Animal therapy sure is reaching new heights. We’ve written stories about therapy cats in nursing homes and the prison system, not to mention the ubiquitous cat cafes and cat yoga studios around the world. It almost seems like yesterday’s news. Cat World Domination really is in full swing. Next stop — The Office!
In an effort to reduce stress in the workplace, a Tokyo firm introduced its own “office cat” policy back in 2000, allowing its staff members to bring their cats to work. Hidenobu Fukuda, head of the IT firm Ferray Corporation, even gives 500 yen (about $45) a month to those who want to rescue a cat.
But Ferray Corporation (can we change its name to Furry Corporation lol?) isn’t the only place that “employs” therapy animals. Japan Oracle Corporation in Tokyo had an old English sheepdog named Heidi who, after 12 years of “service,” was given a retirement party in 2009 for her efforts. Their fourth therapy dog, Candy, even has Twitter and Instagram accounts.
In 2011, Pasona Group Inc., a staffing agency headquartered in Tokyo, recruited two female goats in 2011 to “provide comfort” to their fellow employees as well as manure to be used as fertilizer for crops in the company’s urban farm. They even have employee ID cards on their collars.
I mean, can you think of a better prescription for stress than taking a break from your computer and giving a furry animal some love (and vice versa)? I sure can’t. If you’re on the fence with this issue, this last video will definitely help you make up your mind.
Does your office “employ” cat (or dog or goat) “therapists?” If so, we want to hear from you!