News & Politics

How to Bring Your Dog to Work (and Not Be a Jerk)

Photograph by Chad Latta/Getty Images

Our expert: Lou Barletta, congressman from Pennsylvania and owner of Reilly, an English Cream golden retriever recently named the cutest dog on Capitol Hill by IJ Review.

“Make sure there are doggie bags in every suit you put on. Multiple doggie bags, because you don’t want to be caught without them. We also have lint brushes on just about everyone’s desk.

“Let people know before they come in that there’s a dog inside. We have a picture on the door when Reilly’s here. It’s for people who may not like dogs or who may be afraid of or allergic to them.

“Make sure the dog has water and some toys. We keep Reilly on a healthy diet, so I try not to overdo the treats, but there are treats in the office and I usually go to work with a pocketful.

“Take him out more frequently when you first bring him in the office. When I first got Reilly as a puppy, we wouldn’t go two hours without taking him out. Usually as soon as he’d go, I would bring him back in so he’d know that’s the purpose. Now he’s trained and hasn’t had any accidents.

“Raise the trash cans. Some of the staff got larger cans so Reilly can’t shop out of their trash.”

Read more advice, tips, and tricks from Washington natives in our Secrets of the City package.

This article appears in our January 2016 issue of Washingtonian.