deciding to use a pet sitter
Using the services of petsitter is a good choice when you plan to travel. The alternative is to leave your dog in a boarding kennel. Research has shown that more than 90 percent of dog owners consider their dog to be part of the family. This means that you will want to find a pet sitter that not only takes care of your dog’s basic needs but also gives her some of the love and attention that she is used to. Ideally, you will want to find a pet sitter that you can use on a regular basis. This will give you peace of mind when you travel
can a friend or family member help?
Before you start searching for a professional pet sitter you should think about approaching one of your friends or family members to do the job. This seems like a big thing to ask. But if the person also has a dog, then you may be able to provide a reciprocal service which will work out well for both of you.
What Qualities should a Pet sitter have?
If you decide to use a professional pet sitter, there are some things to check out to help you make the right decision.
- Love of Dogs. A love of dogs is the most obvious quality a good pet sitter will have. You can often see this when the prospective sitter first meets your dog.
- Your dog should like them. When the sitter meets your dog for the first time, you should be closely observing them both. You can learn a lot from the way your dog reacts to them.
- Experience. This is really important. The sitter should have experience dealing with the type of dog that you have. Ask questions about this. You may have a big dog, an excitable dog, an energetic dog and so on. Each type of dog requires specific care and previous experience is a must.
- Consistency. You have certain guidelines and boundaries for your dog’s behavior. She may be restricted to certain area of the house or maybe, not even allowed in to house at all. You need to be sure that your sitter will maintain these rules.
- Reliability. Your pet sitter needs to be where she says she is going to be when she says she is going to be there. The last thing your need is a phone call to say that “something has come up” and the engagement can’t be completed.
- Professionalism. Does your pet sitter hold all the necessary licences and certificates needed for this job?
Ask the potential pet sitter some tough questions
You should not be afraid to ask tough, probing questions during the interview. Even then, it may be difficult to put your mind completely at rest based on the interview alone. That is why references are important. As for the contact details of some of the sitter’s previous clients. Follow up these leads. The people you contact will understand your concerns and will be happy to help put your mind at ease.
Make sure your sitter understands exactly what is expected of her. As well as her doggie duties there may be some other things you need her to do. You could want here to water the garden or take care of other minor household chores.
If you plan to be away for an extended time, it is a good idea to organise a shorter “trial’ sit beforehand. This is not always possible, but it can be very reassuring to have had at least this interaction with the sitter.
Choosing a pet sitter can be a stressful experience, so the more effort you put in ahead of time will contribute to ensuring a satisfactory outcome.