love pets and be who you are

Pets are great because you can be yourself when you’re with them. They’re always exactly who they are, no faking, and they love you for who you are.

Who knew that pets could be such great role models?

Being who you are – your authentic self – isn’t always easy, but it’s something we value highly at Banfield. It’s one big reason we recently changed our associate name badges, which can now include the Banfield team member’s pronouns.

Using gender-neutral or non-binary pronouns, such as they/them or zie/hir/zir, allows us all to speak to and about others without making incorrect assumptions about gender. Everyone, including allies, can share pronouns, which helps create a safe and inclusive environment for all.

"It can be very harming or triggering to be misgendered," said Kristen Pelenskij, a programs specialist at Banfield. "We want to ensure that transgender, transitioning, and non-binary associates are addressed as their authentic selves by their peers and clients."

For Dr. Carl Winch, a senior manager at Banfield, providing pronouns on name badges shows how much we care and that we are aware of how we can help our associates and clients feel included, respected, and accepted. “It's exciting to be able to provide what seems like a small change that has such a large impact,” he said.

The reaction to the change has been overwhelmingly positive and has also been emotional for some folks. "There have even been tears of excitement from some of our associates," said Michelle Slater-Young of Banfield’s marketing team.

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