What does a Professional Pet Sitter do?
Pet owners realize that their pets feel more comfortable and secure when they can stay in their own home rather than being boarded at a kennel. Pet sitters make this possible by providing daily visits to your home to care for your pet. Sitters provide a variety of pet care services, including feeding and providing fresh water, walking dogs, cleaning litter boxes and cages, and administering medications. They can also give your house a lived-in look by bringing in mail, packages, newspapers, opening and closing blinds, and rotating lights. Your pet will appreciate the extra doses of loving care and you will experience the peace of mind knowing that your pets and your home are in capable hands.
Why should I hire a professional?
Professional pet sitters are just what the description implies – professional. While having friends, family, or neighbors care for your pets may seem like a logical choice, professional pet sitters do this for a living and have the experience necessary to care for your animals. We are insured and belong to several industry trade associations. This means that you can trust us to act responsibly when we enter your home. Since this is our job, you can always count on us to be there.
Advantages For Your Pet
- Your pet stays in the comfort and security of his/her own home, surrounded by the sights, sounds, and scents most familiar to him/her.
- Your pet stays on his/her customary diet and exercise routine.
- Your pet receives personalized individual attention.
- Your pet is not directly exposed to illness, noise, or stress that may be present in a kennel.
- Pets receive consistent, loving and customized care from the same pet sitter, allowing bonding between them. Your pet feels more secure, and your pet sitter is more readily able to recognize behavior that may require medical attention.
Advantages For You
- While you are away, you can feel confident your pet is in capable and caring hands.
- No need to transport your pet, and best of all, your pet is waiting for you when you get home.
- To aid in crime deterrence, pet sitters can rotate lights and blinds, and bring in your newspaper and mail to give your home a lived-in look.
- No imposing on friends, family, and neighbors, all of whom have their own busy schedules. Pet sitters make your pet’s care their number one priority.
- Network members have clear business policies, procedures, and documentation in place for your protection and theirs.
- Network Members companies have carefully thought out back-up and emergency plans for your pet’s safety.
- You will have peace of mind knowing that your pets are receiving the best care possible.
What kinds of animals do you care for?
We care for a variety of pets, from the usual dogs and cats to birds, gerbils, hamsters, and other furry friends. We do not have experience with reptiles. I don’t need a pet sitter, I need a dog walker! We also offer dog walking services at flexible times to clients who can’t get home to exercise and provide a potty break for their dogs.
What happens if my pet gets sick while I'm away?
At our introductory consultation, we will discuss and document your preferences for veterinary care. You must arrange for payment to your veterinarian of choice should care for your pet(s) be required in your absence.
You will be contacted in non-emergency situations prior to any decisions being made about care. In the case of an emergency, we will take your pet(s) to your preferred veterinarian or to the closest emergency veterinary clinic.
I’d like to save money by having my friend, relative, or neighbor share the pet sitting duties. Good idea right?
We DO NOT share pet sits with other care providers, be it friends, relatives, or neighbors. This is because of insurance liability issues and continuity of care concerns.
My cat is independent. Would you visit him every other day?
We require cats to be seen a minimum of once per day. We feel strongly that cats should be observed at least once in 24 hours as they are very good at hiding illness, some of which may require immediate medical attention. In addition, cats are curious creatures, so they may find themselves trapped in closets or rooms away from their food or litter box.
Since I’m planning to leave a big bowl of food for my dog, and he has a doggie door, can you come once a day?
Dogs are social creatures and need the company of a “pack” to stay happy and balanced. We require a minimum of three visits in 24 hours for dogs, even if your pet has access to a doggie door.
When is it not appropriate to hire a pet sitter?
There are some cases where pet sitting may not be the best alternative for your pet. Here are some examples:
- We are able to give your pet basic oral medication and can administer insulin injections. If your pet is in failing health, or requires more intensive care, we suggest boarding your pet at your vet’s office, which can provide 24 hour care.
- If your pet is aggressive, or doesn’t react well to visitors or strange people entering your home, it would be best to board your pet.
- If your pet gets very destructive in your absence, or suffers from severe separation anxiety, he or she may be better off at a boarding facility around other dogs and people.
What happens in the event of a weather emergency or natural disaster?
Having a severe inclement weather contact is critical to your pet’s welfare. We will ask for the name and contact information of a nearby neighbor who can walk to your house and care for your pets in the event that impassable road conditions or other emergency prevents safe travel to your home. Please make sure this neighbor has access to your home and will be home during the period of time that you are away.
Why does my cat have to be vaccinated? It lives indoors!
Rabies vaccination is required by law. Other vaccinations should be considered for the overall health and welfare of your cat, as your cats could be exposed to disease from feral animals in your yard or from viruses carried on your shoes or clothes. This is a topic to be discussed with your veterinarian.
What if I don’t believe in vaccinating my pets?
While we respect everyone’s opinion, we will not accept unvaccinated pets as clients because of the health risk to ourselves (think rabies), our personal pets, and to other clients’ animals.
What do I need to do to prepare for my sitter?
Before you leave for your trip, make sure these things are in place to make for a smooth transition for your sitter and your pet:
For Your Pet
- Your pet will need to be up to date on vaccinations. While this is a complicated topic, you and your veterinarian should be in agreement on specific vaccinations that your pet needs to maintain optimal health.
- Make sure that your pet’s collar fits properly and that an identification tag with current contact information is attached. If you are using an invisible fence, make sure batteries are fresh and the system is working properly before you leave.
- Have extra food, litter, medications and other supplies in case you are delayed in returning home.
- Place medicines and pill pockets out where the sitter can access them (but out of reach of your pet!).
- Put out leash and potty bags.
For Your Sitter
- Confirm all visit dates and times with your sitter prior to service commencing. Provide precise feeding instructions.
- To insure accurate administration of medication, label prescriptions clearly along with dosage.
- Provide the sitter with your flight itinerary and lodging information.
- Let your pet sitter know where your pet’s crate/carrier is located. Keep it accessible in case your pet needs to be transported or evacuated.
- If you have an alarm system, make sure to test it, and provide your pet sitter with both the keypad code, as well as the spoken password, in case of a false alarm.
- To avoid concern by neighbors it is appropriate to let them know that a professional pet sitter will be caring for your house and pets while you are away.