Pet Sitters International reflects on the growth of pet-friendly policies and encourages companies to "make it their business" to help pets in need on June 24.
With high-profile companies such as Google, Mashable, Etsy and even Ben & Jerry's offering pet-friendly work environments, it's easy to forget that the trend of dogs in the office is still a relatively new one. When Pet Sitters International (PSI) created Take Your Dog To Work Day® in 1999, PSI President Patti Moran says the day was initially met with skepticism. Since that time, however, the annual event - which will be celebrated this year on Friday, June 24 - has grown in popularity and PSI hears from companies across the United States and abroad that are excited to experience dogs in the office, even if just for one day to support a great cause.
"The idea was first inspired by Take Your Daughter to Work Day. We thought a similar day was a great idea because we knew so many pet owners see their dogs as surrogate children," explains Moran. "We believed the idea had merit but it was a tough sell convincing other businesses that the Day could be a great morale booster for employees and help promote local pet adoptions. For the first few years, we spent countless hours calling companies around the country, pitching the idea and encouraging them to participate."
"It was truly a grassroots effort," she adds. "So, it's very exciting to see how much the popularity of pets in the workplace has grown since we first launched the Day."
The trend has certainly grown since the inception of Take Your Dog To Work Day and shows no signs of slowing. A 2015 Society for Human Resource Management survey found that 8 percent of American workplaces allow employees to bring pets (up from 5 percent in 2013). More and more companies are likely to jump on the pet-friendly bandwagon as they seek to attract millennials who are set to soon surpass baby boomers as the largest pet-owning generation and who will be making up almost half of the workforce by 2020.
"2016 marks the 18th annual celebration and we hope that the increasing acceptance of pets in the workplace will open the door for even more companies to celebrate dogs and promote their adoptions by hosting a Take Your Dog To Work Day event," Moran concludes.
Ready this article to make sure your dog is office-ready.
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