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Tips for choosing a Great Pet Sitter

Pet Sitters aren’t just taking care of your cherished pet, they are coming into your home. They need to be credible, reliable, experienced, and able to handle emergencies. Your animal should feel comfortable and safe around them.

Leaving your precious buddy alone in the house while you’re at work or travelling is hard enough; finding a reliable great pet sitter should not be. Faced with chaotic schedules and long commutes– or even a pet whose handling separation stress and anxiety– more individuals are working with professional caretakers to ensure their animals’ daily health, exercise and happiness.

When owners are away, there are many options for pet care. Some owners board their pets with their veterinarian, dog-boarding kennel, or cattery. Some have a member of the family or next-door neighbor take care of them.

Animal sitters are a fantastic choice for homes with multiple animals, special needs animals, or when owners choose that their pet remains in the comfort of their home environment. Many family pets are less stressed when they can stay in their own homes and follow their typical routines. A great pet sitter provides dependability and comfort while the owner is away.

Here are some ideas to discover that great pet sitter!

Look for firsthand recommendations or reviews

  • Check the reviews on the Service Provider listings on Great Pet Sitters
  • Check any bulletin boards at regional shops or your vet’s office for advertisements
  • Ask your veterinarian and local humane societies, they might have clients or employees who are part-time pet caretakers
  • Checking out a potential great pet sitter’s Facebook page can also help your search

Get ready for the Meet and Greet

Take your time to think about questions and specifics you want to know about your great pet sitter prior to interviewing them by phone or video chat. Don’t be afraid to have a long discussion; you can get a great sense of somebody’s character during a good conversation. If it’s possible an in-person meeting at your house would be a great idea to introduce the potential pet sitter with your pet. This will enable you to be familiar with the person and observe how they interact with your animal. Maybe ask a candidate to do a trial walk to see how they manage your pet. You could even hire the person for one day, go out for the day, and see how your dog is when you return. if the person is unwilling to meet you and your pet ahead of time– consider it a red flag and look somewhere else.

Here are some topics to consider:

  • Discuss all aspects of your pet care needs
    • Do they have a special diet or exercise needs
    • Do they have regular medications that the sitter would need to administer
    • Do they have any quirks or different behaviours that the sitter needs to know
    • Where everything is located (food, collars, leashes, vet information)
  • Ensure that the Service Provider is able to provide the level of care your great pet deserves
    • How long have they been providing pet sitting services
    • What are their experience and qualifications
    • What types of pets do they look after
    • What sizes of pets will they look after
    • What do they charge for their various services
    • Do they have a contract or written agreement for you to read and sign – one that protects you and them
  • What their communication methods are
    • texting photos, texts, emails, webcam – what do they prefer and provide?
  • How they deal with disputes and refunds
    • while we never want anything to go wrong, it’s best to know the service providers policies upfront
  • How prepared they are to deal with emergencies
    • Do they have any emergency training like pet CPR
    • Do they have access to a vehicle
    • Do they have other support people
    • What is their backup strategy
    • Ask them to give you an example of how they handled a past emergency with a client’s pet
  • It can also be helpful to pose a couple of emergency scenarios to see how candidates react
    • What would they do if the air conditioning breaks on a hot day
    • Your pet begins throwing up

Ask for References

Ask the Service Provider for their references and check them! Ask for proof of their insurance, qualifications, and experience. Ask if they are bonded and licensed if that is applicable in our area. Ask if they have a copy of a recent criminal background check, if these things are important to you.

Accept that it might not work out

The very best screening in the world might not prevent you from choosing the wrong pet sitter for you and your pet.

You can take some basic actions to help determine whether the person is doing their job. If you decide to try a new pet sitter for a day before you go away – here’s a few things you can do to determine how well it went with your dog:

  • Check whether the pet sitter comes at the agreed-upon times if you have a doorbell cam or a nosy neighbour
  • Get a GPS or AirTag for your dog’s collar to guarantee they are being walked every day
  • Pee puddles, poop or throw up in your house are not a good thing if your pet is house trained
  • Treats or toys that you’ve left for the pet sitter to give your pet are untouched
  • Failure to provide any kind of report or feedback of your animal’s behavior
  • How did your pet greet you when you returned – were they their regular happy to see you? Or were they stressed and clingy?

While it’s excellent to be mindful when starting with somebody brand-new, remember that the majority of people who choose pet sitting as a profession are animal lovers. A great pet sitter will soon become a relied upon resource and friend to you and your pet!


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