Maintaining pet routines: How Homesitters help when owners are away

Posted on 20 May, 2024

Image by Art-x A.I artxai from Pixabay

Heading off on holiday or a business trip can be both exciting and stressful, especially for those that have pets. Many people are reluctant to use kennels or catteries, as most dogs and cats simply don’t enjoy the experience of being away from home.

Both are creatures of habit who enjoy a routine with familiar smells and people around them. This is why many people now turn to homesitters who stay in the home to take care of the home and any pets’ people have. This is the kindest arrangement for both pets and their owners.

Pets then stay in their home environment which is much less stressful than going to stay elsewhere and owners have the reassurance they are being cared for by a professional. It can help prevent separation anxiety too which pets can get if their owners are away or if they get left on their own for too long.

When dogs or cats get stressed or suffer separation anxiety it can manifest itself in many ways. For dogs, it can present in symptoms such as pining, loss of appetite, gnawing, kennel cough, diarrhoea and self-harming. And in cats can result in symptoms such as loss of appetite, spraying, scratching, hiding and excessive meowing.

These symptoms and behaviours can be unhealthy if suffered over several days but can be reduced or avoided altogether by employing a homesitter to look after pets in their own home. Homesitter rules mean that pets are not left for longer than three hours during daylight hours or one hour at night.

Here are some of the other ways that homesitters maintain a healthy routine for pets during their owner's absence.

Firstly, they stick to a pet’s regular routine. This means feeding them at the same times each day, taking them for walks or having playtime, and adhering to any medication or grooming routines. Consistency is key to minimising stress when their owners leave home and ensuring that pets feel secure and comfortable in their familiar surroundings.

All homesitters have a preliminary meeting with clients prior to an assignment where they are briefed on everything to do with the home and the pet’s usual routine. This is also the chance for them to meet and engage with the pet so that they are familiar to them when they turn up for the assignment.

Secondly, for dogs homesitters will have been briefed on the best places to walk them so dogs can enjoy the same daily walks they would do with their owner, often meeting their usual doggy friends when out and about too. This can help reduce separation anxiety in dogs that tend to get this when their usual pack members aren’t there.

Thirdly, homesitters can look after several pets at a time, so for those that have more than one pet this can be a cost-effective solution for getting them all looked after at the same time. For pets that are used to having other animals in their pack then this ensures life carries on as usual. The alternative would be separating them and taking them to different places, which has the potential to cause them stress.

Fourthly, homesitters understand the importance of companionship for pets, particularly for those who are used to constant human interaction. Whether it's cuddle time on the sofa, gentle grooming sessions, walks in the local park or simply sitting with them for company, homesitters provide the love and attention that pets crave in their owner's absence.

Finally, in addition to caring for pets' physical and emotional needs, homesitters are vigilant about their safety and security. Our homesitters are responsible and experienced in caring for all sorts of pets and can identify potential hazards and take necessary precautions to prevent accidents or injuries.

Homesitters also ensure that dogs are always supervised when out walking (keeping them on their lead if this is what is required) to minimise the risk of accidents, encounters with unfamiliar dogs, or even being stolen. This is something that can’t be relied on if left in kennels where they may be walked as a group or in unfamiliar places.

Homesitters play a vital role in maintaining a healthy routine for pets when their owners are away. By prioritising the needs of the pet and enabling them to stay in their comfortable home environment, pet owners can enjoy their holiday knowing that their beloved companions are safe in capable and caring hands.

To find out more about our pet sitting service, please click here


Share this: