The joy of pet sitting
Pet sitting is an awesome service and lifestyle business because it creates joy and peace of mind for so many people and their pets. It also gives much joy to pet sitters!
One thing I've said frequently regarding pet sitting is that "there is very little actual 'sitting' in pet sitting". This is because a typical pet visit involves many tasks ~ anything from dog walking, feeding, scooping litter boxes, cleaning bird and other small animal cages, administering medications, doing things in the client's home if needed, taking in the mail, filling outside bird feeders, watering plants, and other things. It is a very active business to have. As I mentioned in last week's post, it was also the most joyful "job" that never felt like a job, that I've ever had.
Imagine a workday where you walk into your place of work (a client's home) very early in the morning, and right there before you are five cats with big round eyes staring at the door awaiting your arrival. They gather around you, rubbing on your legs and meowing for breakfast. Or seeing a dog's cute face, ears and eyes alert, in the window as you pull into a client's driveway waiting for your arrival and then disappearing from view because you know he/she is trotting to the front door to greet you!
Imagine having fun conversations with parrots and receiving all the joy and love from oodles of pets each day. Little creatures who want to eat, have some love, take walks, play a little, and receive some cuddles. Their simple needs remind us to uncomplicate our lives and help to make the business aspects of this business all worth it.
Another joy of pet sitting is getting to know the human clients as well as the pet clients. Over time, a special bond develops between the sitter, the pets, and the owners. Many pet sitters find that their clients give them nicknames. Over the years I've been referred to as the following:
* bird whisperer
* cat/dog whisperer
* "our little St. Francis"
* fairy dogmother
* guardian angel
* miracle worker
* part of our family
* a lifesaver
* our pet nanny
I don't say these titles to brag, but to demonstrate how clients become connected to their pet sitters. I've met many pet sitters who've received similar nicknames. It is a special field because it is one of those career paths that are "from the heart" and if a sitter is passionate about what they do, they will experience the joy of pet sitting too.
A pet sitting business is what you make it. It can be primarily a business that focuses on pet care just for the sake of earning money, but if that is the main reason why someone goes into this business, I'm of the opinion that they won't last very long. This is the type of business where passion for what one does is essential. Loving it is what makes it worth getting up early in the morning and staying out late at night.
Pet sitting is a field that requires a well-rounded perspective. One must look at all the aspects of this business and go into it with eyes wide open. Talk to those who are already pet sitters. Do your research. Read. Check resources and professional associations such as NAPPS and PSI (Pet Sitters International). Get as good a handle on a pet sitting business as you can before you start one. If you do, and you feel it is right for you, then jump into it with both feet.
Splash in the joy that pet sitting brings! Wake up every day looking forward to the little faces that will be greeting you each morning. Create a business that will give you joy. Add your own twist to it. See how you can incorporate your personal gifts and talents into your business.
Wishing you joy in the journey of professional pet sitting!