See Spot Run? The Dogs in the Workplace Debate
In response to employee requests, Tony Treanor, Director of Human Resources at Northwestern Counseling & Support Services (NCSS), was faced with making an important policy decision about permitting dogs at NCSS. Treanor, a pet owner himself, was open to the idea but was concerned about the consequences of allowing dogs in the workplace. For example, would all employees and clients welcome dogs at NCSS? How would people who fear or are allergic to dogs react to dogs in the workplace? Should he maintain the current unwritten policy of prohibiting dogs or should he adopt a policy permitting them? Adopting an informal “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy on dogs at work was also an option. Concerned with maintaining good employee morale, Treanor researched the issue and learned about legal issues and pros and cons of permitting dogs at work.