Before you go on a vacation, business trip or have to leave unexpectedly, there are a few things you can do to prepare for your pet sitter.
When we go out of town, a pet sitter comes to our house and watches Bernice, our Pit Bull. The cost of having a pet sitter versus boarding is almost the same, so why not let her stay in the comfort of her home?
In-home pet sitting is great (if you have a reliable sitter) because you don’t have to drop off/pick up your pet. Additionally, some boarding facilities don’t monitor dogs carefully and this is a great way for your dog to catch kennel cough, get in a fight or catch another lovely illness.
Here are a few things we do to get ready for our pet sitter. Even if your sitter takes notes, I still leave instructions just in case they forget their paperwork.
- Make a list of any medications or food allergies.
- Write out feeding instructions and include any other unique requests/instructions.
- Provide the phone # and driving directions to your vet and local emergency room. If you are going out of the country, write a letter to your pet sitter giving them authorization for your pet to have the emergency care they need. If you are on a budget, you may want to authorize a specific amount that can be spent at the vet. Don’t forget to sign this document.
- Leave a pet insurance claim form just in case your pet has to go to the vet.
- If you have skunks or other creatures, let your pet sitter know. We close all dog doors and keep Bernice in at night as she’s been skunked several times this year. You’d think after the first time she’d learn……not the sharpest knife in the drawer, but her cuteness makes up for it.
- Lock gates leading to your yard. Even in the nicest neighborhoods, people go around looking to steal pit bulls so they can be sold or used for fighting.
- Have you sitter bring in the mail, newspaper and rotate blinds to give the appearance you’re home.
- If your pet sitter uses a key ring with your information on it, make sure they DO NOT put your address on the key ring. Our pet sitter has many other clients. To recognize our key, we have them put Bernice’s name on it. If the key is ever lost, we never need to re-key our home.
- Tell the pet sitter to keep coming until you let them know you are standing in your home. Transportation glitches and emergencies may cause a kink in your schedule. Just because you plan to come home on a certain date, doesn’t mean you’ll be back on that day.
So, those are my neurotic tips on how to get ready for a pet sitter before leaving town.
If you have any other suggestions, please share!