Choose a good dog sitter, one who can effectively watch your four-legged family member when you go out of town. This individual or company should be top-notch. You should know that your dog is in good hands in your absence.
- Predetermine your needs. Is your dog a pup, adult or senior? How does he react to other dogs or small children? What is the state of his health? The answers to these questions determine what level of care your dog needs and who can actually give them.
- Ask for recommendations. Choose a good dog sitter by making sure to ask for recommendations. These are letters or phone calls from other people used this individual’s or organization’s services. Try to get three.
- Schedule an interview. Set a time to meet with and interview your potential dog sitter. This interaction allows you to get a ‘feel’ for the type of person who will be handling your dog. Have a set of questions handy in advance. See: Tips for Conducting a Pet Interview
- Seek ‘easy access’. Choose a good dog sitter by considering this person’s or organization’s schedule. You want the ability to check up on your dog. So, consider a dog sitter with excellent hours and other methods to which you can make contact (telephone, e-mail, Skype).
- Get proof of insurance. Request proof of insurance from your dog sitter. Individuals who offer this service out of their home should have property insurance. Organizations that offer this type of services should have a license and also insurance. Insurance protects you, your dog and the dog sitter in the event of an unfortunate event.
- Do a background check. Choose a good dog sitter by performing a background check. It unveils any criminal record or complaints associated with a potential dog sitter. Don’t let the sweet demeanor of the dog sitter you are considering using cause you to skip this step. Dog theft and abuse are rampant. Background checks are a way to reduce your chances of being a victim to both. See: Do a Free Online Background Check
- Check out the accommodations. Is the home of the individual or facility of the organization clean? Do you see any hazards that might put your dog in harms way? Be sure to check out the accommodations and make sure they are safe.
- Set up a test run. The proof is in the pudding. Drop your dog off with the dog sitter for a few hours. Then, after you pick him back up, examine his condition. Is he hurt or anxious? If something isn’t right, you know to pass on the dog sitter.
Use the above to choose a good dog sitter. If you do, your lower the chances of things going awry when you allow someone else to care for your dog in your absence.