If you are a busy dog owner, you probably have needed the help of a dog-sitting service from time to time. Whether you have a demanding job that requires you to leave your dog at home most days, or you need to travel and cannot take your pup with you, regular life events can sometimes make it difficult for you to tend to your dog for a period of time.
Dogs are not designed for solitary life. For your dog to thrive, it needs social interaction with you, other dogs and other humans. When you use a professional pet sitter, you can relax and know that your dog is getting care from an educated, responsible individual who will ensure the safety and wellbeing of your dog.
What Does Dog Sitting Include?
Professional dog sitting includes any activity that is part of caring for a dog in its own home while the owner is away. Dog walking and feeding are typical services performed by a dog sitter.
When you find a dog sitter you think would work well for you, be sure to discuss what services will be included. In addition to walking and feeding, professional dog sitters often provide services such as multiple visits to the home each day, play and companionship time (which may include a trip to the dog park), cleaning food and water bowls and administering medication. Many sitters will even stay overnight with your dog.
If you need a dog sitter while you are traveling, the dog sitter will frequently be willing to tend to other matters such as bringing in your mail or newspapers, turning lights on and off, watering plants and any other tasks needed while you are away from home.
Whatever service you need from your dog sitter, be sure you understand upfront what the dog sitter’s services will include, the frequency needed, the dates you need services and the sitter’s fees. Each of these services should be thoroughly discussed and understood by both of you before you hire the dog sitter.
Dog Boarding vs. Dog Sitting
Dog boarding means you have to take your dog to a kennel and leave it there until you are ready to bring it home. This means your pup will be separated from you and from its familiar environment until you return for it.
Boarding arrangements are very stressful for some dogs. Depending on the boarding facility, your dog could be overwhelmed by the commotion and the unfamiliar surroundings. Many dogs are too stressed to eat for a day or two. They may or may not have access to other dogs in a safe and secure manner.
Boarding situations also present health risks. Most boarding facilities require dogs to be current on their vaccines, but that does not prevent diseases from spreading through even the best-managed facilities.
Professional dog sitters, on the other hand, will come to your home to take care of your dog. That way, your dog’s routine is only minimally interrupted, and the dog does not have to leave the safety and security of its own home. The dog is less stressed and will be home ready to greet you when you return. Sometimes, the dog sitter will care for your dog at their home, but it is up to you and the sitter to work those details out.
What You Should Look for in a Professional Dog Sitter
A true professional dog sitter is a safer choice for dog care than a friend or family member who lacks professional training in pet care. Here are some important things to look for in a dog sitter:
- Properly licensed to do business by the city and/or state.
- Insured and bonded for the business services provided.
- Clean criminal record.
- Provides client references.
- Uses a written pet-sitting services agreement or contract that specifies the services to be provided and fees.
- Certified by a professional pet sitting organization.
- Trained in pet care and pet first aid.
- Member in good standing with a professional pet sitting association.
Benefits of a Professional Dog Sitter
Using a professional dog sitter offers many benefits for both the dog and for you compared to boarding your dog in a kennel. As noted earlier, your dog will be much happier in the familiar safety of its own home. Even though you may not be home, your dog sitter will make sure your dog maintains its regular diet and exercise routines. The dog sitter will give your dog ample attention and exercise without exposing it to the risk of illness often common at boarding facilities.
A dog sitter also relieves you of the hassle of rushing to meet the schedules and hours of the boarding facility. Most facilities have strict check in times and pick up times. A pet sitter who comes to your home eliminates those worries and removes the stress (and expense) associated with dropoff and pick up times.
If during your absence your dog has a medical emergency, a professional dog sitter is right there and ready to provide emergency first aid. This expertise should give you peace of mind knowing that you do not have to rely on well-meaning but untrained friends or family members to take action for you. A professional dog sitter will know what to do in the event of an emergency.
Contact the Dog Sitting Experts at Paw Pals for more information
The professional dog sitters at Paw Pals provide expert pet sitting services for those who need care for their dog without boarding them. Their dog sitting experts have all the training and experience needed to provide the top level of care for your dog while ensuring your travels are worry free. Contact them today to discuss your needs and schedule an appointment.