Just like starting your first day at work, bringing a pet into the workplace for the first time can be scary… And it’s normal and perfectly fine to worry a little. Hopefully, this post will help you feel better about your dog or cat first day in the office 😬
Do Cats and Dogs get along?
Yes, Cats and Dogs can get along with each other excellently. It’s easier if they have grown up together rather than introducing them later on in life. But don’t rush things along, It’s best to introduce them slowly. Your cat and dog can become friends.
Firstly you will need to find a safe area for the cat, where the dog cannot reach. It’s best to introduce the cat into the office first and let the cat familiarises with the surroundings. Give the cat a promotion. naturally, they like to rest and hide in high places, let the cat feel comfortable on your desk, rather than the floor.
Introducing new pets will usually be unsettling for both the dog and cat. You can help this transition by Introducing them both together slowly. Maybe start by allowing the animals to see each other through glass windows, different rooms, and different areas of the office. The cat and dog need to start with seeing and smelling each other safely. Take extra care when introducing kittens because they have more youthful energy. Especially take more care when introducing terriers to kittens! Some owners like to crate train their dogs. This is a good idea in case you need to calm your dog down. Dogs can get overwhelmed.
What is an office scent swap?
A scent swap is when you find objects belonging to your pet, and swap them with items belonging to another pet. Both cats and dogs rely on smell for communication. When thinking about introducing pets into the workplace, it’s an excellent idea to temporarily swap pet bedding for a week or so. This way, the cat and dog can familiarise themselves subconsciously with each other, allowing for more ease when meeting.
Scent swapping doesn’t just apply to items, it can also apply to areas in the office as well. Let your pets walk around and smell different areas where different pets have been. Do this when the other pets are not present.
The first encounter
Make sure the cat has a direct ’emergency exit’ back to her bed which should be high up, preferably on a desk.
A dogs tail can be a big giveaway to how the dog is feeling, more information on this can be found here. If your dog gets excited easily, it’s best to take your dog on a long walk first, to calm him down.
when the cat and dog are meeting, make sure the dog does not chase the cat. The dog may mean well, however, the cat does not know this and will feel threatened. Resulting in remembering the danger for a long time to come – making the introduction of the cat and dog much more difficult in the future.
Until your dog is very comfortable with the cat and they are best of colleagues, It’s best to keep your dog on a lead, these retractable leads are very good because you decide how much leeway your canine will get. Reward the dog for calm and relaxed behaviour. It may take several months for the dog and cat to become friendly acquaintances. So until then, never leave the cat and dog together unattended.
Most cats like to spend time ‘watching’ and won’t rush things when it comes to approaching a dog. Don’t force anything, cat’s are great at scratching and biting humans and dogs if they panic and feel threatened.
Keep these initial interactions short at first and always try to end on a positive note. If your pets appear frightened, just keep them apart for a while but continue scent swapping. The more short meetings, the higher confidence and reduced excitement from the dog.
Dogs and Cats are both very different. But with persistence from you and your colleagues, hopefully, most of the cats and dogs in your workplace become friends, if not friendly acquaintances! Cats and dogs make great workplace pets.