Say hello to Tori Lattig.
Tori and Megan Ventura, her friend since childhood, found themselves working together at a local animal hospital.
As luck would have it, an opportunity presented itself for the two to transition perfectly to become pet sitters.
In March of 2007, Tori and Megan officially opened for business by creating Endless Pawsibilities – a full service pet sitting business in New Jersey.
With a vast combined background in dog obedience, training and animal rescue, these two ladies truly encompass the pet sitting professional.
In this episode of Super Hero Sitters, Tori tells of a story where “going above and beyond” is an understatement.
Transcript Of Today’s Video
up about life, liberty, and the pursuit of happy pets. My name is Joshua Cary, co-founder
of the Association of Pet Sitting Excellence (the APSE), and in this series we follow
professional pet sitters who have stories to share that may sound heroic, but were really
all carried out without a second thought and as we hear all part of a day’s work.
In today’s program, we’re happy to be joined by Tori Lattig, who is the co-owner of
Endless Pawsibilities in Toms River, New Jersey – my home state.
Thank you, Tori for joining us today.
Tori: Thank you for having me.
Joshua: Let us begin with an overview, what were you doing right before you became a
pet sitter professionally?
Tori: Megan and I; Megan my co-owner with me in Endless Pawsibilities, and the
two of us were actually working at a local animal hospital. A couple of the doctors had
aggressive or diabetic clients who really wouldn’t do well in the boarding scene. The
vet offered boarding, but they knew that these specific animals weren’t going to do well
there, either it would really stress them out and just exacerbate their medical conditions,
or they were really aggressive and the owners weren’t comfortable bringing them to the
vet for those reasons. And so the doctors would ask if any one wanted to go and take
care of the pets in their home; and Megan and I found ourselves saying yes and taking on
these pets and helping their owners and getting them through whatever it was that they
have issue with and we kind of started growing a client base. So, it was just kind of a
natural thing that just kind of fell into our laps and we loved it.
Joshua: How long has Endless Pawsibilities been in business?
Tori: We were created in March of 2007.
Joshua: What happened when you received a last minute call from a would-be potential
Tori: We received an email from a woman who was in Florida and she had expressed
that her brother-in-law lived up here in Toms River, and that he had no family and no
friends that lived here. He had a heart problem and he had driven himself to the local
emergency room a few days beforehand. He had a cat who was overweight and so he
left some food down for her and figured that he’d be back and everything would be fine;
however, they weren’t sure how long he was going to have to be there. She contacted
us on his behalf just to inquire about how our services would work, how would she
be able to contract us, how would we be able to get into the house, and just kind of do
preliminary research in case she needed to contract us.
Joshua: So you have the conversation with her and then what happens next?
Tori: We told her that if she needed to contract us for services that we would email her
all of our paperwork and then we would have to go meet dad in the hospital, get his key;
because no one else had a key. His neighbors didn’t have keys. He really didn’t trust
anybody, he didn’t really know anyone that he wanted to give the key to, so we were
going to have to go to the local emergency room to meet him and to get the key once
everything was signed and she wanted to bring us on board.
Joshua: When do you hear from here again?
Tori: We heard from her the next day and called us and said that he was medevaced
from our local hospital to an emergency facility 30 miles away. He was definitely going
to need us to take care of his cat, because we had explained to her since she was a heavier
cat and overweight, if she ate all that food already and then didn’t have food and was
left without food for a few days, she could develop something called fatty liver disease;
which what happens in overweight cats; if they’re not eating for whatever reason, their
body sends fat cells to the liver for it to turn into fuel. However, the cat’s liver isn’t
really so great at turning those fat cells into fuel, and the fat cells end up just sitting in the
liver and kind of turn the liver into fat; so they can go into liver failure and have lots of
complications. Once we explained that to her, and once she learn that he was moving to
the emergency facility, she contracted us and wanted us to go up there. I drove 30 miles
to the new hospital to meet him and pick up his key, and then came back and was able to
go in and take care of her; and he had warned me that she wasn’t really a nice cat and that
she would probably just hide and not be friendly; so I was able to go in and take care of
her. After I think a day or two, she did come over and say hi and we became friends, and
I was able to pet her and love her, and it ended up being a good situation.
Joshua: If I have all the details right, this woman in Florida is calling on behalf of her
brother who had driven himself a day earlier to the hospital for a heart condition; and a
day later she finds out that her brother is now not in your area, but now medevaced 30
miles away, and then she calls you and says, “Great, I need you; however, he is now 30
miles away.” Is that out of your service area? Was that even a consideration?
Tori: It is definitely out of our service area; however, this cat needed us and it really
wasn’t anything that we were going to tell her, we can’t do this, because the cat needed
to be taken care of, we needed to get in there and make sure we were able feed her, and
that there was nothing medically going on on with her. So going up there and getting the
keys, and spending that extra time really wasn’t an issue because that was what was in
the best interest of the cat at that moment.
Joshua: Did you wind up charging her extra for this travel?
Tori: We did not charge her extra. We needed to get up there and to get the key and it
was all part of what we do and we needed to get up there to get it so we could go in and take care of her.
Joshua: And then the owner is released from the hospital and the job at that point is
Tori: Almost. She emailed us. The woman in Florida emailed us to let us know that
her brother-in-law would be released but his car was still at the local emergency room.
So what we did was drove to the emergency room, picked up his car and brought it back
to his house; because he was going to need to take a cab from the emergency facility
home, and I don’t know about you, but I really wouldn’t want to drive home after being
in the hospital for a couple of days. So we went and got his car so that he could come
straight home and relax and be with his cat and not have to worry about going back out
and getting his car later.
Joshua: That is just amazing. So you not only at the drop of a hat drove an additional
30 miles to grab the keys so you could properly care for this cat, but then before he was
released drove to the local hospital and took his car from the hospital back to his house,
so it would be safe and secure when he is released and back home.
Joshua: That certainly sounds like a job well done. Did everything go successfully?
Everybody was happy? The woman must have been thrilled.
Tori: Yes, she was very happy. He was actually impressed and taken back that the cat
became friends with us and I took a couple of pictures and emailed them to Florida so she
could see that she was doing well. She wrote us a letter of recommendation explaining
what we did for her and how happy she was.
Joshua: Why do you think she didn’t just call some neighbors or he didn’t get in touch
with some neighbors to handle this?
Tori: I think for him it was a trust issue. He didn’t just want anyone to have the keys to
his house, contracting a professional who knows what their doing and has insurance, and
that made him feel a little bit better and then also with the medical background, if we had
walked in and there was something wrong with her, we would have been able to assess it
and to bring her to the vet and help to take care of it; whereas a neighbor may not know
that whatever symptoms the cat is displaying is an issue and that may be the cat and they
may ignore it and just go about their business.
Joshua: I’m always impressed with how pet sitters go above and beyond without even a
second thought, without even thinking about it, and this is surely another example. And
with that, Tori, I want to thank you tremendously for being the professional pet sitter,
both you and Megan are; and for taking the time to share this wonderful story with us.
Tori: Thank you Josh, I appreciate it. It was great speaking with you.
Right click here to download this video to your computer (mp3 format, ipod compatible)
Download the Complete Series Written Transcript (PDF)
Return to the Super Hero Sitters Episode List.