If you need to go away, dog sitting in your home offers an alternative to boarding your dog. Read our guide to help you choose good dog sitters.
How does pet sitting work?
Instead of your dog going to boarding kennels while you are away, a holiday dog sitter will come to your house to care for your dog. The benefits are that your dog will be able to stay in their own home and stick to their own routine. It also means that you will have the security of someone looking after your house while you are away.
Pet house sitters can provide a range of cover from a weekend dog sitter if you are having a short break away, to holiday dog sitters for longer famliy breaks.
Pet sitting is sometimes confused with dog boarding, home boarding, or dog minding where your dog stays at a different property while you are away. Anyone who provides kennel boarding for dogs must be licensed.
What does a dog sitter do?
A dog sitter will be responsible for caring for your dog while you are away – this includes feeding, walking, grooming, playing and taking them to the vet if necessary. Most dog sitters will stay overnight at your house – so your dog receives 24/7 care. Dog sitters that stay in your home may also look after your property while you’re away.
How to find a dog sitter
A quick search on Google for local dog sitting services will return plenty of results. It’s important to note, however, that pet sitting is not regulated in the UK, so the onus is on you to choose someone you trust to care for your dog and your home.
There are two membership bodies for pet sitting in the UK, where you could begin your search. Their members work to a code of conduct and hold a list of registered dog sitters. These are:
There are also several national pet – and house sitting – organisations. Some offer a professional house sitting service, others operate as networks, connecting pet and home owners with pet sitters.
The key points to consider are:
- Does the pet sitter have the right knowledge and experience to care for your dog? Ask for references and reviews.
- Is the pet sitter insured? This should include public liability and protection of your property as well as cover for your dog whilst in their care.
- Have they been DBS checked? If you trusting the care of your dog and home to someone, then a criminal background check may be advisable.
How much does a pet sitter cost?
Dog sitting costs vary and often depend on the number of dogs you have, the level of care required and how long the pet sitter is needed.
How do you become a pet sitter
Being a dog sitter can be a rewarding role. If you’re a dog lover and enjoy travelling then dog sitting could be the job for you.
There are no specific qualification requirements for becoming a pet sitter but having a qualification in animal care, along with first-aid training for pets, would give you the skills you need to do the job and your customers peace of mind about leaving their pets in your care.
If you live in England and plan to offer dog sitting in your home, you will need to apply for a licence from your local council.
See all Dog Care Services: