When it comes to hiring a pet sitter, the decision goes far beyond the quality care of your favorite furry friend. While walking, feeding or loving your dog are important, you also need to consider things like home security and tasks that keep your pet in a tip-top condition. Do you know what to look for when choosing a sitter for these critical dog-sitting chores?
Why Hire a Dog Sitter?
It is often necessary to travel for work or vacation, and you want to make sure your dog is comfortable which is why many people prefer in-home sitters whether it is a friend, neighbor or paid sitter. Benefits include keeping your pet in a known environment, sticking to routines and preventing travel stress. You will also hinder burglars, collect mail and water the greenery.
Where Is the Best Place to Find a Sitter?
There are several resources to use to find a pet sitter you can trust.
Word of Mouth
Did you know that more than 90 percent of consumers trust word of mouth as a reliable source for recommendations? Not only can you find someone who personally has experience, but you have access to trustworthy sources who you know personally.
You should check with your local neighborhood association to see if there is a dog-sitting co-op in your area. By trading services in a cooperative, you save money and trade off sitting duties with neighbors and friends who have a sitter when they need to travel.
Local Professional Sitter Services
You can find available sitters in your local area by searching online at quigig.comor by visiting the yellow pages or Google and type “Pet Sitting Services” to get recommendations closer to home.
Post an Ad with Travel Sitter Websites
Some people travel the world by trading dog sitting services for accommodations. You can find these professionals on sites like Trusted Housesitters, which cater to both pet owners and travelers. You can also visit the National Association of Professional Pet Sitters and find out about sitter accreditations.
Do Pet Sitters Need Special Accreditation?
This industry is not regulated when it comes to in-home sitters. It is best to personally interview each applicant to find out about their skill sets, qualifications, education, or accreditations:
- Does the sitter have verifiable recommendations from previous employers?
- Is the sitter bonded? While not critical, it does protect your financial interests.
- Does the dog sitter have any specialized training?
- What type of records will the sitter keep while you are gone? What about medical knowledge or routine?
- Does the sitter have access to emergency vet services?
- Does the sitter have reliable transportation? Is there a backup plan in place?
- Will the sitter have the ability to perform grooming, walking, and training?
- Does the sitter provide a rights and responsibilities contract with fee and services?
- Will the sitter have live-in or day-to-day responsibilities?
- Does the sitter provide you with contact information to check-in?
When you take the time to vet a person’s experience and references fully, you have all of the knowledge you need to make an informed decision that will beneficial for you and your pet.