Pack some Milkbones in the lunchbox and put a doggie bowl down by the water cooler, because Friday is Pet Sitters International’s Take Your Dog To Work Day®!

While some of us are lucky enough to work from home with our furry secretaries by our sides, or have employers that understand the benefit of allowing Fido to visit the workplace from time-to-time, most Americans are forced to leave their dogs behind during the work week. Thankfully, Pet Sitters International (PSI) created an event that gives humans the opportunity to take their canine companions with them to work one day (or week) a year — in the name of supporting pet adoptions and furry friendships.

As I mentioned in my last post, adding a dog or cat to the family has a whole host of benefits, from reducing stress and anxiety to encouraging physical activity and social interaction. (And, of course, there’s the not-to-be-overlooked humor factor and viral video potential.) But somehow, despite all these benefits, intake at animal shelters continues to persist at a startling rate — with an estimated six to eight million cats and dogs entering shelters in the United States each year.

In order to help put these deserving dogs and cats to work — as loving companions for humans from coast to coast — Pet Sitters International created Take Your Dog To Work Day® (TYDTWDay). The event encourages employers to experience the joys of pets in the workplace for one day to support their local pet community, and help promote local adoptions. PSI feels that through the events, non-pet owners are able to witness the special bond their co-workers have with their pets firsthand and be encouraged to adopt a new best friend of their own.

An estimated 300 businesses participated in the inaugural celebration of TYDTWDay in 1999. Since that time, America’s love affair with pets and interest in TYDTWDay has grown to an all-time high. So if you own a business, or think your employer might be open to the idea, participating in TYDTWDay is a fantastic opportunity to help spread the word about adopting from local shelters, or even raise a little money to help local pets in need!

For more information, or to download a copy of the 2012 TYDTWDay Participant Action Pack (which contains a sample “dogs at work” policy, tips for planning your event and additional resources to help make your TYDTWDay event a success) visit