How Much To Pay A Dog Sitter?

Ryan O'Connell

By Ryan O'Connell

Last updated:

Are thoughts of your furry friend crossing your mind while you jet off on adventures or head out for work? Wondering how much to charge for dog sitting? Fret not – today, we’ve got your back, and we’re here to unravel it all for you.

dog sitter service

At PetsitUSA, we understand that your four-legged companions are not just pets; they’re cherished members of your family. And when life gets a bit hectic, finding the right dog-sitting solution is key to keeping tails wagging happily. So, let’s dive into the world of budget-friendly dog sitting!

How Much To Pay A Dog Sitter?

Dog sitting rates vary greatly among locations and services. Typically, pet sitters charge approximately $25 for a 30-minute visit, and daily rates vary from $20 to $30. Overnight stays can range from $45 to $75, depending on factors like the type of services you require—be it 24-hour care or a holiday visit—and the number of adorable pets under their watchful care.

Professional Pet Sitter Rates

Now, let’s zoom in on the cream of the crop – Professional Pet Sitters. Professional pet care services are the top-tier choice, albeit a bit pricier. When you go for the experts, there’s no need to stress about your furry friends or your home while you’re away. Customers can rest easy knowing a skilled and trustworthy pet care professional is handling things.

  • $23 to $28 for a 15-minute visit
  • $27 to $31 for a 30-minute visit
  • $32 to $37 for a 45-minute visit
  • $37 to $45 for a 60-minute visit

Hiring a pet sitter for your dog might be around $85 to $90 per day for three 30-minute visits. If you opt for visits a day, dog-sitting rates per day could go up to $110 to $125.

Overnight Pet Sitting Rates

If you’re going on a long trip, overnight pet-sitting is the way to go.
It is priced between $40 and $75 per night. But the perks of this setup are pretty fantastic. They’ll have their companionship all through the night – a real slumber party for pets! Emergencies, like unexpected illnesses, can be addressed promptly. It’s ideal for those with demanding work hours or frequent work-related travels.

Hobby Pet Sitters Standard Rates

Individuals providing pet-sitting services as a side hustle for some extra income are commonly known as hobby pet sitters. These can be local neighbors, college students, dog groomers, or individuals available on pet-sitting platforms or apps.

Typically, with a hobby sitter, you can expect to pay around 60-70% of the cost charged by a local professional service. This translates to approximately $14-$19 for a 15-minute drop-in visit and $21-$32 for a 45- to 60-minute visit. If your hobby sitter offers overnight stays, anticipate a fee ranging from $65 to $75, and don’t forget to factor in the cost of a midday walk.

Common Factors That Drive Cost

Dog Walking Business

Geographic Location

Analyzing local rates reveals that pet sitter costs can vary significantly based on location. In larger cities and areas with higher living expenses, both professional and hobby sitters tend to charge more. 

Services in metropolitan areas often include additional perks, as pet owners in these locations are typically busier and may travel frequently. Additionally, many city dwellers lack yards or open spaces for their dogs to exercise.

The heavy traffic flow in urban areas results in increased time and transportation expenses. To maintain a sustainable business, dog sitters need to account for the time spent traveling between clients’ homes in their overall pricing. Conversely, smaller areas generally have lower pet-sitting rates due to quicker travel times and ample open space.

Type of Pet

dog type

Caring for smaller, self-entertaining animals might come at a lower cost compared to looking after an energetic dog requiring multiple daily walks. If you have puppies, expect a potential increase of $5 in visit costs. 

In addition to the standard nightly fee ranging from $40 to $75, you can opt to pay an additional $7 to $10 for each extra pet. Simplifying the pet-sitting scenario, like having all dogs instead of a mix of dogs, cats, and birds, may result in a reduced charge, making the overall pet-sitting experience more straightforward.


Anticipate an increase in charges during holidays, considering that you’re sacrificing your own vacation time to care for clients’ dogs. On holidays, most pet sitters typically add an extra $5, depending on how you assess the situation. 

While it might seem like a minor amount, when you factor in expenses like food, toys, and veterinary care, the costs can accumulate swiftly. This way, clients can enjoy a stress-free vacation, knowing their dogs are in capable hands. You can be assured that their beloved pets will receive special care without putting a strain on their budgets.

Additional Pets

Standard service rates typically pertain to the care of a single dog, reflecting the responsibilities and efforts associated with tending to that specific pet.

However, it’s not uncommon for clients to have multiple pets with similar needs and request your care for all of them. Given the increased effort required from you as a dog sitter, additional pets should come with an associated extra cost. 

Maintaining a fair value for the care of additional pets is advisable. A common approach is to charge approximately a quarter of your hourly rate for each additional dog.

