Many studies have proven that pet owners are healthier, both mentally and physically, than people without pets, which suggests that owning a pet makes you smarter as well. There is no evidence that owning a pet makes you more intelligent or that pet owners are more likely to make more money but the actions of an increasing amount of businesses are certainly pointing in that direction.
Thousands of companies across the US are now offering pet insurance as a benefit to employees. A monthly premium of approximately $10 to $60 comes out of their paychecks in exchange for an insurance carrier footing the majority of the bills for their pets’ medical treatment. Depending on the procedure, these bills can range from a few thousand to tens of thousands of dollars.
Every business has its own reason for offering pet insurance. For example, it is abundantly clear that the average pet owner in 2017 is far more devoted to his or her animal than pet owners of generations’ past.
“Pets today occupy a special place in people’s lives. They’re family members, and their owners don’t want to cut corners on care,�? Dr. Tracey Jensen, a Colorado veterinarian and former president of the American Animal Hospital Association, told the New York Times.
Still, it’s safe to say businesses wouldn’t be offering pet insurance if they didn’t believe it came with a significant reward. Businesses want to attract the best talent, therefore the decision to offer pet insurance gives the impression that the most qualified candidates for important positions are probably dedicated pet owners.
Alex Blynn an account strategist at New York digital communications company Praytell, admitted that his employer’s pet insurance plan is one of the main reasons he will likely stay there for a very long time. At Praytell, employees pay just $10 a month for a plan that covers two physical exams per policy term, vaccinations, blood tests, and more. The company even has a “paw-ternity leave�? policy in which new pet owners can work from home until their pets are comfortable enough to be left alone.
If he were to look elsewhere for employment, Blynn told the New York Post that “One of the first things I would ask [prospective employers] would be what their work-from-home policies are and if their benefits covered pets.�?
Serial entrepreneur and Fortune 500 consultant Dan Schawbel expects more companies to add pet insurance to their benefits programs in order to compete for top candidates. After all, some big companies with pet insurance programs are in related fields, like Microsoft, Yahoo, and Hewlett-Packard. Someone looking for a job in technology could very well base his or her decision on the strength of these companies’ pet insurance programs.
In addition to attracting workers, pet insurance ensures these workers perform to the best of their ability.
“Insurance gives me really solid peace of mind,�? Blynn said.
Lou Ann Hutchinson serves as managing director for global audit, tax, and advisory firm Grant Thornton. She told the New York Post that offering pet insurance “is an engaging way to help our people bring their whole selves to work,�? and support the company’s “people-first�? policy.
With so many competitive pet insurance programs available, it wouldn’t exactly be a surprise if more companies were to go one step farther and start allowing pets at work.
Tim Bailey of Bond Collective is well-aware that when he closes a new business deal, the two wiener dogs by his side are largely to blame.
“They’re often greeting visitors and I honestly think they’re the reason why potential clients sign,�? he said. “They’re my closers. They often say, ‘You had me at dachshund.’ “