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NIH Record - National Institutes of Health

Hold Those Allergies! We’ve Got More Tele-Pets

Angus the cat

It’s not surprising NCATS staff showcased their feline friends. Here’s Angus, who beckoned owner Eric Wallgren: “Close the door and have a seat; we need to discuss your performance review."

Auggie the doggie

“All I have to say is ‘Let’s go to work’ and Auggie gets so excited. He runs into my office and sits there right next to my desk. He’s an excellent teleworker,” says Donna Dassen, a Clinical Center administrative officer.

Bagheera the cat

“Bagheera is ready to ‘roll’ with posting Covid-19 information to www.nih.gov,” says Jess Hiller of OD’s Online Information Branch, which updates the main NIH web page.

Beans the goldendoodle

“Beans the Goldendoodle here, with a reminder to take frequent breaks for some fresh air, and oh, I don’t know—maybe a game of fetch?” Beans belongs to Jill Hughes, an NIEHS administrative officer.

Cat peeking around computer screen

“My not so helpful coworker,” says Angie Tew of NIEHS.

Chile checks on her owner

“Chile has been giving me constant support of my telework situation,” said Donna Stefanick of NIEHS. “She checks on me throughout the day.”

Bulldog Churchill

Kate Winseck, public health advisor, ODP, says of family bulldog, Churchill, “Lazy dog that embodies the stay-at-home mentality.”

Dog wearing protective cone on neck

“One of my coworkers asked if this was a dog or a phonograph,” said Nora Weston, Access & Reference Services librarian at NIEHS.

Cat crawls out of plastic dinosaur jaws.

Beth Mahler of NIEHS offers Cricket’s sentiments.

Dog at owner's computer keyboard

Dr. Nancy Garrick, communication director at NIAMS, gets paw-sitive advice from her dog Darwin Murphy.

Two beagles lounge on floor.

“Here are my dogs, cozy and happy with me in my den all day long,” said Dr. Linda Kupfer, senior scientific advisor for FIC’s Center for Global Health Studies. “They only move when I take them out for their 2-3 daily walks. They have never been calmer or happier.”

Dove nesting outside office window

Sharon Webster, a research nurse study coordinator who teleworks from Arizona for NIAID, has a co-worker outside her office window who patiently sits at her worksite for hours. “She provides a little respite for me when I look out the window and see her there,” said Webster.

Dog crouches under workstation.

NIAMS’s Sara Rosario Wilson has home office support staff from Duncan Bear McDoodle.

Dog rests on couch.

“Any questions?” asks Elsie, who belongs to Dr. Oliver Bogler, director, Center for Cancer Training, NCI.

Cat sits atop puzzle.

“Freddie decided that when I finish teleworking it’s his turn for attention—NOT to work a puzzle!” says Paula Powell of NIGMS.

Dog sits at owner's workstation.

"Hairy Caray was hoping to circle back on the treat proposal made at this morning’s walk meeting,” said Meredith Swan, special assistant in the Office of Finance & Management, All of Us Research Program.

Two lounging cats

Says Kathy Mesner, a budget analyst at NIEHS, of her “helpers”: “Not only do they help with my morale, but also they try to help with my work. They don’t leave much room for my laptop though!”

Dog looks out window.

Kat Schwartz, communications specialist at ODP, explains, “Little Jerry Seinfeld practices physical distancing from squirrels and local cats. He also serves as neighborhood watch, alerting us to anyone not taking the appropriate public health measures. #Solidarity #InItTogether

Guinea pig eats a leaf.

“I do realize this dandelion leaf is bigger than me, but…,” says Lemon, a guinea pig belonging to Christopher Wanjek of the Office of Intramural Research

Dog stretches on yoga mat.

Lucy the beagle does the downward dog yoga pose for her owner Judy, of NIEHS.

Two twin pups

Telework patrol always has their eyes on me, says the Office of Human Resources’ Joani Ward, of dogs Mai and Mikko.

Dog regards workstation from couch.

“I can hear Mia saying, ‘Not another reply-all!’” said Frank Mickey of the Clinical Center.

Dog lounges on couch.

“Sending a photo of our pets at home during telework…mostly of them sleeping,” says Pam Leach of NINDS.

Dog on couch peers with owner at screen.

"Move the little mouse thing again, please,” says English bull terrier Phineas to his owner, Debbie Gutierrez, nurse manager at the Clinical Center’s 5SE and SCSU.

Cat rests on owner's arm.

NIGMS’s Nick Mitrano (r) lets one of his cats, Pita, take a break on his arm.

Woman cuddles pup.

“Excuse me, this is not social distancing!” says Ranger, who belongs to Evelyn Castro-Rubio, operations coordinator in the Immediate Office of the Director.

Bespectacled dog looks at computer.

Sandor (l) has thoroughly enjoyed working from home, catching up on reading and taking plenty of walks, notes Colleen Dundas of the NIAMS communications offic

Dog in jersey sits next to basketball.

“Simba [l] has been my therapist during this period of social isolation,” said Mandy Mansaray of the Clinical Center.

Worker at desk with onlooking pup.

Christine Mashek (r), a clinical manager/nurse on 5SE, is attended by Skibo, her Australian retriever.

Dog lays on sunny couch.

12-year-old Stella tests the limits of inactivity and her own disordered sleep throughout the day, while her parents are working. She belongs to Katie Morris, health science policy analyst, Office of Behavioral and Social Sciences Research.

Two cats regard one another in doorway.

Taco and Nacho (l) are still figuring each other out, says Jake Basson of NIGMS.

Dog lays on floor.

Norma Minkoff, contract analyst at ODP, says, “Teeni [r] is showing you all how it’s done.”

Cat near keyboard

The Clinical Center’s Benita Bazemore has co-worker Winston as an accomplice.

Dog in front of exercise video

“This is my dog Zach, who watches to make sure I am doing my exercise,” said Sandra McBride of NIEHS.

Prone dog peers upward.

Yes, NCATS staff enjoy dogs. For example, Dorian Cheff now works side-by-side with Derek, who feels like his whole world is turned upside down.

Sneezing yet? Yes, we have another selection of the unsung heroes of our telework lives, who have kept us company through thick, thin and plans for eventual return to our physical workplaces. These pets, by obeying their natures, have behaved heroically. It is not, however, possible to nominate one for an NIH Director’s Award.

The NIH Record

The NIH Record, founded in 1949, is the biweekly newsletter for employees of the National Institutes of Health.

Published 25 times each year, it comes out on payday Fridays.

Associate Editor: Carla Garnett
Carla.Garnett@nih.gov

Staff Writers:

Eric Bock
Eric.Bock@nih.gov

Dana Talesnik
Dana.Talesnik@nih.gov

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