It’s has been well recorded that pet ownership significantly increased during the pandemic. According to research conducted by Sainsbury’s Bank, a quarter of Brits welcomes a new pet into their home since March 2020. But as employers try to tempt workers back into the office, many are considering if they should allow pets to be brought along with them.
In the US, a 2018 study by National Insurance claimed that pet insurance is quickly becoming one of the most requested voluntary benefits, and a recent study by pet products company Bark found that over 70 per cent of dog owners still working from home expect to miss their furry companion when they return to the workplace, according to Value Penguin.
This is in stark comparison to 42 per cent who said they will miss their spouse and 39 per cent who said they will miss their children.
It is important that employers do not judge, but respond, which is what many US business owners are doing.
Typical pet insurance policies – which employers can either fully pay or make available to their employees at discounted rates negotiated with the insurance company – cover wellness exams, shots, chronic conditions and acute illnesses and injuries. Offering pet insurance is a great way for employers to demonstrate that they care about employees.
Besides pet insurance, a growing number of businesses are allowing their employees to bring their animals to work. The most famous of these is Amazon which, once again, ranked as America’s number one dog-friendly business this year, according to data provided by the pet-sitting and dog walking service Rover.
However, bringing dogs into the office can be complicated, and the companies that allow it already have fairly strict policies, such as ensuring that employees have adequately trained their pets, providing insurance details, and evidence of medical check-ups for parasites and vaccinations.
It might sound like a lot of work, but allowing employees to bring pets into work could be a very powerful way to entice workers away from remote working.
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