Do Pet Sitters Work On Holidays?

Everyone loves the holidays! Even if you don’t enjoy the holiday itself I am sure that, at Kitten With Bowthe very least, you enjoy getting to have the day off. You get to sleep in, watch a parade or two, eat some delicious food and enjoy time with family or watching football.

The picture is a bit different for us pet sitters. Holidays for us are our busiest time of year! We have a lot of clients that travel to see family and friends which means that someone needs to celebrate the holiday with the fur babies of the family!

While everyone is sleeping in, our pet sitters are out at 5 or 6am getting ready to start their first round of visits for the day. Our morning is filled with dog walks and visits with kitties.

After the first round of morning sits are completed, we get to spend some time with our families and then head back out for round two of visits in the afternoon which usually last from 2pm-4pm.

We head home, enjoy some delicious turkey with the fixings, relax for a bit and then we are right back out to end our day with evening visits with our 4-legged companions. Our day usually comes to an end around 9-10pm.

It may come as a surprise to you however to know that we actually don’t mind doing this! Sure it would be nice to have the day off, but we just look at our holidays a bit different. We still get to enjoy time with our families while taking care of our client’s pets that we’ve come to love so much which in a way, makes our holidays complete.

Why Does My Pet Sitter Need A Key?

All too often during meet and greets we get asked by our clients if we can use a garage Pet Sitting Key Policy door opener or garage code as our single mode of entry into the house while we take care of their pets.

While most of us do prefer the easy access of our garages now a days – Menlys Pet Care does require that you provide us with at least one copy of your house key for us to keep on file. We can use the garage as our main form of entry if you prefer, but we do need to have a key as back up.

Why the reason for this policy?

Bottom line – technology doesn’t always work. What if there were a power outage? What if for some reason your garage door just stopped working and needed to be repaired?

There have many times that we have arrived at a clients house to take care of their pets, gone to open the garage door and it would not open.

If we would not have had our back up keys to the clients’ home we would have had to do the following:

  • Call an emergency contact that has a key – which would mean hoping that they were around, waiting from them to drive to the home to let us in and inconveniencing them while making the pet wait to be taken care of
  • Call a locksmith – which again means waiting for them to arrive, delaying the pets’ care and an extra, unexpected invoice for you to arrive home to

These situations are easily avoided by requiring at least one copy of each of our client’s keys. Not only does it keep our entire business running smoothly, it’s just another way that we provide peace of mind to the pet owners that intrust us with the care of their babies.

Why Do We Have You Schedule Pet Sitting Online?

We do not take the fact that you trust us with your pets lightly. We understand that every time you leave your babies in our care, you are trusting us totally and completely to care for them and treat them like you would.

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So in order for us to ensure that we can provide you with reliable care and consist

ency, we have developed very specific policies and systems to ensure that you get the same experience with Menlys Pet Care each time.

By having an online scheduling system we accomplish 3 things:

1) It ensures that a visit is never accidentally missed. Every time you submit a scheduling request into our system, not only will your pet’s visit automatically be added to your sitters schedule but you will also receive a scheduling confirmation ensuring that the visit days and times are correct and that we have put your pet in our books.

2) We always have your pet’s care instructions up to date and in one, easily accessible place. Our pet’s needs change frequently and sometimes your pet starts eating a different food, has a different feeding schedule, is on new medication or has other new, specific requirements. Having an online profile, allows you to log in and update that information right away. No more calling your sitter every time something changes and hope they remember to write it down somewhere.

3) You can schedule any time, day or night. No more phone calls and emails requesting visits and waiting for a response. You can schedule your visits right away, whenever you want and as far in advance as you’d like.

The less time we spend writing out schedules and keeping track of client’s requests using archaic methods, the more time we are able to focus on the thing that matters the most; taking care of you pets

5 Ways Thirty Minutes Will Benefit Your Dog

Your Question: Why should I pay a pet sitter to come and spend 30 minutes with my dog when they can go to daycare and play all day with other dogs?

It is tempting to think that you’re getting more value for your dollar by taking your dog to doggy day care or boarding when you travel or work.

However, there are many different factors to consider before making a decision on your pet’s care solely based on price.

Here are 5 ways that 30 minutes with a dog walker will be more beneficial to your dog than a full day at daycare:

  1.  Structured walks and play actually tire your dog out more than running around like a lunatic all day. Why? Giving your dog a focused task (focusing on walking, using commands while playing etc) forces your dog not only to work their body but also work their brain; and the more your dog uses their brain, the more tired they are at the end of the day.
  2.  Your dog walker will stick to the same training and routines that you use. At daycare, it’s just not possible for the daycare workers to make sure that all of the dogs are minding their P’s and Q’s and dogs that are continually taken to doggy daycare or boarding can develop some bad manners.
  3. Your dog walker will take your dog to his regular potty spot to reinforce potty training. At a daycare, your pup will be able to pee and poo wherever he would like. Unfortunately, dogs don’t understand that what is okay in one place is not okay in another so they can easily get confused when they come back home and start having accidents in the home.
  4. A dog walker is able to provide your dog with one on one attention and care. At a daycare there is often one or two workers assigned to 10-20 dogs at a time. With so many dogs to look after, there main focus is making sure there are no fights and that the play area remains cleaned and sanitized. They are unable to give each dog one on one attention.
  5. When your dog is at daycare they are at risk of injury and illness from being exposed to other dogs. When you hire a dog walker, your dog is safe and secure in his own home and environment. Cutting down on vet bills and adding peace of mind.





How We Really Feel About Being Pet Sitters

I’m sure there are some of you skeptics out there that believe pet sitting companies don’t actually care about your pet. You and your pet are just another customer, another job, another dollar. However, you couldn’t be further from the truth!photo (4)

One of the greatest joys of pet sitting is getting to take care of pets over the course of many years. We really get to know these pets and start to form very deep bonds with them. Every time we come to take care of them, it’s like visiting with an old friend.

However, there is a flip side to that. At some point or another, the time comes that we have to stop taking care of that pet. Whether it be because of their passing, moving or changes in finances at some point or another we have to say goodbye to our old friends.

I recently had to say goodbye to one of my dog walking clients, Chola. I had been walking with her Monday through Friday for almost a year but now her and her Daddy are moving to a new house.

Everyday I could expect the same thing. I would call her name when I walked in and she would just wait in the bedroom with her tail wagging essentially saying “I’m happy to see you! But can we just do bellyrubs instead of a walk?”

After some convincing we would go for our walk and there wasn’t a time that she didn’t enjoy it as soon as we got outside.

These are the types of bonds and friendships that make pet sitting such a great profession but also, very difficult. We aren’t in the pet sitting industry because we want to get rich, we are in the pet sitting business because we truly, 100% do love our clients and what we do.

And in a very cool way, we are the luckiest pet lovers out there because we get to have deep bonds with more animals than we ever could have had if we weren’t pet sitters.

Even though it is difficult to say goodbye to our clients, it always makes it a little bit easier when the clients appreciate us as much as we appreciate them. photo (3)

Chola isn’t the first pet that we’ve had to say goodbye to and she won’t be the last. But each pet family brings with them their own unique memories and experiences and we treasure each and every one of them.

Is Your Dog Right For Doggy Day Care?

For some dogs, doggy daycare is a great place to burn off some extra energy and make new friends. For other dogs, doggy daycare is a nightmare. How can you know if your dog will enjoy daycare or not? 1309327_27739819

Answer the following 5 questions to find out if your dog would enjoy doggy daycare:

1) Is my dog friendly with strangers? – Even though doggy daycare is a place for your pup to interact with other dogs, they also need to interact with staff members. If your dog is nervous or timid around strange people, not only are they going to be miserable, the staff is going to be miserable trying to bring your dog in and out of the play areas.

2) Is my dog easily overstimulated? – It is possible for there to be TOO much excitement for your dog. There are new scents, new people, new dogs, new toys, loud noises, new places to potty, new routines and an entirely new environment. This can be extremely overwhelming for your dog.

3) Is my dog dominate or aggressive with other dogs? – This one is a bit obvious but just in case you hadn’t thought of it. If your dog is dominant or aggressive with other dogs, he is not going to be a good candidate for spending hours and hours cage-free with them.

4) Is my dog old or ill? – The impact of playing with other dogs and constantly moving can be very stressful on a dog’s joints. When they’re old, it’s not a very good idea to put them in an environment where there body is going to be constantly exposed to being bumped into, jumped on, bitten, pulled and wrestled with for hours on end. And if your dog is ill, not only is it not fair to him to put him into daycare, it’s not fair to the other dogs attending the facility. 

5) Is my dog frightened of new places and loud noises? – There is constant noise at a boarding facility. Dogs are almost non-stop barking and playing. Staff are yelling over the barking so they can communicate with each other. There are people coming in and out of the building at all times and it’s a completely different environment than they are used to. If your dog does not enjoy new experiences, especially without you by his side. Say no to daycare.

