Do you want the best care for your pets when you can’t be with them? Of course you do! I’d bet money that your animal companions are more beloved than most human family members. Don’t lie, you know it’s true! Everyone in my life accepts that my dog and my Cape Pet Sitting friends will ALWAYS be my first concern with anything I do.
In spirit of the 28th annual celebration of Professional Pet Sitters Week, let’s talk about what a professional pet sitter is and why your pets deserve the exceptional pet care that only Cape Pet Sitting can provide.
What is Professional Pet Sitters Week?
You know how there’s a special day or week of the year that honors teachers, nurses, your favorite snack....pretty much everything? Well, there’s a week that recognizes professional pet sitters for their hard work and dedication too!
Professional Pet Sitters Week was created by Pet Sitters International in 1995. This annual observance takes place during the first full week of March to honor professional pet sitters and educate the pet-owning public about the advantages of choosing professional in home pet care.
What is Pet Sitters International?
Pet Sitters International (PSI) is the world’s largest educational association for pet sitters. PSI’s network of pet care professionals extends all around the globe! As a PSI member, Cape Pet Sitting has access to the most comprehensive educational resources and business tools in the industry. You wouldn’t believe how much there is to learn about pet care!
But what makes a professional pet sitter professional?
With so many new platforms for people to advertise themselves as pet sitters (Rover, Wag, Care, Nextdoor, etc.), knowing the difference between a professional pet sitter and a hobbyist is a must.
A professional pet sitter is someone who has made pet sitting their career. They are educated and experienced with the pets under their care. Professional pet sitters own, or are trained and employed by, a legitimate pet care business with a website and other credentials. Professional sitters are prepared to handle any unexpected situations.
A hobbyist pet sitter is a person who occasionally pet sits for friends/family/neighbors, or as a side job/retirement gig, with little to no educational training. There are many people in this category who consider themselves a “professional” due to their years of experience and love of animals. While knowledge learned the hard way always deserves respect, professionalism in pet sitting runs much deeper.
The 3 most important questions to ask when choosing a pet care provider are:
Are they Insured?
More specifically, is their insurance tailored to cover the needs of pet care services? PSI has been working with Business Insurers of the Carolinas for over 25 years to provide professional pet sitters with adequate coverage for our businesses which include liability, bonding, and care custody and control.
The “Rover Guarantee” is NOT insurance. It’s only under strict criteria that you are eligible for reimbursement should something go
wrong, this typically involves suing the sitter personally first. If a hobby
sitter has their own insurance, that’s great, but it may not cover everything.
Are they Educated?
Professional pet sitters are typically members of an education association, like PSI. Members of these organizations have access to knowledge from industry experts and a network of support from other pet care professionals.
Professional sitters are trained in pet first aid & CPR, animal behavior/pack mentality, and proper sanitation. Requirements for membership include continuing education and agreeing to code of conduct and ethics. Some sitters take it the next step further by becoming a Certified Professional Pet Sitter (CPPS).
Experience as a pet owner is not the same as pet care education. Many of the hobbyist horror stories we read about could have easily been avoided with a pet care specialist doing the job.
Do they have a Service Contract?
In other words, are they prepared and responsible? Professional pet sitters have policies and procedures in place for everyone’s best interests. We know what can go wrong and take every possible precaution against situations that you probably wouldn’t even think of. A service contract will clearly outline what is expected of the sitter and of the pet owner from the very beginning.
Without a service contract, are you and the sitter really on the same page? Are you certain that they are prepared to handle any unforeseeable issues that could arise in your absence? A well written service contract will help you have all of these important questions ready to go once it’s time to meet your potential sitter in person.
Why is it so important to have an in person interview?
Being a pet parent, you want to see how your pet responds to the sitter/s as well as how the sitter interacts with your pet. You also want to show the sitter where your pet supplies are located so that they aren’t searching the house for what they need during future visits. An in-person interview provides the opportunity to ask more detailed questions and get a real feel of the sitter’s professionalism. You want to be sure any potential sitter asks the right questions when you meet them.
Many hobby pet sitters will ask for some quick information by phone, email or through a corporate service listing system, which could potentially turn out to be problematic. If your sitter doesn’t insist on an in person client meeting, or “meet and greet” as some call it, that should be a red flag. Having your pet watch you allow a specific person into your home will help familiarize them with that person's presence there.
So what makes Cape Pet Sitting the best choice for professional pet care in Cape May County, New Jersey?
Cape Pet Sitting is a Pet Sitters International member, insured by Business Insurers of the Carolinas, background checked by ACUTRAQ, certified in pet first aid & CPR through ProPet Hero, and our service contract must be read and signed during our account activation process via Time to Pet.
Another very unique qualification we have is that I, the owner and primary sitter of Cape Pet Sitting, was personally trained by PSI’s 2012 Pet Sitter of the Year! It’s no easy feat becoming the Field Manager of an award winning pet sitter’s business. The knowledge I gained working for Zoo Sitters is a priceless treasure which will forever be the roots of my pet care business.
Shortly after opening Cape Pet Sitting, I passed my exam with flying colors and earned my CPPS designation through Pet Sitters International.
If you’re interested in learning more about exactly what the CPPS exam covers please visit petsit.com/pet-sitter-certification-study-objectives.
All current and future Cape Pet Sitters are valued employees who are trained by me personally. This ensures that every Cape Pet Sitter is a professional who is committed to providing only the highest quality service which guarantees the same excellent experience every time you book with us!
We care about you and your pets like family! With our superior training, education and experience, Cape Pet Sitting doesn’t shy away from providing care for bully breeds, senior pets with special needs, or rowdy puppies who need some patience while reinforcing their training.
Cape Pet Sitting is a woman-owned, local small business. Choosing us also has the added benefit of contributing to our local economy. Instead of getting the corporate runaround if you have a problem, you can relax knowing that the owner of your pet care service is only a message or phone call away and will respond in a timely manner.
Still don’t believe we’re the best? Check out any of our online reviews along with the testimonials page on our website. See what our actual clients have to say about their Cape Pet Sitting experiences!
Better yet, check the PSI pet sitter locator to confirm our credentials for yourself!