BY: Laurie Brzostowski, President, Snaggle Foot Dog Walks and Pet Care-Round Lake, IL
Well, it is that time of year. We, in the pet sitting business, are now starting to get clients scheduling for Christmas, and New Year's.
But, there are always those new or even current clients who call us 3 days before a major Holiday asking us if we can take care of their pets.
Most of the time we cannot because we are already booked. Because of this, it is important that you schedule your pet sitting needs as far in advance as you can.
I personally hate turning clients away but if I am already booked there is nothing I can do to help you. Even referring to another pet sitter probably won't help as they are in the same situation as I am.
So, here are 10 tips to get you on the pet sitters schedule in time to enjoy the Holidays:
- If you have pets, and you are planning on going away for the Holidays, call a pet sitter immediately and make arrangements. Do not wait until the hotel and flight is booked.. that may be too late. If you are a new client, most pet sitters need to meet with you in advance to go over any and all logistics of the visit and get you on the schedule.
- Don't forget when planning your vacation budget, you must also plan the pet sitting costs. Most pet sitters also charge holiday fees in addition to the standard visit fees and some pet sitters require payment up front or require a down payment before the visits begin.
- If your pets require vaccinations right around the holidays, make sure all pets are vaccinated before your pet visits begin. Most pet sitters require pets to be vaccinated and may require proof of vaccination.
- Make sure you read your pet sitters cancellation policies. Right around the Holidays, pet sitters may require payment up front or a down payment and cancellations too close to the actual visit dates may forfeit some or all of your payment.
- When going away on long holidays, make sure you give your pet sitters emergency contact information and give YOUR contact information, whether that be your cell phone number and the hotel or friend you will staying at/with.
- If you are going overseas, it is even more important to give your pet sitter contact information in case of an emergency, preferably a friend or family member who is still in the area of where you live.
- Make sure you notify your veterinarian that your pet sitter will act as proctor for any pet care should it be needed, this includes medications.
- Make sure that if you come home early from your Holiday, notify your pet sitter immediately. If you do not contact them they could already be on the way to complete their visit and you may still be charged for that visit. Again, read any and all cancellation policies.
- If you are going away for a long period of time, make sure you leave phone numbers for any repairmen including heating/air conditioning, water heaters, etc. Things tend to happen when homeowners are away and pet sitters will need those numbers to get any major issues taken care of.
- Best tip yet.. If you schedule in advance, now you can relax, pack and enjoy your Holiday with your friends and family !!!!!!