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Are you anxious about leaving your pups overnight with a pet sitter?

Have you left your pups overnight before? Either in their own home or at someone else’s home such as a friend, relative, pet sitter or in a kennel?

This is an important conversation to have with a prospective pet sitter.

The pet sitter needs to know as much as possible about your pup with respect to their needs and their previous experiences.

Some pets are anxious by nature. Some owners are equally anxious when it comes to the care of their pets.

Pups are highly intelligent and quite often so tuned into their humans that the moment you start contemplating a trip they almost instantly know that something is up.

They may not understand exactly what’s happening, however they do get a sense that something is going to be different.

If you’re feeling anxious, nervous, or guilty that they’re going to be left behind while you’re away they will sense those feelings and it can potentially either cause their upset or intensify it.

It’s been said that we have between sixty to ninety thousand thoughts a day.

Per DAY! And most of those thoughts are repetitive. Repetitive and negative.

Those thoughts are often worry or concern about what we haven’t done, should have done, or forecasting into the future about things that we must attend to and how we are going to manage it all.

When planning your trip, you might be focused on the logistics of the trip such as departure times. The time and date you’re returning and all the details that must be taken care of in your absence.

While your mind is preoccupied with packing, organizing, household chores, errands that must be attended to you could unknowingly be building up a level of stressed energy as you start feeling the tension of your thoughts about what’s going to happen to your pup in your absence. You might start thinking about what their day typically looks like. The time they get up, the time they eat, when they go for a walk and what they do for the course of the day while you’re at work or at home hanging out with them.

You might start feeling guilty as you picture how they’re going to feel when they’re left on their own.

Perhaps the best thing you can do is to relax your mind and visualize the ideal situation for them to be in while you’re away from home.

Envision the perfect environment for them and imagine them being happy and content. Imagine them feeling safe and confident with the person you’ve chosen to provide their care.

The more relaxed you are the more relaxed they’ll be while you’re packing, getting organized and planning your trip.

Give yourself lots of time to find the ‘perfect’ or ‘ideal’ situation for them to be in while you’re away so that you don’t add more stress to your already busy agenda by searching for a pet sitter at the last minute.

This will allow you to search for multiple options, have time to have an initial phone or email consultation to inquire about the services pet sitters provide and then have enough time to set up an in person meet and greet for you, your pup(s) and the pet sitter.

The initial meet and greet in the pet’s home is ideal when possible. Pups are more relaxed in their own environment, especially when meeting someone for the first time.

An alternative is to set up a meet and greet at the park, trail, or the beach. An outdoor area that allows for lots of space for the dog to feel comfortable as they explore their surroundings and the pet sitter.

It gives the pet sitter a good opportunity to watch your pup(s) as they curiously run around. The pet sitter can observe your pup(s) behavior, get a sense of their personality, how the two of you interact with one another. You can see how your pet takes to the sitter. It also gives you an opportunity to observe the pet sitter to see if he/she meets your comfort level and gives you a sense of whether it may or may not be a good fit for everyone involved.

If your pup(s) have a favorite blanket, bed or toy arrange for those items to go with them during the length of their stay. Some owners like to send blankets along with their pups that have their scent on them to help the pup feel like they’re still connected to ‘mom or dad’. If you do choose to send a toy, make sure the toy’s intact and not partly ripped or destroyed as it could become a choking hazard for the dog.

Should you decide to have your pup stay with a pet sitter in their home on the day you arrive with your pup(s) it’s important to be as relaxed as possible even when you’re handling your dog on their leash, getting in and out of the vehicle and speaking to the pet sitter while dropping the pup(s) off.

Dogs can feel any tension you may have in your body when you’re holding them on leash. Everything is energy. Any nervous, apprehensive, or worried stress or tension that you feel inside of your body will transfer down from your hands into the leash and directly to them.

You both deserve peace of mind while you’re away from home. It’s important for your pup(s) to be happy. It’s important for you to be happy and it’s equally as important for the pet sitter to be happy so that it’s a win-win-win situation for all involved.

It’s kind of like when you take your children to kindergarten or daycare for the first time. The parent is usually more anxious and upset than the child even if the child is unsure or upset initially. As soon as Mom drives away the child is fine! It’s the same with the pups.

The more relaxed you are the more relaxed your pup(s) will be.

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