By Stephanie Stahl

by Stephanie Stahl

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Companies are going to the dogs. A growing number of businesses are letting employees bring their dogs to work.

About 20% of American companies, including giants like Google, allow dogs in the office.

Even when Kristi Borgia is hard at work, her best buddy, Rex, is always by her side.

“His preference is to be with me and be around people,” Borgia said.

Rex joins Kristi at her desk at Nvidia, a software company.

Every day, several dozen employees bring their dogs, all breeds and sizes, to work.

“Usually, every couple of hours he’ll want to go outside, and so it forces me to take a little outside break, which is healthy,” said Borgia.

According to several studies – pets in the workplace can help reduce employee stress and improve productivity.

Employees who bring their dogs to work also report higher levels of job satisfaction.

“It does make sense to bring your dog to work. It’s worked well in terms of making employees feel happy, in terms of keeping them relaxed, and that’s good for the company,” said Bob Sherbin with Nvidia.

But there are some ground rules here. Dogs aren’t allowed in indoor common areas, they can never be left unsupervised, and owners must keep their pets on a leash during walks.

Researchers also say people become more trusting, relaxed, and nicer towards each other after interacting with dogs.

While it is a popular idea, some think dogs at work would be way too distracting

Stephanie Stahl