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family pets
July 12th 06, 05:52 PM
Before the Pet Sitting Industry

In this day and age of modern technology and fast-paced living, travel
is as easy as the touch of a button. Either through the internet or
your touch-tone phone you can make travel arrangements to suit your
vacation needs, or fill a work request. But, if you happen to have one
or more pets, you have a responsibility to your companion aimals. You
aren't always able to leave at your own whim, so what do you do?

Prior to 1997 when Pet Sitters first became a commonplace word there
were only a few options available for away-from-home pet care: Ideally,
a family friend or relative to come in and feed and care for the cat or
dog would be the best option. But failing that, the only other
alternatives were boarding at a cat and dog kennel, or boarding your
pet with your vet. Neither of these latter two options took into
consideration how pets become comfortable with routine and dislike
change. Boarding at a kennel, that oftentimes contains other stressed
out animals, exposed your pet to stressful, unfamiliar situations and
even sickness. While boarding at the vet, the same applies in being
surrounded by stressed animals in unfamiliar surroundings. The only
difference is your pet is monitored so if your pet becomes ill there is
help available quickly.

How to Choose the Right Pet Sitter

Enter the professional pet sitter. Someone who will come to your home,
feed your pet, administer meds, make sure that your pet has company at
least for a portion of the day, and make sure your pet is safe until
you return home. Sounds like a great idea right? You bet, but how do
you find the right pet sitter for you? Opening up the Yellow Pages and
looking under Pet Care (depending on what area you live in) you are
confronted with a virtual buffet of names to choose from. Websites
such as www.pet-sitters.biz.com can be a great help, as your can easily
browse the profiles of pet sitters in your area, or register to be
informed when pet sitters are available in your area.

If your pet has a special need, your best bet is to ask the girls at
your vet's office if they know of a qualified pet sitter. Many pet
sitters have worked, or still do work in the field of veterinary
medicine, and are skilled at pilling cats, getting a finicky cat to
eat, or simply watching out for the very real danger of a pet becoming
ill at the absence of the owner. Also talk to other pet owners and find
out if they have someone they use which they can recommend. Use the
internet and network on pet boards and in emails. Make sure that the
person you find will give exemplary care to your pet(s).

Once you secure the phone number, call and see if the pet sitter is
receptive to meeting you in their home first. This is a good way to
gauge the person you wish to entrust your pet(s) to because while you
are there, you can observe their animals and make your own
determination.

Some pet sitters will only meet with you at your home, if that be the
case then during that meeting, watch how they interact with your
animals, and how your animals respond in kind to them. Trust your
instincts. If something unsettles you, be polite about it, but tell the
person you need to keep looking and interviewing and you will let him
or her know. And always follow-through, don't leave the person
hanging about the job. Give them a courtesy call and let them know you
have found someone else. It is the proper way to do things

Be Prepared

Have a list of questions beforehand to ask. Here are a few samples: (I
am using the female gender for ease of writing only)

Does she have assistance in caring for your animal? If something should
happen to her is there back-up?

How many clients does she have - and insist on referrals

Is she licensed, bonded and insured?

Formal training to handle emergencies should they arise?

Why does she feel she is different from other pet sitters?

How long has she been in business?

What types of jobs did she hold before becoming a pet sitter?

What led her into the field?

Are there certain pets she enjoys over others?

Request a copy of her resume.

Once you determine that you have found the right person, and that
person has also passed your inspection in your own home with your
animals, it is now your turn to make the pet sitter's life easier in
caring for your pets.

Prior to leaving town, make sure that you have gathered all the extra
feeding and water bowls in one central location in your home. Leave a
list of feeding instructions taped to your refrigerator or wall-

Leave out leashes and collars. If it is wintertime, arrange for a
neighbor to come and shovel snow, or mow the grass (if you are going to
be gone awhile).

Before you leave town, take a ratty old pair of sneakers and slip them
on barefoot and wear them as you do your housework. Get them all nice
and sweaty, slip them into a Ziploc bag and leave them with a note for
the pet sitter to put one shoe down the day after you leave town, and
then the other a few days later. (This just reinforces your scent to
your cat, and comforts her to let her know that you are near).

