Wayfinding and city signage
Becoming a pet-friendly place
Did you know: Almost 40 percent of U.S. households have at least one dog and a third of U.S. households have at least one cat. Altogether, that’s 164.6 million animals. Those pets don’t just stay home, though. Many pet owners enjoy taking their animals with them when they run errands and some of them can even take their pets with them to work. These days, a good number of businesses are taking notice—using pet-friendly work environments to help employees de-stress and enhance the recruitment pool.In Germany, pets are particularly welcome at places of business with the exception of establishments that sell fresh food. In fact, pets can pretty much go wherever their owners go—even most government offices. Can you imagine how convenient that might be for pet owners in your community? Not that you would be the next pet store, but you would definitely be a welcome stop and preferred place of employment among people who enjoy taking their animals with them.

Adopting a pet-friendly policy
Think it’s just the Germans? Nope! In 2009, Knoxville, Tennessee was voted the most dog-friendly city in the southeast region by Dog Fancy magazine. The city recommends starting slowly, allowing pets on certain days or during certain business hours. Maybe it means only allowing them into certain parts of your facility, limiting pet size or the maximum number of pets at any given time.

A pet-friendly policy can be customer-facing or staff-facing. Currently, 17 percent of workplaces allow employees to bring their animals to the office with them due in part to a number of studies showing the relaxing and even therapeutic nature of interactions with animals. This might be an idea to consider if you work in a high-stress environment like Jone Bouman does. Jone is the director of communications at the American Humane Association film and TV office in Los Angeles, California. Her Lhasa Apso terrier mix Twigden accompanies her to work every day. “He makes me utterly happy,” she says. “And,” she notes, “I’ve actually seen the faces of people in my office relax and their shoulders go down whenever they pick him up for a hug or he trots into their office for a visit.”

We recognize a pet-friendly policy isn’t for everyone and it will take serious consideration and buy-in should you venture down that “ruff” path. Some people have allergies or even fears of animals. There’s also a fair amount of extra work that comes with allowing pets. But, if you decide that the benefits outweigh the disadvantages, below are some basic starting guidelines for your new pet policy.

Make these rules and the others you agree upon very clear to your staff, visitors and returning customers.

  • Animals have to be friendly and obedient.
  • They must be on-leash at all times.
  • They must also be house-trained.
  • Require animals to be up to date on shots and vaccines.

Promote the policy
Pet owners aren’t going to know about the switch unless you tell them. That’s why it’s important to talk about the change you’re making, and help visitors and staff understand the rules governing your pet-friendly environment going forward.

  • Post a sign. Publicize the news with a sidewalk sign so passersby with pooches know they’re welcome.
  • Then, post the policy. To ensure that you’re covering all of your proverbial bases, hang a poster in a place immediately inside your facility so people know what to expect and what’s permitted.
  • Provide water. Place a water bowl just outside your door, or if it’s cold outside, just inside the threshold so your new four-legged visitors are able to quench their thirst if they need to.
  • Plan for accidents. Becoming pet-friendly also means planning for, well, accidents. Set up a readily accessible station of cleaning supplies, just in case. Think paper towels, disinfecting wipes, hand sanitizer and disposable pet bags.
  • Encourage good pet ownership. Keep pet health slide guides and/or a pet health guides and record keepers in a highly-trafficked area and let people know they’re free to take.
  • Cater to cats, too. Have a few pet brushes on-hand for feline pet owners who visit with their kitties in tow.
  • Reward good behavior. Train staff to recognize a good-mannered animal when they see one. Allow staff to have treats so as to reward those models of good behavior—and thank their owners, too!

Pet-friendly business and workplaces are on the rise in the United States—you, too, can be one of them!

“U.S. Pet Ownership Statistics.” U.S. Pet Ownership Statistics : The Humane Society of the United States. The Humane Society of the United States, 12 Aug. 2011. Web. 05 Nov. 2012.

“Pets in Germany.” How To Germany – Pets in Germany. How to Germany, n.d. Web. 05 Nov. 2012.

“Becoming a Pet Friendly Business.” Pet Friendliest Community | Becoming a Pet Friendly Business. Pet Friendliest Community, 2009. Web. 05 Nov. 2012.

Afzal, Sara. “Is Your Office Going to the Dogs?” Is Your Office Going to the Dogs? Five Top Dog-friendly Employers. – American Humane Association – CSMonitor.com. The Christian Science Monitor, n.d. Web. 5 Nov. 2012.

