About Us

Doggy De-stress brings adult, well behaved dogs to your workplace to offer the most unique Health and Wellbeing service in London and sometimes further afield. Our mission, with the help of the dogs is to reduce heart rate and blood pressure, create a positive mental health benefit and spread huge smiles in the busy working environment.

The Problem

Between 2017 and 2018, 15.4 million working days were lost to work-related stress, 13% of UK workers are unhappy at work, one in three admitted to finding their work stressful, while over 10% report being dissatisfied with their work–life balance*.

Research has shown that businesses prepared to invest in their staff and focus on improving working conditions and benefits can see a notable spike in employees who are happier at work—something which our evidence suggests employers are beginning to recognise and encourage. Yoga, massage and free fruit are the usual go-to benefits to begin that work, but now it’s time to add something completely unique to that list!

*Health & Safety Executive – work related stress

Our dogs in your office

For just over two hours we will bring three dogs from our team of fourteen into a safe enclosed space such as a meeting or conference room. We will help make sure the room is suitable, but you can see the guidelines we work to on our FAQ page.

We’ll arrive up to forty five minutes before the agreed session start time to set up the room and settle the dogs. Thereafter for two hours your staff have the opportunity to rotate in groups of up to ten people to spend time with the dogs in fifteen minute sessions. The dogs (and humans!) ask for an additional fifteen minute break in the middle.

Our dogs may be excitable when we first arrive but they settle down quickly to create a sense of calm and a relaxed and chilled environment. They know their job is to de-stress you and ultimately they are in your office so that you can benefit from the science behind dog therapy. It’s not Doggy Playtime – it’s Doggy De-stress, so if it’s a ball throwing, toy playing, mad doggy run around you’re looking for I’m afraid we’re not the wellbeing service you’re after.

Our dogs in your Uni

Exam time can be a very stressful experience, and our dogs are well experienced at chilling out students during these high pressured periods. We’ve worked with the likes of University College London, Kings College London, London School of Economics, Trinity Laban College and University of the Arts London.

It’s not just students of course, we also provide Doggy De-stress sessions for staff.

Take a look at a recent BBC article about dogs and student stress which highlights how powerful our dogs can be.

Our dogs at your event

We’ve provided many sessions during conferences, away days and reward events. As long as we have an enclosed area in a calm environment we will provide the ultimate Doggy De-stress break-out session for attendees.

Our dogs are the perfect ice breaker and our de-stress sessions provide a fantastic team bonding experience.

Our dogs

The Doggy De-stress team is made up of adult, well behaved, hand picked mature dogs. Breeds include Labradors, Retrievers, Labradoodles and one very cute Sproodle! All have good basic obedience and love the work they do. We do not use puppies due to welfare issues and we do not mix random breeds. Our dogs are chosen for their calming talents to ensure you have the best therapeutic experience possible. Their welfare is paramount.

Our humans

Doggy De-stress has been running since 2016 and is the creation of Rob and Mel. Both have worked for Guide Dogs and Rob has also worked for the RSPCA at a corporate level. Through their careers they’ve witnessed the power of being around dogs, especially in a busy working environment. Both are well experienced in dog handling and the welfare of the dogs will always be their paramount concern.

The science

Multiple scientific studies indicate that dogs are powerful forms of stress relief, lowering not only blood pressure and heart rate but also harmful stress hormones like cortisol, which is associated with depression and anxiety, and elevating beneficial ones like oxytocin, which is linked to happiness and relaxation. Some people experienced increased output of endorphins and dopamines after just five minutes with a dog.

Just the presence of our dogs in your workplace distracts from the daily grind for a short amount of time, creates a talk-about factor and produces smiles wider than you’ve seen before.

You can find various recent scientific studies here:

Stress reduction benefits from petting dogs, cats – Washington University Study.

Using Therapy Dogs to Reduce Stress and Improve Emotional Well-Being in Vulnerable Individuals.

BBC News: Student stress and dogs.