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Katie Hill
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Operation Kindness – North Texas’ original and largest no-kill animal care and adoption center — is encouraging businesses in the Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex to celebrate National Take Your Dog to Work Dayâ all summer long with a Work Paws Playdate. Allowing employees a chance to step out of the office to interact with adorable, adoptable animals enhances employee health and productivity. Take Your Dog To Work Day was established in 1999 by Pet Sitters International to celebrate the great companions dogs make and promote their adoptions.

As a part of the Work Paws Playdate program, Operation Kindness will bring socialized puppies, dogs and sometimes kittens to any local workplace. This unique program treats humans to a “Cuteness Break,” featuring playtime with adoptable pets and “fur therapy” of dog kisses and cat purrs – ensuring employees will return to work rejuvenated and ready to take on the rest of their day. Playdates are limited and arranged on a first come, first serve basis. Operation Kindness requests a donation to help fund medical and general care expenses.

“We could not have asked for a better way to relieve the stress of our busy season. According to many of our staff, having the puppies and kittens run around our office made it ‘The best day of work ever!’” said Debbie Ames, director of Human Resources for Goldin Peiser & Peiser, LLP, who recently arranged a Work Paws Playdate for her office.

Recent studies have shown that interaction with animals has many proven benefits that can help boost productivity and morale in the workplace, including:

  • The lowering of blood pressure, serum triglycerides and cholesterol levels by exposure to animals
  • Increased production of neurochemicals in the brain associated with relaxation and bonding, which also improve immune system functioning
  • Increased dopamine and endorphins associated with happiness, coupled with decreased levels of stress hormones such as cortisol following a 30-minute interaction with a dog, provide stress-relieving benefits that allow employees to become more relaxed and in turn return to work more productive. 

For companies unable to host animals at their place of business, they can visit the Operation Kindness campus for a volunteer day that includes walking dogs, playing with kittens and projects around the facility.  

Operation Kindness does not receive government funding and relies solely on funds from donations and corporate sponsorships to care for homeless animals. Since 1976, Operation Kindness has saved more than 90,000 dogs and cats. Each life saved by Operation Kindness costs an average of $398 to provide comprehensive care before adoption; in some cases, the costs are higher for animals that have been injured and require lifesaving surgeries.

Last year alone, Operation Kindness was able to save the lives and find forever homes for 4,566 animals. The on-site medical hospital provided care to 4,887 animals; performed 2,875 spay/neuter surgeries, 20,656 exams and 250 medical surgeries; gave more than $100,000 worth of medicine; and provided more than 292,000 meals. To help Operation Kindness save more lives in 2017, employees can join together to raise funds needed to provide lifesaving medical services by creating a Companies Who Care fundraising campaign with TXT-2-Give by texting “give” to 972-441-7708.

Companies across the Metroplex are welcome to learn more about how they can become involved in Operation Kindness’ Companies Who Care program by visiting www.OperationKindness.org.

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