benefits of pets in the workspace
Most of us understand the adjustments of working from home; for some it’s gone well, and for others not so much. There is a whole list of things that you can do to make it easier, but there’s one that we can all agree on—pets.
As I'm typing, my cat, Felix, is laying next to me on the windowsill soaking up the sun. He likes to be next to me at all times, and he'll often walk across my desk looking for me to give him some love. It makes us both happy, and gives me a few brief moments to look away from a computer screen.
Stress + Work
A study by Harris Interactive found that 80% of workers feel stress on the job, nearly half say they need help in learning how to manage stress, and 42% say their coworkers need the same. Having that much stress at work is bound to cause problems in various aspects of your life. Even worse, the uncertainty surrounding the pandemic has job-related stress at an all-time high, and mental health at an all-time low.
So, what do we do? How do we try to make work more enjoyable, maybe even something to look forward to? How do we cope with the stress of 2020?
Studies have shown that owning a pet alone helps reduce your stress and anxiety levels. For those of us working from home during the pandemic, we now get to enjoy our pets at work while reducing work-related stress and anxiety. Not to mention, the unconditional love that comes from our pets is a feeling like none other, and spending the day away from them can cause guilt which leads to even more stress.
In our post Working From a Mobile Byrd Haus, we talked about how taking small breaks throughout the workday might actually improve your productivity. Being able to take a break for a quick game of fetch, a walk around the block, or however you may bond with your fur friend, can refresh your mind, get you moving, and improve your mood.
Then consider the cost savings on doggy daycare, a dog walker, or the trip home to let your dog out on your lunch break. According to HomeGuide, doggy daycare runs $25 per day, or $500 per month, on average. During a time when saving money is extremely important for so many, that $500 savings can make a huge difference.
Now, we understand this isn't quite as simple as it seems for those of you in shared workspaces given allergy concerns, mixing various animal types, breeds & personalities, and so on, and there's certainly not a one-size-fits-all solution. However, it's certainly worth exploring the options given the many benefits.
The companionship of a pet, no matter what kind, is just what most of us need right now. If you're in the market for a fur friend, find your local animal shelter here: Petfinder Shelter List.
Have you felt having a pet in your home office has reduced your stress and anxiety? Does your employer offer doggy daycare or allow pets at work? Send us your thoughts, ideas and experiences to firstname.lastname@example.org.