In this article you will learn the seven simple step you will take to ensure you get the best possible pet sitter to take care of your pet while you are away.
Insurance and Bonding
Your pet sitter should be able to provide proof of both insurance and bonding. Insurance is important as it protects both your home and your pet.
Qualifications and Training
During your registration meeting, you will want to ask the pet sitter about their past experience.
- How many years have they been doing this job?
- What types of pets have they cared for?
- Do they have any specialized training like pet first aid/CPR?
You will also want to pay attention to how they interact with your pets.
- Does your pet seem happy with the pet sitter?
- Is the pet sitter paying attention to your pet or ignoring them completely?
Whether you just want to check in or have an emergency you need to know how to contact your pet sitter.
- How will the pet sitter communicate with you while you are away?
- Do they have regular office hours where you can contact someone?
Professional pet sitters should send you updates along with photos of your pets after every visit to let you know they have been completed.
The pet sitter should provide a way of stating what's expected of them. For example...
- How many visits will occur each day and at what times of the day – morning, afternoon, evening?
- How long will each visit last?
- What pet care instructions are they to follow?
Ideally, you should know any other responsibilities the pet sitter will take care of for you while you are away. For example, will they bring in packages and the mail/newspaper so it looks like someone is home?
Back up and Support
People get sick and sometimes accidents happen.
- What is their policy if something happens to your primary pet sitter?
- Do they have a backup pet sitter?
- How will the backup pet sitter get your instructions?
You don't want a friend of a friend showing up to take care of your pets.
- How do they keep your information and keys secure?
- Who keeps the key and where?
- What policies do they have in place for alarm security codes?
Effective Business System
- What type of system does the pet sitter use to ensure they never forget a visit?
- Are you able to double check what visits you have scheduled and for when?
- How do you make updates to your pets' information?
Pets get sick and have accidents just like we do.
- What is their policy for taking a pet to the vet?
- What if the pet ends up needing extra care until you get home?
- Do they have a veterinarian release form so your vet is aware you will be out of town and the pet sitter will be caring for your pet?
Make sure you both understand what their emergency policy is and agree to it.
Ask plenty of questions when you initially contact the pet sitting service and when you meet your pet sitter for the first time.
Remember, there is no such thing as a stupid question, especially when it comes to the care of your pets.