People who own pets, often need care for their pets for a variety of reasons, e.g., travel for work, illness, vacations or emergency trips. Most people look to a family member or a friend to care for their pet. This is a problem for people who can’t find anyone within their circle of family and friends to help. Some people feel uncomfortable leaving their pet at a kennel.
Pet sitters are an alternative to kennels, friends, and relatives. Pet sitters come into your home. Thus, the pet stays in surroundings where they feel safe. Pet sitters provide your pet with food, water, exercise and play time while you are away. If your pet has medical issues, the pet sitter can dispense medication and be on the watch for changes in the animal that might require a trip to the vets.
HOUSE SITTING: The sitter comes into your home and looks after your house and your pet. This is very useful for those who do not want to leave their home unattended, or for those who have more than one pet.
HOME VISITS: These are ideal for those who are out at work all day and need someone to feed or walk their pets.
PET SITTER HOMES: Some pet sitters will take your dog into their home. The pet still receives individual care and attention with all the comforts of home. This is a personal choice.
WHAT TO LOOK FOR IN A PET SITTER
- Are they experienced?
- Do they have pets of their own?
- Do they carry liability insurance?
- Do they have back up help in case they have an emergency?
- Ask if they have completed any types of training? (There are pet-sitting accreditation classes available.
- Can they provide references? (Always check references)
- Do they provide a contract, policies and fees?
WHERE TO FIND YOUR PET SITTER:
- Do a search on the Internet: go to a search engine such as www.GoodSearch.com and type in pet sitters.
- Look for ads in local papers
- Ask friends and relatives for the names of pet sitters they have used
- Call local veterinarian offices
- Call local dog trainers
- Look in the Yellow Pages
Call: Pet Sitters International 1-800-268-7487
National Association of Professional Pet Sitters 1-800-296-7387
Your pet is your responsibility. Make sure that you check references and leave your vet’s number in case of an emergency. Make sure that your pet’s vaccinations are all up to date and the pet sitter has records to reflect this. Make sure your pet has proper ID tags on it’s collar. All dogs should be microchipped.
Leave explicit instructions for feeding, medication, outdoor time, walks and anything else that pertains to your dog’s daily routine. Always leave a number where you can be reached as well as an alternate phone number of a friend or relative who might be able to reach you or make decisions regarding your pets in your absence.
Before hiring a Pet Sitter, check with you insurance company to make sure you have the proper coverage. Check out the Pet Sitter’s insurance to make sure they have proper coverage as well.