At Care Housing Association (Care) we want tenants to enjoy their homes and be able to make lifestyle choices. Several of our tenants have pets themselves – from dogs and cats to an African grey parrot – while many others enjoy pets visiting with friends or coming to work with support staff.
Last month Care issued our Pets Policy, which can be viewed here. A few weeks after doing so we were delighted to receive this unexpected feedback by email from an online researcher for animal charity Blue Cross:
Blue Cross are one of the leading animal charities in the UK and I was carrying out some research into pet friendly accommodation across the country and came across your pet policy. Whoever wrote it, deserves huge credit. The reason being is not only do you mention about the owner and their responsibilities, but more importantly the welfare of the animal which is often overlooked. You have certainly done your homework, please pass on my comments.
We understand that time with pets can significantly enhance wellbeing. A wonderful example of this has been shared by a parent of one of our tenants and the support manager where he lives: We started a bring your dog to work scheme when lockdown started this year and Alexander had to shield. Alexander struggles to engage with a lot of activities and we didn’t want him to get depressed or start to lose his skills and motivation. We tried several sensory activities with him which were hit and miss depending on his mood. The dogs however always cheered him up. Alexander engaged with stroking them and getting kisses. He seemed to recognise them as friends and get excited with their presence. It also helped a lot with staff morale which was affected during this awful year. This obviously helped Alexander as people are better at their job when they’re happy. And for those who don’t have dogs (like me) it was lovely.
We’ve had a few canine visitors to our office as well. Several of our staff team have, or sometimes look after, dogs. They definitely increased team morale, though perhaps not productivity… Looks like Ella, below, was after a job!
We also understand that irresponsible pet ownership can cause nuisance to other tenants and staff, and/or suffering for the animals. It is, therefore, essential for measures to be in place that enable tenants to keep pets, whilst ensuring that others, and the animals, are not adversely affected by this.
If you would like to share any feedback on this, or any part of our work, please email firstname.lastname@example.org