by Nancy E. Hassel, American Pet Professionals We are in the midst of Professional Pet Sitters Week celebrated March 5 – March 11, created by Pet Sitters International. Pet sitting and dog walking, and the services area of our industry is the fastest growing, and not showing any signs of slowing down. When American Pet Professionals (APP), first started, we always have had pet sitters as members and many of their early day problems were getting customers to sustain their business so they could do it full time. Now in 2017, their problems are finding good staff, having enough staff to meet the needs of all their customers and training the staff to be the best in the industry. Good problems to have. Pet sitters help keep pets out of shelters, help more pets get adopted – how? Because more and more pet parents realize that even if they are working full time that dog or cat is better at your home vs. being in the shelter and can hire a professional pet sitter or dog walker to help you care for your pets. Pet sitters help keep your pets from being bored while you are at work or away on vacation. They are taking care of your family members and love doing it. Pet sitters come from all walks of life, I know some who were full time corporate career people who wanted to start their own business and combine their love and passion for pets. Others who are vet tech’s who saw a need for pet sitters with more of a medical background, i.e. caring for senior pets or pets that need medications administered and so forth. It is an area of our industry that is now being more widely recognized as a professional profession vs. having the kid down your block, or family member take care of your pet. So what better way to celebrate this week, but with a video interview with one of our top pet sitters, Lifetime APP Member, Robyn Elman President and Founder of In Home Pet Services, Inc. Some of the questions I ask Robyn in this interview are:
- What lead you to becoming a pet sitter? (You have to see what Robyn says and her interesting background!)
- In Home Pet Services has grown quite rapidly in the past few years, what did you do to grow your business?
- What tips would you tell a new pet sitter, or pet sitter who is having trouble growing their own business?
- How do you get your business to stand out and what would you say to other businesses to help them?
- Do you refer other petting sitting companies to your customers?
- What is the most challenging part of being a pet sitter?