January
Monthly
Apple and Apricots Month
Artichoke and Asparagus Month
Bath Safety Month
Be Kind to Food Servers Month
Birth Defects Month
Book Blitz Month
California Dried Plum Digestive Month
Carnival Season
Celebration of Life Month
Cervical Cancer Screening Month
Financial Wellness Month
Get Organized Month
International Change Your Stars Month
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International New Year’s Resolution Month for Business
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National Be On-Purpose Month
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National Glaucoma Awareness Month
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National Mail Order Gardening Month
National Mentoring Month
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Oatmeal Month
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Self-help Group Awareness Month
Self-Love Month
Shape Up US Month
Tubers and Dried Fruit Month
Thyroid Awareness Month
Weekly
New Year’s Resolutions Week: 1-4
Celebration of Life Week: 1-7
Diet Resolution Week:1-7
Silent Record Week: 1-7
Someday We’ll Laugh About This Week: 2-8
Women’s Self Empowerment Week: 5-9
Elvis’ Birthday Celebration Week: 5-8
Home Office Safety and Security Week: 6-12
National Lose Weight/Feel Great Week: 6-13 KidFilm Festival: 7-27
Universal Letter Writing Week: 8-14
National No-Tillage Week Conference: 9-12
Cuckoo Dancing Week: 11-17 
National Vocation Awareness Week: 14-International Snowmobile Safety and Awareness Week: 13-1920
National Soccer Coaches of America Week: 16-20
National Fresh Squeezed Juice Week: 17-23
Sundance Film Festival: 17-27
Week of Christian Unity: 18-25
Bald Eagle Appreciation Days: 19-20
Clean Out Your Inbox Week: 20-26
Healthy Weight Week: 20-26
Hunt for Happiness Week: 20-26
National Nurse Anesthetists Week: 20-26
National Handwriting Analysis Week: 20-26
International Printing Week: 21-26
No Name Calling Week: 21-25
National Take Back Your Time Week: 21-25
National Activity Professionals Week: 22-28
World Leprosy Week: 27-2/2
Catholic Schools Week: 27-2/2
Meat Week: 27-2/3
National Cowboy Poetry Gathering Week: 28-2/2
National Medical Group Practice Week: 28-2/2
International Hoof Care Week: 29-2/1
US National Snow Sculpting Week: 1/30-2/3
Daily
1: New Years Day
1: Copyright Law Day
1: Ellis Island Day
1: Euro Day
1: Global Family Day
1: First Foot Day
1: Mummer’s Parade
1: New Year’s Dishonor List Day
1: Odd Day
1: Polar Bear Plunge or Swim Day
1: Saint Basil’s Day
1: Z Day
1: Rose Bowl Game
1: Tournament of the Roses Parade Day
2: National Buffet Day
2: Earth at Perihelion
2: Happy Mew Year for Cats Day
2: National Motivation and Inspiration Day
2: National Personal Trainer Awareness Day
2: 55-MPH Speed Limit Day
3: Drinking Straw Day
3: J.R.R Tolkien Day
3: Memento Mori “Remember you Die” Day
3: National Chocolate Covered Cherry Day
4: Dimpled Chad Day
4: Pop Music Chart Day
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5: Bean Day
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6: Epiphany or Twelfth Night
6: Three Kings Day
7: Harlem Globetrotter’s Day
7: I’m not Going to Take it Anymore Day
7: International Programmers’ Day
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7: “Thank God It’s Monday” Day
8: Argyle Day
8: Bubble Bath Day
8: Earth’s Rotation Day
8: National English Toffee Day
8: Midwife’s Day or Women’s Day
8: National Joy Germ Day
8: Show and Tell Day at Work
8: War on poverty Day
9: Balloon Ascension Day
9: National Static Electricity Day
9: Panama’s Martyr Day
10: National Cut Your Energy Costs Day
10: League of Nations Day
11: Cigarettes are Hazardous to Your Heath Day
11: Learn your Name in Morse Code Day
11: National Human Trafficking Awareness Day
12: Fruitcake Toss Day
12: Miss America Pageant
13: Public Radio Broadcasting Day
13: Rubber Duckie Day
13: Stephen Foster Day
14: Caesarean Section Day
14: Dress Up Your Pet Day
14: National Clean Off Your Desk Day
14: Organize Your Home Day
14: Ratification Day
15: Humanitarian Day
