Autumn Animals is the result of a host of elderly animals stomping their way into the life of our founder Sieske Valk. Either by her own choice or accidentally, they all made a huge impact and sparked the fire of her love for the more "mature" companion animals.
After almost ten years of veterinary nursing in the Netherlands and five years of serving London's dog and cat community as a professional medical pet carer, Sieske finally took the plunge in 2022 and set up the kind of holistic care company she would like to use by the time she would need it for her cat, Lewis.
Whilst serving London's pet community, Sieske noticed a lack of adequate and specialised in-home palliative and geriatric care for companion animals, emotional support for their caregivers and access to supplementary care. Moreover, the different silos of veterinary care did not seem to communicate with each other to support the care of individual patients.
Autumn Animals strives to bring these professionals together, and provide holistic, personalised care for the patient and their caregiver, even after the Final Goodbye.
When setting up Autumn Animals, we have put great effort in pinning down our values and goals and making sure we report annually on how we have served the community to attain our goals, whilst keeping a close eye on our values.
It was never in the books that Autumn Animals would be the kind of company that would serve the shareholders before the patients, clients, community and environment.
Personal and personalised care for the patient and caregiver always comes first. That is just not negotiable. This is very important, not just for the relationship with the client (caregiver), but also to provide the best care for the patient.
At Autumn Animals we find it equally important to invest in the future of our world by taking care of the environment. This is why we:
Plant one tree for every patient we had to say goodbye to;
Are a member of 1% for the Planet;
Are on our way to become a certified B Corp;
Are a Carbon Neutral company by limiting our carbon footprint and offsetting our limited amount of carbon with Ecologi.
Our goal is to be Climate Positive by the end of 2022. Find out more about what we do to support our planet here.
And last but certainly not least, we make sure we take care of our community of animal lovers.
Autumn Animals is a Real London Living Wage employer, meaning we pay our staff at least the RLLW according to the Living Wage Foundation.
Due to the heavy emotional toll our work can have on mental health, we work a lot with sponsors, professional mental health counsellors in times of emotional crisis and life coaches.
We believe in a world where we can openly talk about our grief for a companion animal and feel strong enough to ask for compassionate leave if that's what you need. We are also aware that she wasn't "just a cat" or you can't "just get a new pup". Companion animals come with beautiful stories that should be heard and with a ton load of emotions that should be felt.
This is why Autumn Animals starts providing regular local Pet Bereavement talking groups as of 2023, free of charge and accessible to all, where you can openly speak about your grief and listen to others as they tell their story. If you'd like to read more or attend one of these meetings, visit the Events page.