In our fast paced world where we can now request dog sitters and dog walkers on demand there are some important things to look at when choosing a company and caretaker that will best fit you and your pet's needs. The consequences of not considering who is providing care for your pet can be tremendous. Below are 5 of the most important questions to ask yourself when looking for a pet sitter or dog walker.
1. Does this person require a Meet and Greet before taking me on as a client?
Meet and Greets are essential for all pet sitters to do when taking on a new client. At the meet and greet the pet sitter will ask you important questions about your animal to better serve and take care of them. Some questions they may ask are; has your animal ever bitten anyone? Are they friendly with other people and animals? Do they have a specific diet? Are they allergic to any foods? Do they take any medications? A professional pet sitter and dog walker needs to know these answers to give your animal the best possible care.
2. Is this person caring for my pet trained in Pet CPR and First Aid?
Just like you would feel more comfortable with someone who is CPR trained to watch your child, having someone trained in emergency care for your animal will give you the same peace of mind. If your animal gets a cut or accidently chokes on an item, you should have someone who is trained in emergency care.
3. Are they Insured and Bonded?
A professional Pet Sitter will be insured and bonded with a reliable company, because they know that sometimes things happen that are out of our control. For example, a dog could be bitten while on a walk, or your pet sitter could accidently loose your keys. In these cases, if your pet sitter has insurance and is bonded, those costs would be covered by their insurance.
4. Are they members of any Professional Pet Sitting Organizations?
In any profession when someone is a member of a larger organization that supports their profession, that shows dedication and continued education in their field. This holds true with Pet Sitters and Dog Walkers. There are a number of Professional Pet Sitting Organizations such as National Association of Professional Pet Sitters, Pet Sitters International and Professional United Pet Sitters.
5. How does my animal interact with this person?
You always want to trust your animal when introducing them to someone new. Especially, someone that will be looking after them while you are away. Your animal will let you know if they are excited to see this person, if they are scared of them, or if they trust this person. If you have a shy or skiddish animal, I would recommend having the potential Pet Sitter stay longer than 30 minutes so your animal can have extended time to adjust and get comfortable with them. You can also try having the potential Pet Sitter give your animal a treat, and see how your pet reacts.
In my experience, these 5 questions will help provide you and your pet with the safest and lasting care. When we consider our pets as our family, we want to give them the best. Some other important questions to consider may be: Does this person or company have references? Discussing their services with other clients is your right to know. A responsible and quality Pet Sitter will have references available.
Edited by Tara Rico