What a Pet Sitter Should Do in their First Meeting with the Pet Owner
If possible, provide references
You should be able to provide the contact information and phone numbers of pet owners that you pet-sat for in the past. For one thing, it provides the owner with reassurance that you have the experience necessary to do the job, and are skilled enough to merit confidence and a reference from past clients. Keep in mind, however, that you should never share a client’s contact information if they haven’t expressly given you permission to do so. Ensure that those past clients have agreed to serve as references, and then only give out the number they provide you for this purpose. Client’s you’ve worked with for more than a year make for the best references.
And if you don’t have any references
Ask past employers to volunteer as references, or friends whose pets you watched.
Make sure to discuss expectations
Ensure that both you and the pet owner know what to expect from each other. The pet owner will state everything they expect from you, depending on the requirements of their pets. Establish what kind of time commitment is needed beforehand, and whether you’ll be required to stay at the house, or merely to check in on a regular basis. By the end of the meeting, you should also know where the pet food is kept, the amount of food the pet consumes every day, as well as if the pet is on any medications.
Ask plenty of questions to cover your bases. The owner should let you know how old the pet is, as well as what its medical history is and how often it should be given treats. The owner probably already has a system of giving their pet treats based on its behavior, as well as methods of discipline like withholding treats in case of bad behavior. Ascertain how you should continue disciplining the pet. You should also be told whether it handles contact with other animals or people well. You should also be well aware of the pet’s likes, dislikes and fears. This will keep the pet from accidentally being triggered, and so prevent any mental or physical issues from happening to it while it is in your care.
All of these questions will allow you to serve the pet’s needs better, so don’t skip out on them.