Office Dogs

One good thing about my place of employment is that people are allowed to bring their pets into work with them. Well some people are. I’m not, but other people are. I don’t really know what the official rules are for being allowed to bring your pet in to the office with you. It seems to just be made up on a person by person rule and I’m just not one of the ‘in’ people. Anyway I digress.

Obviously, all the upper management are allowed to bring in their pets, and sometimes when they are too busy we ‘riff raff’ are allowed to look after their pets and take them out for short walks. Being allowed to escape your desk for a few minutes to get some fresh air and walk a dog is brilliant and something I really enjoy and was a definite perk. Well it was until recently; recently it seems that if I head out the door with any of the dogs’ hilarity ensues. My only concern is if this happens and more frequently so will my p45!!

The first time incident happened when I was asked to walk multiple dogs at once. Usually not a problem, but on this day I headed out with the two dogs having been assured that only one needed to be on a lead. I had explained I would be happier having them both on a leash but I was assured that they would be fine and as there was only the one lead in the office I didn’t really have a choice.

The walk started well and I was beginning to relax when the off lead dog discovered someone’s discarded lunch and decided he would finish what they hadn’t wanted. I initially tried calling him away, but surprise surprise I was not as exciting as whatever the hell had been left – don’t ask I don’t know and wouldn’t eat it!! So I went over to encourage him with a gentle pull on his collar. However with a gentle pull the collar came off.

I must admit I panicked slightly. Luckily the mess on the floor held his attention while I snuck up behind him and managed to sort of hoopla his head with the collar. However a second attempt at moving him along, soft tug on the collar with a gentle nudge from behind (while keeping second dog clear of the lunch) had little effect. I couldn’t pull too hard without running the risk of the collar coming off a second time. I was now worrying what was he eating, what effects would it have and so I gave him a slightly stronger shove and proceeded to stand over the lunch pushing his head away. He took the hint and bounded off across the car park to go and say hello to the big shiny black car which was reversing towards him. I screamed the dog’s name, which he ignored, and ran across the car park flapping my arms like some sort of idiot hoping the driver would notice and stop – he did. But my run, flap, scream technique also attracted the attention of all my co-workers and the dog’s owner, my big boss!

Since then, whenever a dog has needed a walk I insist on having them all leashed no matter how ‘good’ they are. Lesson learnt. The next incident happened with a different dog; he has a tendancy for running off and so does not get out of the door without a long leash. We were quite happily walking along him sniffing the sniffs, me stressing about my work load, until he spotted a rabbit at the far side of the car park. He took off with me following after him… across rough ground…. with heels on. He was still on the end of the leash, barking his head off and pulling determinedly after the retreating rabbit. We turned the corner and I was pleased to see that the rabbit had vanished and so we continued with the walk. Until we discovered the hiding place of said rabbit and then all hell broke loose.

I screamed as the frightened rabbit panicked and jumped, landing on top of a very startled dog who didn’t quite know what to do as the object of the chase had so easily given itself up. I froze and said a quick prayer that the rabbit would not get eaten. It didn’t. The rabbit composed itself and hoped in the right direction away from the barking dog that decided to go bat shit crazy on the end of the lead running back and forth trying to get at it. I breathed a sigh of relief and walked round the corner into a Harris hawk which was been exercised in our car park.

The bird clocked the dog, screeched and without a moments thought for my own safely I stepped in front of the dog, grabbed it into my arms and ran full pelt into the office. Where I announced I am done walking the office dogs!

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14 thoughts on “Office Dogs

  1. Oh geeze…how scary! And how weird that the owners don’t walk their own dogs. I get that it’s supposed to be a nice way to get some exercise…but hey…it would be nicer if it was your own dog. 😦

    Most dogs are going to listen to their owners a lot better than someone they only see occasionally. Glad nothing bad happened in either instance.

  2. I love the idea of a dog friendly office. But without guidelines, it’s not always a good idea.

    I asked my boss’s permission to bring Honey to work with me when she was a puppy, to help with house training etc.

    I set out my plan, including how I would manage if one of my clients objected to meeting with me with a dog in my office. I also assured him that if Honey caused any problems I would stop bringing her with me.

    He told me that he was certain I would deal with any issues far before he felt the need to say something to me.

    I was very thankful for my boss’s confidence in me. Especially since he hates dogs.

    Unfortunately, several other people just started bringing their dogs in without laying down the ground work I did. And now there are occasional unruly dogs in the office.

    You were smart to insist on a lead. Hopefully you’ll grow in confidence and not have to face some of the silly problems you had with people who have no idea how their dogs really behave.

    I hope that despite those negative experiences you still enjoy having dogs around the office. Even if they’re not yours.

  3. Oh my goodness!!! I always get nervous when I walk someone else’s dogs. And I also get nervous if someone else walks my dogs. We have housemates and one time when one of my housemates tried to walk both dogs, Pierson’s leash broke. He was struggling to try to hold on to Maya and grab Pierson’s collar. And luck would have it that someone else with their dog was coming near. Luckily, Maya barked and I heard the barking and went out to see what was going on. From then on, only one dog could be walked at a time.

  4. I think dog friendly offices are great as long as there are a set of rules etched in stone, and I don’t think I could ever walk another person’s dog, especially my boss’. Although, no people or dogs were hurt, and that’s what really matters, it’s an adventure until someone gets hurt.

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