Australia is a country of animal lovers. In fact, 62 per cent of Australians households have at least one pet. However, many of us also love to travel, and travelling with a pet is, to be perfectly honest, almost impossible.
New research conducted by Trusted Housesitters has found that 4 million Australian pet owners actually choose to stay home rather than go on overseas holidays because they worry so much about their pet’s wellbeing. One in 10 Aussie pet owners also reported having cancelled a holiday because of their pet, and a further 69 per cent of holidaying owners say that they feel stressed and anxious while on holiday because they have left their pet behind.
As it turns out, their worry isn’t misplaced.
Animal behaviourist Dionna Newton, founder of Animal Behaviour Australia, says putting you cat or dog in a kennel can be stressful for your pet.
“Care facilities for pets, despite how well they are run, are still unfamiliar to pets with other animals, new smells and a new environment and some pets can find this challenging or stressful. Their normal routine is altered and everything is different which can be confronting for a pet.”
So what’s the alternative?
Dionna suggests an in-house pet-sitting service.
“Pets are more comfortable in their home environment and will adapt much faster to a new carer than a new environment, which is why services like TrustedHousesitters are so beneficial for pets. Owners can arrange for a handover prior to the sit, where owners can introduce their pets to the sitters, take them through their pet’s routine, favourite foods and walks, to make sure they’re well cared for while they are away. It’s beneficial to stick to their normal routine and organise this with a handover for your petsitter to make sure your pet is as comfortable as possible.”
6 benefits of using a pet-sitter
- It can be stressful for pets to be taken out of their normal environment. Being taken to a different location, with different animals and different smells can be stressful or confronting as everything is quite alien to your pet. Being cared for at home alleviates this.
- At home, the normal routine remains the same. By staying in their own home pets can take comfort in normal routines and this can easier be kept with one-on-one care. In a boarding facilities their normal routine and daily structure will be altered.
- Normal daily walks and places your pet visit remain the same, which can keep dogs calm. This is prevented and/or the environment is different in a boarding facility.
- The home environment and creature comforts remain the same. A pet will get comfort from being in its usual environment where it has its normal creature comforts, smells of its owners and family, normal toys, etc. Normal creature comforts and familiarity are not possible in a boarding facility.
- Normal food and feeding routine can be adhered to. In a boarding facility this may be altered and potentially a different food is fed, even if owners take their pets usual diet they will be fed at different times to normal.
- You pet will get one on one time with the sitter. Most pet sitters love pets and enjoy having regular contact with the pet that they are sitting throughout the day. This means that your pet gets that on-on one contact from a person, affection, fuss and probably gets spoilt.
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