Recently, I had a new sitter of mine comment that she was visiting a client’s home and she noticed a guy parked in an unmarked car on the street outside the house who lingered and made her uncomfortable.
She said I should tell all my new pet sitters to lock the doors after they arrive for the visit.
Makes complete sense.
I guess locking the doors behind me is so automatic that I don’t think to tell my new sitters.
So I started thinking… How many other safety tips do we ourselves do that other pet sitters need to know.
Some pet sitter safety tips that you routinely do yourself may not be so obvious to others.
Here are two safety tips to get us going…
Tip #1: Lock doors after you enter the house.
Tip #2: Carry keys with you at all times during the visit – especially when taking pets out into the yard. Some clients have doors that automatically lock when closed – you don’t want to be locked outside with the pets.
And here are other pet sitter tips that were contributed by APSE members.
Tip #3: Keep cell phone with you–do not leave it in the car.
Tip #4: If a parked car, or pedestrian, seem out of place, don’t stop the car. Circle the block.
Tip #5: Carry some sort of ID on your person–not just in your wallet (usually left in the car).
Tip #6: Learn to dial 911 on your particular phone without having to look at the keypad.
Tip #7: Locate where the landline phones are in the client’s home (if they have one).
Tip #8: If you will be walking dogs after dark, invest in a leashlight, or some reflective wrist/ankle bands if you don’t wear reflective clothing.
Tip #9: We personally DO NOT walk dogs after dark. In the evening I take another person with me even if they just sit in the car… just in case.
Tip #10: I also do this when I do meet and greets…my sons or husband sits in the car..which also helps me keep the meeting to a minimum. (I know this not an option for every sitter)
Tip #11: I also make sure to leave the address and phone number on my dry erase board if I have to go make a visit alone and the time or times that I will be there and if my family doesn’t hear back from me within a certain amount of time they call or text me to make sure I am ok… if I don’t answer within a certain time they have been instructed to contact the police. I have had my husband text me during a visit because I got to chatting with the client and I forgot to text my husband to let him know I was still at the client’s home..so the text came through and I excused myself and explained to the client that my husband was just checking on me since I wasn’t back home when I told him I would be home…
Tip #12: Make sure alarm companies are notified of any sits.
Tip #13: All keys should remain clipped to the uniform.
Tip #14: Have a business id on hand in the event of any law enforcement interactions.
Tip #16: Remove business signs during sits (we used magnetic on car).
Tip #17: Carry pepper spray or dog deterrent in the event of a dog attack.
Help Your Fellow Pet Sitters By Adding Other Safety Tips
Leave a comment below with a safety tip or two other pet sitters need to know.
BONUS: There will be a download, editable fact sheet / tip sheet available in the APSE Members Area so that you can easily give this to new sitters as you bring them into your business.
Thank you to all the APSE members who shared their valuable tips for this article.