I was laid off from my marketing position in June, and during the past couple of months at home, I’ve really enjoyed my dog’s company. She doesn’t talk loudly on the phone, she doesn’t steal my lunch out of the refrigerator, and she doesn’t gossip behind my back. I’d like to be able to find a job where she could be my coworker all the time.
It’s better for her and it’s better for me. Sasha is an Australian Shepherd/Border Collie mix, and those extra walks in the afternoon and increased human companionship make her a much calmer doggie. During the past few months, she rarely has woken me up in the middle of the night to go chase critters in the yard. And plenty of research has shown the benefits of dogs on humans. A study in the International Journal of Workplace Health Management found that dogs in the workplace reduce stress and increase job satisfaction, not only for the dog parent but also for other employees who come in contact with the dog.
About 1.4 million dog parents take their furry ones to work every day, and 17 percent of businesses across the U.S. are considered dog-friendly, according to an American Pet Products Association survey. It may take a little digging, but there are ways to uncover companies that allow dogs in the workplace.
One tool is SimplyHired, an online job board that filters job searches on a number of criteria, including whether a company is dog-friendly. You can even set up searches for jobs at dog-friendly companies and have these job openings emailed to you. Another option is DogFriendly.com, a website that lists dog-friendly companies by city and state. Overall, high-tech companies are more likely to accept dogs in workplaces due to the long hours many employees work. It’s become one of the perks offered to lure hard-to-fill positions, such as software programmers.
Start-up companies are more informal and more likely to allow dogs in the workplace. There are a number of places to search for jobs at start-up companies, including StartUpHire, Startuply, and VentureLoop. With Startuply, you can add the search term “dog” and companies that allow dogs at work will show up. And if you don’t live near a metro area that incubates a lot of start-up companies, you can search for virtual opportunities on StartUpHire.
If you’d rather look for a job where you can work at home, there are several websites that can assist you. On Craigslist and SimplyHired, you can narrow your search by selecting the “telecommute” option when searching within a job category. The tech-heavy job board Dice has an option to filter jobs to telecommute only. And FlexJobs is another option; however, the site require a fee to access the job listings.
And then there’s the good old standby of using your network to find a job with a company that’s pooch-friendly. Studies show that anywhere between 65 to 80 percent of jobs are found through word-of-mouth. So, tell your friends, talk to people at the dog park and soon you may be commuting to work with your furry best friend!
Do you work with your dog? Tell me about it in the comments!
About the author: Cathy Weselby is a purple-lovin’ ambivert who enjoys exploring new places and ideas, the arts, humorous memoirs, collecting old magazines and making collages. She and her husband live with Sasha, a rescued Australian Shepherd/Border Collie mix, in the Santa Cruz Mountains.
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