Legally blonde dog

A Slaughters lawyer welcome the news. The dog is undecided.

Slaughter and May is letting 1 Bunhill Row go to the dogs, by trialling its first ever 'bring your dog to work day'.

The mutt-friendly policy is being piloted today. Deborah Finkler, Managing Partner at Slaughter and May said: “I have long been an advocate of having our dogs in the office and so am delighted that we are trialling Slaughter and May’s first ever Bring your Dog to Work Day."

"The benefits of all animals and especially dogs to mental health, morale and alleviating stress are widely recognised, and I also hope that the trial makes for a fun and sociable day,” she added.

A Slaughter and May spokeswoman set out the rules to RollOnFriday: "Dogs will not be allowed in the staff restaurant, in coffee pods, or anywhere food is served, or in the first floor meeting rooms".

The spokeswoman added: "We understand that not everyone is comfortable, or able to be around dogs and have put in place a series of guidelines around the day." For example, dog owners must ask colleagues who they share offices with, whether they are happy for a pooch to be in the room.

RollOnFriday also asked Slaughters if it was a dog, what kind of breed would it be, but the firm (wisely) was unable to provide a response. 

Providing the dog day is "successful", the Magic Circle firm will extend the trial period to the last Friday of the month over the summer, and review it again after that. It is not known how the elite firm will measure success, but should a St Bernard escape from its owner, bound into a meeting and forcefully dry-hump a bewildered partner, that will hopefully be viewed as a splendid result.  

Slaughters is not the first firm to make it paw-sible (RollOnFriday apologises) to 'bring your dog to work'. In December 2017, Eversheds Sutherland also held their own event.  An Eversheds spokeswoman, reflecting on that day, told RollOnFriday that "every dog got a ‘report’ and a doggy bag at the end of the day." She also recalled that "our CEO's dog Poppy had to be put in time out for too many zoomies."

And other firms have also shown their dog-friendly side. One firm posed with a giant dog, another offered a dream job walking a partner's dog, while a German firm gave over its entire website to someone pretending to be a dog.

If you're working in Slaughter and May's office today, please do provide an update in the comments below as to how its going, and whether the dogs have taken over yet. And send in some photos

Tip Off ROF


Gloves 24 June 22 09:43

I can't stand this nonsense. When it comes to dogs, people worship them like divine beings and assume everyone else thinks they shit gold bars.  Even though it is mentioned that dog owners must ask colleagues, can you imagine how cutting the office talk will be if you dare say you'd prefer to work without a dog in your office? 'I wanted to bring my pug that wheezes like a 70yr old chainsmoker but Dave said he doesn't want a dog in the office' (cue all the dog lovers treating Dave like some kind of weirdo disrupting the team spirit). Offices should be human-only spaces. 

Bingus 24 June 22 09:44

I’ve had a stroll around all the fee-earning floors this morning purely so I can make this post. I counted 6 dogs - 3 of which belonged to partners (leading by example eh…). It’s almost as if a) the office is always dead on a Friday and b) no fee earners actually care about this gimmick - the dogs are either sat with the secretaries or (in two cases) sat next to the trainee in the office wagging its tail doing nothing. 

What’s more, Deborah is selling this as a) a mental health thing (give me a break) and b) she loves dogs. I’m not even going to indulge a) because it’s clear the mental health aspect of things are being directed by a [redacted] but on b) Steve Cooke loves his dogs and didn’t implement a clown policy like this. Just look at the media coverage - the article and comments from The Times are quite telling. 

Also STILL no bonus announcement - if you thought Slaughters couldn’t get any more stingy, our payday is the last working day of the month - rather than most normal employers that pay on a set date or on the last Friday. Pretty abysmal if you ask me but then again not as if we are living pay cheque to pay cheque. When the bonus does get announced - today I should think, I’ll post it here (likely the starting date for NQs for fear of giving away my PQE!). 




Dogwatcher 24 June 22 09:56

I didn't see anyone walking past our floor Bingus, calling BS on your walk round.

But yes, the point of bringing in this policy on a Friday was that it's often a day with fewer people in the office (and it's even more so today after the rail strikes this week) do dog haters can avoid the office if they need to.

