No matter what type of work you do, jobs these days tend to be pretty intense, with short deadlines and high expectations contributing to higher stress levels and unhappiness among employees. One great way to counter the negative effects of job stress is to allow dogs in the workplace.

Dog-Friendly Workplaces have Happier Employees

New research from consumer group NimbleFins shows that employees in companies that allow dogs are in fact happier versus dog-free workplaces. Specifically, employees in dog-friendly workplaces rate their companies 0.5 point higher on a scale of 1 to 5, according to data gathered from Glassdoor.

How Dogs Improve the Work Environment

Stress is not only bad for your health, but it can also reduce productivity at work. This is because brains don’t work well when they’re stressed – brains are most productive when they’re energized but calm.

Interacting with a dog can actually reduce stress levels and facilitate a calmer, more productive state of mind from a neurological point of view. According to a report from Harvard Medical School interacting with a dog reduces mental stress, which researchers attribute to lower levels of the stress hormone cortisol. And petting a dog releases serotonin, which can help boost creativity.

Dog-Friendly UK Companies

With Bring Your Dog to Work Day coming up on 21 June, NimbleFins wanted to find companies that are dog friendly all year long. After scouring job sites and rating companies, they identified over 70 companies that are dog friendly in the UK. From this batch, they selected the companies that both allow employees to bring dogs and have the best employee ratings:

When Dogs are an Integral Part of a Company

When dogs are allowed at work, they often become a highlight of the office. For example:

In addition, Twinkl even takes care to ensure office dogs are healthy, allowing employees to bring pets as long as they’re “pawthorised” by checking they’re insured and up to date with their jabs.

Even Large Employers are Dog Friendly

UKFast, a hosting provider than employs more than 200 people, is one of the larger dog friendly companies. CEO Lawrence Jones said: “A year or two ago, we noticed a number of dogs joining us in the office from day to day. They were no trouble, and we quickly realised how much of an energy boost they brought. People light up when they see a pet sleeping under someone’s desk! Whilst it would be easy to assume that dogs become a huge distraction from the work that needs to be done, there is absolutely no doubt in my mind that having them around improves people’s moods and boosts productivity.”

If your employer is wary about allowing dogs into the workplace, just ask if they’d like less stressed, more creative employees.