Make sure you have an emergency plan in effect - Leave a photo of your
pet(s) on the refrigerator - (in case the worse thing happens and the
animal gets outside). Leave alternate numbers of people the cat knows
who would be able to capture the animals outside more so than a
stranger would be able to.

Leave all the phone numbers where you can be reached and an itinerary
of your trip.

Leave your vet's phone number and name and the hours the clinic keeps,
provide an after-hours phone number if available.

Shut all extra room doors to other bedrooms and bathrooms. Leave your
cat access to the living room, your bedroom and master bathroom. Make
sure all closet doors are shut, use the childproof safety locks in
your absence so the pet doesn't get shut up into a cupboard and become
trapped.

Leave enough food and litter to compensate should you have to be gone
longer than expected. Make sure your litter pans are cleaned and full
of new litter right before you leave town.

You also want to pet proof your home before you leave. Take off all
breakables that are on shelves and dressers, put up any cleaning
products etc... When pets are left to their own devices in an empty
home, many things can and do happen. What you want to happen, is for
your pets to remain safe, and so pet-proofing is a good way to maintain
the home. When you get back, you can return things back to normal, it
only takes a few minutes. In being prepared ahead of time, you can then
achieve peace of mind and enjoy your trip. Visit Pet Sitters & Sitting
Directory worldwide <a href="http://www.ezpetz.com">read more click
here</a>

dgk
July 13th 06, 06:33 PM
On 12 Jul 2006 09:52:38 -0700, "family pets" >
wrote:

>Before the Pet Sitting Industry
>
>In this day and age of modern technology and fast-paced living, travel
>is as easy as the touch of a button. Either through the internet or
>your touch-tone phone you can make travel arrangements to suit your
>vacation needs, or fill a work request. But, if you happen to have one
>or more pets, you have a responsibility to your companion aimals. You
>aren't always able to leave at your own whim, so what do you do?
>
>Prior to 1997 when Pet Sitters first became a commonplace word there
>were only a few options available for away-from-home pet care: Ideally,


....


Thanks, good stuff to think about.

July 23rd 06, 07:41 AM
I am a professional sitter, and I run a professional Pet sitting
organization. I have a few comments on the things to look for when
choosing a professional pet sitter.

Most states do not have any "licensing" for pet sitting. Many states
don't even require a license to run a business any longer.

Bonding is fairly meaningless when it comes to pet sitting. A Bond
only applies if a sitter steals from the client, and then is convicted
in court of the crime. Some bonds don't even apply to the owner of
the business at all, and often the owner of a pet sitting business does
most or even all of the pet sitting. So bonds are definitely NOT a
must these days. A better option for sitters is actual
theft/mysterious disappearance, and breakage INSURANCE. PSA offers
this, and you can see a free comparison chart of them against other
major insurance companies at www.petsits.com/insurance.htm

So bonding and licensing are generally not questions a client needs to
consider.

When you hire a professional pet sitter, you should not have to place
out any instructions about the service except notes about things that
have changed since your first consultation or "meet & greet".
Professionals will write down all necessary information at the
consultation, and/or have you fill it out at that time so that everyone
can be sure everything is accurate.

A profession pet sitter will not welcome clients to their own home.
That would be a security risk, since most pet sitters keep their client
information and keys locked up in their homes. Most sitters will not
even publish their address to the public, just for added security.
Also, pet sitters are very busy people, who work from as early as 6pm
to as late as 11pm. Some even do overnights. So most sitters don't
have extra time between sits and consultations to go home and 'clean
up' just to impress a new client. Finally, sitters often have personal
pets with some quirky personalities - including high-anxiety or
aggressiveness, and it may not be safe to invite strangers into their
home for any reason. A professional will happily arrange a
consultation with you in YOUR own home, often for free. In fact, this
consultation is generally required by professional pet sitters.

The pet sitter directory link you provided isn't working. Here are
some other directories that are functional: www.petsits.com,
www.petsitusa.com, www.petsitterneeded.com, www.petsit.com,
www.petsitters.org.

1dave
August 5th 06, 03:50 PM
The website has been revamped.
http://www.ezpetz.com