Taking the Dog to Work for the First Time

Not only in the hipster marketing offices of Berlin’s creative agencies, but dogs are also now part of the common appearance of many workplaces. Rather, there is a rethinking per dog across Germany. As a dog person and dog owner, I expressly welcome that. With this article, I would like to help you to set the right course in advance and to prepare for the first working day with a dog in the best possible way.

Before the First Day with the Dog at Work

First of all, the most important thing: In principle, you can bring a dog to the workplace. The prerequisite is, of course, that he does not disturb the operational processes and that the boss has not ruled out bringing it with him in advance. Also, bringing dogs does not mean a free ticket for the future. Your employer has management rights and can withdraw your permission again ( But I’m assuming for now that you have the best-behaved dog in the company.

Already common practice in many offices

Some companies are already teeming with fur babies. So even if you think that a dog more or less goes unnoticed: I recommend that you announce in good time that you will soon no longer be coming to the office alone. This is how you show your best communicative side and give your work colleagues the opportunity to mentally adjust to “the new colleague”. Humans are creatures of habit and rarely want to be surprised or overwhelmed.

Clarify in advance whether there were any abnormalities with certain dog types in the dogs you had already brought with you and what you have to pay attention to when bringing the animals together.

Your Dog is the First Dog at Work

In companies where the culture and structure are just beginning to loosen up, you may be the first person to bring a dog. Expect that not all colleagues will be equally enthusiastic. The often propagated and hoped-for positive changes, which numerous studies have shown, only materialize slowly over time. Sometimes it’s a bit like in the Hollywood movies, in which an old, dissatisfied man with a stony heart slowly rediscovers his gentle side through a dog or a child and transforms himself into a whole new person.

If your dog – as already suspected above – is one of the most beloved dogs in the world, give your anxious colleagues the opportunity to slowly get to know and love your fur child. In the very best case, you should also clarify the rules of conduct with your colleagues beforehand.

Do you agree if your animal gets treats from colleagues or is that taboo? Not every dog likes to be petted: It is only forward-looking to pass this information on to your work colleagues beforehand. This also shows thoughtfulness and prudence. Discuss the do’s and don’ts in advance, then you will have less stress on the first day.

The First Day with a Dog at Work

While you are probably full of positive emotions because your dog is finally getting to know your workplace and you can be together permanently, please consider one thing: Dogs are creatures of habit too and a whole new situation is arising for them today. And that means Stress!!! Please do yourself and your dog a big favor and give them the opportunity to relax and take an extra-long walk before work.

At first, my state of mind was somewhere between funny and embarrassed. After that, I was angry at myself for not seeing this situation coming. Admittedly, the four-legged companionship was not planned well in advance but born out of necessity, but our poor Oscar was visibly overwhelmed by the many new faces and impressions.

Dog Familiarization Phase at Work

Rome wasn’t built in a day, and neither will your dog get used to its new place on the first day. If you can, bring the dog home after a few hours. The tension in your four-legged friend is crackling. If you have the opportunity, introduce him little by little to his new environment. Maybe take it with you to the office for an hour or choose days when there is less activity because colleagues are on vacation.

Actively Avoid Critical Situations

You know your dog best. You can read him like an open book and you can see his current state of mind in his eyes and the posture and tension. If the signs point to stress, then take the time to free your dog from the situation. Walk around the block and, more importantly, be careful that co-workers don’t unintentionally get too close to the situation. Because they can’t read your dog!

Dog inexperienced people bend over the dog with good intentions or send out signals that can unsettle the dog. Please don’t let it get that far and always keep an eye on your animal.

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