Almost one in two French households has a pet. However, when the time of the weekend or the holidays arrives, this situation can limit the activities, even the solutions of lodging.
While it is possible to consider giving the animal to family, neighbors or friends, it is a responsibility they may not want to take on, especially when the demand is repeated too often. As for the pension, it represents a significant cost. Also, more and more pet owners are turning to the pet-sitting solution.
We tell you everything there is to know about this pet sitter solution that has continued to grow in recent years.
What is pet sitting?
Pet sitting is baby sitting for animals. And so, the pet sitter will be like the “nanny” of your pet (s). As with childcare, you define your need and specify it to the pet sitter: duration of care, services to be provided, possible frequency of the service, etc.
Different possibilities are possible:
- take your animal with you on vacation and use a pet sitter on site, to take care of your animal occasionally, during your absences,
- entrust your pet to the pet sitter who will welcome him at his home for the duration of your absence,
- leaving your pet at home, which implies, in addition to entrusting the task of ensuring that your pet is well, to give the keys to your home.
Depending on the option chosen, it is therefore important to find a person serious because the care of your animal can involve great responsibilities.
Who are the pet-sitters?
A pet-sitter is generally not an animal professional, unlike the staff of a boarding house.
For the most part, it is mainly students, who can own animals themselves (this is better to justify a first experience), who want to earn pocket money. But just as baby sitters can take studies to learn a trade related to children, it is possible to find pet sitters following studies related to animals.
The profiles also include seniors who see it as an opportunity to break out of isolation and their daily routine.
Many unemployed people also offer their services, in order to make ends meet, thanks to a job that ultimately does not require special qualifications, apart from good contact with animals and a real desire to looking after them and wanting their well-being.
Good contact with the owners of the animal may also be necessary because, depending on your level of expectations (to be clearly expressed beforehand), the pet sitter may have to reassure you by regularly giving news, by sending photos. or videos, for example.
How to find a pet sitter?
If the system of advertisements distributed to merchants still works, it may require talking to many people in order to clarify their profile. The Internet undeniably facilitates research and comparison.
Like baby sitting, pet sitting has become an attractive market for many companies that have developed websites that act as intermediaries between the owner of pets and people wishing to offer their services. It is often enough to specify the place, the type of animal and the dates of guard, to quickly find the pet-sitters available nearby.
In general, the profiles of pet sitters are well informed and include photos, years of experience, description of past experiences, motivations for keeping animals and, arguably the most useful, owners reviews having used the service of the pet sitter. If you choose to entrust your pet to the pet sitter who will welcome him at his home, do not hesitate to ask to visit the premises.
These specialized platforms aim to give you all the elements and help you make the best possible choice. Take the time to choose the platform that gives you the most (real) guarantees as to the seriousness of the profiles offered. Some have dedicated ad verification teams. Others also offer additional services such as the possibility for the pet sitter to contact a veterinary assistant during the stay.
How much does pet sitting cost?
The price varies depending on the nature of the service provided: feeding, walking, dressings …
There are inevitably differences in cost between a care carried out at your home, which includes travel, or that of the pet sitter, which implies a longer daily care.
The average the daily salary of a pet sitter working at your home is 9 euros, to which must be added the travel costs: hence the interest in choosing a nearby pet sitter.
Obviously, the species and the breed of the animal vary the prices because we do not take care of a dwarf rabbit in the same way as a large dog. The price of keeping large dogs, calling for regular outings so that the dog is spent enough, can exceed 20 euros per day. For a horse, this price can reach 200 euros.
For a dog, the comparison of pet sitting with a specialized boarding house is very advantageous. Pet sitting platforms estimate the average price of the first type of care at just over 11 euros per day, against 15 to 30 euros for the second. However, the calculation can be a little biased insofar as the prices of a board often include food, while it is more rarely in the case of pet sitting.
Prices also vary between regions, or depending on whether you live in the city or in the countryside. Costs are generally higher in Paris and around the capital than in the rest of France. Finally, very low prices should always alert you because a price remains closely linked to the quality of the service.