Almost everyone sooner or later dreams of starting a home based business to make some extra money, or to be able to work part time. The one thing that stops most folks from acheiving this goal, is money. They just don't have the financial stability to either borrow the money needed or are not sure they can pay it back. There is one business that anyone can start with no upfront money needed, all that is required is patience and kindness, this is the business of Pet Sitting.
In the U.S. over 70% of all homes contain at least one pet, there are over 65 million dogs and 77 million cats, and in 2005 American's spent over $14 billion on their pets. All of these pets need care and treatment, and at many times throughout the year each pet has to be left unattended a large amount of the time. During these times, a pet's owner often needs the services of a 'Pet Sitter'.
There are two ways you can operate your own pet sitting business, if you own your own residence, you can watch pets inside your home, having the pet owners drop off their pets at your residence. This puts you more at ease, and you have more time to devote directly to your home duties as well as the pet sitting business, since you don't have to spend time traveling to the pet owners residence. Just make sure you have proper areas sit up for the pets that will be arriving, they must not interact with your own pets, as this can cause fights, unwanted breeding and the spreading of fleas and diseases. Plus pets dropped off at your residence will be scared because they will be in unfamiliar surroundings.
You may wish to stay at the owners residence and watch the pets while they are not home, like a babysitter. This has benefits and disadvantages as well. For one thing you will be traveling and will have to spend a great deal of time away from your own residence and money on gasoline. You may also break or damage something in the pet owners home, causing trouble for you. Or you may find yourself in a hostile environment, due to fighting between the pet's owners, or other household members. Staying in someone elses residence could also get you accused of stealing something, even though you didn't, but a babysitter faces these same obsticles also. The benefits of watching the pets in the owners home is you will have a lot less chance of exposing your own pets to diseases and unwanted breeding and fights, and the pets you are sitting will be calm and relaxed since they are being left in their familiar environment.
Either method of pet sitting you choose has its advantages and disadvantage, so you must carefully choose which is better for you. Just make sure that whatever type of service you choose, that you think of the job as carefuly as a babysitter would. Think of the pet as a small child, because a lot of pet owners love their pets as if they are children.
Make sure you have some knowledge of the pets you will be sitting, for instance read and learn about them all you can, dogs and cats are pretty easy, birds are harder, but snakes and lizards or turtles may be totaly unique and could even pose a danger to you, if your not familiar with them. Pets need sleep and rest time, they need activity or exercise, they need food, water and warmth, some even require medication at certain times of the day, but all pets need patience and love. Make sure you have emergency telephone numbers, so you can call the owners veterinarian or pet clinic in case you have too, and you may also need to get in contact with the pets owner, so don't forget the telehone number where they can be reached at.