(707) 478-5673

FAQs

Q?

How do I reserve a booking for pet care services?

A.

Just call or text us at 707-478-5673, or email us through our Contact page here on the web site, or directly at [email protected]. We will return all calls and emails as promptly as we can and we will be happy to discuss your particular pet sitting needs with you. We will schedule a complimentary consultation to come out to meet with you and your pets and get more detailed information about your specific needs for care. If all seems mutual with both parties to move forward, we will complete a service work order where we will have a written plan that covers your vet info, feeding, pet and house care routine, contact info, emergency references, etc., as well as receive a key to your house for any future pet care booking(s) that you schedule with us.

Q?

Are you bonded and insured?

A.

Yes, we are bonded and insured, and certified members of NAPPS (National Association of Pet Sitters). All our Independent Contractors also are members of either NAPPS or PSI (Pet Sitters International) and /or are insured and bonded also.

Q?

What information do you require when I inquire about your services or want to schedule a booking with you?

A.

Please let us know what type and how many pets you have, as well as any house/ plant care you may need, etc., and also importantly, where you live, as we are limited in the areas we serve. Include, if you know, whether you are interested in daily visits and how many per day, or overnight care and whether you require any mid-day visits as well.

Q?

I have never hired a pet sitter before. Can you tell me how your service works?

A.

We will determine what kind of care you require and schedule an initial consultation to meet with you to see the set-up at your house, meet your pet(s), and fill out a service agreement that details what kind of care we will be providing. If one of our Independent Contractors will be sitting for you, we would likely meet you together so you both also can feel comfortable and know what is expected. (All our sitters are very experienced with animals, and have gone through thorough background checks, are licensed and bonded, etc, so we feel confident that they will offer the quality of care we demand of ourselves.) We will match you up with the best sitter for your particular needs, from once/daily visits to full or almost full-time care for your pets. Our Rates & Services page will give you an idea of the different services we offer and price ranges of each. Along with caring for your pets, we also can bring in your mail, newspapers, take garbage out to curb, alter lights, and drapes, and water any plants that need attention while you are gone, usually for no or minimal extra fee.

Q?

What kind of pets do you care for?

A.

We offer care for pretty much any animal you can think of—we have cared for dogs, cats, birds, horses, goats, llamas, cows, chickens, rabbits, ferrets, pigs, turkeys, peacocks, foxes (!), lizards, hamsters, guinea pigs, and fish. We have owned and/or cared for many animals throughout our lives and have a vast experience with both large and small critters.

Q?

Do you administer medication to pets?

A.

Yes, we offer a full range of medication services to pets, including pilling, subcutaneous fliuds, and insulin shots. Unless your pet is exceptionally difficult to medicate or is timid with strangers, etc., we should have no problems. It is sometimes advisable when unsure how a pet will react, to schedule a ‘practice/prep’ visit before you leave to go on any extended trip, just to make sure all goes well and there are no problems.

Q?

When should I have a key ready for you?

A.

Typically we will get the key at the initial consultation, so it is a good idea to have a copy ready for us at that time. Otherwise, we can pick one up at a later date, but we need to then charge a $10 key pick-up fee to cover our extra time and costs. We can also keep the key on file for you if you prefer, for future services, which is recommended to avoid further pick-up and drop-off fees. (We never put addresses or full names on them and they are kept in a locked, confidential file for safety.) This is especially beneficial when you travel often or need service on a last minute basis, or are stranded or delayed getting home and need immediate care. (We have even been called to help some clients who have locked themselves out of their home and we have been able to let them back in with our extra key…!) We can also of course return your key after our services are over. The first return is complimentary, but each pick-up and return for future services is subject to the $10 service fee.

Q?

How do you handle payment for your services?

A.

Typically we collect payment from customers on our first visit for travelers who leave on trips. If you aren’t able to leave payment then, we will leave you an invoice for you to mail a check to us when you return. Our address is:

Julie’s Pet Care
93 Firestone Way
Santa Rosa, CA 95409

For clients who book us for regularly scheduled visits or dog walks, we prefer to bill monthly, and often will mark the times we visit on a calendar left at your house, so you can easily see at the end of the day when we were there. It acts as an easy way to cross-reference our own calendar to ensure it matches what we have on record, and we will leave an invoice at the end of each calendar month unless you prefer to pay in a different fashion, which we are flexible with also.
(Also, we currently only accept cash or checks, no credit cards.)

Q?

Do you have a cancellation policy?

A.

Yes. Please understand that we carefully plan out our daily schedules far in advance to accommodate all our customers and to be able to ensure customized and personal, quality care for each one. Therefore, changes can easily impact us and it takes some doing to refigure our routes and availability for other potential clients, etc. For pet care and dog walking visits, we require a 24 hour cancellation notice prior to the date of each scheduled visit.  Failure to provide notice in this time will result in a 50% cancellation fee for the date of service reserved.  When booking overnight care, as we can only serve one client at a time, we often have to turn away several other potential bookings when we reserve time for you.  Therefore, we require a 50% non-refundable deposit at the time of booking for all overnight services.  If you must cancel your trip, you are subject to pay the full amount for the service unless you give at least 2 weeks prior notice, or there are extenuating circumstances that prevent you from going away, and/or we are able to re-book that time-slot with another customer.

