Want your pooch to be the most popular pet in your office? Before you and Fido clock in on Friday for the nationwide Take Your Dog to Work Day, make sure you avoid the dreaded doggie don'ts, care of the Humane Society’s Jennifer Fearing, author of the book "Dogs at Work" and mom to 8-year-old Yoda, who commutes with her every day.
Don't …Bring a stinky dog to work. You and your dog should both dress for success! "Hygiene needs to be a top priority for your dog if you're going to bring him to work," Fearing says. Make sure your pup is well-groomed, with clean ears and trimmed nails, and that any bedding you bring along for them is laundered and as tidy as possible.
Wander around the office with your dog. The office is not the dog park! Taking a stroll around the building with your dog can disturb others, so use the nearest exit to take your dog out for a walk when it's time for him to do his "business."
Let your dog hang out in common areas like bathrooms or elevators. Avoid places where coworkers who aren't comfortable with dogs may be confined. "These people should have safe harbors where they don't have to come in contact with dogs if they don’t want to," says Fearing.
Assume you're the Dog Whisperer. You wouldn't just walk up to another dog on the street, so why do it in the office? Avoid petting or feeding other people's dogs without permission. Find out a dog's boundaries and comfort level before you interact with them. "When strangers walk up to them, they may just be uncomfortable," she says.
Let your dog run off without a leash. "Your dog [needs to be] either restrained by a baby gate or under your desk," says Fearing. Anytime you're walking in the hall or heading to your car, your dog should be leashed.
Wash dog bowls in the office kitchen. Dumping out your dog's water over the dishes that are shared by coworkers is a no-no – and so is letting your dog lick food off of plates used by others. "Some humans find that less than sanitary," says Fearing. "It's not really appreciated."
Bring squeaky or stinky toys with you. It’s fine to bring toys to entertain your dog throughout the work day, but be considerate of others. Squeaky toys are not for the workplace, say Fearing. And leave the big rawhide bone at home — no one needs to smell the wafting aroma of your pup's favorite chew toy.