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  • Super Hero Sitters: Jan Brown

    Posted March 9, 2011 By in APSE News and Events, Pet Owners, Pet Sitters With | No Comments
    This episode is part 4 of 6 in the Super Hero Sitters series in celebration of Professional Pet Sitters Week.

    Jan BrownSay hello to Jan Brown.

    Jan Brown is one of those rare individuals who exudes warmth on a consistent basis.

    From the moment you speak with her, you are immediately set at ease and feel you are in good company.

    Respected by her peers, Jan has been pet sitting longer than most teenagers have been alive. She opened shop in 1996 on a part time basis, went full time two years later, and has never looked back.

    Jan’s Pet Sitting was voted 1st Place Readers’ Choice “Pet Care Service” in the San Mateo Daily News (California) in 2005.

    In this episode of Super Hero Sitters, Jan’s worst nightmare comes true when she enters the house of a client’s two dogs and can’t believe her eyes. Luckily, she is a certified PetTech® Pet First Aid/CPR instructor and quickly saved the day.

    Transcript Of Today’s Video

    [spoiler]Joshua: Hello and thanks for joining us for another edition of Superhero Sitters – Real pet sitting stories about life, liberty and the pursuit of happy pets. My name is Joshua Cary. Now, as a pet owner, we understand you have plenty of options when it comes to the care of your pet when life calls you away. Many rely on friends, family and neighbors to watch Fluffy and Fido but please allow me to introduce you to another option – the professional pet sitter. The pet care industry has been active for a couple of decades now and it is considered booming and one of the fastest growing industries by experts. In today’s superhero sitter profile, I’m happy to be talking with Jan Brown of Jan’s Pet Sitting in Foster City, California.

    Thank you, Jan, for joining us today.

    Jan: Thank you for having me, Josh.

    Joshua: How long have you yourself been a professional pet sitter?

    Jan: I quit my day job about 12½ years ago and before that, I was doing it for about a
    year on a part-time basis.

    Joshua: Wow. What were you doing in life right before you started pet sitting

    Jan: I was working for a biotech company. I was doing administrative work.

    Joshua: Now, I know as pet sitters, we’re often faced with challenges that others may
    simply take for granted but more often than not, some of these challenges really require
    us to think quickly and rely on our professional training, skills and knowledge. Tell me
    please about the time you were caring for a client’s two dogs and walked into a floor full
    of snail poison.

    Jan: Yes, I had cared for this client’s two dogs for many, many times. I walked in one
    morning to take care of them and walked into the backroom where they were and there
    was part of a box of snail bait poisoning – or snail bait I should say – laying in the corner
    and there was vomit and diarrhea all over the room.

    Joshua: Oh no! What did you do? What was your first, first reaction?

    Jan: I think my very first reaction was just disbelief looking at the scene and I knew I
    had to get these dogs to the vet immediately.

    Joshua: What happened at the vet’s office?

    Jan: I took them into the vet and the vet finally came out to talk to me. She said that
    there had been many pets sitters in the past who have called her office with emergencies
    of one type or another and they said, “oh, I’m not bringing the dog or cat in.”

    Joshua: They’re not bringing it in?

    Jan: Not bringing the animal in when the vet officer said you need to bring the animal

    Joshua: Right. So there are people who will watch a family or friend’s animal and not
    take that course of action; won’t bring them to the vet.

    Jan: Correct.

    Joshua: Wow. How did your quick response play a pivotal and vital part in all of

    Jan: Ultimately, if we had not gotten the dogs into the vet right away, the dogs would
    not have survived.

    Joshua: Literally.

    Jan: Literally. In fact, the vets, they were shocked that the two dogs did survive and
    they think that they only survived because of the dog size; they were large dogs.

    Joshua: So if there is anything, any lesson to be learned from all of these, what would it

    Jan: Trust someone who has the skills to take care of your animals should any
    emergency arise.

    Joshua: How does someone like you gain the skills?

    Jan: I am a pet first aid and CPR instructor. I know of a plenty of other pet sitters,
    while they may not be instructors, they have taken pet first aid and CPR and I think
    that is the first step in knowing what to do if an emergency arises. It’s also educating
    ourselves about things that can go wrong with the animals so that we are aware of signs
    or symptoms.

    Joshua: Right. Knowing whether a dog is lethargic because she’s tired or there’s a
    more pressing emergency at hand.

    Jan: Exactly or for example noticing that the cat has not used the litter box.

    Joshua: Ah, so you see something like that and someone untrained might not even
    realize that they need to keep an eye on that sort of a thing.

    Jan: Correct.

    Joshua: Wow. How did these two dogs turned out? I hope everything’s A-OK.

    Jan: It had a happy ending. The client had to fly home. She was out of the country but
    they did survive so it had a very happy ending.

    Joshua: How did the client react to your role in all of these?

    Jan: She was very thankful. She sent me note and she said you saved my dogs. Words
    couldn’t express her gratitude.

    Joshua: And I’m sure it’s moments like that that allow you to remember why you went
    into this profession in the first place.

    Jan: Absolutely.

    Joshua: Well, that wraps everything up. Jan, I really appreciate your time. Thank you
    so much for joining us today?

    Jan: And thank you so much, Josh.

    Joshua: I appreciate it. Enjoy the rest of the day.

    Jan: You too.[/spoiler]

    Right click here to download this video to your computer (mp3 format, ipod compatible)

    Visit Jan’s Pet Sitting Website

    Download the Complete Series Written Transcript (PDF)

    download the pdf transcript

    Return to the Super Hero Sitters Episode List.

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