Attorney Kate Cavanaugh-Forte
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15 Questions to ask when looking for Pet Sitter

It’s summer and unfortunately Fido can’t always come with us on vacation. We all want to find a pet sitter who will love our pets like we do. Here are some tips on how to find a really good one.

dog walker

Leslie Eufrazio who runs Pet Services by Leslie in Franklinton, North Carolina, sent the following suggestions for dog owners looking for a pet sitter:

  1. Get and check at least five references.
  2. Be sure the pet sitter has professional affiliations, i.e.-PSI (Pet Sitters International) or NAPS (National Association of Pet Sitters). These organizations offer seminars and newsletters that help pet sitters provide knowledgeable and ever-improving care for pets. Memberships can be evidence that the business has some permanence in the community. Other memberships such as Chamber of Commerce are good too.
  3. Ask the sitter what he or she would do in the case of illness or inclement weather?
  4. Choose a service that promises to spend a set minimum amount of time with your pet.
  5. What pets does the sitter own? (Leslie would only want “real dog people” caring for her Rottweilers.)
  6. Why did the sitter get into this business?What did they do before? (In addition to being “animal people,” the sitter should come from a background that promotes excellent judgment and communication skills.)
  7. Is the service bonded? Licensed (if required in your area)?
  8. Is the sitter insured with a policy written specifically for pet sitters?Does it include “care, custody and control” of your pet and belongings; and re-keying of your locks if your key is lost or stolen?
  9. How are the employees selected? These people will be entering your home; is a criminal background check done annually on each one?
  10. Always insist on a get-acquainted visit with the sitter prior to your trip. Schedule this well in advance; a reputable, successful pet sitter does not squeeze you in to his or her schedule.
  11. At the get-acquainted visit, does the pet sitter ask to see shot records?
  12. Does he ask good questions about your pet’s feeding, exercise, and clean up requirements; and get detailed information regarding where you can be reached?
  13. Does he get the number of a friend or relative, in case of emergency; as well as your veterinarian’s number and the pet’s medical history?
  14. Learn up front what else is included in the fee. Will they bring in mail, change lights, rotate blinds, or water plants?
  15. What are the extra costs? Some services charge for the get-acquainted visit or charge an initial registration fee. Some charge extra for each pet over a certain number.

Pet sitting is a specialty service tailored to meet your pet’s individual needs. If you have only a couple of pets, and are seeking to economize, a pet sitting service may not be your best option.

For the rest of that great article check out DogOwner’s World– it’s a great little blog site.


A great info-graphic on Picking a pet sitter .


How to pick the right Pet Sitter

About the Author Kate Forte

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