Hug Your Cat Day!

A common relief for stress that is prescribed by doctors is to get a pet. There are cat people and there are dog people. I, of course, am a dog person however I hold no ill will toward our feline friends. As a matter of fact I am helping them celebrate Hug Your Cat Day today, June 4, by hugging my little Belle. I know my pup has brought great joy into my life and I know as many other pet owners that she has become an integral part of my daily routine. She has special food (holistic and all natural) and has her regular visits to the veterinarian who sometimes tells me I over react to Belle’s ailments. Like a child, I don’t want her to hurt or be in pain. A visit to the veterinarian can be quite expensive. The flea/tick/heartworm medicine is costly, too. I wish I could cover her under my workplace health insurance. People like me make a market for providers that offer pet insurance. Now we just need to get these types of insurance included in our employer’s total rewards package.

A trend in employee benefits is for companies to offer pet insurance to their employees. This is a small, but growing sector of the market. According to a November 2009 article from the Washington Times, about 3% of US employers offer pet insurance to their staff (Washington Times, 2009). In less than one year, that number exploded significantly. By the end of 2010, 1 out of every 5 Fortune 500 companies offered pet insurance – that’s 20% of the Fortune 500 (PR Newswire, 2011). Growth of this type of benefit offering in the Fortune 500 sector might indicate that it will begin trickling down to large and mid-size companies within the next 5 years shows a trend that more and more companies might follow in the next 5 to 10 years. Offering an employee peace of mind for their “fur kids” would benefit a company by encouraging retention and employee value.

According to American Pet Products, in 2010 the US spend over $48 billion on our pets and 62% of US households have a pet (American Pet Products). Pet insurance sounds like a great benefit for companies to offer.

Don’t forget to CELEBRATE!

Additional Reading on Pet Insurance

Washingon Times (2009, November 12). Retrieved from Washington Times: http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2009/nov/12/employers-pitch-in-for-pet-health-care/ 

American Pet Products. (n.d.). Retrieved from American Pet Products: http://www.americanpetproducts.org/press_industrytrends.asp 

PR Newswire. (2011, April 26). Retrieved from PR Newswire: http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/pet-health-insurance-experiences-record-growth-as-employee-benefit-in-2010-120692879.html



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