As pet owners we love our pets, but no matter how much we enjoy being with our four-legged companions sometimes it’s not always practical to have them with us. That being said, I hate leaving my dogs behind or alone. I usually feel like I’m being selfish and abandoning them. So when I do have to leave them at home, I always want to make sure they’re going to receive great care. My dogs are my kids, which means I have very high standards, as do most dog owners, when it comes to who I will allow to take care of my pups when I’m out of town. I have talked with several people who feel the same way, but have no idea how to go about finding a quality pet sitter that will be the perfect fit for both the owner and the dog.
My first choice for having someone take care of my pets is my best friend who also happens to have a dog and treats her dog just like I treat mine. I know when I leave my dogs with her, I have nothing to worry about. Unfortunately there’s a problem with leaving them with Heidy: she lives three hours away. I don’t mind driving the three hours if I’m going on an extended trip somewhere (A week or more.). However, it doesn’t make sense to drive three hours one way to have Sadie and Rusty stay with her when I only need someone to take care of them overnight or for just a few days. For those times, I turn to a professional pet sitter.
A professional pet sitter has the training and experience needed to take care of your dog. Pet Sitters International (PSI) is the world’s largest associations for professional pet sitters. They recommend you hire a pet sitter who:
- bonded and has liability insurance
- visits your home before the first pet sitting assignment to meet your dog and get detailed information about their care
- is courteous and professional
- provides references
- conducts business with honesty and integrity
- has adequate knowledge and experience in caring for dogs
- belongs to a professional organization
- provides materials or online access to services and fees
- has a written service contract which specifies services, fees and time allocated per visit
- has a backup plan in case of inclement weather or a personal illness
Pet Sitters International has Pet Sitter Interview and pet sitter locator on their site to help you find pet sitters in your area. You will need to scroll down the page and download the Pet Sitter Interview.
I recommend meeting with at least two different pet sitters to see how well they fit with you and your dog, check their credentials and get their references. If it makes you feel more at ease you can have a background check done for an added security measure.
You’ll want to hire a pet sitter who meets all the standards, and you feel comfortable with. When you’re away the last thing you want to have to think about is whether your dog or your home is safe, instead you want to know that everything is in professional hands. It might cost a little more, but peace of mind is well worth the extra cost.
Find a reliable pet sitter by clicking on the picture below or if you live in the Chico, CA area you can hire a Chico Pet Sitter. My pet sitting company is Sitter For Your Critters we would love being your next pet sitter!