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Pawternity Leave Is Becoming Official for Staff With Newly Adopted Pets

Apr 11, 2017 11:01 AM EDT

HarperCollins Publishers India (HCI) is granting their employees "pawternity leaves" when they newly adopt a pet. Starting this year, those who take in a dog, cat or any other pet will be entitled to up to five working days of paid leave to settle in with their new animal friend, according to a report from Huffington Post India.

It might seem strange but anyone who has ever had a pet can attest that settling in at home with a new pet can be nearly as stressful as taking care of a newly born baby. Companies like HarperCollins seek to encourage responsible adoption of animals as well as make life easier for their staff who choose to open their homes to furry friends.

"At HarperCollins we want the very best of work-life balance for our colleagues, and that includes being mindful about their family needs," Ananth Padmanabhan, CEO of HarperCollins India, explained. "Pet children need as much attention [as human children], if not more. We don't want colleagues to worry about the number of leaves they have before deciding to start a family."

READ: Life With Pets: Talking to Dogs, Cats Is Actually a Sign of Intelligence 

Aside from the pawternity leaves, the company will be letting their employees bring their beloved pets to work should the need arise. The pets will be able to stay in a designated area in the office while their owners work.

More and more people are opting to get pets nowadays, so pet-friendly companies could expect appreciation from job-seekers, particularly the younger generation. Research has shown that millennials are more likely to choose to have pets than children.

"Pets are becoming a replacement for children," San Diego State University psychology professor Jean Twenge told Washington Post. "They're less expensive. You can get one even if you're not ready to live with someone or get married, and they can still provide companionship."

There has been a growing trend in giving employees time off for their pets, according to a report from Business Insider. Mars Petcare, BitSol Solutions and BrewDog also offer pawternity leaves, while Kimpton Hotels & Restaurants in San Francisco, Mars Inc., Maxwell Health in Boston, and Trupanion let their staff take some time off to grieve a pet who just passed away.

READ: Even Dogs Have Gotten Into the Plastic Surgery Craze With Botox, Nose Jobs and More  

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