Pet Sitter Checklist: Getting Your Home Ready for Dog Boarding

Author picture Jessica

Why Prepare Your Home?

It can be an anxiety inducing experience for Pet Owners & their pets to to be boarded. As the pet sitter - you want you home to feel welcoming for the pets you board, but getting your house ready for dog boarding involves more than just a tidy up.

A lot needs to be considered; Where the pet will stay in my home? Is my house pet-proof? Do I have the all the emergency contact & veterinary information?

By taking the time to prepare, you give yourself the greatest chance for success on a booking. Ensuring that by the time you return the beloved pet to their pet parents, they'll already be wanting to come back.

Pet Sitter Checklist for Dog Boarding: Preparing Your House

A Dachshund in a box

Pet-Proof Your Home

Before welcoming your guest, take the time to pet-proof your house. This involves anything from making sure fences are secure. It also means locking up toxins and cleaning products. Additionally, it includes checking for small objects that could be a choking hazard.

Pet-proofing is important for ensuring that all pets are kept safe and happy for the duration of the booking. You will need to adjust your preparation based on the guest dog's age, breed/size, and behaviour.

The dog you are caring for will determine how you should modify the preparation. Consider the age, breed/size, and behaviour of the dog when making changes. Tailor the preparation to suit the specific needs of the dog in your care.

If it seems overwhelming, don't worry - Pawshake has a blog post to help you with any concerns you may have.

Get to Know Local Pet Care Laws

Before pet sitting, learn the laws in your area, especially rules from your local council about pet boarding.

Knowing local laws is necessary and protects your pet sitting business. Make sure to stay current with Council Guidelines, get all necessary permits, and give the best care possible to stay compliant.

Establish a Solid Communication Channel

Clear and open communication with pet owners is critical. At the Meet and Greet, learn about the dog's needs, habits, and special care instructions to provide proper care. Always make sure to finalise bookings and share important news through Pawshake for protection and transparency for both parties.

Here is a link to our blog on What to Discuss at your Meet & Greet and how to establish and maintain open lines of communication.

A Beagle on a couch

Ensure Your Home is Fully Equipped

Prepare your house by setting up a designated area for your guest dog. Depending on the Meet & Greet - this may need to be independent from your own pets' space (if you have one).

Give your guest pet a cozy place to sleep, always have water and food available, and keep a first aid kit handy. Make sure to put any of their favourite objects or toys in their spot.

Don't work above your capacity

Understanding and acknowledging your limits is vital in pet sitting. Do not overbook or take on more dogs than you can comfortably manage. Before booking, always have a Meet & Greet to ensure compatibility with the guest pets. This will help you understand their personality better and limits the possibility of a failed booking.

Quality, attentive care for a few dogs is preferable than spreading yourself too thin over too many pets.

Develop an Emergency Plan

Having a plan for potential emergencies is an integral part of your preparation. This includes knowing your nearest veterinary clinic & making a list of emergency contacts as provided by the pet owner. It is also worthwhile to plan for any potential emergencies that are specific to your area.

This could mean getting ready for bushfires, extreme heat, or just knowing what to do if you have to leave your apartment building in an evacuation.

Preparedness ensures you’re ready to act swiftly and confidently should an unexpected situation arise.

A Dog with its tongue out

Keep the Lines of Communication Open

Regular updates are a reassuring touch that pet owners appreciate and often need. Send daily texts, photos, or emails to keep them informed about their dog’s activities and wellbeing. Your attentiveness to their pet’s needs could be the beginning of a long a rewarding relationship with the owner and the furry pal.

By following this pet sitter checklist closely, you'll provide a positive and stress-free experience for both the pets you board and their owners. Your readiness to welcome guest dogs into a prepared and pet-proofed home sets the stage for a successful booking.

Need assistance with a booking? Check our our Help Centre for more advice!

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