Choosing a pet sitter can be incredibly stressful. We all love our pets like family and want the very best for them! But how do you know if the sitter you’ve selected is the right one for your dog?
Our friends at DogVacay – the leading online service connecting pet owners with the best sitters across the U.S. and Canada – have given us some tips on how to find the perfect sitter for your pet.
Whether you’re a first-time boarder or just getting to know a new dog caretaker, here are three signs to look for that you’ve chosen the very best sitter for your dog.
1.Their reviews speak highly of their experience.
Thanks to sites like DogVacay, dog sitters can now be reviewed online like everything else! Dog lovers are a close-knit community, so knowing how other owners felt after their dog’s stay with a particular sitter can give you some serious peace of mind. Read the online reviews of your sitter carefully and look for things that make you feel reassured. Have past guests spoken highly of the host’s punctuality and attentiveness? Are there pictures of the host sitter with happy-looking pooches?
It’s also a great sign when the sitter you’ve chosen has a lot of return clients. It’s a huge sign of trust when a dog owner leaves their pet in someone’s care not once, but multiple times. Think of online reviews as referrals from friends and family…your dog friends and family!
2. They never make you feel like a burden.
A great dog sitter will understand your anxiety about leaving your dog with someone new. They’ll never push you to do anything you’re uncomfortable with and they’ll start your interactions by being polite and responsive, either online or over the phone. They won’t make you feel like a nuisance when you ask for a meet-and-greet (which is, by the way, always a good idea!) and they’ll be friendly and comfortable with your pet when you meet in person.
Once you leave your dog with a sitter, they should reassure you as much as necessary. A sitter who frequently sends pictures and updates is a thoughtful one! They understand that taking care of a dog parent’s anxiety is as important as taking care of the dog’s. Be sure to be very upfront with you dog sitter about how much communication you expect while your dog is in their care and if you want an update, don’t hesitate to ask!
3. Your dog doesn’t want to leave!
If you’ve left your dog with a new pet sitter, you’re probably excited to get home and pick him up! If your dog doesn’t immediately bound in your direction when you open the door, don’t be offended – that’s a great sign he’s comfortable where he is! Hopefully your dog will learn to feel calm, reassured, and at home in your dog sitter’s presence.
When you pick your dog up, a great pet sitter will show genuine signs of sadness that your pup’s stay is over! If they’ve formed a connection over the stay, you’ll probably be able to tell. The sitter shouldn’t hesitate to give you a report on how your dog did. If they bring up something troubling (your dog was anxious the whole first day or that he wouldn’t eat, for example), take that as a sign they’re willing to be open and honest with you in the dog’s best interest.
At the end of the day, knowing you’ve found a great pet sitter is more about gut feeling than anything else. If you feel comfortable with the person tasked with watching your dog, your dog will feel comfortable, too. They pick up on our emotions!
The easiest way to ensure you’re searching reputable, experienced pet sitters is to use a trusted online platform like DogVacay.com. With reviews from thousands of dog owners around the world, it’s impossible not to find a dog sitter you love!