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What's the Deal with Pawternity Leave? 5 Purrrfect Perks for Pet Lovers

POSTED BY
Patrick Ball on May 19, 2016 01:50 PM

We talk a lot about supporting working families. By that, often we mean new moms and dads and the importance of family-friendly benefits like paid parental leave and child care assistance.

But when it comes to successfully supporting employees through benefits and total rewards programs or cultural initiatives, it’s important to ensure you’re addressing all types of families. That means new moms and dads, Sandwich Generation employees employees caring for mom or dad and the pet parents, too.

When you design a program to support all employees, you’re able to avoid unfortunate side-effect of well-intentioned policies that can crop up when certain populations of employees feel underserved in comparison to another group.

Here, we’ll take a look at 5 work perks that will make your company a great place to work for pet lovers.

  1. Paw-ternity Leave
    A new trend bubbling up over in Britain,paw-ternity leave is the idea of offering employees paid time off to take care of four-legged family members. This could take a couple of forms. One concept would mimic maternity or paternity leave, allowing employees to take a few days or even a week off when the adopt a new pet. Another concept would be more akin to a true paid family leave program, in which the pet owner could take time off to adopt a pet or even to care for an ailing animal.

  2. Pet Insurance 

    As most pet owners can attest, visits to the vet can be very expensive. That’s why leading employers like Genetech and Salesforce are among those who provide employees with pet insurance discounts. Makes those vet visits hurt a little less … for the humans at least.

  3. Bring Your Dog to Work
    A popular perk among pet-friendly companies is letting employees bring their dogs to work, either regularly or on special occasions. To avoid employees’ pooches overrunning the workplace, be sure to put some guidelines around the privilege. Survey employees to see who’s uncomfortable around or allergic to dogs, then designate areas where dogs will be allowed. By coming up with a few etiquette guidelines, you can make sure the dogs aren’t a major distraction. 

  4. On-Site Services 
    Our lives are crazy busy. Who has time to get their dog groomed or get their cat to the vet during the crammed work week? Consider partnering with pet insurance providers, groomers or local vets to provide occasional on-site services. How appreciative would your employees be if you offered a mobile vet, where they could get rabies or kennel cough shots? Or even a grooming station to make it easier to care for their pets once a quarter?

  5. Help Finding a Pet Care
    You can be a pet-friendly employer without letting your office go to the dogs. Through Care@Work, companies can help connect employees with the pet care they need when they’re away at work – from dog-walkers to groomers to boarding services. Another great off-site, care-related perk would be to subsidize boarding for employees on extended business trips. 

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Find out how Care@Work can help working families and their employers: