What to Include When Leaving a Note for Your Sitter
When it comes to your pet’s laundry list of needs and preferences, you know every detail by heart — and when you leave your dog or cat in a new sitter’s hands, you’ll want to arm them with the same knowledge.
Lucky for Sarah’s Pet Care clients, our state-of-the-art software, powered by Precise Petcare, streamlines this process. Does your dog or cat have any food allergies? What kinds of treats are Fido’s favorite? At the same time you register, schedule or pay for our services, you also have the opportunity to provide details about your pet’s medical and behavioral history — all available on your sitter’s smartphone while on location.
Of course, we know it can sometimes be difficult to recall and outline each and every aspect of your pet’s routine on the spot. Though you can always amend your pet’s records in your client portal, many pet parents find extra peace of mind in putting pen to paper when recapping their furry friend’s needs. The bonus step of leaving behind a note can be another convenient point of reference for your sitter in case any additional information or reiteration is needed while you’re gone on vacation or a business trip. While the bulk of your note may simply be a handy review of the basics, it is also your chance to elaborate with more nuanced tips and instructions that are just beyond the obvious. Consider jotting down a guide to the following before locking up and jetting off:
Should your sitter be aware of any tummy issues that might make potty cleanup alarming? Does your shih tzu have runny eyes, or perhaps your kitty has recently come down with a cold? Will the sitter need to administer any special medications while you’re gone?
2. Food, water, treats
Does your pet’s diet include dry food, wet food, or a combination of the two? Where is it all stored? Also consider factors such as timing, measurements and cleanup. If you reward your pet with treats, or perhaps keep them busy with a bone or Greenie, note when these treats are given and where they are kept.
For dogs, recap how often and for how long they need to be taken out, as well as providing any instructions (i.e. – where can leashes, harnesses, doggie cleanup bags, etc. be accessed?). For cats, where is the litter box kept, how often will it need to be cleaned, and where are any necessary cleanup materials and litter refills stored?
4. Toys, play and exercise
For dog walking, useful details can include frequency, timing, length, popular routes and/or routes to avoid. For home playtime, where can your sitter access squeaky toys, throw toys, or cat wands? What are your baby’s favorite games?
5. Behavior and personality
Our beloved pets tend to carry their quirks. Are there any aspects of your pet’s personality the sitter should be aware of? For instance, are they susceptible to petting and handling, or do they prefer to keep their distance? Are they skittish when it comes to loud noises, or do they enjoy being talked to? Do they have a habit of trying to escape out the front door? It’s also important to note your go-to humane discipline tactics for when things go awry (i.e. – excessive barking, scratching, nipping, etc.)
Should blinds and curtains remain open or closed? Would you and your pal be more comfortable with the lights left on, off, or alternated depending on time of day? What temperature should the thermostat be set to, or in the winter, do you leave the heater on a timer for Fido or leave out his favorite blankets? Also note your pet’s favorite spots to take refuge (i.e. – beds, carriers, etc.) and where they should be kept.
Are there any off-limits areas? Should electronics or appliances remain unplugged and out of reach? Will the sitter need any spare keys other than one to the front door? Perhaps the most crucial information of all is what to do in case of an emergency, with any pertinent contact information included.
Time to really rack your brain for anything you may have left out. You may also want to include information that applies to your human guest, such as whether they can help themselves to snacks, drinks, or entertainment. Other things to consider: the nearby parking situation, or any relevant details about your neighborhood or apartment building.
List or no list, the compassionate experts at Sarah’s Pet Care will work with you to ensure your best friend stays safe, comfortable and happy.
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