Extra Expenses

When determining your dog-sitting rates, it’s crucial to consider additional services. Start by defining the services you are comfortable providing and recognize any that might be beyond your scope due to discomfort or lack of training.

  • Number of Dogs: Standard rates typically cover care for one pet, with dog sitters usually charging an additional fee of $4 to $5 per extra pet for each session.
  • Medical Care: Additional charges may apply for administering medication. Moreover, the rate might increase if your dog requires special care due to illness, post-surgery recovery, old age, or other situations demanding extra attention.
  • 24-Hour Dog Care: While some pet sitters provide round-the-clock care, not all offer this service, and opting for it can significantly increase the overall cost.
  • Late Booking Fees &  Holidays: Pet sitters commonly impose surcharges, averaging around $25, for services on holidays. Additionally, if you make reservations less than 48 hours in advance, you may incur an extra fee ranging from $10 to $25.

Advantages of Hiring Professional Dog Sitters

Becoming A Pet Sitter

Easing Separation Anxiety

Separation anxiety is a real concern, causing distress in dogs and even some cats. The stress of solitude can lead to destructive behavior, potentially harming your pet or your belongings.

Keeping Your Pet Healthy

A pet sitter keeps a watchful eye for signs of illness or injury and allows your pet to stay in their familiar surroundings, steering clear of potential risks in kennels or boarding facilities. For pets with special medical needs, a pet sitter ensures they get the required treatments and medications on time.

Fostering Socialization

Is your pet a bit shy or overly energetic around strangers? Introducing a pet sitter into their life can be a valuable lesson in trust and socialization. The gradual approach during a meet-and-greet helps your pet get comfortable, making interactions smoother and building their confidence.

Providing Tailored Attention

This personalized, one-on-one interaction helps your pet feel at ease, especially when compared to competing for attention in a group setting. Your furry baby deserves that exclusive focus, making them feel relaxed and cherished in their own home.

Comprehensive Training

Many professional pet sitters undergo extensive training in animal behavior, first aid, and other essential aspects of pet care. This knowledge ensures that they can handle various situations and provide the best possible care for your furry friend.

Stay Connected

Stay connected with your pet, even when you’re away. Modern pet sitters often offer services that include GPS tracking of walks, real-time updates on your pet’s activities, and even photo-sharing to keep you in the loop.

Pet Sitting Insurance and Bonding

Reputable pet sitters carry insurance and bonding to protect you and your pet in case of unforeseen incidents. This insurance offers financial protection in case of accidents, ensuring that your pet receives the necessary care and attention without burdening your shoulders.

PetSitUSA goes beyond the basics, offering a comprehensive range of exclusive services to guarantee the best care for your pets. From dog walking during your work hours, invigorating runs, and doggie hikes to essential grooming services, our commitment is to go the extra mile. Discover all our services to guarantee your pets receive the highest level of care and attention they deserve!


Should Pet Sitters Receive Payment On An Hourly Basis Or A Flat Rate?

An hourly rate may be more suitable if your needs involve brief and varied visits with a flexible schedule. On the other hand, if you require longer, consistent care with predictable costs, a flat rate may be the better option. 

Consider the specific services and your preferences to determine the most appropriate payment structure for your pet-sitting arrangement.

How do Dog Walkers, Dog Sitters, and Pet Sitters differ?

  • Dog walkers: Primarily focus on taking dogs for walks and playtime.
  • Dog sitters: Provide dog care when owners are away, including walks, feeding, playtime, and overnight stays.
  • Pet sitters: Care for any pet, not just dogs, cats, birds, rodents, and more. They offer services similar to dog sitters for a wider range of animals.

What Is The Ideal Tip For A Pet Sitter?

The best tip amount is what you feel comfortable with and reflects your appreciation for the sitter’s dedication and good work. Their efforts kept your furry friend happy and safe while you were away, so a thoughtful tip shows your gratitude.

General Tip Range:

  • 10%-20% of the total fee: This is a standard tip range for many service professions, including pet sitting.
  • $20-$40 per night for overnight stays: This is a typical average, though it can vary depending on the length of the stay and the level of care provided.


In essence, navigating the realm of dog sitting rates per day need not be daunting. Our 2024 guide is designed to offer a comprehensive understanding of average rates for a range of pet care services, guaranteeing that your beloved companions are well cared for during your absence.

At PetsitUSA, we commit to making pet care practical and budget-friendly, ensuring that your furry friends receive exceptional care!

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Ryan O'Connell

Ryan O'Connell

Ryan O'Connell is the owner of PetSitUSA - a directory of professional pet sitters, dog walkers, and dog daycares. He has been helping pet owners and pet care professionals find each other since 2012.

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