You’re planning your next holiday and at the same time thinking ‘what do I do with my fur-child?’ No need to worry, we have put together all of your options with a little help from Alex Bedwani, Founder of FindADogMinder, a pet care marketplace connecting dog owners with pet sitters all over Australia.
Do you have a friend or relative who will take care of your pooch? You’re in luck. Your dog probably already knows them and possibly even their home. It won’t take long to get used to the environment and they will feel comfortable in familiar surrounds. It’s also a cheap option, because usually a small gift as a thank you is enough. When your dog stays at their home you need to ensure that your friend isn’t working long hours and that they have a safe and secure environment.
A boarding kennel is usually the most expensive option and probably not the best alternative these days. The reality is your furry friend will be caged for up to 18 hours every day. Whilst having plenty of play-mates around is certainly a bonus, the TLC and human affection is something your dog will certainly miss at a boarding kennel.
If you fur-child prefers to stay in the comfort of his own home whilst you’re away then pet sitting in your home is the choice for you. The dog sitter stays at your house or visits your home once or twice a day. If the sitter is only visiting this usually means your dog is alone for extended periods, which may not be suitable. The sitter staying in your home means their regular routine is uninterrupted, just be sure to properly screen your house guest.
An affordable option which still offers a high level of care for your pooch. Often these dog minders are dog owners themselves, they may have had a pet in the past, or are just dog lovers who cannot have the long-term commitment of a dog of their own. Loads of TLC is the bonus, as your dog will be getting around-the-clock care. Even though the dog doesn’t know the minder, you and your pooch can meet the minder in advance, so everybody is comfortable and the dog can become familiar with the dog sitter. Pet sitters on FindADogMinder will even send you SMS or photo updates whilst you are away. Dogs who aren’t comfortable travelling in the car may not be best suited to this option.
Whichever path you take, plan well ahead – at least 2 to 3 weeks prior to your trip. Be sure to provide the carer with your dog’s feeding and exercise routine as well as any medical information and the contact details of your regular vet.
Alex Bedwani founded FindADogMinder, Australia’s largest pet care marketplace in 2007. A devoted dog lover and passionate industry supporter he is also a member of the Pet Industry Association of Australia. A sought after public speaker in the areas of business strategy, brand marketing and client engagement.