Pet Sitting vs. Pet Boarding

I had an inquiry the other day from someone who wanted to know if Toby’s Pet Care offered pet boarding and also on what the differences were between pet sitting and pet boarding. So let’s start off by defining what these terms are.

Pet Sitting refers to drop in visits we do at your home. You could schedule anywhere between one to three visits depending on your individual pet’s needs. So for example, you could schedule one visit during the morning, a midday visit, and then an evening visit. This type of schedule works great for dogs, whereas cats often do well with just one visit a day.

Pet Boarding on the other hand is when you drop off your pet at a facility such as a kennel. Your pets stay there around the clock until you go to pick them up.

​So now that we know what each of these services entail, which one is better for your pets?

Daily pet sitting visits at your home or dropping off your pet at a kennel?​

In my professional opinion, I often recommend pet sitting for number of reasons. Let’s focus on the three most important ones.

Here are the benefits when you choose to hire a pet sitter:

    Your Pets Get to Stay in a Comfortable & Familiar Place

    This is especially true for dogs who experience anxiety when taken out of their home or are very attached to their owners. If not seeing you for a number of days already isn’t enough, they have to deal with the stress of being cooped up in a totally new surrounding with new people and new dogs when taken to a boarding facility. By hiring a pet sitter, your pets can stay in the comfort of their own home.

    They Get to Keep Their Regular Routine

    A pet sitter will work with you and your pet's individual needs to come up with a customized plan that best mimics their regular routine. Animals are creatures of habit, and so they hate change! Feedings, walks, and potty breaks all occur at the same time and place as they're used to, and so this helps to minimize stress with your pets while you're away. By contrast, kennels have set times when everyone is fed and taken outside.

    They are not Exposed to Potential Illnesses

    Unlike a kennel, when you hire a pet sitter to come to your home, you don't have to worry about your pet accidentally catching kennel cough, fleas, or even parasites by being in the presence of other unknown pets. Even though most boarding facilities are strict when it comes to the health of the pets they take in, it's still important to be aware of this, as it's easy for a dog or cat to get sick especially under stressful environments.

I know boarding is the old school way of taking care of your pets when you are traveling, and while it certainly is beneficial for some pets and situations, I’m quite happy to offer the best alternative.

​Having that said, I can hear you saying, but I’m a private person. How can I make sure my pet sitter will respect my privacy and home? Or how will I know if they even show up?

My answer to this is to get a professional pet sitter. look for one whose company is insured, has great reviews from current clients, has a strong online presence, and will communicate effectively with you. I do believe if you pay a premium fee, you will receive a premium service, and that’s just what I offer here at Toby’s Pet Care.

If you’d like to see how Toby’s Pet Care can provide you with complete peace of mind when you’re traveling, simply request a Meet & Greet or send me an email for a quote.

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  1. Thank you for clearing up that pet boarding is when people drop their pets off at a facility. My wife wants to do this and I wouldn't mind it. As long as I can get to meet everyone at the facility at least once.

  2. It really helped when you talked about pet sitting and boarding and their main differences! Recently, my wife and I decided to visit my parents. We have two dogs, and they can't travel with us, so we'll be sure to read your tips carefully before choosing a caring option! Thanks for the advice on considering our dog's needs when choosing a caring service.

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