Petsitters & Work: Can I Expense That?


Here’s a question from a reader who wants to know about pets and work.

You have come to the right place. I’ll take any excuse to talk about HR and show a picture of Scrubby.

laurie, i have to be out of town for 11 nights. i am having an overnight petsitter for my cat & dog — $75/day. runs the tab to $825. should i be allowed to expense this? i think i should but thought i’d consult the expert!

Listen, I think you should be allowed to expense dry cleaning, your daily Starbucks, and your pet expenses. It’s all work related, right? When you have to spend money to have a job, it seems un-American.

Unfortunately, most companies think that your salary should more than cover your pet-sitting expenses. SHRM recently released its annual Employee Benefits survey and fewer than 1% percent of companies surveyed offer pet-care arrangements or reimbursement.

That means 99% of companies need to get on the stick. Fast.

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