The Benefits of Hiring a Pet Sitter
Let’s face it, none of us really like to leave our pets at home when we are going out of town, but situations can arise where taking your pet along is impossible. In these cases, hiring a pet sitter may be your best option. This article will take a look at the benefits of hiring a pet sitter and why this may be the best choice for your furry friend.
The Pet Sitter vs. Boarding Dilemma
Let’s start by taking a look at what our options are when it comes to caring for pets while we are away. For many, these options are limited to hiring a pet sitter or leaving our pet at a boarding facility. Let’s take a look at how a pet sitter might be the better choice in this situation.
Benefits of Choosing A Pet Sitter
Reduced Risk of Getting Sick: Pets that are left in a boarding facility are more likely to get sick due to exposure to other dogs who may be infected. Commonly called Bordetella, it is not uncommon for dogs to come back with highly contagious symptoms including fever, lethargy and a cough. It is an upper respiratory infection that requires veterinary treatment and can be treated with antibiotics. Obviously, leaving your pet with a sitter will greatly reduce any risk of illness.
Stress Free Experience: When pets are away from their owners, they can experience separation anxiety. This can be even more likely when pets are put in a boarding facility and is extremely common in rescue pets. Although most facilities promise quality playtime that can relieve anxiety, a pet sitter can provide them with the undivided attention they need to feel less stressed out.
Minimal Changes: The anxiety your pet may feel can be exacerbated by a change in atmosphere and schedule. When it comes to schedule, a facility will feed and care for your pet on their schedule. When you hire a pet sitter, you can leave them with a schedule to let them know when your pet is fed, taken for walks, etc. Keeping them on this schedule will help them to feel calmer.
Increased Communication: Another one of the benefits of hiring a pet sitter is increased communication. A pet sitter will be able to provide you with updates in the form of emails, text messages, etc. All this will contribute to your peace of mind making you feel more relaxed as well.
Pet Sitters Can Multi-Task: Not only will a pet sitter take care of your pet, they can also take care of your house. Having someone around will help to deter theft. And while they’re at it, they may be able to check the mail, water the lawn and perform other small household tasks as needed. Of course, these services may cost extra so be sure to talk with the sitter about fees if you would like additional services included.
Your Pet is in Good Hands: Professional pet sitters are certified by the National Association of Professional Pet Sitters and Pet Sitters International. This certification means they have a comprehensive knowledge of pet health and behavior and have received first aid training. Their first aid training helps them to determine the difference between emergency and non-emergency situations and assures they know how to react in either case. The one on one attention they provide your pet also ensures that they will notice unusual behavior and be able to act on it quickly.
Still Not Convinced? Other Benefits of Hiring a Pet Sitter
Pet Sitter vs. Travel: Though many pet parents would love taking a pet with them while they are on vacation, this isn’t the ideal situation in every pet-owner relationship. Many pets fear travel. They are not used to their surroundings and experience anxiety. If your pet is one that does not enjoy traveling, leaving them with a pet owner is a better solution.
Pet Sitter vs. Friend or Relative: When you are going on a trip, there is probably at least one person who’s going to want to know, who’s taking care of Fido? He or she might love your pet and jump at the chance of taking care of him or her. However, you have to wonder how responsible this person is when it comes to caring for your dog. Will they remember to care for them, walk them and feed them on schedule? Do they have the experience to care for them when they’re sick? Remember, you get what you pay for, and even if your friend is offering their services for free, it may be better to hire a professional for the benefit of peace of mind.
What to Look for In a Pet Sitter
Even though there are many benefits of hiring a pet sitter, not every sitter is created equal. There are certain characteristics you should look for when choosing the best one for your furry companion. These include:
Calmness: A pet may act in unexpected ways that can make sitters impatient or angry. A sitter with a calm demeanor will maintain composure in these situations and not lose their temper making the situation a better experience overall.
Trustworthy: Because a pet sitter is likely to be in your home alone, it is important to hire someone you can trust. Although you can count on gut feelings to some extent, it is a good idea to check other references and run a background check before you make your decision to hire.
Experience: Any pet sitter you hire should have some amount of experience, but it is also important that they have the right kind of experience. This can especially be the case if you own a bigger dog or one that has a medical condition. In these instances, you will want a sitter who has dealt with pets in similar situations.
There are several benefits of hiring a pet sitter. They are knowledgeable, trained experts that can give your pet the type of care and attention they need. If you are going to be traveling, consider hiring a pet sitter in your area to enjoy a stress-free experience that comes with knowing your pet is getting the best care possible.