Would You Stay Home With A Sick Pet?

Would You Stay Home With A Sick Pet?

by Elisa Black-Taylor
(USA)

Please stay home with me!

Please stay home with me!

Good day readers. Would you stay home with a sick pet instead of going to work? Today I'd like to share an experience with you and I want comments on how you would handle it. I hope this article will get a lot of feedback because it's a pet issue each of us may face.

My question is: How do you handle your pet being very sick and you're scheduled to work. This experience happened several years ago when an employee I worked with took two days off of work to be with his very ill dog. He was honest when he talked to his supervisor and the head of human relations. Luckily they had no problem with it. Possibly because the human relations director was a big animal lover who would sometimes bring her dog to work.

His fellow employees weren't so understanding. For the two days he was on personal leave to care for his sick dog he was seriously ridiculed. I overheard the statement "It's just a dog" so many times I was ready to strangle someone. How can anyone who loves animals or has a pet make that statement?

This man had a very sick pet and the vet recommended around the clock care. I've never had to take time off of work to be with a sick pet, but it could happen. I've been mommy to more cats than dogs and they are more independent by nature and when they were sick they weren't as NEEDY as a dog. People who own both cats and dogs understand what I mean. A cat is an aloof creature by nature. They give you the pleasure of caring for them when they decide. Dogs are needy almost all of the time. A sick dog is much more easily distressed if left alone.

Thankfully, I've never had to make the choice of going to work or tending to a sick pet. Just for the record I would stay home with a sick cat or dog if my veterinarian stressed round the clock care. Or if I was afraid to leave my furbaby alone.

I spoke to several friends about this subject shortly after it took place. Many said they had lied to employers and taken a sick day for themselves when their pet was the one sick and needing a vet visit. Others I spoke with had even taken bereavement days (usually 3 days for a close family member). All of them lied and told their boss a relative had passed away. One employee was even faced with the question "where can the flowers be sent." In case any of you have to get this underhanded to grieve for a pet, the proper answer is "in lieu of flowers (insert pretend dead relatives name) asked that donations be made to the Humane Society."

Very clever. And sad.

This is a topic that needs to be discussed with an employer before such deception is needed. Get a feel for the kind of person your supervisor is. Go from there. Some employers may offer time off with or without pay and not make rude comments behind your back. Others may believe it's cause for a write-up. Especially if you lie and the lie is found out.

If you're out of work because of a pet's illness or death and don't tell your employer the truth, this could come back to haunt you. Fellow employees may unknowingly mention why you were out and that would be grounds for termination in many cases. Perhaps it's best to be honest in cases like this.

So have any of you ever faced this sick/deceased pet situation? What did you do? How did your boss handle it. Feel free to leave comments. I'm really curious about this one.

I'd also like to hear input from all of the "bosses" out there. Would you rather an employee tell you the truth about the reason they're out of work or would you rather not know?

I realize this isn't one of my usual articles with lots of numbers. It's still important for pet owners and I thought it would be a break in my usual subject matter.

Elisa

Would You Stay Home With A Sick Pet? to Articles of Elisa Black-Taylor

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Would You Stay Home With A Sick Pet?

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May 16, 2012
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MY SICK SCHNAUZER NEW
by: SANDRA

My Schnauzer was hit by a car and could not move for a weeks. she had a fracture pumis bone. I layed on the couch holding her for days. I spoon fed her baby food and water. I did tell my bosses exactly what I was doing. I have vacation due to me and I can take as I please. I was very lucky.
I took off again when she was fixed. I again held her on my chest for two days as she cried and whimpered in pain. I cried right along with her. I really love my dog...


Aug 24, 2010
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Kathy makes a great point
by: Michael

I think Kathy makes a great point and I can really empathise. Life is harder for people who care about animals because firstly they actually care and in this world there is a slight lack of that - they are working against the grain. And animals are often treated horrendously.

Hunting in the USA is horrible and unnecessary. Fox hunting in the UK for me is madness. These things are hard to digest for people who love animals. There is too much cruelty to animals.

I actually avoid watching television that shows bad things happening to animals because the images imprint on my mind. I can't get rid of them. It is a form of post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

So, Kathy, I feel for you and wish you the very best.

Michael Avatar


Aug 23, 2010
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sick pets
by: kathy

I recently left work early because Lia needed to go to the vet. If he gets sick theres no way Im going to work. One of my supervisors is a cat person. Im sure shed understand. I have a job coach who is very aware of my animal loving disability. I say disability because there are so many humans out there who have no idea what its like to love animals. Sometimes my love for animals causes me very serious problems. I am stressed out at hunting season thinking about all those poor defensless animal being killed for no reason. Last year I had to take off 3 weeks from my job because the stress was just too much for me. I have several traumas from my past that include animals and the way they were treated. I grew up on a farm. Sometimes loving animals can be a disability. But I cant stop the way that I feel. Im a true animal lover all the way through. My Lia comes first before any job. I know jobs these days are far and few. Its a good thing I work at a place for people with pysical and mental disabilities.


Aug 23, 2010
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Yes, I'd Stay Home
by: Gail (Boston, MA USA)

I've experienced both sides of the question. In the past, I've stayed home after calling in a sick day, then for 3-day bereavement when my companion passed.

My current job does not have sick or vacation days. Everything is called PTO Days - Personal Time Off - to use as one sees fit. My annual total PTO days for 2010 = 23 days, to include vacation, sick, personal days, but not including legal holidays (Christmas, New Year's, etc.). My current supervisor has been very supportive whenever I've needed time to care for Sadie, so there's no reason to be dishonest.


Aug 22, 2010
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Family first
by: Leah

I once had a boss who had a cat but wasn't really a pet person until he got a dog even when the dog died he still came to work. My dog died so I went sick. When I went back he went mad which doesn't help when you're feeling low; took me all my time not to cry.

On the flip side when my cat died 18 months ago my boss (a very diffent one) was lovely because he has 5 cats. He understood totally.

If you're a boss and you're not an animal lover why would you make an employee work if you know their mind isn't going to be on the job? They will work much better when they do return if you give them time and in the future you'll get so much more from them because they appreciate your understanding.


Aug 22, 2010
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Home alone and sick? No way.
by: Dorothy

There is no question that I would take off from work if I had a sick animal at home. Fortunately, I don't have to worry about that any more. In my working days, I was an employer of anywhere from 80 to 100 employees depending on the season. I would always let folks off for either sick kids, or sick animals.

I'd like to think I was not the exception.

Great article. Thanks for your contributions.

dw


Aug 21, 2010
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Sick pet
by: Debra Rosier

Yes, I would certainly stay with my furbaby if they were sick. I would probably call in "sick", which would not be a lie because when my babies are sick, I FEEL sick too!

Thank you so much for your articles which are informative, sometimes heartwrenching but always enjoyable.


Aug 21, 2010
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yes
by: Dee

Absolutely! Good Article! Thanx


Aug 21, 2010
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Interesting
by: Michael

Hi Elisa, I think this is an interesting subject. It tells us a bit about how we relate to our companion animals.

If I was employed I would take time off to care for my cat probably as holiday rather than lying about the reason.

The need to lie indicates that employers usually don't find it acceptable for an employee to take time off for their pet.

This is odd because companion animals are considered family members by 90% of people in America. Employers should realise that. There appears to be nothing in the employer/employee contract that deals with these circumstances and perhaps there should be as it places the employee in a difficult situation.

Michael Avatar



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