All Pet Sitting Advice Is Not Created Equally
Editor’s Note: This is the first article by our newest PetSittingOlogy writer, pet sitter Sarah Johnson, of Menly’s Pet Care in Michigan.
When you’re just starting your pet sitting business, there’s no doubt that you have a thousand questions ranging from “What should my business name be?” to “What should I charge for my services?”
Getting involved in pet sitting organizations and forums such as Professional Untied Pet Sitters, the Association of Pet Sitting Excellence and Pet Sitters International are great ways to get in touch with other pet sitters and ask their questions and advice.
However, let me give you one piece of advice.
No matter what advice you get, always do what you feel comfortable with and what YOU feel will make your company a success.
When you first “open your doors” so to speak it’s easy to get overwhelmed with the things you don’t know yet and take the first advice that is offered from someone who has been doing this longer than you.
I will be the first to admit that you can learn an invaluable amount of information from others, but don’t get wrapped up in how everyone else feels you should run your business.
The reality is there is no one way to run your company.
You can ask ten pet sitters the same question and may get ten different answers on the way they operate. The most important key to success is doing what works for YOU!
Charge what you feel comfortable with. Make it an amount that will allow you to stay in business but also is a number that you feel confident telling potential clients.
Don’t like network marketing or putting up flyers? Then don’t! Maybe you would rather delegate your time by working on your website, social media and craigslist ads all day.
Do you prefer a more hands on approach to scheduling rather than having a pet sitting system where clients can do it themselves? There’s nothing wrong with that.
Maybe someone shares with you their pet sitting contract and you don’t feel comfortable with some of the policies they have listed. Then don’t use them!
My point here is that eventually, if you’re not doing what you feel works for you, you will get burned out and lose passion for your business or worse.
Your business could fail because you couldn’t stick to all of the procedures and policies that someone else told you “you should be doing.”
When you listen to your heart and have fun with what you’re doing and success WILL follow.
Let us know in the comments below the best (or worst!) piece of advice you’ve ever received, and how it’s worked out for your business.
Sarah is amazing! She is wise beyond her years. Anyone using Sarah as a pet sitter is truly blessed! Good job Sarah!
Great blog! Favorite line:
“No matter what advice you get, always do what you feel comfortable with and what YOU feel will make your company a success.”
It is so TRUE and the reason why all business owners should know their own goals and what they want! 🙂 Then, determining which way to go will be easy. It is like this:
One day Alice came to a fork in the road and saw a Cheshire cat sitting
upon a branch of a tree. Alice asked the Cat—”Which road do I take?’
and the Cat replied”—Where do you want to go?”–Alice answered that
“She did not know”—-“Then it doesn’t matter,” said the Cat.
Thank you Julie for your compliments, I really appreciate your support!
Danielle – I’m glad you liked the blog! The Alice in Wonderland reference is great. So true.
thank you for the advice, i started my business 8 years ago and i rely on refferals and local advertising not real comfortable with big time advertising. rather keep things on a personal level and I don’t charge much but thats what tips are for
I worked for another pet sitting business for five years before starting my own company. When I asked her how she built her clientele, she said word of mouth and knowing two vets personally. She advised me to stay away from Craigslist and she never built a website for her business. She had chosen to keep her business small enough that she could handle most of the business alone, just using me for her own vacations and weekends away. She told me it would take at least three years to get established. I knew I had to get found online and had to learn “Pull Marketing” as opposed to “Push Marketing,” because I did not want to wait three years to reach my goals. My goals were just that: MY GOALS.
Julia, that is a great example of “to each his or her own!” Everyone simply needs to approach their work how they most feel comfortable and appropriate.
Great article Sarah…good luck as the newest blogger @Petsittingology.
We are thrilled to have Sarah on board sharing her wisdom and thoughts! She has some excellent stuff to share coming up soon.
Thank you Killeen! I appreciate your support 🙂
I actually learned
how i can make money and doing what i like in the same time from
PETSITTING.TK there is a step by step
guide that helps you start up.
Great advice Sarah. Any business should be built from the heart first. Get advice – get experience – get training – but only follow what resonates. Forcing your business into a container that doesn’t fit your personal flow and style is stressful and pointless. Build and plan from the heart and then the money and success YOU want will follow.
Thank you Sue! Im always happy to see a pet sitter who “gets it”!
Hi I just got ripped off by a woman names Daina in Sunnyside Queens .She only paid me Half of what she said she would .Never paid me the rest after came back from expensive vacation . What legal acts can I take.
Sorry to hear that Elyse. It all comes down to what agreements/contracts you had in place? You can always consult an attorney to see what you may be entitled to recoup.
Going forward, do consider receiving 100% of the total service fee BEFORE service begins! Hope that helps.