FTC Disclosure: I’m an affiliate for Rover.com, and I will receive compensation for anyone who books through my unique link.
A lot of folks don’t know this, but I used to be a pet sitter and a dog walker. Yep! True story. It’s one of the many side hustles I had throughout grade school and college. I always took care to make sure that the pets I walked and watched were healthy, happy and felt loved.
When I got my own dogs, I confess I was afraid to let anyone but my husband watch them or walk them while I was away at blogger conferences and other getaways. That has meant that with every trip with my hubby, we had to bring the dogs along. Now, as we’re discussing a trip where we can’t feasibly bring the dogs, we’re talking a lot about dog walkers and pet sitters.
I’ve teamed up with Rover.com to bring you these important tips on how to find your perfect sitter or walker. After talking with them, I’ve learned that there’s no better place to turn than Rover.com, a community of people who are dog lovers to the core. (Side note – Special thanks to Nat Smith, a Rover.com community member, for helping me with this post.)
Finding a Pet-Sitter
Look for someone who can sync up with your pet’s daily rhythms. Get clear about what your pet needs: Can the sitter provide enough exercise and playtime? Will they be around during the day, or do they work a 9-5 job? Does your dog have any medical concerns or physical limitations to keep in mind?
Figure out what’s most important: lots of experience, a training background, a person who’s really active, someone with a flexible schedule, and so on.
Personality matters, too. Most sitters will say in their profiles what kinds of dogs they get along with best, so that’s a great clue as to whether or not they can get along with your fur baby!
No matter who you find, make sure they’re great with communication. They should be responsive, friendly, and open. And it’s important that they understand your dog’s body language, too. Do a Meet & Greet before the stay to be sure you’ve found a good match!
Finding a Dog-Walker
Reliability and efficiency are especially important when you’re looking for a daily dog-walker. They should be able to show up at the same time every day, follow all your instructions, and give lots of one-on-one attention.
Walk training is an important way to keep your pup on track, especially if you’re actively working on impulse control or other training issues. Look for walkers who enjoy walk training and use lots of positive reinforcement, like treats and praise.
Most importantly, you’ll want a dog-walker who can come back again and again. Their schedule should be predictable, so they can commit for weeks or months at a time.
A great walker can become a great sitter, and vice-versa. But don’t sweat having two helpers! They can often become pinch-hitters for each other. It takes a village, right?
Rover.com is so sure that you will LOVE them, that they are giving everyone who signs up through my unique link a $25 credit to try them out. Simply head to http://famousashleygrant.com/Rover to sign up today!