A Professional Pet Sitter provides in-home pet care while you?re away. Keeping your dog at home helps maintain his normal eating and exercising routines. It also helps minimize the stress suffered by both you and your dog. This article examines what may happen when your dog stays at a kennel and the benefits of contracting the services of a Professional Pet Sitter.
Part I: What Really Happens at the Kennel?
To better understand the benefits of hiring a professional pet sitter, let?s look at the reality of keeping your dog in a kennel while you are away. Please keep in mind that these generalizations are based on the experiences of the author and may not represent every boarding facility.
The first thing you want to consider is the care your dog will receive. In a kennel, your dog may be exposed to sick pets and parasites due to the close proximity of the boarders.
Your dog may be staying in a stacked cage with several other barking, whining, and crying dogs. This can be a stressful event for your dog, especially since he is not in his familiar surroundings in the first place.
If you have a larger dog, he will probably be in a run. The run probably has a concrete floor for easy clean up from messes. Will your dog sleep on a warm blanket or a hard floor?
When the lights go out, will he be sad because he is not in his home and does not have his family? Will his stress result in diarrhea, vomiting, or a bloody stool? Will he lose weight from refusing to eat? Believe it or not, these are common stress symptoms of boarded dogs.
You should also know that Kennel Attendants are paid at about the same rate as fast food workers. The low rate of pay contributes to high turnover and a younger workforce. Some of your kennel staff may be inexperienced and learning on your dog.
Finally, consider one more thing that happens at the kennel. Routine! Of course, it is not your dog?s routine where he gets personal attention, touch and affection, playtime, walks, and potty relief when he asks. It is the routine of the business that is followed.
Your dog will probably be let out to potty while the kennel staff freshens up his cage/run. Then, he will immediately return to his cage for his food and water where he may stay until the process is repeated in the evening.
The attention your dog gets in a boarding facility depends on several uncontrollable factors such as the number of dogs currently boarded, the experience of the staff, and the protocol established for caring for the animals. Would you rather ensure your dog receives personal attention while you are away?
Part II: How a Professional Pet Sitter Can Help
A Professional Pet Sitter provides personalized care for your dog in his own environment where he feels safe. Dogs are territorial pack animals. He understands his boundaries and position in the pack at home.
He may feel insecure, unsafe, and uncertain of his position when he is not at home. Uncertainty results in physical and emotional stress for your dog.
A Pet Sitter will ensure your dog?s normal routine is maintained. He will be able to go potty whenever he needs to go. He will be fed his normal diet plus any special treats as instructed.
Your dog will have a human contact which is extremely important for these social animals. He will continue his normal playtime routines as well as scheduled walks.
?Playing ball? is very important for some active dogs. One couldn?t expect that type of attention or commitment from a boarding facility; however, your Pet Sitter could easily toss a disc or throw a ball around the yard.
Another key benefit to your dog is a Pet Sitter can administer medications for your sick, elderly, or injured dog while you are away. They can also tend to your dog in the event of an emergency and ensure he receives the attention of your veterinarian.
While a Pet Sitter may provide light grooming assistance such as daily brushing of long-haired dogs, they may also provide pet taxi service. This means that your dog will be able to maintain grooming and veterinarian appointments in your absence.
That is definitely something to consider if you are deployed in the military or will otherwise be detained for any length of time. If you do set up taxi service, take the time to set up appropriate authorizations with your service providers. This will ensure that once your dog reaches his destination, he will receive service.
Another benefit for your dog is that he will not be exposed to sick animals. He will not come home with fleas or kennel cough. He will have his own personal babysitter in the comfort of his own home.
In addition to personalized pampering, you might be surprised that Pet Sitters provide additional services to give you peace of mind while you are away. Pet Sitters may provide services such as turning on lights in the house in the evening, bringing in the mail and newspapers as well as watering houseplants. In other words, they can actually double as house-sitters.
If you add up the potential pitfalls of boarding your dog in a kennel and the benefits of contracting the services of a Professional Pet Sitter, you will quickly realize why the demand for Pet Sitters is growing and why a Pet Sitter may be the best choice for you.
Part III: How to Find a Pet Sitter
So, how do you find a Pet Sitter? Look in local newspapers, veterinary clinic bulletin boards, and internet listings. You are sure to find someone in your area. You should interview the prospective sitter to ensure they have appropriate credentials and insurance.
The National Association of Professional Pet Sitters was founded in 1989 to provide Pet Sitters a code of ethics, education and support. Pet Sitters International was founded with similar goals in 1994. Membership in a professional organization generally means your prospective sitter is qualified, organized, and dedicated to providing the best possible care for your dog.
About The Author
Julie Butts is a Kennel Manager and author of http://www.all-about-small-breed-dogs.com, an online guide for selecting, owning, and raising a small breed dog. Her website is dedicated to small breed dog lovers and includes information on breeds, training, behavior, grooming, supplies, books, gifts, and more.