Most people have employed a dog walker or sitter while they were working or traveling. Now, the new trend is to hire a dog nanny — a person dedicated entirely to taking care of your pet 24/7.
It’s the new “must-have” for the super rich. Just like hiring a nanny for your child, a dog nanny will either live in your home or bring your dog to his or her place to walk, play, wash, feed, groom and even sleep with it at all times of the day, the Daily Mail reports.
It’s the perfect solution for pets who don’t take to — or get stressed out by — boarding kennels. Usually, the dog nannies will be in place for weeks or months, and some are paid to be companions for years at a time.
Nina Cole, founder of Nina’s Nannies for Pets based in Dunstable, Bedfordshire, told the Daily Mail:
“We’ve certainly seen an increase in business in the last couple of years. I’m having to turn work down because we haven’t got the live-in sitters to cope.”
Cole charges 29 pounds ($43) a day for a live-in service for one dog, plus an agency fee of 25%. For a 50-hour week, a live-in nanny can command 50,000 pounds a year.
That’s a whopping $74,235, which is why dog nannies are employed by the wealthy — everyone from everyone from high-profile businesspeople to celebs — in the U.K. One dog nanny service even counts the royal family among its clients. These super rich have housekeepers, personal chefs and gardeners, but want someone dedicated entirely to taking care of their dogs as well.
A quick U.S. search reveals that dog nannies aren’t as popular here as they are abroad. We came up with dog walkers, kennels and pet sitters, but found few choices when it came to finding a designated dog nanny who could be with a pet throughout the entire day.
In New York City, Pet Nanny NYC will look after your pet in your home overnight for $85 per night, a price comparable to dog nanny services in the U.K., but the company doesn’t advertise itself as a 24/7 service. The same goes for Pet-Nanny.net in Pennsylvania.
Whatever service you choose, remember to check up on who exactly will be catering to your dog’s every whim. Pet Sitters International warns that anyone can call themselves a “pet sitter,” but only a few will match its professional criteria and even be bonded. PSI advises owners to ask “seven important questions when interviewing a potential pet sitter.” They are:
1. Does the pet sitter have the proper business license for your city or state?
2. Is the pet sitter insured and bonded?
3. Can the pet sitter provide proof of clear criminal history?
4. Does the pet sitter provide client references?
5. Will the pet sitter use a pet-sitting services agreement or contract?
6. Is the pet sitter a Certified Professional Pet Sitter (CPPS) and/or has he or she participated in pet-care training, such as pet first aid?
7. Is the pet sitter a member of a professional and educational association, such as Pet Sitters International?
Ask the right questions, and you’ll gain a person whom you can trust to take care of your precious pet.