If you are going on holiday, you’re going to want to find a pet sitter you can rely on to feed and keep your pet company. However, a google search will yield an overwhelming number of pet sitting companies in your area. Knowing whether you’re hiring a quality, reputable firm and professional can be difficult. This article will help make the search easier.
Reasons to Hire a Sitter
Pet owners turn to sitters for many reasons. You might be new in town and don’t know anyone who can take care of your pet. You may be looking for a pet sitter because you don’t wish to trouble friends or relatives. A sitter will typically be able to care for your pet better than a neighbor or friend would. Pet sitting firms understand animal behavior and have reliable procedures in place in case of emergencies.
Background Check and Insurance
Look for insurance and, ideally, run a quick, informal background check. A professional who is insured and bonded will protect you from liability and loss. The first step for a pet sitting firm is having business insurance. Something like lack of insurance can move many pet owners to give up on finding a sitter and decide to search for a pet hotel instead.
Look for a Local Presence and a Team
The best choice of a pet sitting firm is one with a local presence with a team, whose main service is pet sitting. You will be able to contact a manager or owner if you have concerns or questions when you’re on holiday if you hire a local firm.
It’s always a good idea to choose a company over an individual sitter without a team. Many of them are hobbyists rather than professionals. Reputable companies have reliable processes and procedures in place to keep things running smoothly. In addition, hiring a firm with a team will keep you safe in terms of hiring someone on short notice or in an emergency. You can develop a relationship and have them serve your pet sitting needs moving forward.
Ask for Certification
There are specific pet sitting certifications to look for. The most qualified professionals in this niche will be certified in one of the following ways:
- NAPPS – Certification
- CPE – Certified Pet Expert.com
- CPPS – Pet Sitters International
These and other documents ensure the professional holding them disposes of sufficient knowledge to care for your pet well and keep them safe. Holding a certificate shows a person has commitment and is more than a hobbyist who only takes care of pets occasionally. As a bare minimum, your sitter should be able to identify medical issues and know it’s time to call a vet.
Having first aid training can be very helpful. Sitters who have completed a first aid program will know what to do to prevent an emergency.
In case one occurs despite that, trained sitters will know how to handle it calmly. They will also know what to keep in a first aid kit, how to evaluate a pet’s health, and how to identify signs of poisoning. A professional sitter knows how vital signs normally appear in cats and dogs. They can recognize signs of electrocution and of blockage. They know how to do the pet Heimlich Maneuver and pet CPR.
The Best Pet Sitting Organizations
When you go to a sitting company’s website, you might see a certain logo there. This will signify membership in a pet sitting organization. Some leading ones are:
- NAPPS – National Association of Professional Pet Sitters
- APSE – Association of Pet Sitting Excellence
- PSA – Pet Sitters Associates
- PUPS – Professional United Pet Sitters
- PSI – Pet Sitters International
Pet sitting associations usually have membership forms that professionals use to get more information about the latest trends and the best practices. and to keep up with trends in the industry. They might have annual meetings attended by the owners or managers of pet sitting firms. Finding a firm with membership in at least one association shows commitment and professionalism.
Thank you for reading. Hopefully, these tips will help you find the right sitter for your needs. If you don’t manage to for whatever reason, don’t panic. Traveling with your pet is ultimately an option. If you decide to do that, follow the best and most humane practices, which you will learn about on websites like PETA, the CDC, and the Red Cross.
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