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Tuesday Office Dog | Horatio “Houdini” at Google

By February 9, 2017October 16th, 2018No Comments


Horatio, a five-year old black pug, is one of the resident dogs at Google‘s London Central St Giles offices. He has been accompanying Jen, his human, to work since he was a young pup and knows his way around the office. He is a speedy runner and is partial to playing “catch me if you can” in the office.


Horatio is a very lively pug, so much so Jen says that he almost acts like a cross with some other breed. “Horatio has an amazing zest for life”, explained Jen. “He is a natural clown, who just makes everyone laugh [as well as being] incredibly greedy and loving any food, especially bacon. He’s been known to have his own plate of bacon at brunch places around SW London and they even call him “The King of Bacon”. [However,] he is by no means lazy, and he regularly does 5k runs with me around Battersea Park.”

Indeed Horatio has some very funny grins, showing part of his teeth while making the sort of expression you would expect from someone who is thinking “less staring, more bacon-sharing!”


Horatio is Also Known For

Food and cuddles
Fire and things burning
Funniest habit:
Singing along with Jen when she practices her scales for singing
Most annoying habit:
Sneezing in the faces of Jen’s guests when they stay over!

His singing habit is indeed pretty hilarious and Jen showed me some videos where he expresses his full vocal dexterity. He definitely has the skills to be signed up for a “Dog-Factor” contest!


Horatio’s Office Life

Jen explained that Horatio does not have a bed in the office, as he prefers wondering around, visiting the other dogs, getting fussed over and eating.

He is a very fast runner and gained the nickname of Houdini among Googlers. “One time, when my friend was looking after him, he managed to slip out of his harness and made a run for it around the office. My friend proceeded to chase him, which he thought was a game. Luckily five engineers managed to corner him and he was returned and promptly told off! She now calls him Houdini!” said Jen.


Google’s offices are truly beautiful and on Jen’s floor, apart from a sort of sofa and cushion pyramid feature at one side of a room, and submarine-like doors, there is a colourful ball pool by a window.

The balls are enclosed within a sofa on the other three sides and that looks like the sort of paradise that any dog (as well as child or grown-up) would dream of. The balls are, of course, colour co-ordinated to match Google’s logo. A few balls seem to have undergone some dog testing (or – more appropriately – tasting!), which is evidence that they are appreciated by Google’s furry residents.

Google’s Dog Culture

The dog wall of fame

Google has a remarkable and long established dog culture. So much that it even has a “wall of fame” to celebrate their resident dogs, featuring a framed picture of each pooch. There are dogs of all ages, sizes and breeds (or mutts), which reflects Google’s culture of inclusion. Jen noted “People love dogs at Google, there are a few regulars who just wander the office and some new pups too!”

Horatio’s picture earned a spot in the central part of the wall of fame, right under the Google dog logo.


Google’s dog-friendly policy

Regarding Google’s dog-policy, Jen recounted “Our dog policy states that dogs are allowed in working areas but not in canteens nor at mass social events where some people may be allergic or scared. Other than that, it’s pretty relaxed!”

Furthermore, since the other companies within the building do not allow their employees to bring their pets to work, “Dooglers” are required by the building management to take the lift at the back of the building.

The top 3 office dog perks

– according to Jen –

1) Cuddles
2) The way they make people feel happy
3) More cuddles!

“I think [having a dog at the office] makes people happy, I love having a dog cuddle when I’ve had a tough day and I often “loan” Horatio out to my colleagues when they have a client coming in who loves dogs!” concluded Jen.

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