TODAY is Blue Monday, said to be the gloomiest day of the year.

But one boss in Brighton has found a surefire way to make her staff happy.

Blue Monday falls on the third Monday in January.

And according to statistics based on Google searches, people in Brighton are the second most concerned in the UK about feeling depressed, hot on the heels of those in Bedford.

But Brighton boss Carlene Jackson has the answer – she lends her dogs to her staff to cheer them up.

Employees at software company Cloud9 Insight, based in Preston Road, will be given a special treat today – the chance to stroke and play with her Samoyeds, two-year-old Bear and Shaska, six.

Chief executive Carlene said: “With Blue Monday coming up I thought everyone might like to meet my dogs because they always make me smile.”

She said the fluffy white pooches love the attention and are very friendly.

She said: “They like to play, sleep, rest their heads on people’s laps, join meetings, and sometimes pinch leftover lunches out of the bins.

“My team really love them and I think my dogs love the team, too.

“I see staff mental health and wellbeing as my responsibility and I take it very seriously. We have created initiatives to celebrate the company culture and these become stories shared which are cherished as the company grows.

“I wish to empower staff and make the team’s contribution feel valued and celebrated and we proactively seek opportunities to have fun together, such as group lunch and learn sessions and mindfulness meditation.

“We also have an employee recognition scheme to highlight staff achievements.”

Why is Blue Monday so called? After the fun of the festive season and initial excitement of entering a new decade, the buzz is starting to wear off as we all head back to work.

The weather is cold and grey and our New Year resolutions may have already slipped.

Things are probably made worse by Christmas debt catching up with this and all these factors apparently come together today.

Based on Google searches for queries related to feeling sad, Bedford came out top of the gloom polls, followed by Brighton in second place.

The most searched-for question was “why do I feel sad?”, followed by “how to stop feeling sad”.