Professional Pet Sitter vs. Hobbyist Sitters

“I really don’t want to board Fido during our upcoming trip” David stated to his wife.  “He is getting older and has always seemed so depressed every time we have left him there.  Do you think we could find someone to come here to care for him?”

“Ive heard that Suzy from down the street has done that before.  I believe she does it just to be around the animals too, so it shouldn’t cost very much” stated his wife.

“Great! Let’s give her a call and see if she is available then.”

For many people looking for alternatives to boarding their dogs for long term or short term stays, having someone like Suzy seems like a win-win.  Low cost for you, she gets to be around our four-legged furry friends, and Fido gets taken care of, right?  Well . . . maybe.  Though Suzy may have the best of intentions,  what happens if the unexpected happens?  If Fido gets loose, gets hurt, or had an alergic reaction to something, would Suzy know what to do?  Would she be covered in the case of injury either for herself or Fido?

It is  for these reasons, the unforseen what ifs, that organizations like Pet Sitters International and the National Association of Professional Pet Sitters exists.  Together they have paved the way for professional in home pet care.  Whether your pet stays in their home or is taken to another residential dwelling for a cage-free day of playing with other pooches (a decision made by each sitter individually), pet parents can rest asured that, should anything happen, the sitter is knowledgeable in how to handle it and insured should any unforseen medical or personal injury expenses occur.

So who should you look for when considering a pet sitter? Here are some tips from Pet Sitters International President, Patti Moran:

Does the pet sitter have the correct business license for your city or state?
Is the sitter insured and bonded?
Can the sitter provide proof of a cleared criminal background check?
Does the sitter ptovide client references?
Does the sitterba professional service contract?
Is the pet sitter a member of a national organization like Pet Sitters International?
Has the pet sitter taken educational classes like Pet CPR and First Aid and/or have they become a Certified Professional Pet Sitter through the educational avenues offered through organizations like Pet Sitters International?

Though pet sitters may cost a little bit more than Suzy (after all, most professional sitters do use it as a source of income for their family), pet parents can rest easy knowing that their beloved pets are well cared for and covered in the event that the unexpected were to happen.

Virginia is the founder of Creation’s Care Pet Sitting, serving North Florida and South Georgia. Creation’s Care is a member of Pet Sitters International, and is bonded and insured by Business Insurers of the Carolinas. Virginia is trained in pet CPR/first aid and is currently working on her designation as a Certified Professional Pet Sitter. For more information about our services, visit

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