I've seen a handful of dogs, so far all on the smaller caliber. I think the people with big dogs have sensibly decided not to bring them in. Albeit I would have loved to see a Rottweiler gobbling up a chihuahua. No such luck.

On bonus, we have been told in my group... 

Graggle Simpson 24 June 22 09:56

Why would any dog want to be kept in an office building all day, or does that not come into the dog owners' calculations?

Afraid of dogs 24 June 22 10:04

This is awful. I have a severe fear of dogs from being attacked by dogs on multiple occasions. As 09:43 said, "must ask colleagues" is a joke. I'm going to be antagonized by colleagues if I decline.

Doesn't this constitute discrimination against those with diagnosed dog phobias serious enough to fall under the Equality Act?

S AND M 24 June 22 10:04

"RollOnFriday also asked Slaughters if it was a dog, what kind of breed would it be"


anon 24 June 22 10:05

Oh dear so far only a dog hater (to be fair you don't have to like dogs) and someone whining on about bonuses - it is not as if lawyers don't earn vastly more than most people - for goodness sake get a grip. I am not an S&L employee but it is a lovely idea - I would happily take my dog to work if I could, not for "mental health" reasons but because he is vastly more entertaining and better to be around than most people. 

Dogwatcher 24 June 22 10:15

Sorry I didn’t go around every nook and cranny of every floor? It’s okay though you can go tell the partners you made a brave comment and stood up to Bingus on ROF…

ShootyOriginal 24 June 22 10:43

"Anonymous 24 June 22 10:17

Think there was a missed opportunity for a "Slaughter & the Dogs" headline here."


Niche 1970's pub rock shout.

Bingus 24 June 22 10:48

Sorry - is anyone taking Dogwatcher seriously? If you know the bonus drop the %s then? An offhand conversation with a partner saying you’ll be happy with the bonus doesn’t count…


Jebediah Ruff Ruff 24 June 22 10:52

Speaking as a dog myself, this is a great idea. Now where’s [redacted] office? I need to unload a Cumberland.

@Bingus 24 June 22 10:55

Mate, you entertain me, not least with your anonymous WebEx queries, so keep doing what you're doing. I was just taking the piss.

And I also was flagging to you that we have had our bonus information here so not sure why it hasn't filtered to you?

Anonymous 24 June 22 11:03

I feel sorry for the cleaners. Bound to be a few turd surprises around the office.  

Anonymous 24 June 22 11:07

I think it's pretty irresponsible to work at SM and own a dog.  But at least the owners will be able to see the dog once a week now.

Anonymous 24 June 22 11:10

Isn't Slaughters already in the dog house?

papercuts 24 June 22 11:34

Corporations have been undergoing a cult-ification process for most of this century.  Law firms, by virtue of a flatter management structure and a disdain for doing anything which isn’t billable, seemed to have escaped the worst excesses of the b/s inflicted on corporate employees.  Alas, law firms are now succumbing to this cult-y rubbish.  

I remember a cartoon I saw in the 1980s or 1990s.  A grumpy bespectacled senior partner was speaking testily to a sheepish looking junior lawyer of an idealistic bent, with a CND banner or somesuch hidden behind his back: “We practice law to make money, Blatworthy.  If you can think of a more compelling motivation, let’s hear it.”

I worked in a City firm during the 90s.  I loved it.  You were worked into the ground, bawled out for the most minor of slips, the partners could never be pleased, nobody gave a flying fig about your mental health or your career development or your work life balance or your social life blah blah.  In fact, any suggestion of any interest in such matters would have been viewed, by both employee and employer, as a vulgar and impertinent intrusion.  The sub-text was that you were a thick-skinned adult.  The deal was simple – we pay you well, work hard and don’t mess up.  Everything else was your business.

It’s healthy to dislike your job.  It’s healthy not to be best mates with your colleagues.  It’s healthy to want to have a life that your employer knows nothing about. 

Now, your employer wants to be your best friend, your parent, your shrink, your life coach, your dating assistant, your thought police, your social network – rampant infantilisation of adults is now part of the Faustian bargain. 

