The Interior Department is poised to become the first federal agency to allow dogs at work, according to a new report.
Interior Secretary Ryan ZinkeRyan Keith ZinkeWatchdog: Trump official boosted former employer in Interior committee membership Overnight Energy & Environment — Biden makes return to pre-Trump national monument boundaries official Want to evaluate Donald Trump's judgment? Listen to Donald Trump MORE announced a trial run of the policy in an email to employees early Thursday, The Washington Post said.
The Post said the program, “Doggy Days at Interior,” will launch with test runs at the department’s Washington, D.C. headquarters on two Fridays in May and September.
“I’m taking action to establish a pilot program for Doggy Days at Interior!” Zinke reportedly said in his 9 a.m. email, which includes two photographs of him and his wife, Lolita, alongside their black-and-white Havanese, named Ragnar.
“Opening the door each evening and seeing him running at me is one of the highlights of my day,” the former GOP representative from Montana added.
“I can’t even count how many miles I’ve driven across Montana with [Ragnar] riding shotgun, or how many hikes and river floats Lola and I went on with the little guy. But I can tell you it was always better to have him.”
Zinke added employees who “would rather not interact with dogs at the workplace” can telework when the animals are present or have “other flexibilities.”
The former Navy SEAL noted dogs will likely need to be fully housebroken, vaccinated and have no history of aggression to visit Interior’s D.C. offices.
The Post added that Zinke’s primary rationale for trying out the policy is to improve morale among Interior employees.
Interior ranked 11th in employee morale out of the 18 largest federal agencies in 2016’s Best Places to Work in the Federal Government survey, with 61 percent of its 70,000 employees saying they are happy there.