Just like all things in life, doggy daycare isn’t for everyone. Be sure you take the time to really understand your options before you take your dog into a situation that is going to be more harmful to them than it will be good.

5 Doggy Daycare Truths You Need To Know

Ah, the great pet care debate: isn’t doggy daycare a better option for my dog than hiring a dog walker? I mean, my dog will get a full day of playing with other dogs compared to just one or two visits from a dog walker, right?Doggy Daycare Northville

These are common questions that we hear most of the time from clients who are looking for the best option for their dog while they are at work. These are completely valid questions and in theory, it sure does look like doggy day care is the best option for your dog right?

However, most pet parents don’t look at the whole picture when debating between doggy daycare and a dog walker. Often times the “length of time” and the price are the only things that they focus on but in reality there is so much more to factor in before you make your decision.

The following are 5 things that might make you reconsider taking your dog to doggy daycare:

1) Your dog will not be getting much one on one attention. It’s just not possible for a daycare facility that often has anywhere from 15-50 dogs at a time, with one or two staff members, to provide your dog with individualized care. The staff is there mainly to break up any fights that might happen, keep up on cleaning up pee and poo and to make sure no one is getting hurt. Beyond that, your dog is on their own.

2) Your dog is at a high risk of injury. Your dog can get injured from rough-house playing  or getting into a fight with another dog. And YES this DOES happen. I took my Golden Retriever, Copper to a daycare in Novi for the day so he could play and socialize with other dogs. Within an hour of play, I received a call from the facility saying they were rushing my poor boy to the vet because another dog attacked him and tore his ear into two halves. When there are that many dogs in one place interacting with each other, it is absolutely impossible, no matter how much pre-screening a doggy day care does, to prevent fights from breaking out.

3) Playtime with other dogs is great but too much play with no structure and no mental stimulation can create behavioral problems. Dogs thrive off of structure and having rules. When they do not have to follow any structure of any sort, they start behaving like animals rather than our trained companions.

4) Get ready to do some driving and rearranging your schedule. Doggy Daycare facilities all have pick up/drop off times of some sort. So, you need to plan extra time in your morning commute to drop your dog off at the facility, plan extra time driving home and be sure you leave in enough time from work to make the pick up deadline otherwise you incur extra charges or your dog is forced to stay overnight in boarding.

5) Your dog will be at risk of infections and illnesses from other dogs. Most doggy daycare’s require vaccinations including Bordetella vaccinations. However, those are not the only illnesses that dogs can pick up from each other and there is no way for a large facility to health screen every single dog beyond having their vaccinations up to date.

Doggy Daycare is certainly not an evil place with only negative sides to it, otherwise they wouldn’t be around! However you need to really evaluate your dog and what you’re willing to expose him to and what he can handle. Not every dog is the same and your decision to take him to daycare should be based on more than just the amount of playing he can do or the price.

3 Ways To Be The Best Pet Sitting Client

Having a great pet sitter that you trust with your pets and your home is invaluable. A great working relationship with your pet sitter requires a little bit of work on the part of the pet sitter and the pet owner.Lover Valentine Havanese puppy

Yes, that means you!

If you want to get the absolute best out of having a pet sitter, you need to make an effort to be a great client that your pet sitter just can’t wait to take care of.

How do you do that? It’s simple! Follow the 3 simple steps below and you’ll quickly become among your pet sitter’s favorite clients!

1. Schedule In Advance – as soon as you know your work schedule or your travel plans, let your pet sitter know when you’ll be needing them! Not only does it ensure that your pet sitter will be able to take care of your pets, it also alleviates scheduling nightmares for your pet sitter while they scramble to try and fit in last minute requests.

2. Pay On Time – Yes, we absolutely love what we do! We get to take care of animals all day, who wouldn’t enjoy that?? But, we do also need to make a living. When you leave payment on time it shows that you respect your pet sitter and the hard work that they do for you and your pets.

3. Stock Up On Supplies – Nothing is more frustrating for a pet sitter than when we are taking care of a dog and they run out of food half way through our services or when we have to scrape the very bottom of the litter box for the last few grains of litter because there wasn’t any left to fill the box up appropriately. Us pet sitters can’t do our best when we don’t have the proper supplies to take care of your pets!

The great thing about pet sitting is that you, as the pet owner, have to do very little! We come to your house and pretty much take care of everything for you.

If you can stick to these 3 small suggestions, you’ll go a long way towards forging a great relationship with your pet sitter, helping to make someones job just a little easier and getting the most out of pet sitting services as a whole!

