If you are a keen dog lover, you can think about pet sitting in your free time to make a bit of pocket money on the side. You could even build this into a full time job. But before you start out, there is a few things you need to put some thinking into.
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Safety of the dogs you are minding
You have to make sure the area that you will keep the dogs in is safe and secure. There must be absolutely no opportunity or space for the dogs to escape and land up in the street or under the wheel of a car. Your yard should be well fenced and all gates should have locks on them. If you are keeping them inside the house, make sure there are no open windows they can jump out of.
Make your whole property doggy secure before you start off.
The area you are going to keep the dogs should be warm and dry with enough light. Well enough if you keep them inside the house with you, but most definitely do not keep them in a dark shed that has no windows and not closed up somewhere like the utility room with no windows. It should be comfortable for the dog and really likeable for the owner so that they will feel happy to leave their dogs with you.
- Get some equipment.
You will need some crates that are large enough for a dog to move around inside. It is a good idea to crate dogs at night for bed time. This will make sure they are safe and that your house or area where you keep them stays clean. We would recommend getting a few crates of different sizes. Get some soft comfy blankets that are easily washable and can go into the tumble dryer. You will also need some doggy bowls for food and water.
- Food and treats.
You can ask owners to bring their dogs own food and treats to make sure they do not get stomach upsets or allergies of food they are allergic to. If you are sure a dog has no problems, you can use your own Stock of good quality dog food and treats. You may also get a variety of wet and dry food. Some dogs will turn down only dry food or a mix of wet and dry, and will only ever prefer wet foods. Make sure your price reflects your cost of feeding them!
- Safe walking
You should invest in very good and secure leashes and have a few spare harnesses in case the dogs you mind have theirs chewed or broken. Ask owners to bring a good quality harness and make sure it fits snug enough that the dog will not escape when out walking. .
- First Aid Kit
Don’t forget to have a fully equipped and stocked canine doggy first aid kit. You can buy a fully contained kit from online or any reputable pet shop or veterinary clinic. You can also make one up yourself. Get a toolbox or plastic container that can close and fill it up with the following: It should contain some good variety of bandages and ointment for burns and bee or bug stings. Get some antibacterial wipes and spray and a foil blanket for emergencies. Scissors, tweezers and a pair of latex gloves is also a must have.
- Have suitable grooming supplies.
Whether you are going to offer a bathing service or not, you will sometimes have no choice but to clean a dog if you were out walking and went through mud and rainy puddles. Get a non-slip mat for the bathtub and as good quality as you can afford dog shampoo, conditioner, and perfume. A good few brushes are also a good idea. If you don’t already have some, have a read in our product review section on recommended slicker brushes.
Exercise your pet sitting dogs.
When you look after a dog, you have to take them out at least twice a day, but preferably twice a day for toilet business and one more time to go for a long walk. Long walks will keep them stimulated and get rid of some excess energy. It will curb barking and restlessness
Get information and be informed
Do visit your vet, groomers, and breeders to find out about different breeds you are going to mind. You can also search online and go to your library to get books on different breeds and their habits and genetic traits. You can also read our section on top breeds for more information.
You can also visit Learn Center to do a course on becoming a professional dog sitter