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How We Care for Our Associates

Thank you to all our associates for making our 2022 Belonging Week such a success! Your commitment and passion to advancing our culture as an inclusive organization made this a truly special event. It was wonderful to see associates cheer and recognize one another, awarding nearly 3.5 million PlayUp points.

Our associates are the heart and soul of PetSmart. You provide excellent service to our customers, you go above and beyond for the pets in your care, and you give your all to make sure the entire team succeeds. That’s why caring for associates is a top priority. Our commitment to all of you is to support you in all the ways we can to help you thrive as pet care specialists, individuals, and members of the communities you serve. Here’s what we’re doing.

We Provide Competitive Compensation and Benefits

Caring for our associates begins with meeting their needs and looking out for their well-being. All of our associates make more than minimum wage, and we’ve recently implemented an hourly rate increase across all of our locations. In fact, since the beginning of the pandemic, we’ve increased the average wage by 24% in our stores and by 16% in our distribution centers. Associates also enjoy paid time off, paid volunteer time, and 401(k) matching.

Additionally, we offer extensive health and wellness benefits for associates enrolled in the medical plan, including medical, dental, vision, behavioral health, and pregnancy and adoption support. For the fourth year in a row, we’ve maintained low premium costs for associates with no increases. We’ve also introduced new medical plan options that allow associates additional flexibility to take care of their families. In 2018, we began offering paid parental leave, which provides up to four weeks of paid leave for a new parent. In 2021, more than 600 associates used this benefit.

We’re proud to offer other benefits, including professional development opportunities, tuition assistance, scholarship programs, discounts program, a free associate assistance program, a peer-to-peer associate recognition program, and pet adoption reimbursement.

For details on our benefits programs, visit the PetSmart benefits site.

We Make Health and Safety Our Top Priority

As we faced the challenges of COVID-19, we made the safety of our associates and pet parents the highest priority. At every step, we adapted our business practices to meet or exceed all health and safety guidance, including enhanced cleaning and disinfecting protocols, face covering requirements, and social distancing. We invested millions of dollars in personal protective equipment (PPE), face coverings for associates, cleaning supplies, physical barriers, vaccination incentives, and more.

At the same time, we continue our standard practices to ensure the safety of associates and animals in our care. Over the years, we’ve established industry-leading animal care policies, including 800 hours of hands-on instruction and safety certification and six-months of continuous support thereafter for all dog groomers. We have veterinary hospitals in nearly half our stores and on-call emergency vet coverage for all stores. Our panel of veterinarians and our newly formed Vet Health Services team ensure our pet care practices, policies, and procedures are evidence-based and built on clinical best practices. Our safety and care standards have never been higher.

"I’ve felt a consistent sense of belonging at PetSmart, from my time in the stores to my current role in the home office. I still struggle sometimes with my neurodiversity, but it is a core part of who I am and deserves to be embraced and celebrated. These experiences, along with my friends, family, and coworkers, have filled me with a drive to create a space where everyone can belong and thrive."

- Jason, Store Associate to Sr. Risk Systems Analyst

We Welcome Everyone

PetSmart’s success depends on creating and maintaining a culture of inclusion, where all associates can excel. We promote Belonging across all our locations and take action to ensure the diversity of our associates reflects the diversity of the communities we serve.

We focus on attracting, recruiting, and developing passionate, diverse, and skilled associates that make us better every day. In 2022, we increased race and gender representation across the company. We’ve seen the highest growth among our Directors and Officers.

We dedicated 2,000+ hours and $80,000 last year to leadership and interviewing training, in order to increase awareness of behavior-based interviewing and reduce unconscious biases.

You can learn more about Belonging, diversity, and inclusion by following the Life at PetSmart blog.

We Listen

Finally, we welcome all perspectives and feedback. We believe open and transparent engagement with our associates is the best path for fostering a positive culture. We embrace an open-door policy at all levels, and we take proactive steps to share updates with our associates and hear their feedback. We conduct an annual engagement survey, pulse check surveys, culture assessments, and listening tours.

Do you have questions, ideas, or concerns you’d like to share? Please email us to let us know your thoughts.


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