Holiday Season Preparation: Pet Sitting

 The holidays are very busy for everyone, and for pet sitting companies, it’s the hhbusiest time of year! So, if your holiday plans involve travel outside of the Washington DC area, and you are unable to take your pet, make pet sitting plans early so your pets are taken care of while you are away. While there are many pet sitting companies located in the Washington DC area, reservations fill up fast.  Pet sitting is a great idea for many reasons: generally your pet feels more comfortable in their own home, the convenience of not having to drop-off and pick-up at a separate location and during specific hours and your pet receives individual attention and care as well as the ability to remain on their regular schedule. Consider this checklist when hiring a pet sitting company:

  • Ask friends and family for recommendations.
  • In order to protect yourself from any liability, ensure that the pet sitting company is licensed, bonded and insured.
  • Request a list of references in the Washington DC area
  • Ensure the pet sitting contract outlines services performed, time to be spent with your pet and related fees.
  • Discuss back-up and emergency plans with your pet sitting company to ensure they have a good system and you know what that system is.
  • Request a daily report from your pet sitting company so you know how your pet was while you were away
  • Leave instructions, your contact information while out of the Washington DC area and your vet’s contact information, in case there is an emergency.
  • Purchase extra food and supplies, in case your trip gets extended.
  • Make pet sitting reservations as soon as you know your holiday plans!

Give your pet the best present this year—being home for the holidays!

Becky O’Neil is a pet expert and owner of Becky’s Pet Care, a professional dog walking and pet sitting company in Alexandria, Northern Virginia.


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