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Would You Hire a Stranger?

It can take a village to care for a pet so I'm curious to learn how many of you have hired strangers to sit or walk your pets. These people gain access to your home (and your precious cargo) and building that trust can take time. I'd love to hear from you about your experiences when enlisting outside help for animal care.

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icing icing 8 years
I let a "stranger" to me thatis a friend of a friend do pet sitting for my dog over the vaacation.. it was hard for me to settle and not think about it a lot but it worked out great and nw I have someone new I trust for future vacations!
n_i_k n_i_k 8 years
No way!
Shibi Shibi 8 years
We found a super pet sitter in November. She was a stranger to us, but we liked her website and qualifications. Nicole has a great business for dog walking and cat visiting -- she has all 5 Star ratings on Yelp and she is a nice person, too! So, while she was not someone that we knew, we got to know her and we trust her and her employees with our home and our cat.
Lovely_1 Lovely_1 8 years
No.
snowbunny11 snowbunny11 8 years
I said "yes" I would trust a stranger, but I definitely met our pet-sitter and loved her before we hired her, so I guess she wasn't a complete stranger. She came highly recommended from the shelter I volunteer at, and I almost felt like I was the one that had to have references before she would take the job, because she is very high in demand and very picky about who she will sit for! She is watching my bunnies for two weeks, and I am going back home on Sunday! She has called with updates, and I really am glad we trusted her...but we'll see when we get back!
marnapalmer marnapalmer 8 years
I have worked as a dog walker and hired my dog walker without really knowing her. I looked at her website, met her in person, and my pups have been happy with her since. I've actually seen her out walking them (sheer coincidence because I work near where I live) and she's great with them. I know it's not true of ALL dogwalkers, but I've found that the smaller, individually owned companies are usually run by people who love dogs. The company I worked for screened me extensively before offering me a job, and attended the first few jobs I did. My pups reacted well to my dogwalker when they met her and are always happier on the days she comes, so I trust their judgement!
mlmoreno47 mlmoreno47 8 years
We try to go places where we can bring our puppies. Our cats are pretty self sufficient and we are never gone for more than a few days.
sfbutterfly24 sfbutterfly24 8 years
I am the designated cat sitter for all my friends.Let me tell you none of them would hire from a service especially since they always have be sleepover!!
macgirl macgirl 8 years
We have a woman that runs a small company out of her home. She was a neighbor of good friends so we felt a bit more comfortable. They come in a few times a day and leave us detailed notes of all of the dogs activities for each visit. They also will come at 6am to let the dogs out! I love reading all the notes when we get home and seeing how well loved they were. They genuinely love my pups, it really shows since they each gain a few pounds each time we are out of town. ;-)
TASTEthiss TASTEthiss 8 years
no. no. no. never.
popgoestheworld popgoestheworld 8 years
We hired a bonded/licensed service. We met with the pet sitter beforehand and haven't had any issues. I wish we had family or friends who never left for the holidays, but that's just not ever going to happen for us :(
ALSW ALSW 8 years
I have so many family members in the area that someone is always available to look in on my kitties and change the litter. And thank goodness for it!
cambridge cambridge 8 years
We have our older, retired neighbors come over to let the dogs out, walk them when the weather is nice, and visit with them inside when the weather is poor. They enjoy it quite a bit, we feel we know them as well as any neighbor, and they earn some money that let's us work full days without worrying that our pets aren't receiving the attention they need. A win-win, and I'd recommend it if you trust your neighbors.
Thiv04 Thiv04 8 years
I have a friend come over and check on my kitties when I am gone. They go crazy without human interaction. lol.
ufshutterbabe ufshutterbabe 8 years
Martha, you should definitely let that company know why you're unhappy and leaving their services. They might not realize how they've upset you. When the company I work for introduces a new walker to a dog, we always let the owner know, have the new walker and the old walker go together so the dog knows this is a good new person, and give the owner the option to meet the new walker as well.
wakeupandora wakeupandora 8 years
i am not a certified 'pet sitter' but i do put an ad in a local paper for pet sitting. people meet with me and bring their dogs to my house/yard while they are at work. pet sitting doesn't always have to include access to your own home. I'm not sure if i would leave my own 2 dogs with anyone just because there is so much animal mistreatment and harm out there. But I help people ease their minds while at work for $8 an hour! Its not all that bad.
ufshutterbabe ufshutterbabe 8 years
It is funny for me to hear this from the other side - I am a dog walker :-) We meet all clients and their pets beforehand, so I don't really consider myself to be a 'stranger' to any of them afterwards. Most of our clients get to know us pretty well over time (through the notes we leave them, and the occasional interactions when owners are home or whatever.) I feel like I'm pretty good at judging personality of a new person that I've met - if I were to interview a petsitter and didn't get a good vibe, I just wouldn't hire them. And I'd definitely never hire someone (for any job) without meeting them first, so I guess the answer is "No, I wouldn't hire a stranger" but I feel like thats not what the poll is explicitly asking.
MandyJoBo MandyJoBo 8 years
I also have security cameras linked to the internet so I can see what is going on in my homes at all times (if I have my laptop and a wifi connection).
MandyJoBo MandyJoBo 8 years
It baffles me how someone could trust their pets with someone they wouldn't trust their home with. I would certainly interview my tail off finding the right person. A stranger is just a pre-friend! :) Who cares if it adds $300 to the expense of the trip or whatever I need a petsitter for.
marthalilian126 marthalilian126 8 years
I had a dog walker and before I let him start walking Maximus, I asked him about a billion questions. He came from a dog walking company and seemed to truly get along well with my little guy. Unfortunately, just a couple of days ago, the company told me that Maximus has a new walker. I've never met this woman and she not only goes into my home but also is responsible for the well-being of my baby! Needless to say, I'm livid and will be trying to find a new company ASAP.
rickimc rickimc 8 years
We use a petsitter, but we always get someone we know personally.
wackdoodle wackdoodle 8 years
Nope, not in my home. If they couldn't stay with friends as they usually do then I would send them to Wags Hotel like North. Or board them at their vets (Pets Unltd).
foxie foxie 8 years
I had to hire a petsitter for my 2 kittens when I went TDY for a week. I just looked online for someone with credentials and met with them before leaving to make sure they knew where everything was, where the kittens were allowed to be, etc. They gladly gave me status reports over the phone the whole week; they did a great job.
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