Impero – the creative and social digital agency – is not ruled only by human imperians. There are also THE “mighty” dogs. Six of them. Who form an essential part of the team and bring even more character to the agency.
We left Impero this summer after interviewing Bert the Chief Executive Dog and his father, Creative Director Michael Scantlebury, and at the time its crew counted five furry heads. Going back after the summer for this special edition, they had become six, the latest addition to the gang being Merlin the pup.
Bert the Miniature Labradoodle, Peanut the Jack Russel, Merlin the Large Münsterländer, Norman the English Bulldog, Kaiser the White Shepherd and Coco the Puggle compose such a unique squad.
The dogs in the words of the Imperians
You may remember Bert, Chief Executive Dog at Impero, who featured in June’s edition of the Office Dog Series. If you don’t, I recommend reading his hilarious interview.
Bert loves his dad Michael, balls and sitting on his father’s lap, he has a thing for treats and knows how to be respected by the other four-legged members of the team. Michael said that being Bert “second in charge of the agency, should something happen to me (God forbid) he’s ready to wear the crown”.
Peanut may be little, but she is full of beans.
Her mum, Account Director Lauren, noted, “If Peanut were a person, she would be that crazy lady with a trolley that shouts at everyone that walks past and has a million cats as friends – except that for Peanut she shouts at all dogs and has a million human friends. Her favourite things in the world are (in order): her mums, tennis balls and anything that Merlin has.”
Coco the Puggle was named after Coco Chanel and she is the poser of the pack.
“Coco is a fun-loving pup, full of cuddles. Her habits include sitting on shoulders, walks in the park, making friends and sleeping in awkward positions – upside down, front legs splayed and bum in the air as if she’s passed out from a busy day at work… Her FOMO (fear of missing out) means she just wants to be involved with everyone and everything, so much so, she has to have an Impero dog tag, as she’ll often trot off on a networking session only to be found hours later walking with someone else from the building”, said her owner Paul, Director of Photography.
“She is incredibly vocal and loves a good sing-song, it’s like listening to Dolly Parton singing in the shower!”, he added. “In fact, Merlin and Coco could form a singing duo, as both have the vocal cords of musical legends. She’s been known to pinch people’s lunches, so a word of advice, best not to come between Coco and a snack or you might be hungry!”
Kaiser’s shyness with people is inversely proportional to his friendliness to other dogs. When him and Argo met they made good friends and had some very good runs together, while he is probably the only dog who wouldn’t come close even with treats.
“Kaiser is one of those people you’d probably cast as the handsome lead character in a Hollywood film, but behind-the-scenes he’s a poor, insecure soul. He’s a massive introvert and is still learning to trust people. He much prefers playing by himself at the park and hopes to one day be the Ultimate Frisbee World Champion”, said his mum Ade, Head of Design at the agency.
Norman the English Bulldog may look grumpy, but that’s just his norma(l) expression and seems to be very misunderstood by the other dogs.
“Norman is a gentle giant whose fears include cardboard boxes, plastic bags and fairies”, recounted Head of Operations Abby. “He tends to greet people back to front because he is always up for a bum scratch – well he can’t reach it himself. Despite having an inscrutable face, and a tail that doesn’t wag, he is full of personality and is almost always happy. Everybody loves it the first time they see him gallop! He loves everyone: human, dog or UGG boot (sometimes he loves an UGG boot a bit too much!).”
When you meet Merlin you notice he is a bouncy joyful pup, but from his size you would never guess his real age.
“Merlin is the puppy of the pack at only 5 months, but he is also the second biggest at 27kg!”, confessed Lauren. “He’ll launch himself at anyone that makes eye contact with him and loves a snuggle and a chat, although he doesn’t realise we don’t all speak dog. There’s nothing that he won’t eat – literally nothing (shudder) – and his best time of the day is food time!!!”
Impero’s dog pack
“Unlike the humans, the Impero dog pack has plenty of office politics going on”, said Laura, PR guru. You won’t normally find the whole pack at the office on the same day. They gather according to a house system akin to Hogwarts’. These are some of the dynamics and intrigues going on:
- “Kaiser and Merlin are the young lads at Impero, always slacking off at the park.
- Merlin will try to chat up literally anyone who walks by him.
- Peanut and Coco have a deep rivalry over their roles, which isn’t helped by the rumour that Kaiser has been dating them both on the sly.
- Peanut’s also been overheard a few times at the water fountain bitching about Norman, but we think that is because she feels threatened by his looming promotion.
- Norman is definitely the odd one out of the pack, but luckily he is happy in human company or snoozing in the corner, and never lets it get him down.”
Wall of Fame // Wall of Shame
Some of Impero’s campaigns are mind-blowing and their Christmas 2016 campaign in particular involved the dog pack… Four of them graced An Impero’s Christmas Tail, a website where you can pick Bert, Coco, Peanut or Norman and feed them a treat in order to give money to dog charity Love UnderDogs. Laura noted, “They were all incredible actors who hit their mark. Luckily their ‘mark’ was eating food…”. Definitely something that deserves a mention in their Wall of Fame.
More recently, the pack was also protagonist of some lovely animations and graphics that featured on Impero’s Instagram and that they were so kind to share:
Every pack worth this name has anecdotes to tell that go populating a Wall of Shame. Impero’s dogs are no exception. Here are some noteworthy shenanigans recounted by Impero’s team:
- “Kaiser’s farts once cleared one end of the office.
- Coco once stole a burrito off a desk, and then deeply regretted how spicy it was.
- Peanut can’t control her bladder around the boss, it’s pretty awkward.
- Norman’s sexual feelings are always pretty close to the surface, be prepared to see a lipstick or two. Again, man, woman, dog, Ugg boot…”
Impero’s office pack survival guide
Imperians abide by a set of rules to ensure that peace and prosperity of the empire are maintained. If you visit Impero’s office, have this pocket survival guide at hand, to ensure you don’t unleash hell:
- “Balls are banned in the office between 9am and 5pm.
- Never kick a tennis ball if Peanut is nearby, well not unless you have booked out a full hour for the game – it’s an investment!
- Any food left within 3 inches from the edge of desks is fair game. Coco steals with the efficiency of a shark.
- If you’ve got treats, you’ve immediately earned the love of six dogs.
- Don’t clap your hands, ever!
- No Norman in the small meeting room – he will fart you out of there and snore to the point where clients can’t hear you on the speakerphone.”
Impero’s office pack is…
“Full of character! They are exactly like family – they tussle and play and sometimes they annoy the hell out of us, but we love them anyway.”
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