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Pet Food Maker Reveals ‘Most Pet Friendly Companies of 2019’

A survey says pets are beneficial to morale and can help with recruitment and employee retention.

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A new list from Wellness Natural Pet Food reveals “America’s Most Pet Friendly Companies of 2019.”

The list, being released in celebration of Take Your Dog to Work Day on June 21, is in its third year.

The top five are:

  1. Amazon (Seattle) – Amazon takes the pet-friendly office to a whole new level as there are as many as 6,000 dogs in the Seattle-based headquarters on a given day. The company has been dog-friendly since its creation but has amped up its dog-friendly culture by creating multiple dog parks, including a doggie deck, for pups to stretch their legs and providing treats at every reception desk in their buildings.
  2. Harpoon Brewery (Boston) – Featured for the second consecutive year, Harpoon Brewery welcomes dogs on a daily basis. They they can lounge in the office or explore the Boston Seaport for a walk by the water. In 2018, Harpoon hosted the first-ever “Dogtoberfest,” which allowed Boston pet parents to bring their dogs along for an afternoon of beer tasting – just for the humans, though!
  3. Trupanion (Seattle) – A leader in medical insurance for cats and dogs, Trupanion is all about pet perks for its employees, too. Dogs are frequent visitors in the office, so the company has a team of in-house dog walkers to keep pooches moving as well as a pet program manager and a pet emergency team who work together to ensure that all four-legged friends are safe during the workday. Trupanion also supports pet parents by offering a pet bereavement benefit which includes three days of paid leave should their pet pass away.
  4. Ben & Jerry’s (Burlington, VT) – Employees at Ben & Jerry’s love their dogs almost as much as they love ice cream, and the office is a place where “K9-5ers” are always welcome. The company’s “Canine Culture Committee” works to ensure that the 35-40 office dogs are happy and healthy by inviting veterinarians to speak about behavior and training tips to educate pet parents. Dogs start the work day with a dog treat from the front desk on the way into the office. The only “work” they must do is enjoy plenty of play time and naps.
  5. Contently (New York) – Dogs have a permanent place on the employee roster at Contently, a content marketing platform company. On any given day pups can be found roaming the halls or curled up on conference room floors. Employees are encouraged to bond over pet parenthood through the company’s “Contently-Canines” Slack channel, where pet parents can exchange photos, ask for advice and coordinate dog-sitting when it’s needed. These pet parents have each other’s backs – and Fido’s too!

Click here to see the full list of 10 companies.

Wellness Natural Pet Food also released survey findings suggesting that:

  • 65 percent of American pet parents believe that having pets in the workplace would benefit company culture.
  • 75 percent of respondents believe that pets would diffuse a stressful situation in the workplace.
  • 59 percent feel they would get to know their colleagues better if there were pets present.
  • Nearly half of dog owners say that “pet perks” are important when considering a job offer, with one in five millennial pet parents noting specifically that being able to bring their dog to work is important when considering a job offer.

“Studies have shown how pets can have a positive impact on our own health and wellbeing – from lowering resting blood pressure to reducing stress – but now people are thinking about how those benefits translate to the work environment,” said Dr. Danielle Bernal, staff veterinarian with Wellness Natural Pet Food. “With more companies realizing that pets can improve the working experience, more are going above and beyond to cater to our new furry officemates and make sure they are happy and healthy from 9 to 5.”

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$20M Pet Nutrition Facility to Focus on Needs of Small Dogs

It will be home to 80 small dogs under 12 pounds.

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TOPEKA, KS — Hill’s Pet Nutrition held a groundbreaking ceremony for a $20 million, 25,000-square-foot nutrition facility focused on the needs of small dogs, along with a center developed for veterinarian and other pet caregiver engagement.

“Hill’s is excited to announce the expansion of our world-renowned pet nutrition center to focus on the special needs of small dogs and also to enhance our involvement with those who care for pets through the new engagement center,” said Hill’s President Jesper Nordengaard. “We are always investing in research and development to serve the nutritional needs of pets as well as learning from veterinarians, customers and caregivers through their experiences.”

