Are you planning a vacation that doesn’t include your dog? Dog owners can’t always take their animal with them when traveling. What to do with your pup while your gone is a dilemma a lot of dog owners face.
Sending your dog to a “dog camp” when you are gone isn’t always the right answer. Are you thinking about using a “dog sitter?” There are many benefits to a dog sitter for both you and your pet. For instance, your dog gets to stay in familiar settings, and your house isn’t left empty.
How do you know if someone is the right pet sitter? Where do you find the right person for your dog that you can trust in your home while you are away? Here are some tips:
- Referrals: Speak with your veterinarian, friends, family, neighbors and your dog trainer. Who have they used?
- Training and Qualifications: Do they have experience?
- Insurance and Bonding: An insured dog sitter should have documents showing proof of commercial liability (in case your pet injures someone) and be bonded (to protect you from theft). Don’t take their word for it -ask for written proof.
- References: Past clients should be happy to provide your sitter with a reference. Plan to contact these clients.
- Back Up: What happens if the dog sitter becomes sick and cannot walk your dog or provide the services you expected? Do they have a back-up person?
- On the Clock: For live-in sitters, how long do you expect them to spend with your pet? All day? If they walk other dogs, are you comfortable with your pup joining the pack or do you prefer one-on-one?
- Communication: What is the agreed upon method and time (if at all) to provide updates while you’re away? If your pet is frail or older, you may want regular text messages or emails. Do you want your sitter to log your pet’s daily behaviors for when you return so you can spot any irregularities or change in his mood?
- Test Run: Before you seal the deal, do a test run. Take off for a weekend and have the sitter care for your pet. Together you can spot and resolve any problems or questions that may crop up and your pets have the chance to become familiar with this new person.
Following the above recommendations, will make taking a vacation without your dog a lot less stressful.
Source Credit: Pet Guide