We've both always been captivated by cats, which is only one of the reasons we like cat-sitting. What's not to adore about their beautiful gait, intriguing aura, independent personality, and mischievous and playful nature? Some cats, like humans, are extroverts who like meeting new people. They charge at you, demanding your attention, and can't get enough neck scratches. Others are introverts who prefer time alone, or they are bashful and require more time to get to know you. Perhaps they have been harmed in the past, and their confidence in people has been severely shattered.
We want to share the key strategies professional cat sitters employ with you. Read on if you've never taken care of cats before, if you are anxious around them, or if you want to learn how to quickly win over a fearful cat.
This guide will arm you with the knowledge you need to take the best possible care of your friends' cats and ensure their safety while you are in charge of cat-sitting! A competent cat sitter will make an effort to provide the greatest cat care possible, whether they are cat-sitting for a friend or are a professional cat sitter.
First, there are a few basic guidelines for taking care of any cat. When your cat sits, it may seem apparent, but many people are unaware that you must respect the animal's boundaries!
Cats need a lot of alone time each day since they like to unwind and sleep peacefully, so it's best to leave them alone while they're not eating or using the litter box.
Cats also enjoy scratching and climbing, therefore their owners give them many toys that enable these activities. Last but not least, always make sure your pet has access to a litter box!
Contrary to common opinion, you cannot just feed food to a cat and leave it alone for a lengthy amount of time. Cat sitters or a cat motel are your best bets if your pal has to travel out of town.
Let's get to more specific cat-sitting advice now that the fundamentals are out of the way.
Pet caregivers and cat owners should always have these items on hand. You might wish to buy some for yourself if your cat client doesn't have any when you arrive:
- Food and water bowls
- A full set of food and water
- Emergency contact info
- Detailed instructions and pet care information
- Litter boxes and litter
- Bed or Scratcher
- Paper towels
- Cleaning products
While feeding, drinking, and maintaining the litter box may be the top tasks on your cat-sitting to-do list, don't forget that cats also require exercise. During your cat-sitting visits, you may help your cat clients reach this activity-level target by using your expertise as a professional pet sitter. Exercise not only keeps cats' bodies healthy and their muscles strong, but it also stimulates their minds, keeps them alert, and strengthens your link with the cats you look after.
Cat-specific toys like feather dancers or homemade toys like knotted socks are frequently quite popular. for more suggestions on simple DIY cat toys. Just keep in mind to get the consumers' permission before using any toys. In order to adapt the degree of play to the cat's age, health, and physical capacity, make sure you have a solid grasp of the cat's medical history. Always stay away from physical play.
You can't just show up and go when you work in the pet-sitting profession. You must remain until all of the animals are cared for!
How long should a cat sitter stay?
Cat-sitters can stay in the client's home depending on how long the clients want their pets to be taken care of, especially when they are out of town or on a vacation, or just simply at work.
Brush up on your basic feline-grooming skills.
Offering basic brushing or combing as an add-on service will improve your cat-sitting visits even if more involved grooming requirements should be left to professionals. Cats should be groomed frequently to maintain their appearance and well-being as well as to make them more comfortable with people. Cats' skin is stimulated and conditioned by regular brushing or combing. Additionally, it can help manage hairballs and avoid matting. Additionally, it's a wonderful opportunity for you and your feline customers to bond, and cat owners will value your added cat-sitting service!
When a cat is being watched after by a pet sitter, never brush or comb it without first considering how comfortable it is. Introduce grooming gradually and with caution to prevent stress for the cat (and a possible scratch or bite for you). beginning with brief brushing sessions (only a few minutes). During or after the brushing or combing session, give the cat a reward. Always stop quickly if the cat becomes upset. Do not intervene on your own if you discover a mat in the cat's fur. Tell the customer to contact a local, reputable groomer to schedule an appointment.
Other extra services that are guaranteed to be appreciated by the cat owner include brushing the cat's teeth and occasionally cleaning its eyes and ears. As always, make sure the customer has given you the go-ahead before providing these cat-sitting services.
Being upfront about your time commitment when taking a job is crucial when you're just starting out in the pet-sitting industry. Cat owners need to be confident that their cats are in good hands, and pet sitters need to be careful not to take on too much.
Always keep the litter box clean and well-maintained
Cat owners care deeply about litter box upkeep; happy cat owners are customers who have clean litter boxes. Along with cleaning the litter box, they constantly sweep up any litter from the area around the box to prevent it from being tracked throughout the home. Additionally, make sure the litter is taken out from below the litter box and shaken out of any rugs that might be there. Although it is customary to leave the house as you left it, doing so with the litter box regions will delight your customers and encourage word-of-mouth recommendations!
Make sure your customers have one litter box per cat, plus one extra box, and educate them on the fundamentals of litter boxes to make your visits easier and guarantee their cats can keep happy, healthy "bathroom habits" (at minimum). Make sure your customers have positioned their litter boxes in locations that feel "comfortable" to their cats, such as far from noisy appliances like washers and dryers that can discourage cats from using the box. Additionally, emphasize to your clients the value of routine (daily) litter box cleaning. This helps their cat maintain good litter box habits as well as prevents you from having a mess to clean up on the first day of a pet-sitting gig.
As a professional pet sitter, you should also keep an eye out for any adjustments in a cat's bathroom routine that can indicate a medical condition. Litter box usage is impacted by common medical conditions such as urinary tract infections (UTIs) and bladder stones/blockages. Notify your client right once if a cat in your care begins to use the litter box differently or displays any indications of pain or discomfort when peeing. Make arrangements to take the cat to the vet for your customer if they are out of town.
What makes a good cat sitter?
A competent cat sitter is dependable and adaptable; they are aware that schedules might vary and are eager to make every effort to cooperate with their pet-sitting customers.
It's also critical for a cat sitter to be responsive; you should send messages on a frequent basis to keep owners updated on how their feline companions are doing. If you are unable to accomplish this work, you should decline the position. Contrary to common opinion, you cannot just leave a cat alone for a lengthy amount of time and only offer food. Cats want lots of alone time every day; they want to rest and sleep in peace, so it's best to leave them alone when they're not eating or using the litter box. To begin, there are some broad guidelines for caring for any cat. It may appear simple that you must respect the animal's limits when sitting, yet many individuals are unaware of this requirement!
If you’re new to pet sitting, just remember these few rules:
- Don’t bring other pets into your client’s house
- Follow their home rules, which include feeding schedules and litter box use.
- Make sure the cat has food and water bowls at all pet-sitting visits
- Make sure there’s a litter box available at all times.
- Clean up after yourself and use cleaning products to keep things fresh!
- Get cats active
You should be able to give decent care for your pet-sitting clients' cats if you follow these cat-sitting instructions - and be paid for it!
Cats typically require 30 minutes of activity every day to remain healthy. Knitted toys and animal toys are popular among almost everyone. Please obtain permission before bringing a new toy into their house. Cat exercise helps to sharpen their intellect while also relieving the tension of being alone.
Using Pet-sitting software
Professional cat-sitters are always in demand and it somewhat makes keeping track of their clients' appointments hard to manage. Most cat-sitters with a lot of customers can take advantage of Scout's software to help manage clients and even collect payments through our program for hassle-free payment collection.