Barking Mad’s Top Tips

How to prepare for your pet’s stay with a dog sitter!

Leaving your dog to go on holiday, or for work commitments, can at first appear to be a very daunting prospect. In an ideal world, your dog would always be by your side and accompany you wherever you go. Sadly, this isn’t always possible as some dogs don’t travel well and many hotels/restaurants don’t allow dogs to visit.

It is normal to feel anxious when thinking about arranging for your pet to stay with somebody else. However, dog lovers at Barking Mad, the UK’s leading dog sitting service are here to help. True pet care pioneers, with decades of experience in the industry, they have provided a list of top tips to make the whole experience easier and stress free:

1. It is vital to provide your dog sitter with as much information as you possibly can

Every dog is different, and it is important to provide your dog sitting professional with honest information about your pup’s personality, including any quirks. A reputable dog sitter will request to have all your dog’s essential information at their fingertips. Karen from Barking Mad says,

“At Barking Mad Dog Care, we visit each doggy customer in their own home and have a detailed chat with their owner, whilst compiling an ‘all about me’ document, which we call a pet schedule. We ask all about your dog’s daily routine, personality, behaviour, daily food intake, favourite toys/games and health history. We also ask you to provide details of any current medication and vet contact details.”

2. Ensure your dog’s vaccinations are up to date

A reputable dog sitter will usually require that all your pet’s vaccinations are fully up to date at the time of their stay. Ensuring that your dog’s boosters are up to date means that you don’t have to worry if you want to book a last-minute holiday, or your vet’s practice is particularly busy.

3. Up to date, adequate worming and flea treatment is essential

If your dog is going to stay with a dog sitter, it is essential that worming and flea treatments are up to date for obvious reasons. It is also very beneficial for your dog’s welfare and comfort.

4. How are your dog’s manners?

It can be a good idea to spend a little time working on your dog’s training and socialisation prior to their stay with a dog sitter. It is far easier to find an appropriate host for a well-mannered pooch who is sociable and easy to manage.

5. Create a packing list for your dog

Creating a packing list is Barking Mad’s top tip for remembering your pup’s essentials, to make them feel at home! Items suggested include:

  • your dog’s own bed
  • their usual food and a measuring cup
  • treats
  • collar, lead/harness and a coat if worn
  • toys
  • waste bags
  • towels and a grooming kit
  • any necessary medication

6. Be oganised and prepare contact details well ahead

It is important to leave your dog sitter with at least two emergency contacts and ensure that their details are up to date. At least one emergency contact should have the authority to make decisions and if necessary, make vet payments on your behalf. Make sure that your dog sitter has your correct contact details for while you are away. You should also leave information regarding your travel arrangements, including flight details etc.

7. Keep your vet up to speed

You should always advise your vet of who will be responsible for your dog’s care during your absence, in case of an emergency. Richard from Barking Mad says,

“At Barking Mad we believe that it is important to always endeavour to use your dog’s own vet where possible. This is much better in the event of them needing emergency treatment.”

8. A trial sleepover provides peace of mind

Make sure that you try a shorter night sleepover before booking an extended stay with a dog sitter, to ensure that your dog is happy. Barking Mad always insists upon a short trial stay when holidays of a week or longer are booked.

9. Ensure a calm goodbye

It is essential to keep things as normal as possible for your dog leading up to your departure. You should try your best to keep calm as dogs are very sensitive and can pick up on your mood. Unusual displays of affection and extra treats/walks may be confusing and disruptive to their usual routine.

10. Enjoy your holiday!

Enjoy your precious time away because you deserve it! Now that you feel safe in the knowledge that you and your dog were fully prepared for their stay with a dog sitter, you can relax and make the most of your trip away. You can also look forward to lots of tail wagging on your return! If you have yet to book your dog a sitter, you can find out more about Barking Mad’s 5* rated service by contacting your local branch.

If researching dog sitting has opened your eyes to the possibilities of the pet care industry and you feel envious of your dog sitter’s lifestyle, Barking Mad can offer the following advice. Karen says,

“Many of our customers and host families have loved the service so much that they have gone on to buy a Barking Mad Dog Care business of their very own! If you are feeling disillusioned with your current career or the commute is getting you down, why not consider dog sitting as an alternative? If you would love to work with dogs and dog lovers, you can find out more by visiting our page about starting your own dog sitting business.”

To find out more about our friends at Barking Mad click here

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