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Should You Tip Your Pet Sitter?

by Therese on December 19, 2010

in Pet Sitting, The Pet Care Biz

tipping your pet sitter or dog walker, especially during the holidaysShould you tip your pet sitter during the holidays?

Absolutely! If you’re happy with the services your pet sitter offers, then by all means, please leave a tip.

It’s common for people who work on holidays to get paid double time, but that’s not normally the case for pet sitters. Although some will charge double, most will charge an additional few dollars per visit or an additional per day fee. There are other pet sitting businesses that don’t charge any type of holiday fee. Regardless of whether or not they charge a holiday fee though, you can bet they’re going to work their tails off!

Why should you tip your pet sitter?
Holidays are the busiest time for a pet sitter. He or she is likely to have some very long days going from house to house, and unlike Santa, there aren’t any reindeer to make the travel time easier! A few days before Christmas until the day or two after New Year’s are usually super busy. A typical day can start as early as 5am and not end until after 10 pm. There may be an hour or two break at some point, but then it’s back to work.

But working holidays is just part of the job!
You might be thinking, “it’s my pet sitter’s choice, to work holidays” and you’re absolutely right. Working holidays is part of operating a pet sitting business, and it’s something pet sitters either accept and do, or lose clients. But as much as they may love what they do for a living, it is tough to miss out on celebrating with their family and friends.

It’s nice to be acknowledged.
Being acknowledged for a job well done makes us feel good. Any gesture you can make to let your pet sitter know how much you appreciate what they’re doing will not be overlooked! The pet sitters I know (and that would be a lot) don’t expect tips or gifts from clients, but they sure do appreciate them. It can make working holidays feel less lonely, and a bit more festive. And it’s not uncommon, after the holidays are over, to see messages on some of the pet sitter forums bragging about the wonderful client who left them a tip, a gift card, or other unexpected treat.

So, how much should you tip?
In the end, that’s up to you, but I suggest a minimum of 15% of the total bill. If your pet sitter cares for your pets on a regular basis, or has gone above and beyond what’s expected, you might want to leave more.

One last thing about tipping your pet sitter . . .
Although the holidays are the most common time for clients to leave tips for their pet sitters, a tip at any time during the year is going to be appreciated!

On behalf of all pet sitters who will get a tip this holiday season, Thank You!