Dubai: A hotel in Abu Dhabi has employed eight cats to help its employees beat stress.

On Sunday, Jannah Hotels and Resorts – the Bedouin-inspired collection of luxury hotels – announced that the decision behind adding the feline pets to the workforce was to assist employees in unwinding and increasing productivity.  

So far, the cats are employed at the hotel’s head office located in Abu Dhabi.

Nehme Imad Darwiche. Chief executive officer and founder of Jannah Hotels and Resorts, said the ‘office cat’ policy was initiated in 2015.

Darwiche said: “Studies reflect that nurturing pets in an office environment increases office communication and lowers the stress of its professionals significantly. We identify as a team that harbors a deep love of felines and consider our pets as a vital part of the Jannah family.”

Today, the company is home to eight furry companions that keep employees cheerful and soothed. Guests visiting the premises can also be found playing with the friendly cats who were quick to warm up to all.

“In an industry like tourism and hospitality where long hours are common, having pets around helps everyone maintain a positive and motivated attitude. Whether our cats are dozing on our laps, lounging on a desk, or peeking at us from around our computers, their presence is accompanied with a healing effect,” added Darwiche.

Did you know?

Last month, Gulf News reported that an IT firm in Tokyo, Japan, hired nine cats at the request of employees, to help them fight against stress.

According to a recent survey carried out by the UK feline welfare charity Cats Protection, more than 80 per cent of teenagers say a cat could calm their nerves and boost their mood, helping to reduce stress at exam time.

This follows previous studies showing that a pet can help reduce stress and possibly even lower blood pressure.

On the Cats Protection website, consultant clinical psychologist Elie Godsi, said: “The companionship that a pet offers is a great way to reduce anxiety and stress because the affection they give back is so simple. Unlike many other pets, cats make it absolutely clear when they want to be played with or stroked…or not.”