Friday Funday

Working at PetSmart brings new meaning to the phrase “where pets are family.” Every Friday is ‘bring your pet to work day,’ which is the most fascinatingly hysterical experience I have ever been made witness to. A normally bustling corporate environment morphs into a four-legged jamboree that reaches out to all of your senses. It never gets old to turn a corner en route to a meeting and come face to face with a Golden Retriever scuttling along, desperately attempting to maintain traction on linoleum flooring. Visual analogy: bad dancer on ice skates. You’ll see Chihuahuas, Dalmatians, Great Danes and everything in between. There’s an enormous Bearded Dragon who wanders the aisle next to my cubicle. Meetings and conference calls adapt to a background chorus of whining and yips, and you quickly learn not to judge any offensive odors. There are ‘Oops Stations’ located throughout the campus, complete with disinfectant spray and plastic bags, to clear up any accidental deposits. Visitors to our offices often wonder why we felt it was necessary to put carpeting in our buildings, when we have so many animals coming through, but if you look closely, our carpet is strategically laid in patches (2 foot squares) that can be individually removed and replaced if soiled. Situations that might embarrass the average person, like having your dog poop in front of your senior vice president’s office, or being forcefully dragged into a doggy rear end sniffing fest, are commonplace here and nothing to be ashamed of. It’s not unusual to find yourself eating lunch with several of your team members and suddenly realize that you are completely trapped amid several interwoven leashes. Or, you might experience what I did this week, when I looked down to see that Bruno had completely chewed through his leash and was beginning to digest half of it. Luckily for me he was so delighted with his snack that he neglected to realize he was no longer restrained to the lunch table. The only rules that apply to this hoopla of a privilege are that your pet be vaccinated, leashed and non-aggressive. Of course, you may believe your pooch to be sweet as pie, but when he’s faced with 50 new members of his species, things can get a bit out of hand. Just another lesson learned. This privilege is just one of so many things I love about my job. The philosophy behind it exemplifies exactly what PetSmart stands for, and is just one more way we’ve found to keep pets and pet parents their happiest.

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