As pet owners, the one thing that weighs heavily on our minds when we travel is leaving the furkids in someone else's care. Although pet hotels have long been the "nannies" of choice for Fido or Puss, pet sitting is fast gaining popularity. The concept of pet sitting isn't new, but there are an increasing number of professional services that go beyond merely feeding and walking your furkid.
Homegrown pet sitting service Comforts from Home goes the extra mile by aiming to replicate what owners do on a daily basis, so they can adapt seamlessly to the routines and habits of the furry ones under their care. "We also help with light household chores like taking out the trash, watering the plants, and collecting the mail—completely free of charge," says Siang Li Ting, founder of Comforts from Home. The rates for such services are upwards of $40 for an hour or two, but overnight care can be arranged at additional cost. A key benefit of pet sitting is that it's usually less stressful for the animal. “Some pets do not do well in boarding, especially if they aren't well-socialised,” says Li Ting. As dogs and cats are creatures of habit, you can eliminate unnecessary distress caused by foreign surroundings, and the risk of disease and tick transmission is also dramatically lowered.
Just as leaving a child in the care of a domestic helper has its pros and cons, there are considerations when hiring a pet sitter. As there aren't any regulatory bodies for pet sitting businesses in Singapore, you may wish to check if the assigned sitter has any relevant experience. Also, safekeep your valuables as you'll be entrusting your house keys to a stranger. So, are you ready to take the leap on your next trip out of town?