JenLovesPets has policy of 2 check ins minimum for dog vacation sits. We require the dog be checked in on every 12 hours even if they have a doggie door and feeder. For cats we are willing to do every other day for healthy kitties, older cats or cats with health concerns are once a day at the very least. It isn’t about money for us. It’s about the safety, health, and well being of the pets.
JenLovesPets has been in the Pet Sitting business for four years and during these wonderful years we have been witness and/or heard client horror stories that could have been prevented or the negative impact could have been reduded if check ins were more frequent. Skipping on a check in could save a few dollars up front but the possibility of accidents or incidents increase and can break the bank or even cost a dearly loved pet’s life.
Let’s discuss the every other day cat check in first. Cat’s are more independent and don’t require the outdoor potty break, thanks to the litter box so less frequent check ins are ok; not ideal but ok. As a cat mom and avid animal lover I prefer cats are checked in on at least once a day but realize some cat owners honestly feel every other day is adequate. Every other day check ins are approved if the cat is healthy and the owner understands things can happen. Cats can knock over their water bowl (so two should be left out), a cat can be locked in a room (just had this happen, thankfully it was less than 12 hours after the owner left and was JenLovesPets’ first visit), cats can sneak out as client leaves for vacation leaving them homeless until the sitter gets there and is able to search for them (JenLovesPets had this happen with 2 clients), cats are masters at hiding and at times hiding so well they get stuck. One fellow pet sitter looked everywhere for a cat during there first 3 sits and couldn’t find him….finally found him stuck behind the stove. It was ok, but if this was every 3rd day he would need serious treatment at the vet. They don’t just hide physically but are masters at hiding an illness and if its a severe one when it shows symptoms the cat can go down hill quickly. The list of issues can go on and on but the point is the more check ins there are the better it is for the cat and your wallet.
Ideally a dog would be let out to go potty 3 times a day but every 12 hours is achievable. Where this becomes an issue is when clients tell me they have a doggie door and a feeder so once a day is ok. Doggie doors are so convenient however they have been a known source of problems. A client of mine told me he had a raccoon come into his home thru the doggie door and attack his dog. Thankfully he heard the commotion and was able to intervene but imagine the dog having to wait 24 hours before a sitter comes to address his wounds and take him to the vet. I’ve even had a client tell me a rattlesnake got into the house, the dog could die. A fellow sitter told me recently a raccoon attacked a woman in her bed after entering the house thru the doggie door, check out the article HERE
I’m always more concerned and paranoid when a client tells me they have a doggie door, because of the above but more importantly because of the safety of the dog. You never know when mother nature will act causing the back gate to be blown open or the fence. The pet sitter going twice a day won’t prevent this but the less hours to pass before this issue is found the better it is for the dog. A fellow pet sitter told me one of her sitters was caring for a dog and all was well on the last vacation sit but when the owner got home found the dog had gotten out of the yard and was hit by a car. Thankfully he was ok, $3000 later.
If you follow my blogs you know coyotes are common here in San Diego and will jump a 6 foot fence to get to our pets, a doggie door allows the pups to be unattended in the yards leaving them open as prey. You also know it’s customary to see bobcats roaming our area. Watching the news you may have seen the story of a bobcat stalking pets and livestock here in Rancho Penasquitos. This is 5 minutes away from my house. A bobcat can and will easily track a dog left unattended in our yards. Take a look at the most recent story HERE Again, these are incidents that can not be stopped by more frequent check ins however the check ins limit the time in between to address situations and take the appropriate actions needed.
Before writing this blog I asked a group of pet sitters for stories or situations regarding this topic. I want to thank those sitters for their input, (their stories are mentioned). One sitter sent me a message via Facebook and this is what she said “Even twice a day is a nightmare for me! We require three times a day. Once I did twice a day, and the dog had pooped all over the house (even though trained on a wee wee pad) and then trailed it all over the place including carpets! No more!” And she’s right, I’ve been thru this and yet I still offer every other day for cats and twice a day for pups; if they are able to handle 12 hours wait time.
When deciding your choice in schedule keep in mind the possible situations that can arise. JenLovesPets is here not just to make a profit, more importantly we are here for your pets well being, and your peace of mind.