Isla from Johnsons of Whixley
Meet Isla, the 2-year-old labrador who spends her working day retrieving plant pots and begging tummy rubs!
What does your company do?
We are one of the longest established and largest commercial, wholesale nursery businesses in Europe, and a trusted supplier of plants and trees to the UK trade.
And introduce us to your workplace pet… What’s their name, and what kind of pet are they?
Isla Richardson, a Labrador, who will be aged three in December. We also have Mollie Richardson, Labrador (aged 1½) and Boo a rescue Pomapoo (aged 6).
How did they become your workplace pet?
Isla has been coming in since she was 12-weeks-old. As the family business pet she is a well-known member of our strong 100+ workforce that are spread over five different nursery sites.
What’s it like having an animal around the place?
Isla’s presence raises a smile and de-formalises what would be a commercial environment. Everybody loves her (she has four or five pit stops in the office a day where employees bring in treats for her) including our chairman, John Richardson, who brings in Digestives which are her favourite.
What made you decide to bring pets into your workplace?
So that Isla wouldn’t be on her own at home most of the day, the nursery provides a great location to exercise Isla too.
Does it have an effect on stress, and on how the whole team works together?
We believe so. Isla is always bringing a smile to someone’s face as she goes around begging for a biscuit or a belly rub or even one of her ‘crazy runs’ around the office.
Any unexpected benefits? Or, indeed, pitfalls?
We have noticed a decline in plant pots in the last two years… Isla is intent on retrieving and is rarely without a plant pot or stick, she also loves a good bin raid!
Who’s responsible for walking, feeding, cleaning… any of the ‘less popular’ jobs?
The family members at Johnsons.
Do you ever find it a distraction?
Only when she and the other office dogs, Mollie and Boo, decide to do several laps of chasing one another around the office!
What would you tell other people who were reluctant to take in an office pet?
It might not work for every office environment, but you won’t know until you try it. It certainly works for us because of the acres of land we have.
Does your office regularly house a four-legged team member? Perhaps you work from home, and have a furry - or scaly - friend who you class as a colleague, even though they don't play fair when it comes to making tea and coffee? We want to get to know your office pets and understand why they're an important part of your business.
Click here for more info or to submit your pet for our feature.
Our BQ Bulletin emails will land in your inbox at 7.30am, Monday to Friday, with a mix of the latest local business news, national news, and features to inspire you. Sign up here!
Click here to read our privacy statement