The new Small Paws center will be home to 80 small dogs under 12 pounds who will benefit from nutrition developed to their unique needs. The center will be devoted to exceptional veterinary care and offer indoor and outdoor enrichment activities that the dogs can choose during the day, including an outdoor Bark Park. The engagement center will have dedicated space to host educational seminars and continuing education programs for veterinary students and professionals.

“All around the world, there’s a steady increase in the popularity of small dogs. Our investment in this specialized facility will help us develop food with the taste and aesthetics that small dogs prefer and that works best with their distinctive behaviors and unique physiology,” said Dave Baloga, vice president, science and technology, for Hill’s. “The Small Paws center will allow us to better understand their needs and discover new ways to help them lead happy, healthy lives.”

Today, more than half of dogs in the U.S. are small and miniature, and the percentage is growing, notes Hill’s, which is part of Colgate-Palmolive Co. These small dogs have distinct needs compared to their larger cousins. For example, small stomachs mean they graze throughout the day, rather than eat one or two big meals like larger dogs. And because of their higher mass-specific metabolism, pound for pound, small dogs eat more than big dogs.

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State Makes It a Crime to Have a Fake Service Animal

Violators face fines and community service.

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Alabama is instituting criminal penalties for anyone who misrepresents a pet as a service animal.

The legislation takes effect Sept. 1. It makes such representation a Class C misdemeanor that leads to a $100 fine and 100 hours of community service, Al.com reports.

Under Alabama law, only dogs and miniature horses can qualify as service animals. They have to be trained specifically to help people with disabilities — emotional support animals do not count.

The law allows for signs to be posted in public places with this wording: “Service animals are welcome. It is illegal for a person to misrepresent an animal in that person’s possession as a service animal.”

According to Al.com, Alabama is one of 25 states with laws related to misrepresentation of service animals.

Read more at Al.com

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Meet the 1 Millionth Dog to Pass AKC’s ‘Canine Good Citizen’ Test

The program stresses responsible pet ownership for owners and good manners for dogs.

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The American Kennel Club, the world’s largest purebred dog registry and leading advocate for dogs, is celebrating 1 million dogs passing the AKC Canine Good Citizen Test.

The millionth dog to pass the test was a Bernese mountain dog named Fiona who is owned by Nora Pavone from Brooklyn, NY. Fiona attended instructor Kate Naito’s CGC classes at Brooklyn’s Doggie Academy as the initial step toward her future role as a grief therapy dog in nursing homes.

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“We are very proud of Fiona and the other hundreds of thousands of dogs that have passed the CGC test,” said Mary Burch, director of the Canine Good Citizen Program. “Many of these dogs go on for additional training to make a difference in the lives of others.”

Started in 1989, AKC’s Canine Good Citizen Program is a two-part program that stresses responsible pet ownership for owners and good manners for dogs. The 10-step test consists of basic commands and actions like accepting a friendly stranger, sitting, staying, coming when called, walking through a crowd, and behaving politely around other dogs, among others. All dogs who pass the test may receive a certificate from the AKC.

“A million CGC dogs is an amazing milestone. The program has done so much good, from helping dog owners teach their pet good manners to rehabilitating dogs that have had behavioral issues,” said Doug Ljungren, executive vice president of AKC Sports & Events. “CGC instructors can be justifiably proud of the great work they have done for dogs and their owners.”

The Canine Good Citizen Program has been adopted and utilized for many activities that require basic good citizen behavior. CGC training and titles are used as a prerequisite by therapy dog groups. Many service dog organizations start their dogs with CGC training, and shelter organizations are utilizing the “CGC Ready” program to demonstrate that their rescue dogs are good citizens.

Several dog daycare facilities train dogs for the test and 4-H clubs around the country have been using CGC as a beginning dog training program. Other countries (including Korea, India, England, Australia, Japan, Hungary, Denmark, Sweden, Canada and Finland) have developed CGC programs based on the AKC’s Program.

Legislative Resolutions endorsing the CGC program as a way of teaching responsible dog ownership and canine good manners have been passed in 48 states, and police and animal control agencies use the CGC program for dealing with dog problems in communities. In addition, some homeowner’s insurance companies encourage CGC testing, and an increasing number of apartments, condos and businesses require that resident dogs pass the CGC test.

More information about the AKC Canine Good Citizen Program can be found at: https://www.akc.org/products-services/training-programs/canine-good-citizen/

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