All Pet Sitters Are NOT The Same
These days pet sitters and dog walkers are a dime a dozen. On that note, having worked in the private-pet-care and in-home service industry for most of my adult life, it always befuddles me to think of someone actually clicking a button on an app on a phone to order a complete stranger to come into the privacy of their home to care for their pets.
An Unregulated Industry
To “own” a pet sitting and dog walking business requires literally no experience of owning and operating a business, very little investment (personally or financially), zero integrity and get this…..no animal experience.
In a day and age of instant gratification and with advances in technology that allow even the most computer or technically challenged individual do almost ANYTHING…..any ol’ person can pop up a “pet sitting” business in a day or less. It takes literally minutes and very little money to jump online, buy a pre-existing logo, throw up a cheap website, create a quick facebook page, etc and call yourself a professional pet sitter or dog walker.
What’s WORSE are those lazy individuals who, through a complete lack of integrity and creativity (insert huge sigh) copy an existing pet sitting professional’s years and years of blood, sweat, tears and hard work. I speak from experience.
But I digress.
What A Professional Pet Sitter Looks Like
When it comes to inviting an individual in the privacy and sanctity of your home to work with your most precious possessions and your family (whether two-legged or four-legged), in my humble opinion price should be one of the last considerations, although I completely understand that everyone has a budget.
Reputation, reliability, accountability, integrity, professionally managed and monitored software (to track visits and make sure they have been completed on time every time), properly vetted, bonded and insured sitters AND professional policies/procedures that include proper emergency plans are just a FEW of the things that you should consider when looking for a pet/home sitter. Ask yourself:
- How long has the service provider been providing pet care in your community?
- Is the service provider properly licensed to do business?
- Does the service provider have proper liability insurance?
- How does your service provider “vet” the people that they choose to work for them if they aren’t doing the visits themselves? How do they support their staff?
- Do you get to meet your service provider IN PERSON?
- Does your service provider have a professional software system in place to manage scheduling, billing, etc.?
- Does the service provider have professional policies to protect you, your home and your pet?
- Does the service provider have professional and tested plans in place for ANY emergency (think pet health, weather, emergencies that may arise as the result of something happening to your assigned sitter, etc)
- Do the service provider give back to their community? How?
- Do they have reviews that can’t be manipulated on reputational sites like Google, Angie’s List, Yelp, etc? Be careful about accepting word-of-mouth referrals. Anyone can give you friend, family or co-workers contact information as a reference. What have client’s said? How many actual clients will vouch for quality of services provided?
- Is there a dedicated person behind the scenes accountable for making sure that all scheduled services are being completed on time, every time? Is there a manager?
- Is your provider sending you confirmations of service being completed after every visit so you have peace of mind?
- Is your service provider willing to send you updates in the form of pictures via text or email?
- Does your service provider have your pets safety and health in mind? Asking that pets be up to date on vaccinations and wellness is just a responsible way to conduct business. As a pet care provider we work with multiple families/pets per day and some diseases like dog flu are transferable from house to house.
- Is your service provider knowledgeable about and have experience in working with different breeds and different types of companion animals?
- Do they have a satisfaction guarantee?
- Do they operate with integrity in their community?
The Right Approach To Hiring A Pet Sitter
Approach hiring a pet sitter or dog walker with the care that you would take in hiring a professional to work on projects in your home. You are going to make for darn sure that plumber knows how to do plumbing, correct? Plumbers don’t do roofing. Painters don’t do plumbing. Roofers would probably do a crappy painting job.
It’s the SAME CONCEPT for a pet sitting, dog walking or pet care provider.
Paws Pet Care’s Track Record
Paws Pet Care has over 57,000 documented pet sitting/dog walking visits since becoming a professionally licensed business in 2010. I personally vet every pet sitter that works for me. I personally manage Paws Pet Care daily. I give back to my community in the form of a non-profit that I founded in 2013 called My Dog Eats First. Paws Pet Care has over 60 A+ Reviews on Angie’s List, over 30 5-star reviews on Google, 7 fantastic reviews on Yelp and even MORE across the internet.
Paws Pet Care has a professional profile management, scheduling and billing system for our clients. We have a satisfaction guarantee. We reward our loyal clients. We have professional policies and procedures for every scenario. We send updates, we do extras…and we don’t nickle and dime our clients to death. That’s just the tip of the iceberg for what you get when you trust your home and pets to Paws Pet Care.
If you have questions about how Paws Pet Care can help you, please feel free to call me personally at 502-802-5052 or email me at [email protected] and let’s chat!