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Home > General > Pros & Cons of Bringing Pets to Work: Tips For a Pet-Friendly Office

Pros & Cons of Bringing Pets to Work: Tips For a Pet-Friendly Office

Woman and a Man Presenting Image on a Laptop Screen to a Dog

Pet lovers can all relate to the desire to spend more time with their pets. These days, many more people work from home and can be with their pets as they work. However, others require going into offices, and these environments often have a no-pets policy.

While there are benefits to having a pet-friendly office, there are also some serious disadvantages to consider. So, before you start proposing a pet-friendly policy in your office space, make sure to weigh all the pros and cons of bringing pets to work.


Bringing Pets to Work: The Pros

1. Pro: Reduces Loneliness

Bringing your pet to work can lead to reducing feelings of loneliness in both pets and their owners. Many domesticated cats and dogs were bred for companionship and are excellent at keeping their owners’ company. They also have their own companionship needs that need to be met.

On average, dogs can sleep between 12-14 hours a day, while cats are most active at dawn and dusk. So, if they get proper morning exercise, they’re likely to be content with just being in the same space as their owners and sleeping while they work. They won’t be a distraction and will still be able to spend time with their owners.

cat in office
Image Credit: Studio-Lannach, Pixabay

2. Pro: Helps Save Costs

If you work long hours, you usually have to find a pet sitter, doggy daycare, or dog walker to spend time with your dog during your work hours. The average price of doggy daycare is $40 per day, and the costs can rack up rather quickly if you drop your dog off at daycare regularly.

Taking your pet to work can help eliminate some hefty costs and direct that money toward other needs in your budget.

3. Pro: Boosts Office Morale

Pets can help boost office morale and build workplace relationships. People with pets will share a commonality that can lead to conversations and increased interactions among co-workers.

Along with strengthening team dynamics, pets in the office can be a great excuse to host fun workplace events, like Halloween pet costume contests or other pet-themed office parties. Community outreach committees can also be unified in choosing to support a local animal shelter or pet adoption events.

employees having fun with their dog office pet
Image Credit: LightField Studios, Shutterstock

4. Pro: Promotes Healthy Breaks

It’s not healthy for humans to sit at desks for long hours, yet many jobs require sitting in front of computers. Having a pet in the office can remind people to take short breaks to stretch their legs and walk around before going back to work.

Pets can also help people plan their schedules better. When nature calls, a dog won’t care if you have to finish up an email. So, owners can be more intentional about taking breaks at appropriate times, which will refresh them and potentially boost organization and productivity.

5. Pro: Ensures Your Pet’s Safety

No matter how much you safeguard your house, your pets can still get into some mischief and accidentally land themselves in an unsafe situation. Pets that experience separation anxiety or boredom while you’re away may even end up engaging in destructive behaviors.

Bringing your pet to work will help you keep a close eye on your pet, and your pet is more likely to feel content being near you rather than being home alone.

Gray Cat Lying Near Monitor on Wooden Desk
Image Credit: davide-baraldi, Pexels


Bringing Pets to Work: The Cons

6. Con: Enforcing Pet Policies

Before you introduce pets to the office, you’ll need a substantial pet policy in place to ensure that the office remains a safe and productive working environment. You’ll also have to appoint someone to help enforce your pet policy so that every employee and pet receives fair treatment.

Pet owners can be extremely protective and partial to their pets and discussing any policy violations with them can be a sensitive topic. While sharing the commonality of pets can bring people closer together, enforcing pet policies that people aren’t used to can cause upset and increase complaints.

Dog Lying on Floor
Image By: lumn, Pexels

7. Con: Can Be Distracting

There’s no denying the fact that pets can be distracting. They need to be taken out for potty breaks and can get bored in the office and start begging for attention. Some dogs may start barking during meetings, and nearly everyone is all too familiar with the pet cameo during video conference calls.

While pets can help promote a healthy lifestyle, they may also lower productivity as pet owners may get tempted to spend more time with their pets rather than working. Their curiosity may also get them into some trouble and take people away from their work as they tend to their needs.

8. Con: Can Increase Allergy Symptoms

Proteins found in pet dander, saliva, and urine are the main culprits of allergies. Pets that shed more can cause more allergic reactions as their hair helps disperse pet dander. However, you’ll also have to think about any pets that lick someone with allergies accidentally or have an accident indoors. These are all incidents that can trigger allergies.

Special accommodations would also have to be made for any allergy sufferers. You’ll have to create a designated pet-free zone or only allow pets in certain parts of the office.

woman teary eyed due to cat allergy
Image By: Dmytro Zinkevych, Shutterstock

9. Con: Increased Risk of Office Damage

Maintaining an office will become more difficult if you’re bringing pets inside. First, you’ll have to deal with loose pet hair and how to clean it up so that your office space maintains a clean and professional appearance.

Dogs that relieve themselves outside will likely cause damage to your grass. So, there’s a good chance you’ll have to invest more in landscape maintenance or have a designated relief area. If you want to bring in cats, you’ll have to think about litter box locations and have a cleanup protocol in place in case a cat misses the litter box. In general, odors will increase, so you’ll have to figure out how to keep rooms smelling clean and well-ventilated.

Some pets may end up damaging office furniture or equipment if their owners are away at a meeting and aren’t able to supervise their pets.

10. Con: Potential Legal Issues

You never know how pets will react in new situations. Some pets may get into incidents and scratch or bite another pet or a co-worker. Pets can create unsafe working environments that can lead to legal issues that negatively impact workplace relationships and the company’s reputation.

Keeping pets at home can help you completely avoid any potential headaches and unfortunate incidents should anyone break pet policies or make others feel unsafe.

Sugar Glider_Rachata Teyparsit, Shutterstock
Image By: Rachata Teyparsit, Shutterstock



Bringing pets into the office comes with a set of advantages and disadvantages. Setting up a pet-friendly office can help boost morale and productivity. However, it can also quickly turn on you if a proper pet policy isn’t put in place or if it gets violated. So, before you decide on opening the office to pets, spend an ample amount of time considering how much a pet-friendly environment would actually be an asset to your workplace.

Featured Image Credit: karolina-grabowska, Pexels

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