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Supporting the Emotional Needs of Cats

There have been many changes to our services over the past three years. Previously, our most popular service for cat owners was our fifteen minute housekeeping checkup, which provided basic necessities for our low maintenance fuzzy friends but little morale support. Cats frequently get a bad rap as being antisocial and grumpy, but our feline friendly clients know they are hosts to surprisingly small packages of loving personality.  However, we have discovered that these types of pets are also very curious about the new person coming into their environment.  They need time to decide if we are friend or foe.  New cat owners know that the best way to  integrate their new furry friend into the family is to let them do it on their own time. 

When our company realized that we were doing a disservice to our bashful kitty clients, we knew change was in order.  Imagine, if you will, a pet sitter entering the home of a client.  The pet sitter knows they only have fifteen minutes to get things done; they will hustle in there and scoop, dump, refill, take items out to the trash, make sure fluffy is still breathing and hustle back on out the door.  This leaves the pets terrified of the whirlwind that just flew through their happy and safe environment.  And then we repeat that once or twice a day for the duration of the client’s vacation.  The pets never realize that we are friendly.  They are always afraid and they never benefited from contact with a new person.  Our pet sitters do not necessarily enjoy this type of visit – they got into this profession because they love hanging out with pets, after all, and they love cats for their individual pouncing and purring ways.  

Knowing that our business is just as much about mental welfare as physical welfare of our client’s pets, we now  tailor our services to ensure their mental needs are taken care of as well as environmental concerns.  We offer to do other things like bring in the mail or newspaper, water plants, open or close blinds, which adds to home security if you have long term trips planned.  As always, though, the most important aspect of our work are for your animals.  Time and time again we have seen cats that formerly never come out from under the sofa, slowly creep out a bit more with each visit.  Nearly always, if given enough time, the cat will make friends with the pet sitter and often even get to the point that they are sitting on a lap, allowing us to love them instead of woo them.  This may be in part due to the fact that the pet is lonely with their owner gone, and is craving affection.

Pets such as rabbits, guinea pigs, hedgehogs, birds and even many farm animals have benefitted from just having the sitter provide a gentle and calming presence, creating a feeling of safety.  This is also our opportunity to visually assess the pet to determine that they are healthy.  We have found that when we take the time to make friends with your small pets or farm animals they actually remember us even when it has been a month or two since the last visit.  Instead of a scary stranger bursting into their peaceful life a few times of day, our visit is simply time spent with a friend.

 

 

 

 

Nothing brings a Pet Care Provider more satisfaction than to receive happy feedback when a client returns from vacation: “Our cat Victor acts more relaxed when we come home after a couple of days away because he has had some visitors. We really see a big difference! He doesn’t cling to us anxiously for hours after we get home like he used to.”

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