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Photo Credit: MarioMancuso via Compfight cc
Getting a great dog or cat sitter can be a fairly stressful experience. Distilling all the quirks that your pet has, their way of doing things and routines for your sitter can ensure that your trip goes off with minimal stress for yourself and your pet.  Ensure that you set up an initial meet and greet with your sitter so that they can get an idea about your pets and get a complete brief on what it will be like looking after the house and its inhabitants. Make sure to let them know where you keep food medicine, toys and anything else that would be relevant for the pet sitter to know.
Although trusting someone else with your pets can be quite difficult to do, it is important to realise that pet sitters know that they are dealing with a family member and will usually go above and beyond to look after your loved one. The main thing to remember when dealing with a sitter is to communicate, communicate, communicate! Leave notes for them, give detailed records of micro chipping, registration and vaccination and make sure to mention if you may have a visitor come to the house to save confusion.  Most importantly, don’t forget to mention where your pet goes to the bathroom when they are being naughty. This can set up some pre-emptive mess prevention for your home.  Pet sitters will often cite that they appreciate details in the instructions that you give because let’s face it – people aren’t mind readers and they like to meet your expectations which is hard to do without being provided the correct information.

Leaving information for your Pet Sitter

Sticky notes strewn around the house can be a great way to give your sitter important instructions that can help them care for your pet. Here is a list of what kind of notes would be helpful for a pet sitter:

  • A list of medications for the pet and the location of the supplies.
  • Information about what to feed the pet, their exercise habits.
  • Specific step-by-step instructions of how to complete tasks. This may seem a little bit intensive but will ensure that your pet is cared for exactly how you would care for them.
  • Common hiding places – much like a resistance force in an occupied country, pets sometimes like to escape the hegemony of the current leadership. Information on where the pets hide will ensure a successful pet sitting operation.
  • Details about any allergic reactions that your pet can have in case the sitter and your pet have to take a trip to the vet.
  • Information about what scares your pet and what to do to provide comfort in these instances.
  • Any extra information about the pet or household that may have been missed during the initial meet and greet.