PS: Here they are:

Anonymous 24 June 22 11:47

I for one appreciate Bingus' scoops on what it's like working at S&M. Keep up the good work Bingus!

Anonymous 24 June 22 11:47

I love dogs, and once worked in an office with an office dog (the CEO's dog), which from time to time I would get to walk home, and I fucking loved that. But this idea is bollocks. One specific day per week to force your own pet to come sit in some lifeless shitty office. For what reason? Like one day per week of ignoring your dog while getting beasted is going to improve your mental health? It's just utter f***ery. It's like all the good ideas of this Me Too, mental health, whatever-you-call-it-age have been used up and now Alan Partridge is on the dictaphone. "Bring your dog to work once a week". "Plastic grapes and vines on every door". "Midget wrestling Wednesday".

Anonymous 24 June 22 12:38

I know it's verboten these days, but I just...don't like dogs? There is no way I would be able to work effectively with a dog in the same office as me - I'd find it endlessly stressful and distracting. And yes I know this makes me a bad person or whatever, but people are allowed to have likes, dislikes and phobias. As it stands this policy is fine seeing as I can just structure my week so that I'm not in on Fridays, but these things tend to be slippery slopes - nobody wants to be seen as the evil partner who kicked the dogs out of the office. And if it becomes an open-ended invitation for lawyers to bring their dogs in, I'd genuinely start looking elsewhere.

Anonymous 24 June 22 12:59

I don't fear dogs, but think I might be allergic to my colleagues.  What should I do?

@papercuts 24 June 22 13:11

There's a sinister, alienating aspect to it as well. It's all part of the ethos thrust on junior lawyers of "not only do we make you eat sh**, we want you to thank us for it while enthusiastically scooping it into your mouth and demanding more". It sits alongside HR departments giving talks to trainees about how they're to make themselves invisible or bland on social media, and professional bodies getting involved with lawyers' behaviour on their own time (although only if they're too poor to instruct counsel and fight back).

It's not so much "bring your whole self to work" as "work wants to take over your whole self and leave nothing that's your own". 

Lydia 24 June 22 13:13

This is very unfair on those who hate dogs and certainliy people with disabilities. It really illustrates how privileged some firms are - the posh doggy country white British people like their dogs and the 2m Muslims find them to be haram or a good few of them and plenty of the rest of us dislike them too but as ever white privilege prevails. If you can bring in your dog cab you bring in your baby? The latter would actually have been helpful for me when I had a new baby when working at the firm.





Rover 24 June 22 13:30

Everyone knows animals are good for stress and law is v stressful.  Once a month is a good idea but the dog owners should be on one floor / in a specific area. 

Anonymous 24 June 22 13:47

I do like dogs, but I'm allergic. It gets quite bad if there are any dog hairs around (so I'm not sure it would help for me to just not come in on a Friday).

I do already take antihistamines most days because of hayfever... So I'm not sure what I'd do if my workplace introduced this :/

Newhammer 24 June 22 14:05

I don't mind dogs however that doesn't mean I want them in my personal space or workplace. I don't want them nuzzling into me or licking me having just kissed another dog's @rse. It's absolutely rank. Sean Lock (legend, RIP) summed it up when he questioned why anyone would kiss a dog and said "you might as well rim it"! 

They tried it in our office once and set aside a room with people on hand to care for the dogs. I went to have a look out of interest and the smell was putrid - just not pleasant in a carpeted office. More amusingly, they'd had to find a couple more rooms to deal with a new type of office romances/fights!  

It's a very subjective thing and the spectrum of dogs is huge. Some dogs are lovely, well trained, don't smell etc. At the other end of the spectrum there are dogs which stink, are not well trained or can be dangerous (unpredictably so in some cases). I don't think it is right to put people in a position where they feel like the bad guy if they say no to a colleague wanting to bring in their precious pet pooch.

Also where do you draw the line? To keep things fair should it be ok for people to bring in snakes, spiders, etc?  Imagine the scenes when Charlie's pedigree lurcher sets eyes on Brenda's pet rabbit...

Anonymous 24 June 22 14:56

I was looking forward to have my dog in the office only to be told that Business Services were not allowed to bring dogs in


Anonymous 24 June 22 16:22

Newhammer has it right here.

