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(480) 608-5885 / TLC House & Pet Sitting Service

3 Things a Pet Sitter Should Establish with the Owner Before the Job

If you’re just starting out as a pet sitter, these ground rules will be quite helpful. Not only will they make the experience more pleasant for you and the pet owner, they will help portray you as a professional.  Without these three simple steps, it is easy for things to get off track quickly.  Ahead, we’ll discuss how to be successful, and encourage recurring bookings.  Read on for the top three things a pet sitter should establish before a job begins.

#1 – Gathering Contact Information

Ensure that you have records all of the important contact information before pet sitting begins.  For instance, how will you contact the owner while they are away?  Even more, what number will you call if there is a medical or non-medical emergency? Always have a number in the event of an extreme situation. Ask for a friend or family member’s phone number, too.  This way, if the owner is not readily available you have a responsible alternate contact. Additionally, be sure to have contact information for the family vet.  Pro tip: Enter this information in your phone to ensure it will always be readily available.

#2 – Determining Your Pay

Among the things a pet sitter should establish before a job begins is their pay.  Whether you are pet sitting professionally or on a freelancing basis, determine the exact pricing prior to start of a job.  This establishes expectations and avoids any surprises from either party.  In your area, do reasearch into the market rate for your services.  Price yourself accordingly.  For example, do you have as much or more experience as the top priced sitter?

In 2022, professional pet sitters charge an average of $25 per 30-minute visit, or $20 to $30 per day depending on your location, the number of pets, the length of stay, and any special pet services needed. The rates will also depend on your own level of experience.

Also, establish a payment schedule.  Confirm if you will be paid on a daily or weekly basis. Weekly wages per week can vary and are affected by things such as holidays, or if you are also providing additional services such as house maintenance or cleaning.  Remember to be polite if there is a negotiation phase. Or, if you have a website, have your fees clearly outlined.

#3 – Scheduling a Meet and Greet Before the Day of Sitting

It is always a good idea to schedule a meet and greet before the pet sitting.  This allows the pet, and also the pet owner, to become familiar with you before you begin solo care of Fido.  Meet and greets also provide you the opportunity to get familiar with the locations of their food, water, toys and treats. In addition, a visit like this provides owners with reassurance that the pet has a degree of comfort with you. After all, sometimes a pet simply may not take to a person, especially if they’re a rescue pet. Rescue animals may develop negative associations with certain types of humans. If you’re one of them, it may trigger a negative reaction. If the pet is uncomfortable, timid or aggressive during your presence, you may want to suggest using a different pet sitter.

These are the top three things a pet sitter should establish before a job begins.  Of course, there’s much more to running a successful pet sitting business. Overall, however, establishing these processes and procedures early on will help you get there.  And, over time, your reputation will spread as professional. Then, you’ll be on your way to becoming one of the areas most sought after pet sitters.

For More Information

If you have questions about this topic or general questions about pet care, you can contact Kara Jenkins, Owner of TLC House & Pet Sitting. We are also available by email at info@tlcpetsitter.com. View more of our articles on pets here.