About Us

Doggy De-stress brings adult, well behaved dogs to your workplace to offer the most unique Mental 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

Covid-19. That’s of course the biggest issue at the moment. Nothing has affected mental health more than this pandemic. Whilst businesses continue planning for what the workplace looks like in the future, staff are in a challenging situation of uncertainty. Mental health has suffered because of lockdown, changes in working practices and the obvious personal worry and concerns that the virus can bring.

No one knows what the coming months hold, but one thing is for sure – mental health and wellbeing in the workplace is going to be at the forefront of every employers back to work list.

Previous to the pandemic, 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. Nothing is more important than security, confidence and happiness in the workplace at the moment. 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!

Our dogs in your office

Before the pandemic, for just over two hours we brought three dogs from our team of fourteen into a safe enclosed space such as a meeting or conference room.

Times have changed, but the core of our service remains the same. We may limit numbers of dogs and we now follow strict COVID-19 guidelines, but ultimately staff will still have the opportunity to rotate in small groups to spend time with the dogs and benefit from their calming and cuddly nature.

Our dogs 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.

We will now tailor the session and location completely to your new COVID-19 needs. We have new Terms and Conditions and a thorough Risk Assessment to ensure everyone is safe.

Our dogs in your Uni

Visiting Universities was an important part of our service. COVID-19 will change that and whilst we will try to accommodate your requests, it may be that during the pandemic we will not be able to visit these locations for various reasons.

Don’t let that stop you getting in touch though!

Previous to the pandemic we were proud to work with the following establishments.

Our dogs at your event

Workplace events may become a huge part of your working life. Perhaps you will now be spending the majority of your time at home, but visiting the office once or twice a week for a catch up or meetings.

We can help with those days when staff return by providing something different and welcoming. Doggy De-stress will find a way to liven up the return to work.

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.

During the pandemic we will be significantly reducing the dogs we use.

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.