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Features June 2016 Issue

Pawternity Leave

Matthew Gilbert, author of Off the Leash: A Year at the Dog Park, stayed home for several weeks with his new puppy, Duncan (as if you doubted he would). Mr. Gilbert is the associate whose automatic e-mail said he was on "pawternity leave."

Pawternity Leave

What to keep in mind when bringing home a new puppy. (Hint: the puppy’s emotional needs.)

“I'll be out of the office until Monday, March 28, on pawternity leave. I will be checking my email only occasionally.”

So went the automatic reply that came to us from a business associate. He had taken several weeks off from work to stay home with his new puppy, which he adopted when the dog was eight weeks old.

Over the top? We don’t think so. “To bring a puppy into your house after it has been with its littermates, and then the next day go off to work — you’re rupturing that delicate bond at the beginning of life,” says Tufts Animal Behavior Clinic Director Nicholas Dodman, BVMS, DACVB.

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