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How do you afford pet sitting?

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 

We are planning a trip to visit family over Christmas. Pet sitting around here is about $75/day for two dogs. For a seven day trip, that is $525!  That would be the biggest cost of the trip by far (using miles for the flight and staying with family). What would you do?

 

We have friends who have watched the dogs for a weekend here or there. But I wouldn't feel comfortable asking them to take them over Christmas. We could hire someone to just come to the house a couple times a day, but I don't know if that is enough interaction for a whole week (these are "people"/lap dogs, though they do spend a lot of the day napping!). If we did that, the cost would be about $350 ($25/visit), so I don't know that it is worth it.

 

What do other people do?

post #2 of 9
I take my dog to a play-based boarding kennel. During the day the dogs play in a couple of large play areas, and have a covered arena in cruddy weather. They play all day long, 8am-5pm, except for a couple hours nap/lunch break at noon. At 5pm the settle down in their kennels for the night.

It costs $25 per dog, though I believe there is a discount for a second dog sharing the same kennel. I think it works out to Something like $45 a night for two dogs.
post #3 of 9

We spend the money to have them boarded. It's a little cheaper than what you posted, but we spend between $300-$500 each time. Totally worth it. We love the place they go and they have a lot of fun. They get to roam free with a ton of other dogs and go inside/outside as they please.

 

We had someone "pet sit" our dogs a few years ago. It didn't go well at all. They destroyed the house and were absolute wrecks when we got home. They just can't be alone for that long with only brief interactions when the person comes by.

post #4 of 9

We have friends drop in & feed/play with the dogs.  It's part of our favour turn taking so it doesn't cost us anything.

post #5 of 9

I've paid to board my dog before.  Good for you for starting to look early. The holidays book up and its difficult to find a spot.  I've used Petsmart Petshotel and loved them and I've used an independent boarding company which was great too.  Boarding runs about $30/day/dog and includes play time, outside time, feedings (I always provide the food and snacks because of a special diet dog) and tons of fun for the dog.  Sometimes I can find a coupon for either a free day or a free add on service while the dog is there.

Boarding is just one of those expenses of having a dog.  I love my dog dearly and willingly pay the fee to make sure she is taken care of while I'm gone.

post #6 of 9

I house/pet sit as one of my revenue streams.  I charge a lot less than $75/day but that's because I don't have any overhead.  People find me through Care.com and Sittercity.com.  You may be able to find someone through those websites.  Both offer background checks.  I had that done through Care.com but not Sittercity.  Make sure you check references and meet with the person to make sure they are compatible with your pets.  I have repeat clients who found me that way.

post #7 of 9

We go away for 2 weeks at a time so have the same issue.  Our dog goes to a lady who owns/fosters dogs from the same breed (Boxers), she lives 30 mins away from us and just loves our dog.  I found her through a boxer forum, someone else recommended her.  I tried to put my dog in a kennel/boarding facility, but she hated it.  Especially since we go away at Christmas I was worried she would be cold the whole time.  In the lady's house she sleeps on a bed (not even allowed to do that at our house!) and plays with other dogs.  It is $35 a day compared to $50 a day for the kennel (since they charge extra for bringing our own holistic dog food).  So still expensive but not so bad.

 

I would love to find someone else with a Boxer who really understands the breed and trade vacations with them, so I watch their dog for their summer vacation and they watch mine for the winter one, but I find it hard to locate people who have the same values as I do with their dog/s - so that idea isn't feasible.

 

post #8 of 9

Mine just came home from the kennel.

 

The place I took her has air conditioned/heated kennels and half of them also have an outside but shaded area the same size as the kennel.  Everyone gets taken out 4 times a day to potty and you can pay for 1 hour playtime and daily walks.  The price is fantastic.  i paid $12 a day for Lu and i think my friend paid $20 for his 2 dogs to share a large kennel.  She had 1 hr group play time 4 times which cost an extra $10 (30 min walks were an extra $2.50 as well)  So tops I would have been paying $17 a day for a lot of interaction.  they also feed her her own food.  It is bad for your dog to switch foods!  and kennels were washed out daily.  

 

She just got home and smells fine and doesn't seem stressed at all.  He said she did very well.  He was concerned that she didn't eat much but she never does.  She ate an appropriate amount.

 

He even delivered her to my door.

 

My friends dogs stayed in a kennel with outside access and he had a combination to the kennel.  He could pick up or drop off at any time.

 

The total was just over $100 for 8 days.  not bad and I just try to think of it as the price of having a dog.  

post #9 of 9
Our family dogs totally stress out when boarded - don't eat, etc. It's much less stressful for our dogs to have someone come into or home. We've used family and hired a friend's teenager. I would check the websites the pp mentioned for in-home sitters. You can probably find someone cheaper than $75 per day.
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