Choosing a Pet Sitter

Choosing a pet sitter

Choosing a pet sitter

Whether leaving to go out on a date or off to work, a pet sitter can be a good investment if your homework before hiring someone.  It’s common for pet owners to leave their pets at home alone but have you ever thought about a pet sitter?  Even if the idea has crossed your mind you may want to look into the idea of having a professional care for your pets while you are away.  You gain peace of mind knowing your pet is comfortable at home being tended to and it can be an option when friends or family are unable to care for your pets.  In choosing a pet sitter it helps to become familiar with services offered, observe their behavior during the interview process and learn background experience.

Ask questions. If the idea has popped into mind, consider interviewing potential sitters and ask about their history in providing care for pets.  What will they do during an emergency?  What kind of schedule would be followed during your time away?  How and when are fees paid for services? If the pet sitter runs a business you may want to ask about insurance or bonding; this helps protect both parties should something happen.  If they have insurance, ask for proof.

How emergencies are handled.  Review emergency measures the sitter plans to follow in case of an emergency, such as your pet falling ill or if the sitter is unable to provide care.  Natural disasters and bad weather situations may be other issues to review. How does the sitter reach you in case they need to contact you? Can they contact your vet if they can’t reach you if your pet needs immediate medical attention?

Review pet issues.  Discuss any issues regarding your pet’s health.  This may include any medications, behaviors or anything of significance concerning their well-being.  Allowing your pet sitter to learn more about your pet helps them provide good care.  Plus, it helps you learn more about related experiences of the sitter.

Discuss contract terms.  Professional sitters should have some sort of contract agreement that states pertinent details related to services offered.  Details may include dates and times of services scheduled, type of service provided, fees, key access, etc.

Check background and get references.  What feedback has been given about the sitter from previous clients? What were things people liked and disliked about their services?  Ask for contact information from previous clients and contact them to learn about their experience and see if they would recommend them.

Key access and home concerns.  If the sitter needs a key to access the home, review policy details; mention where the key should be stored in the house after being used.  If you plan to use their services in the future they may have a standard procedure.  Any issues with your home should be mentioned so the sitter is aware of them; maybe a door doesn’t lock the way it should or you have a security alarm system.

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