Like any devoted pet parent, you hate spending time away from your companion animal. You may often plan trips that include your four-legged friend, but sometimes, it’s neither possible nor practical to bring them with you. It’s not uncommon to feel guilt or worry when you have to leave your pet behind—in fact, a 2013 study found that 72 percent of people worry about their animals at least some of the time, while 24 percent worry during the majority or entirety of their trips.
Create a pet care guide to give to your sitter. Even if it’s not their first time taking care of your dog or cat, providing written instructions will make things easier for them and prevent any confusion, especially if you have multiple animals. Some items to include in your guide are:
- When you’re leaving and when you’ll be back
- Your pet’s daily routine, including feeding, medicating, walks, and other activities
- Some information about your pet’s personality, including any quirks
- Your mobile number and email address
- The contact information of the place you’re staying
- Your vet’s name and phone number
- A trusted friend or family member’s contact info, in case of an emergency
- Where important items such as your pet’s food, medications, and cleaning supplies are kept
- Mail run times, trash pickup days, and plant watering schedules, if they’ll be doing some light housekeeping for you
Take some time to go over the instructions with your sitter and give them a chance to ask questions.
Worrying about your furry pal when traveling without them is normal, but remember that doing so won’t do either of you any good. Be sure to follow the above tips for a stress-free trip!
- Wag!'s checklist on how to plan for traveling without your pet (#6 says to plan ahead and find the right overnight care or pet sitter for your pet's separation anxiety)