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How to Reduce Stress: Find a Trustworthy Pet Sitter

Planning for a vacation is stressful enough without having to worry about leaving your beloved pets behind. Find a trustworthy pet sitter that suits you and your pet(s) before a business trip or exciting vacation pops up.

It seems like many people are eager to take a trip these days; however, for those with pets, a vacation often means leaving pets behind. For first-time pet owners or for anyone who hasn’t gone on a trip in a while, finding a pet sitter could add stress to the trip planning process. This article by Tyler Evans will give you some helpful tips on how to find a pet sitter.

Note: If you are traveling over the holidays, you should book your sitter well in advance. Also check out our Genius 12 Month Trip Countdown Checklist blog.

Find a Trustworthy Pet Sitter

A pet sitter is a professional who takes care of pets in your home. They are like a housekeeper, but they care for your pet instead of your house. Pet sitters offer different kinds of services:

  1. Drop-in Visits

  2. House/Pet Sitting (in your house)

  3. Boarding (in the sitter’s house)

There are also many different types of pet sitters: some specialize in specific types of animals, while others are generalists. It’s important to choose a pet sitter that fits your needs and lifestyle. For example, if you’re looking for a sitter that can come on short notice, you’ll want to look for someone fairly close to where you live. Also, if dogs are involved, walking them is generally included. For cats that are sociable, playtime is often included. As well as taking care of the pets, a sitter will also do basic house-sitting activities like watering a reasonable number of plants, bringing in the paper, and turning porch lights off and on.

Next, you want to make sure the pet sitter is reliable and trustworthy. Rover for example, requires that “All sitters pass a background check.” When looking at pet-sitting companies online, make sure you read reviews, check ratings, and jot down any questions you might have for specific sitters.

This article by petfinder is more specific to dogs, but has some good points about how to find a trustworthy pet sitter.

Relieving Stress for Your Pet

Hiring a pet sitter when you have to work long hours can be a good way to reduce stress for both you and your pet. If you find a trustworthy pet sitter, it gives you peace of mind knowing your pet is being taken care of while you’re away. Having someone to check in on them, walk or play with them and feed them at set times will help to keep your dog or cat (and other pets) healthy and happy. (There are pet sitters for turtles, rats, horses, lizards and snakes…)

Setting Your Sitter Up for Success

You’ll want to ensure that your sitter has everything they need to care for your pet and follows common pet care protocols. Make sure your pet sitter has a clean and safe place to stay while they care for your pet if they are staying overnight. If you have a dog, consider investing in an escape-proof harness so your pet sitter can walk them without issue. Look for a harness that’s durable and comfortable.

For safety reasons, nobody else should be present while your sitter is there. Include lots of information about the space where your sitter will be staying — it’s often helpful to take photos of both the space and the pet to provide to your sitter ahead of time.

Your sitter should know specific details about the care you expect them to provide. For example, they should know when to feed the pet and any specific directions regarding their food. They should also know about how to administer any medication and any house rules you have.

You’ll also want to ensure you have a way to communicate with your pet sitter while you’re gone. Make sure your pet sitter has contact information for both you and your veterinarian. Just in case, you should include the number of the closest 24-hour emergency/urgent care hospital, too. You may need to discuss an emergency care plan with your veterinarian so your pet sitter can be authorized to make medical decisions about your pet on your behalf, if necessary.

Your Pet is Worth a Sitter

By finding and vetting a pet sitter, you’ll relieve any stress you or your pet may experience due to your absence. We hope this helps you find a trustworthy pet sitter.

Planning a trip? A Happy Place Travel specializes in micro-group custom travel.

And if you’re interested in another tour and appreciate getting all of this helpful information, here are details on our 2024 Outlander Tours of Scotland.

Photo credits:

Blue Bird

Ron Lach


Arina Krasnikova

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