'Dog days' are every day at this Jacksonville business

Cathedral Arts Project welcomes four-legged friends to office daily

By Crystal Moyer - Traffic/reporter, Francine Frazier - Senior web producer

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - Work life can be “ruff” some days, but one Jacksonville business has taken a bite out of boredom by making every day “bring your dog to work day.”

For the rest of us, Friday was the annual bring your furry friend to work day, which is in its 20th year celebrating dogs and promoting adoptions

For Cathedral Arts Project in downtown Jacksonville, four-legged companions are always welcome at the office.

"We've had dogs sitting in on staff meetings at the head of the table. It looks like they're giving input. It's a lot of fun,” said Elyse Card, vice president of finance and administration for Cathedral Arts Project.

Card's dog, Penny Lane, was with her Friday, along with four-legged pals Ewok and Blue. Card said allowing employees to bring their pups to work has some added benefits.

"It makes people feel better, if they're working a longer day to know they can bring their dog in and not have to worry about it,” Card said. “Or just have a buddy in the office when you're trying to get the job done."

Employees said the pups bring a paw-sitive influence to the office. To be safe, they make sure all pets are vaccinated, and that the employees aren't allergic and are comfortable with dogs in the office.

“It seems like there's way less stress” said Cenetta Baker, the company's executive assistant to development and finance. “They're way nicer for our guests (and) people's mental health.”

Baker is anything but biased. She doesn't have a dog and was actually afraid of them as a child. She said she has no problem working with them now.

"It does great things for my morale,” she said, smiling.

Except for the occasional bark.

"There's some that have little tiny dogs, and those tend to yip yap,” Baker said.

And the clean-up jobs.

"The glass doors were clean this morning,” Card said. “Now we got a lot of slobber.”

Card and her crew said spotting treats, toys and bowls will continue to be the norm at Cathedral Arts, where “dog days” are every day.

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