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Petco Announces Worker Furloughs, Pay Reductions, Job Cuts

Petco stores have remained open as ‘essential businesses’ during the pandemic.

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Petco has announced employee furloughs and other workforce measures in response to the COVID-19 crisis.

“None of these decisions were made lightly, and all of them are intended to minimize financial impact to individuals by positioning impacted employees to leverage the Federal CARES Act exactly as it was intended,” the company said in an April 16 update. “Our aim with these changes is to keep our most valuable resource – our people – attached to our company and financially supported while protecting the long-term financial health and viability of our business.”

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Effective April 27, Petco employees will either receive temporary reduced hours, salary reductions, extended or rotating furloughs. CEO Ron Coughlin will forgo 100 percent of his salary, while senior vice presidents and vice presidents will take 25 percent and 15 percent cuts, respectively.

Earlier last week, Petco eliminated 35 corporate office positions. The company’s overall workforce totals about 27,000.

Employees including “various dog trainer roles, entry guest experience specialists, and selling experience leaders” will be furloughed for up to eight weeks, Business Insider reported, quoting a companywide letter from Justin Tichy, chief stores officer. Some grooming salon workers will stay on the job “based on the current status of their salon.”

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Petco has kept its stores open nationwide as “essential businesses” during the pandemic, but grooming salons within some of the locations have closed based on local guidelines and staffing considerations.

Petco has about 1,500 stores in the U.S.

Since launching in 2017, PETS+ has won 16 major international journalism awards for its publication and website. Contact PETS+'s editors at editor@petsplusmag.com.

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