For many families, their pets are a part of their family and have just as many privileges and rights as the humans in the house. So, when it comes time to hiring a new household employee, it is important to keep your pets in mind during the process. If you plan on hiring a new nanny and you have pets in your home, this is something that you should discuss with potential candidates from the very get-go.
If you have found the perfect nanny candidate and hire them, make sure to include information about the pet in your written nanny agreement. Information should include details about what duties are expected, if any, and what additional compensation will be for these outlined duties. This should be something that you and the nanny discuss in detail so you can be sure that she is on board with this.
If there are no pets in the house at the time of hiring your nanny, but you think that there is a chance that somewhere on the horizon you will want to introduce a pet into the family, talk to your nanny about this. Talk to her about your plan to add a pet to the house and address any important issues that may include potential allergies, fears, or any shift in daily duties and responsibilities. Talk to her about your expectations about providing a helping hand with the pet or pet training and clearly designate any extra duties and pay changes in writing.
Sometimes a nanny is already in place, working out beautifully, when the family decides to adopt a fur baby. This can be a total game changer for your nanny, and you would be wise to have a conversation before visiting the pet shelter! How does the nanny feel about dogs? Cats? House training a puppy? Your formerly cordial and collaborative relationship with your nanny could become strained overnight. A recent poll in the nanny community found that 32% of nannies would NOT accept responsibility for a new family pet - in short pet training was not what they signed on for, they want to care for children. If your wonderful nanny feels this way you may consider postponing that pet adoption!
Pet ownership is a big responsibility and if it’s something that is important to you, make sure your nanny knows that right from the beginning of her employment. Your pets deserve the best care and finding a nanny that is on the same page with you is key to keeping the pets healthy and happy, as well as keeping the house running smoothly.