“Pawternity” leave and 10 types of leave employers must offer by law

As some in the UK celebrate Love your Pet Day, research by insurance provider Petplan suggests that 5% of pet owners have been offered paid leave from their job specifically related to their pet owning duties.

For example, Mars Petcare offers its employees ten hours of paid leave when they get a new pet, and after that they can bring them into the office if they wish.

This type of leave has been coined by some as “pawternity” leave. While it can be considered an employee perk, if employees want to take time off to look after their pets they would need to book it as annual leave, since employers are under no legal obligation to give them “pawternity” leave, whether paid or unpaid. Those employers which are choosing to offer this are doing so in order to help keep their workforces happy and boost morale, rather than out of any legal duty.

However, there are 10 types of statutory leave employers do have to offer employees in the UK:

  1. Sickness absence

  2. Annual leave

  3. Maternity leave

  4. Paternity leave

  5. Adoption leave

  6. Shared Parental Leave

  7. Parental leave

  8. Time off for dependants

  9. Time off for public duties

  10. Time off for antenatal appointments