Dog Sitter Checklist and Guide: Everything To Tell and Leave For Your Pet Sitter

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Finding someone you trust to look after your dog is essential. There are many options, like kennels, pet resorts, or finding a pet sitter. 
If you’re planning on leaving your dog with a dog sitter, it is a good idea to create a list of everything they might need to know. It is also essential to set the rules to avoid any problems. From the amount of exercise, they have, where they’re allowed to go, or how to turn your heating on.
We recommend looking for someone willing to keep your routine as similar as possible, as this will help keep your dog feeling comfortable and make your departure seamless.

Quick Tips:

  • Communication is also vital, and giving your sitter the time and dates you will be away.  
  • Make sure to give them your mobile number and email address so they can send cute dog pictures while you’re away!
  • Leave $50 in case your sitter runs out of any dog essentials (like treats!)
  • Leave something with your scent on for your dog to feel comfortable while you’re away.

 

Busy? Get Your Hands Paws On The Answers Quickly…

 

 

Download the Dog Sitter PDF here:

 

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Everything We Recommend Leaving For Your Pet Sitter

Feeding Schedule - 

  • When do you feed your dog? (e.g. 7am and 6pm)
  • How much you feed your dog? (e.g., 1 cup in the morning and 2 cups in the evening)
  • Do you feed your dog in a slow feeding bowl or toy?
  • What do you feed your dog? (which brand and type? where do you buy it?) 

Exercise Schedule -

  • Do you have a dog walker? Does your dog go to doggy daycare? (e.g., Tuesday 1 pm daycare)
  • When do you walk your dog? (e.g. 6.30am, 1pm, and 8pm)
  • How long you walk your dog? (e.g., 20 minutes in the morning before breakfast and 1 hour in the evening after dinner)
  • Where do you walk your dog? (e.g., Around the block, to the local park, around the football field, in the woods)
  • Places to avoid (e.g., Is your dog reactive in the dog park? Is there a particular area they don’t like, makes them nervous, or overexcited?)
  • Leads, collars, and harnesses (e.g., Does your dog only walk using a harness? Do you use an extendable lead in the woods? Do you use a head collar walking the streets?)  
  • Off-lead and recall (e.g., Is your dog allowed off the lead in certain areas? Is their recall reliable? Is there anything that your dog will react to, like squirrels?)
  • Toys (e.g., Does your dog like a ball or frisbee on the walk?)

Sleeping Schedule - 

  • What time does your dog usually wake up? (e.g. 7am)
  • What time does your dog usually go to bed? (e.g. 11pm)
  • Where does your dog sleep? (e.g., Crate at night? Sleep on your bed?)
  • Does your dog nap at certain times? (e.g., After the walk)
  • Are there any toys your dog needs to go to bed? (e.g., A particular cuddly toy or blanket?)

Toilet Schedule - 

  • How does your dog signal they need the toilet? (e.g., Ring a bell, bark at the door, etc.)
  • When does your dog need to go out to pee? (e.g., As soon as they wake up, after breakfast, after dinner, right before bed)
  • How often your dog usually poops in a day? (e.g., Three times a day)
  • What time and when they usually poop? (e.g., Once in the morning and twice on their evening walk)

Playing - 

  • Is there a particular toy your dog likes playing with? (e.g., frisbee, tennis ball)
  • Are there any toys to avoid? (e.g., Will destroy squeaky toys)
  • Does your dog use any interactive toys? (e.g., A puzzle toy to keep them busy?)

Treats - 

  • How many treats is your dog allowed a day? (e.g., two bones and then as much kibble as needed)
  • Which treats are they allowed? (e.g., Bones then kibble)
  • When do you treat your dog? (e.g., Tricks, recall, rewards, or before you leave the house)
  • Are they allowed any human food as a treat? (e.g., Carrot, cheese, green beans)
  • Is there anything that upsets your dog’s stomach and that should be avoided? (e.g., Dairy, certain vegetables)

Commands -

  • Which commands do you use for your dog and when? (e.g., Sit, stay, off, down, wait, stop, etc.)
  • Does your dog have a command to use the bathroom? (e.g. ‘Go potty’ etc.)

Other - 

  • Is there anywhere the dog is and isn’t allowed? (e.g., Not allowed on the beds)
  • Is there anywhere your dog sitter shouldn’t go? (e.g., Put away anything you don’t want your sitter to use)
  • Is your pet scared of anything in particular? (e.g., Cars, other dogs, certain people, loud noises, etc.)

Medical Information -

  • Vet information (e.g., Address, contact number)
  • Emergency vet information (e.g., Address, contact number)
  • Insurance Information
  • Microchip Information
  • Vaccine Information
  • Does your dog have any injuries that your sitter should be aware of? (e.g., Any cuts, scratches, or lumps?)
  • Does your dog take any regular medication? (e.g., When your dog takes it? How long do they need it for? Does it cause any reaction? Do they need to take it with a treat?)
  • Do you have any vaccinations due or a veterinarian appointment? 
  • Are they due any flea or worming medication while you’re away?
Once you have given your dog sitter all of the information about your dog, it is a good idea to provide them with as much information about your home as possible to put their mind at ease and make the stay as seamless as possible.

Home Information - 

  • Keys (Which keys are for what doors?)
  • Alarm system (e.g., How to use it etc.)
  • Heating and cooling information (e.g., How do they control the aircon?)
  • Internet and TV (e.g., How to connect and how to use everything)
  • Appliances (e.g., How to use the dishwasher, washing machine, tumble dryer, oven, and who to call if it stops working)
  • Anyone who will visit during your vacation? (e.g., Do you have a gardener, pool cleaner, cleaner, maintenance, etc., who might be around the house?)
  • Trash and recycling collection days/times (e.g., Where are the bins? When do they get collected?)
  • Your contact information (Where you’re staying, the hotel details, your mobile number)
  • Emergency dog care (Is there someone else you can leave your dog with if something happens to your dog sitter? What is their contact information?)

 

Where Everything Is Kept 

If your dog sitter stays in your home, then they will need to be shown where everything is kept for every day and emergencies. We recommend the following:
  • Food
  • Bowls
  • Treats
  • Lead and Collar
  • Dog Towels
  • Shampoo
  • Toys 
  • Dog First Aid Kit 
  • Poop Bags

 

Top Tips For Choosing A Sitter

There are several things you should look for and check when choosing a sitter. These include:
  • Meet them before and check you and your pet feel comfortable with them.
  • References and reviews - Getting reviews from people you know is a great way to find a good dog sitter.
  • Insurance and license information - This not only shows that your sitter is professional and serious about the job, but it also protects you both if something were to happen.
  • Professional training - Although not necessarily crucial, having a dog sitter that is trained positively is great. It indicates they have plenty of experience around dogs and should know how to handle different situations.
  • Availability - A dog sitter who can be available on short notice helps any last minute trips or if you have an unexpected long work day and need someone to check in on your dog.
  • Respectful and consistent - You want your dog sitter to respect your rules and routine and stick to them while you’re away.

 

 

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Disclaimer: Each dog is different, and every circumstance is different. All efforts have been made to provide accurate information. However, it is not provided by a qualified Veterinarian, Veterinarian Surgeon, or Behaviorist. The information provided is purely educational. The information should not be used as an alternative or substitute for medical care. If you have any health or medical concerns, contact a qualified Veterinary Surgeon or Veterinarian immediately.

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