16: Appreciate A Dragon Day
16: Nothing Day
16: Robert E. Lee Day
16: Religious Freedom Day
17: Cable Car Day
17: Get to Know Your Customers Day
17: Hot Heads Chili Days
17: Judgment Day
17: Kid Inventors’ Day
18: Pooh (Winnie the Pooh) Day
18: Thesaurus Day
18: National Sanctity of Human Life Day (or Pro-Life Day)
17-18: Women in Blue Jeans Day
18: International Fetish Day
19: Popcorn Day
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20: Camcorder Day
20: Inauguration Day (traditional)
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20: World Religion Day
21: Inauguration Day (observed)
21: National Hugging Day
21: AFRMA Fancy Rat & Mouse Day
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22: Answer Your Cats Questions Day
22: Celebration of Life Day
22: Rid the World of Fad Diets and Gimmicks Day
22: Roe vs. Wade Day
23: National Handwriting Day
23: National Pie Day
23: Snowplow Mailbox Hockey Day
24: Belly Laugh Day
24: Beer Can Day
24: National Compliment Day
24: National Peanut Brittle Day
24: Rabi’I
24: Talk Like a Grizzled Prospector Day
24: Women’s Healthy Weight Day
25: A Room of One’s Own Day
25: Fun at Work Day
25: Macintosh Computer Day
25: National Pre-School Fitness Day
26: Lotus 1-2-3 Day
26: National Peanut Brittle Day
26: National Seed Swap Day
26: Toad Hollow Day of Encouragement
26: Tu B’shuvat
27: Auschwitz Liberation Day
27: Holocaust Memorial Day
27: International Day of Commemoration in Memory of the Victims of the Holocaust
27: Thomas Crapper Day
27: Viet Nam Peace Day
27: World Leprosy Day
28: Data Privacy Day
28: National Kazoo Day
28: Bubble Wrap Appreciation Day
28: Thank a Plugin Developer Day
29: Curmudgeons Day
29: Freethinkers Day
29: National Puzzle Day
29: Seeing Eye Dog Day
29: Thomas Paine Day
30: Inane Answering Message Day
31: Appreciate Your Social Security Check Day
31: Inspire Your Heart with Art Day
February
Monthly
Adopt a Rescued  Rabbit Month
AMD/Low Visions Awareness Month
American Heart Month
Avocado and Banana Month
Bake for Family Fun Month
Beans (Dried and Fresh Month)
Dog Training Education Month
Exotic Vegetables and Star Fruit Month
February is Fabulous Florida Strawberry Month
From Africa to Virginia Month
Grapefruit Month
International Boost Self Esteem Month
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Jobs in Golf Month
Library Lovers Month
Marfan Syndrome Awareness Month
Marijuana Awareness Month
National African American History Month
National Bird Feeding Month
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National Care about your Indoor Air Month
National Cherry Month
National Condom Month
National Children’s Dental Health Month
National Hot Breakfast Month
National Laugh-Friendly Month
National Mend a Broken Heart Month
National Parent Leadership Month
National Pet Dental Health Month
National Teen Dating Violence Awareness Month
National Time Management Month
National Weddings Month
Pent Dental Health Month
Plant the Seeds of Greatness Month
Pull Your Sofa Off the Wall Week
Relationship Wellness Month
Responsible Pet Owner’s Month
Return Shopping Carts to the Supermarket Month
Spay/Neuter Awareness Month
Spunky Old Broads Month
Sweet Potato Month
Wise Health Care Consumer Month
Worldwide Renaissance of the Heart Month
Youth Leadership Month
Lent: 13-3/30
Weekly
Solo Diners Eat Out Weekend: 1-7
Women’s Heart Week: 1-7
Boy Scout Anniversary Week: 3-9
Children’s Authors & Illustrators Week: 3-9
Dump Your Significant Jerk Week: 3-9
Freelance Writers Appreciation Week: 3-9
Intimate Apparel Week: 4-8
International Networking Week: 4-8
International Friendship Week: 4-8
National School Counseling Week: 4-8
Congenital Heart Defect Awareness Week: 7-14
Have a Heart for a Chained Dog Week: 7-14
Risk Awareness Week: 7-14
Love Makes the World Go Round; But, Laughter Keeps Us From Getting Dizzy Week: 8-14 
Celebration of Love Week: 10-16
Children of Alcoholics Week: 10-16
Jell-o Week: 10-16
Love a Mench Week: 10-16
Random Acts of Kindness Week: 10-16
National Green Week: 11-17
World AG Expo: 12-14
World Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy Awareness Week: 13-19
National Condom Week: 14-21
National NestboxWeek: 14-21
NCCDP Alzheimer’s and Dementia Awareness Week: 14-21
Great Backyard Bird Count: 15-17
National Date Week: 15-24
National Entrepreneurship Week: 16-23
National Future Farmers of America Week: 16-23
Brotherhood / Sisterhood Week: 17-23
Build A Better Trade Show Image Week: 17-23
National Engineers Week: 17-23
National Justice for Animals Week: 17-23
National Conference on Education: 21-23
Read Me Week: 21-25
Texas Cowboy Poetry Week: 22-24
National Eating Disorders Awareness Week: 24-3/2
National Secondhand Wardrobe Week: 24-3/2
Telecommuter Appreciation Week: 25-3/4
Peace Corps Week: 27-3/3
Daily
1: Bubble Gum Day
1: Car Insurance Day
1: G.I. Joe Day
1: Hula in the Coola Day
1: Give Kids a Smile Day
1: Freedom Day
1: Robinson Crusoe Day
1: Spunky Old Broads Day
1: Wear Red Day
2: Candelmas
2: Crepe Day or La Chandeleur
2: Groundhog Day
2: Ice Cream for Breakfast Day
2: Marmot Day
2: Groundhog Job Shadow Day
2: Hedgehog Day
2: Imbolic
2: Sled Dog Day
2: Take Your Child to the Library Day
2: World Play Your Ukulele Day
2: World Wetlands Day
3: Four Chaplains Memorial Day
3: The Day the Music Died
3: Dump Your Significant Jerk Day
3: Super Bowl XLVII
4: Liberace Day
4: Quacker Day
4: USO Day
4: World Cancer Day
5: Move Hollywood & Broadway to Lebanon, PA
5: Weatherman’s [Weatherperson’s] Day
5: Western Monarch Day
5: World Nutella® Day
5: African American Coaches Day
6: Digital Learning Day
6: National Girls & Women in Sports Day
7: Ballet Day
7: “e” Day
7: Black HIV/Aids Awareness Day
7: Wave All Your Fingers at Your Neighbor’s Day
8: Boy Scout Anniversary Day
8: Laugh and Get Rich Day
8: Opera Day
8: Tu B’ Shvat
9: National Stop Bullying Day 
9: Read in the Bathtub Day
10: Chinese New Year
10: Man Day
10: Plimsoll Day
10-12: Shrovetide
10: World Marriage Day
11: Be Electrific Day
11: Pro Sports Wives Day
11: National Shut-in Visitation Day
11: Satisfied Staying Single Day
11: White Shirt Day
11: Clean out Your Computer Day
11-12: Westminster Dog Show
12: Extraterrestrial Culture Day
12: Extraterrestrial Visitor Day
12: Darwin Day
12: International Pancake Day
12: Pancake Day
12: Mardi Gras
12: Paczki Day
12: Shrove Tuesday
12: Lincoln’s Birthday
12: NAACP Day
12: Oglethorpe Day
12: Paul Bunyan Day
12: Safety Pup Day
13: Ash Wednesday
13: Employee Legal Awareness Day
13: Get a Different Name Day
13: Madly In Love with Me Day
14: Ferris Wheel Day
14: Frederick Douglass Day
14: Pet Theft Awareness Day
14: Library Lovers Day
14: National Have a Heart Day
14: National Condom Day
14: World Congenital Heart Defect Awareness Day
14: League of Women Voters Day
14: National Women’s Hearth Day
14: National Call in Single Day
14: National Donor Day
14: Race Relations Day
14: Quirky Alone Day
14: Valentine’s Day
14: World Marriage Day
15: Lupercalia
15: Remember the Maine Day
15: Susan B. Anthony Day
15: National Gum Drop Day
16: Innovation Day
16: Kyoto Protocol Day
17: My Way Day
17: National PTA Founders Day
17: World Human Spirit Day
18: Battery Day
18: Cow Milked While Flying in an Airplane Day
18: Pluto Day
18: Presidents Day
19: Chocolate Mint Day
19: Iwo Jima Day
19: Single Tasking Day
20: Love Your Pet Day
20: Northern Hemisphere Hoodie Hoo Day
20: World Day for Social Justice
21: International Mothers Language Day
21: Introduce a Girl to Engineering Day
21” Ta’Anit Esther
22: National Margarita Day
22: Woolworth’s Day
22: World Thinking Day
22: George Washington’s Birthday
23: Curling is Cool Day
23: Diesel Engine Day
23: Iwo Jima Day (Flag Raised)
23: International Sword Swallowers
23: Open that Bottle Night
23: Purim
24: Academy Awards Night
24: Daytona 500
26: National Personal Chef’s Day
26: For Pete’s Sake Day
26: Levi Strauss Day
26: Spay Day USA
27: Inconvenience Yourself Day
28: Floral Design Day
28: National Chili Day
28: National Tooth Fairy Day
28: Rare Disease Day
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