I'm bringing in my alpacas, and if you don't like it then that's discrimination.

And/or transphobia.




Yes. Some alpacas are trans. Get over it.

Bored of Bingus 24 June 22 16:47

Aptly, I am bored of the whining; I think FBD are looking for support lawyers - they may be worth a look, rather than continual purgatory?

Chris M 24 June 22 20:59

Slaughters can never beat the rivals like Freshfields or Links because they lack depths in their practice and the good people all quit to work at a better firm. This dog initiative is laudable to some but laughable to the firm’s MC peers. 

Not bored of Bingus 26 June 22 18:05

Unsurprisingly, at SM those in Business Services are effectively second class citizens. I didn’t even realise BS weren’t allowed to bring their dogs in… Have heard much worse with their WFH policy and management styles too. 

Lol 27 June 22 01:03

Bingus and Dogwatcher are the same person lol.

He forgot to change the name back to Bingus in the Dogwatcher comment @ 10:15.


also very cringe to allude yourself as some kind of Slaughters vigilante 


Grammaticus Excessivus 27 June 22 17:31

@Bingus 24 June 22 09:44

>the dogs are either sat with the secretaries or (in two cases) sat next to the trainee in the office wagging its tail doing nothing. 

This sentence brought up some really strange images in my mind.

Reis 27 June 22 21:40

The BYOD day is utterly cringe-worthy and isn’t gonna fix the toxic culture that has been in existence for years. Senior management is old-fashioned and has failed big times on numerous crucial matters such as ethnic diversity, remuneration and staff wellbeing - not a place you wanna be. 

Anon 28 June 22 08:43

@Lol I had read it differently - Bingus replying to Dogwatcher but accidentally wrote Dogwatcher? 

Bingus 28 June 22 11:29

Bonus lower than expected - %s weren’t stated (strange as they are given for Christmas bonus) but they started on around 5%. It’s hard to give exact numbers because of salary increases and therefore no clarity on what salaries were used as base pay. 

One thing is for sure - the “two bonuses a year” remuneration change turned out to be a trick. More or less it’s the Christmas bonus split in half.

And finally - in my response to Dogwatcher I meant to put “@Dogwatcher” in the name… I’m not the same person looking to undermine my own comments on this lol. 

@Bingus 28 June 22 16:48

Thanks for the info. Genuine question: you seem to be unhappy at Slaughters so why do you continue to work there?

Bingo! 28 June 22 17:51

Nice to see @Bingus moaning about being paid yet another truckload of cash for seemingly spending more time trolling his firm than doing anything productive, whilst half of the UK population is struggling to make ends meet and cover the cost of their weekly shop.

Not entirely sure how getting two bonuses a year which add up to more than the bonus you used to get paid is a trick? What exactly have you been tricked into doing?

I don't know what your colleagues feel, but personally I'd find your attitude far more toxic than the behaviour of any partner.  Do what the rest of us have done and make some positive life choices and move on to new things rather than choosing to stay where you are and relentlessly whining.

Either that, or follow the crowd, get yourself a dog and moan quietly to them in the office one once a month and give the rest of the legal world a break from your self-important tirades.





D Brent 28 June 22 19:20

"Not brought your dog with you today, David?"

"Did you not see her, she's just left..."

Bingus 29 June 22 09:07

Not that I have to justify myself to randoms on the internet - just because I highlight everything bad about the firm doesn’t mean I absolutely hate the place … there are good bits, bad bits and terrible bits. Right now, admittedly, life is good (for me at least). Still busy but it’s slowing down for Summer and bonus (albeit small) is being paid. 

I simply think transparency is important in a workplace and Slaughters is anything but. If you don’t like the scoops, I couldn’t care less - some people evidently do appreciate them. 

As to the person who is wondering what the trick is - the selling point of the remuneration review and not matching Freshfields pay was that the two bonuses a year would generally bring us in line with  Freshfields (so, for example, a Slaughters NQ should expect somewhere in the region of 130-143k total). Unless the Christmas bonus is MASSIVE, there is no way Slaughters comes close to Freshfields pay.

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