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Finding the best dog sitter for travel Part 3 - the location

At home or in someone else’s home, now that is the question. Whether it is nobler to keep your dog in the comfort of her shelter or to keep your sitter in comfort, there are many questions to consider.

Trusting the process

Finding a dog sitter is like interviewing someone for a job. You go through the whole process of the in-home meetings, the coffee meetings, the texting, asking for reviews and recommendations, seeing some on-the-job training, and then the last question: where do we sit? There are two options: your place or their place. After going through the entire interview process, wouldn’t it be the worst to have someone do something bad inside your own home? Or, would it be worse for something to happen in their home?

Simply, it’s better to reframe that thought process and instead look at the process. Trusting that you made the right choice in terms of dog care is more important than where the dog care occurs. The bigger consideration is not the human, it’s the location for the dog. If your pup has a really hard time away from home, then staying home might make sense. Similarly, if you’re worried about accidents or anything like that, it’s better to have an accident at your place then someone else’s.

Who to consider?

But you also have to consider the sitter’s comfort. If the sitter feels uncomfortable at your place, but your pup feels uncomfortable elsewhere, what do you do? In a bind, it might make sense to just appease the sitter, but do you really want something to happen outside of your home? Ideally, your dog’s sitting situation is dependent on your pup, and the human is the second consideration. But, life happens, and sometimes we have to consider what is most important for us. And at your house, there’s a good chance you have Patio Pet Life’s farm fresh, hydroponically grown, lightweight pet grass that is biodegradable and can be delivered on the frequency of your choice! This artificial turf alternative is a lot safer than turf, and it will keep your pup happy and healthy for years to come!

Finding the best dog sitter for travel Part 2 - the human

en years ago, finding a good dog sitter meant walking down the street to your neighbors house and asking the local adolescent if he or she wanted to make a few bucks. Boy have times changed. Today, there are a half dozen websites where you can find a reputable, legitimate dog sitter with the click of a button. Let’s determine what the best sites and considerations are to find a human for your pup before your next trip.

The major websites

Without endorsing any specific website, it’s very easy to google “dog sitter near me” and find dozens of commercial, large companies along with local sitters in your area. From Craigslist to Rover to DogVacay to Care.com, it’s easy to sign up and find a sitter lickity split. If you don’t want to sign-up for a website, some of the more local options are probably better, but if you’re okay with taking ten minutes, then one of the major providers offers the best bang for the buck. With hundreds of reviews and thousands of sitters nationwide, just take your time and slowly browse through these sites; you’ll find someone who matches in no time.

What to look out for

Like Yelp, most of the dog websites are stock full of reviews and verifications so you know what you’re getting. Unfortunately, you’ll quickly see that dog sitting isn’t cheap! Always better than boarding, having a human sit your dog in a one-on-one or close to it setting is going to cost a few bucks. You’ll quickly notice that the more reviewed and less available someone is, there’s a good chance this person is more expensive. As you can imagine, gaining a reputation as a quality dog sitter gets the sitter a lot of business! You may be tempted to go with someone new or someone inexpensive, but just like everything, you get what you pay for. Watch out for red flags like inexperience with medicines, no close outdoor areas nearby, and inexperience or inability to talk intelligently about different breeds. If you have a hyper pup, someone who doesn’t look very active might not be a great fit. Similarly, if your pup is very docile, and the dog sitter has hyperactive children in the house, it might be wise to consider other options. Just be mindful.

Finding the best dog sitter for travel Part 1 - prepping

Before you can leave for a trip, especially leaving your dog alone for the first time, there’s some prep work involved to ensure you come back to a happy, healthy pup.

A dog is like a two-year old. Anytime her parents leave, she’s very excited and can’t wait for her parents to come back. And like babies, our furbabies’ hearts grow fonder with every passing moment. With this in mind, what are some important things that you can do to ensure that your dog has the easiest time possible while you’re away?

Keep the routine

Routine is a dog’s best friend. Life can become hectic for you, but as long as your pup stays on a consistent routine, it will be much easier to leave her for a few days or even a few weeks. The more structured your routine is, the better your pup’s transition will be.

Routine means keep the feeding times the same every day. Keep a consistent exercise and pooping ritual. Coming and going around the same time everyday, and sleeping around the same time everyday are important as well.

Don’t linger on the goodbye

Having a routine is important, and part of that routine should be leaving without saying goodbye and staying too long. The more emotion you show to your pup when you leave, the more challenging it is for your dog to understand why you’re leaving. Think of it like this: if you’re sad when you leave your dog, how do you think your dog feels? If you want your dog to stay docile and happy while you’re gone, it’s important to keep those goodbyes to a minimum.

Get your dog really, really tired

A tired pup is a good pup for everyone involved. An extra tired pup is an extra good pup right before travel. Go for that long run, play fetch for an hour, or do something pretty strenuous with your pup the day or hours before you go. A tired, sleeping dog will make the transition much easier. Just don’t leave in the middle of the night when your pup is sleeping. Nothing is worse than waking up without parents around!