While I was excited about planning our first family trip to Disney World last year, I had no idea who would take care of my three dogs. All of my dogs are rescues that came from a shelter kennel environment and still have issues being confined. I was fearful of taking them back to a kennel environment as this might cause my dogs excessive stress and trauma.
Then I saw an ad in the Kearsarge Shopper for the Happy Pet Caregivers. When I saw that they will spend the night at your house, I called right away. The price was reasonable, and Ingrid Braulini, the manager, was very nice. She told me that Susie would be watching our dogs, and she lived at that time in Andover. Susie came to visit us about three different times before we left on our trip. By the time we left for our vacation, the dogs and I felt very comfortable with her. It was a good feeling knowing that while we were away, not only were my dogs being cared for, but my house was as well. I called Susie each day to check on the dogs and was pleased to hear that our dogs were sleeping in bed with her. After Susie moved, Amanda became our new pet sitter. She has a degree in zoology and has done really well with my dogs. It makes me feel wonderful that when my dogs see Amanda, they get really excited.
Ingrid told me that she first got into the pet sitting business by helping out a friend and saw the “need for professional standards, written policies and procedures, as well as insurance, bonding, and background checks.” Ingrid said, “I wanted our clients to feel that we were professional experts who could be depended on…always right there to take care of their animals to the best of our ability.” The Happy Pet Caregivers are members of the National Association of Professional Pet Sitters (NAPPS). Ingrid said, “To be certified (by the NAPPS) is to take a battery of exams covering everything we need to know about pet care and nutrition for a variety of animals. We learn about the best business models and ethics as well as emergency techniques for protecting and saving animals from tornadoes and hurricanes to earthquakes, floods, and fires, and on the other hand, protecting humans from dog aggression. We also learn the basics about dog training, pet first aid, and CPR. Certification, insurance, and bonding are signals to the community of The Happy Pet Caregiver’s commitment to professional responsibility. If something should happen to the pets in our care, the client’s property, or to us, we are protected.”
All of the pet sitters for the Happy Pet Caregivers need to pass a criminal background check, be over 21 years old, and have 15 years experience with animals. Everyone must know about dogs and cats; but pet sitters like Amanda know how to take care of other types of animals as well. According to Ingrid, “We can do any household pet including mammals, reptiles, birds, amphibians, and others. We also do llamas, alpacas, horses, sheep, goats, and chickens, ducks, and geese. We do not do livestock or multiple (more than three) farm animals except for poultry.” Ingrid also stated, “We offer dog walking, pet sitting, overnights where we stay at the client’s home; sleep-overs where we have a pet stay at our home (this is restricted to dogs and cannot be more than two guest dogs in each home); medication visits where we come by to medicate an animal, as well as take animals to either the groomer or the vet.” Each client is assigned a primary caregiver and a backup caregiver in case the primary one has a conflict to ensure the animals will always be cared for.
I highly recommend the Happy Pet Caregivers. You can contact them by phone, 369-3422 or 738-6415, or email email@example.com. Their Web site is thehappypetcaregivers.com. They serve the Lake Sunapee region and the Upper Valley.