What Does It Mean If A Pet Sitter Doesn’t Charge By Time?

I would venture to guess that while you have been searching for a professional pet sitter you have been scanning their websites and have seen that most of them explain their services like this:Pet Sitting in Novi

  • 30 minute visit = $X
  • 45 minute visit = $X
  • 60 minute visit = $X

So when you come across a pet sitting business, such as Menlys Pet Care, that says that we do not charge by time, it might be a little bit difficult to understand what you’re going to be paying for.

Well this article will help you to understand what it really means to “not charge based on time” and what you and your pets will be getting for your money.

Why Not Charge By Time?

The answer is simple. Your pet is an individual right? Your dog doesn’t have the exact same exercise requirements as the dog next door and your cat is not fed the exact same way as your friend’s cat. So why is it safe to assume that everyone’s pet’s  needs will be summed up in an exact number of minutes at each pet sitting visit?

Wouldn’t you rather know that your pet is being taken care of solely based on their needs rather than how long it takes?

When a pet sitter charges by the service rather than by time, it allows them to FULLY customize each pet sitting visit to the individual client and their pet. You’re charged a flat rate and the clock is not monitored while the pet sitter is with your pet. Instead, they spend every moment making sure they are following your pet’s specific routines and providing them with one on one, quality care.

How Will I Know How Long My Pet Sitter Is Staying?

When you get your hair done, do you watch the clock to see exactly how long the hair stylist is doing your hair to determine whether or not it’s a quality job? No, you just care about the quality of the cut and color you’re getting (of course, we don’t want to spend 4 hours in the salon chair but you get my basic point).

The same holds true for pet sitting. It shouldn’t matter how long your pet sitter is staying with your pets, but rather, are they giving them quality care that you would expect from a professional? Does your home look the exact same way as you left it when you return home? Were all of your instructions followed properly? And most importantly, do your pets seem calm and well adjusted?

If so, than it really shouldn’t matter whether your pet sitter stayed for 20 minutes or 45 minutes. A pet sitter that charges based on service rather than based on time, is more concerned with the quality of the visit, rather than the quantity of time spent doing the visit.

Does This Mean My Pet Sitter Won’t Do A Quality Job If They Charge By Time?

Absolutely not. I know many pet sitters who are outstanding at what they do and treat every client as if they were their own client. Charging by time doesn’t mean your sitter is going to be a bad sitter.

However, it does mean that the visits will not be 100% structured to your pet’s needs. As I stated earlier, it is impossible to put all pets into a standardized time. It often leaves the visit with too much time left over, or not enough time left at the end to complete everything (which often leads to additional bills to come home too).

It all comes down to you at the end. What do you value more? Quality or quantity?

Are You Abandoning Your Pet If You Get A Pet Sitter?

It’s completely natural to do: you think about your pet all alone at home for several hours at a time and you start feeling guilty.

You start asking yourself:In-Home Pet Sitting

  • Are they lonely?
  • Are they bored?
  • Do they feel abandoned?
  • Are they sad?

These very thoughts are what drive many people to the idea of taking their pets to a boarding facility because they believe that they will get more attention there. However, I am here to ease your mind about leaving your pet at home.

1) According to an article on Pets Adviser dogs sleep anywhere between 12 to 18 hours a day depending on their age. Cats, according to PetMD sleep an average of 18 to 20 hours per day. Your pet is not at home staring at the walls in boredom all day long feeling sorry for themselves. They are enjoying long naps on their favorite couch, bed or blanket. To break up their time and burn energy, having a pet sitter come in to play, exercise and snuggle with them 1-4 times a day (depending on the pet) will plenty fulfill their daily needs.

2) Dogs and cats are creatures of habit. They love their routines, their same napping spots, their same toys and the same smells and sounds that they are used to. Unless they are with you most pets do not like leaving the comfort of their home, so having someone come in to take care of them throughout the day rather than transporting them is actually more beneficial to your pet.

3) Yes, our pets do get sad when we leave them behind. We form very strong bonds with our animals and they love us just as much (if not more) than we love them. They don’t enjoy being away from us however, having a pet sitter come in and give them one on one attention, play, exercise and treats is as close to a mommy and daddy substitute as you can get!

It’s always hard to leave your pet behind when you travel but don’t fall into the trap of believing that you’re a bad pet parent if you leave your pet at home while you’re gone. Getting a pet sitter has many great benefits for your pets and they will be grateful for it!