When we started Pet Sitters Ireland it was to solve a problem we had of what to do with our pets when we went away. We put a lot of thought into the things we wanted and what was important to us. We are just like you and love our pets – so we wanted to be sure we were making the right decision.
We also did a lot of research about what was important to Pet Owners when they were using a Pet Sitter.
From our research we found that people wanted to know:
- Whether the company was a professional company
- Whether the company had insurance
- If the company were easy to contact online
- What the company terms and conditions were
- Who owned the company – were they animal lovers
- What the visits included – how long they were
- How their home was going to be kept safe
- And how personal information and keys were stored
With those things in mind we have put together some factors to consider and questions to ask when choosing a Pet Sitter.
So, whether you decide Pet Sitters Ireland is the right service provider for you or not, you have a handy checklist at the ready to make sure you make the right decision for you and your pets.
Pet Sitters Ireland provide Pet Sitting and Dog Walking Services across all of the Republic of Ireland for all types of animals. Call us 1800 303010 or 087 9898042 or Contact Us for more information.
Questions To Ask Your Pet Sitter or Dog Walker Before You Hire Them
#1. Is The Company You Are Considering Hiring A Professional Company?
You might wonder how you decide whether a company is professional or not, but what we are talking about here is whether this is the persons full-time business. Are they a registered and legitimate company, and, more importantly, are they fully committed to their business on a full-time basis.
If someone is Pet Sitting or Dog Walking as a side hobby then when something comes up for them personally it is unlikely that caring for your pets is their primary concern. With a professional company, your pet care IS their business. This is what they do full time, it’s what pays their mortgage and puts food on their table – so they are committed to making you their top priority.
#2. Is The Pet Sitting / Dog Walking Business Insured?
It’s important that the business you hire is insured, so that if anything happens while they are caring for your pets then you are covered. Every company, whether they are caring for pets or not, requires insurance. It’s part of running a business, it’s what makes you a professional rather than a hobby business owner.
You might think there will never be a need for insurance, but it’s unlikely you would be a homeowner without insurance – so why hire a business that doesn’t insure themselves.
#3. Does The Pet Sitter Have An Online Presence?
We live in a world where everything is online, and while written reviews on a company website are brilliant, there is nothing more authentic than looking at what a company is doing online and what is being said about them.
Pretty much every company now has a Facebook page, a Twitter account and maybe Instagram or Pinterest as well. If they are not active online and only have a website (which most companies rarely update) then how can you check them out and find out more about them.
If a company is online:
- What are people saying about them?
- Are they updating their pages and available online for their community?
- Are you able to get hold of them quickly via Facebook or Twitter (if you want to!)
- Do they answer their phone?
#4. What Are The Companies Terms And Conditions?
If a company has no terms and conditions then run…now! It’s impossible to do business with a company without terms and conditions. How will you know what you can expect from the company, what their guarantees are, what their policies and what they will or will not do?
You might feel that someone taking care of your pets doesn’t need to go to that extent, but if you don’t have terms and conditions and something happens to your pets, or you are not happy with the service, what are you going to do? You have nothing to refer to.
You might also enjoy reading: How Can I Trust My Pet Sitter?
#5. Who Works For The Company?
If you are allowing someone into your home then you want to know who it is. That is why the Meet and Greet is so important, as it gives you a chance to find out more about the person and see how they interact with your pets.
But, do you know who else works for the company? Have you spoke or met with them?
If something happens to your Pet Sitter while you are away, which can happen as people get sick, have family emergencies or just can’t make it, then who will be visiting your pets? Who will be checking that the replacement person knows what they are doing? What is their back up plan?
Make sure you know who this will be. Don’t assume nothing will happen, as things do happen and you need to make sure the company is prepared with a backup team member and not just a friend they ask to cover for them.
#6. How Long Is The Visit And What Does It Include?
When your terms and conditions are outlined to you, then make sure that you know exactly how long the company will be with your pets and what exactly is included.
- Will they be there 30 minutes, 45 minutes, 1 hour or longer?
- Will the visit include a dog walk and how long will that be?
- What if your dog messes in the house, will they clear that up?
- Do they change cat litter and what is their processes for getting rid of waste?
Make sure this is all clearly laid out, documented and in your formal agreement. Also, check how the length of visits is monitored, is this tracked with GPS to give you peace of mind.
#7. Where Will Your Personal Information Be Stored?
You might not have thought about how your information is being stored, but it’s important that the information about your home, your pets, your security systems are all stored on a secure server.
Think about it, do you want all the information about your trip away stored in a diary or in a notebook that someone could easily lose and someone else could then gain access to.
Make sure you find out how the information is stored and what security measures are in place. Also, what is the key storage and security policy?
#8. How Will You Know Your Pets Are Safe And Your Home Is Secure?
When you are away from home you want to know that you will receive constant communication from your Pet Sitter about how your pets are and if your home is secure.
The most efficient way to do this is online via a Pet Care Journal. This is something that allows you to see all the tasks that have been done during the visit and also see the cute pictures of your pet.
It also is a record of everything that was done on your trip, so you have an online journal of your Pet Sitters time with your pets.
How Can Pet Sitters Ireland Help You?
If you are struggling to make a decision about the best pet care provider for you then we would love to hear from you and answer your questions.
We have an extensive library of articles that explain all about our services and continue to write more about the industry.
Make sure you download the checklist and educate yourself about the questions you need to ask. Have it handy when you are hiring and make sure you check off all the important questions as you ask them.
Get in touch today to find out how we can help your pets while you are away. Call us 1800 303010 or 087 9898042 or Contact Us for more information.