If you love spending time with animals and have a real passion for pets, then becoming a dog sitter is an excellent career choice and you can make a good living from it. You will need to be reliable and trustworthy — don’t forget that most dog owners feel the same way about their dogs as they would about their children. You will also need to be physically fit, enjoy the outdoors (whatever the weather) and have plenty of patience. It is worth remembering that you will also be running your own business, too, so you will need to be practical and organised.
Dog sitting in your home
Looking after other people’s dogs in your home is ideal if you don’t have another full-time job. You can fit dog sitting around your family life, doing the school run and other commitments. However, it is imperative that if you are going out, you do not leave the pets that are in your care on their own for long. You may also find that you are asked to look after dogs with separation anxiety that don’t like being left alone at all.
Is your home dog-ready?
It is important for you to arrange comprehensive pet sitting insurance if you are looking after other people’s dogs. This can cover all eventualities including getting injured by a client’s dog. You must have a garden that is completely secure – you don’t want a dog to go missing whilst they are in your care. You may want to invest in getting a couple of baby gates if there are areas where you don’t want dogs going, such as upstairs. You will also want to make sure that your home is dog-proofed — this means securing loose wiring, putting latches on food cupboards and having plenty of old blankets to cover sofas, chairs, etc.
Dog sitting isn’t just about doing a few walkies. When you are running your own business, you need to be organised. Keep individual records for all the dogs that you look after, so that you know exactly what they need to be fed and if they have any medical needs. Make sure that you always have a good supply of dog food and treats too. You will also need to keep financial records and receipts so that you can submit a self-assessment tax return every year.
Dog sitting is a completely viable career choice and can be extremely rewarding. Best of all, you get to spend your time with some wonderful furry clients.