Workplace pets reduce stress

Looking for ways to reduce stress at work? Sharing your cubical with your pooch could help, according to researchers.

A Virginia Commonwealth University study found that dog owners who bring their pets to work experience less stress throughout the workday.


This is my pup, Nema. As cute as she is, I’m confident my stress levels would increase if she was next to my desk all day.

The study took place at Replacements, a service-manufacturing-retail company in Greensboro, N.C. The business employees 550 people and, for the last 15 years, has allowed employees to bring their dogs to work.

On any given day, 20 to 30 dogs are on the company grounds.

Researchers divided full-time employees into three categories DOG group (employees who bring their dog to work), NODOG group (employees who own dogs but don’t bring them to work) and NOPET (employees who don’t own pets).

The study revealed that employees who had their dogs at work had the lowest stress levels of the three groups. Average stress level scores fell about 11 percent for that group, while they increased 70 percent for those who did not have their dogs at work, according to the research.

The group of non-pet owners experienced a slight increase in stress levels throughout the day.

“Preliminary findings suggest pet dogs in the workplace may buffer the impact of stress during the workday for their owners and may also contribute to higher job satisfaction for all employees in the organization, regardless of dog or pet ownership,” the researchers concluded.

The research showed that most employees perceived dog presence on productivity neutrally.

A small group (about 20 percent) of those without pets perceived dog presence as hurting their productivity. About the same number of people perceived the dog presence as beneficial, according to researchers.

What do you think? Would your stress increase or decrease if your dog was at work with you?

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