Pet sitters around the globe will celebrate the 27th annual Professional Pet Sitters Week during the first full week of March (7th-13th).

Started in 1995 by Pet Sitters International, Professional Pet Sitters Week celebrates and honours the valuable role of pet sitters. Indeed, not so long ago pet sitting was a career no one had heard of. Yet nowadays, the increase in pet ownership, as well as the need for dual incomes has paved the way for the rise of the pet sitting community.

For pet sitters themselves, the job is a wonderful way to spend a greater amount of time with our furry friends while earning an income. And, while there is no hard and fast definition of a ‘professional pet sitter’, the week promotes the importance of gaining authorisation and training. Having these things under your belt gives you greater experience and confidence in dealing with different animal behaviours, enabling you to offer quality care to clients.

In addition, the week encourages pet owners to only search for and use professional sitters. So, if you haven’t already decided how you will celebrate and support Pet Sitters Week 2021 – it’s time to get planning!

How you can support Pet Sitters Week

Whether you’re a pet sitter, vet, dog walker, or kennel owner – there’s plenty you can do to help support this special week. After all, the ethos behind the annual initiative is to educate the wider community about the pet care industry. It’s about highlighting the valuable role that pet sitters play in helping to care for our four-legged friends. It also promotes the importance of employing a reputable pet sitter.

There are myriad ways you can support and celebrate Pet Sitters Week. Here are a few ideas to get you started.

  • Providing COVID-19 restrictions allow it, arrange a meet up with other local pet sitters for a special lunch, dinner or glass of wine during the week.
  • Offer a special discount in honour of Pet Sitters Week. Even if you’re not a pet sitter, this is a great way to support the initiative and help start a conversation amongst pet parents in your local community.
  • Donate a proportion of your weekly income to a local animal shelter or animal rescue group.
  • Send a newsletter out to your client database to educate them on the important role pet sitters play. You can share some of your all-important knowledge about animal behaviour or training.
  • Continue your professional development by enrolling in a class or course. For example, you might take a pet first aid course. Alternatively, if you don’t currently have a recognised pet sitting qualification, you might look into ways to get certified.

Time to take action

So, even if you haven’t planned or participated in any activities to support Pet Sitters Week in the past, make 2021 the year you help elevate the significant value of those that work in the pet industry.

If joining an industry body is something you’ve been thinking about but never got around to doing, now’s the time! Organisations such as Pets Australia or the Pet Industry Association of Australia will assist you to stay up-to-date with the latest pet news and policies.

Furthermore, perhaps pet-sitting insurance has been on your radar, but you’ve never managed to take out a policy. Use the week as a prompt to do some research and find the best policy for you.

Alternatively, have you been dreaming of a career as a pet sitter but never pursued that dream? If so, set aside time to look into what you need to do to become a professional pet sitter.

How will you be celebrating this industry initiative?

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Leanne Philpott

Leanne is a professional freelance writer at contentchameleon.com.au. She works alongside her fur pal Chewie (a border terrier) to deliver information that is accurate and relevant to our readers.