Q?

I may come home early from my trip—is that ok?

A.

It is not unusual for trip plans to change at the last minute.  However, please understand that we carefully schedule our time to service you and our other clients. Therefore, except for extenuating circumstances, there are no refunds or credits for early returns or last minute changes to pet care that has already been booked.  Once service begins, payment is due for the original dates scheduled.  Please notify us as soon as you know about any change in your return date and time so we can adjust our schedule accordingly (and not be potentially startled by someone entering the house while we are still there…!)

Q?

Is any personal information I give to you kept confidential?

A.

Yes–we strive to serve our customers with the utmost respect and privacy, which includes keeping any and all information we receive from you confidential.  We do not disclose any or your personal information, including your phone number(s), gate or alarm codes, or mailing and/or residential address to any other party other than our contractors or other sitters who may be helping with your pet care.  We also do not keep your address or full names on key tags.  We only use your information to better serve your needs and to provide quality care for your house and loved ones while you are away.

Q?

Will you always be the one sitting at my house, or do you hire to other sitters?

A.

We will most likely be the ones who help you out, though we do have some sitters who work with us and help out mostly with overnight care or visits that we are not able to cover, or we feel they are best matched for.  If they are utilized, we will let you have the opportunity of meeting with them first so you feel comfortable with them.  All who work with us are insured and bonded and fully qualified to be entrusted with the quality of care we demand for all our customers and their pet(s).

Q?

If one of your sitters has helped me out in the past, may I call on them directly to book future services?

A.

Please understand that the sitters who work with us are hired as Independent Contractors, and all bookings they get through Julie’s Pet Care are exclusive to us.  Customers are often given their private contact numbers or emails when they are sitting their pets and they are always welcome and encouraged to communicate any info to them as needed.  However, for any future pet care bookings, please contact Julie’s Pet Care and we will make all the necessary arrangements to ensure you and your pets are taken care of and are matched with an appropriate sitter.  It puts our sitters in an uncomfortable situation when customers contact them first, as they have signed a contract that prohibits them from soliciting and/or accepting employment offered directly from clients.

Q?

May I give you or my sitter a gratuity?

A.

Absolutely!  All gratuities are dispersed directly to the sitter that is covering your pet(s)’ care, and are very much welcome and appreciated– 🙂

Q?

Would you offer care for my pet(s) if I have to suddenly leave town and need you right away before being able to meet with you?

A.

We unfortunately cannot offer pet sitting services for our customers without meeting with you and your pet(s) prior to your going away.  We need to be able to fill out a service agreement and have you sign it as well, which stipulates all that we will be doing while we are at your house, so this is for your safety and protection, as well as ours.

Q?

Do I need to confirm with you before we leave on our trip that all is set to go?

A.

We recommend you call, text, or email us two days prior to your departure in order to verify that all information (dates, contact numbers, etc.) are still correct.  Since phone mail/text messages and emails are not 100% are reliable, please make sure we speak to you directly or email or text is acknowledged.  Please do not leave town without this, as it is to ensure your pet(s)’ needs are carried out as intended.

Q?

Do you offer boarding services in your home?

A.

No, we are not equipped to board animals in our home. We can, however, provide daily visits to your home (as many as 1-4 visit’s a day, typically), and we also offer overnight care with or without mid-day visits to accommodate your customized needs.  We find that pets are typically much more comfortable in their own home environment and this works out best for them usually.  For those with young, active dogs, or pets that need more constant attention, sometimes a boarding facility is the best option, and we will be happy to refer you to some in your area that may better serve your particular needs.

Q?

What time do you usually arrive and leave the house when staying overnight?

A.

For overnight care, we typically arrive for the night around dinner-feeding time, and leave after the breakfast-feeding in the morning, but we offer mid-day visits, or extended stays at your house in some cases for a small extra fee.  We can accommodate your needs to the best of our ability, to ensure your pet(s)’ normal routine is not disrupted.

Q?

Can you customize your visit times to coordinate with my requests?

A.

We will make our visits at the requested times listed on your service contract as closely as possible.  However, if an unforeseen situation arises, the time may need to be adjusted to accommodate all our clients. We typically like to operate within a 2-3 hour window, unless your pet(s) have a precise feeding, medication, or potty-break schedule that needs to be adhered to.

Q?

Do you pick up pet waste in the yard and accidents in the house?

A.

Yes, we will properly dispose of pet waste and do our best to clean up any accidents that we find in or around the house.  We ask that you provide plastic bags, rags, cleaning products, paper  towels, brooms, and trash bags, and let us know where you would like the waste disposed of.  Also, we ask that you scoop any litter box(es) just before you go, so they are not over-filled on our first visit.

Q?

Do you provide long-term pet care for extended trips?

A.

Yes, we can provide care at you home for extended periods.  Just realize that there may be times we are out of town or not available for all the days requested, in which case a substitute may be utilized in our place.  You have the option, of course, of meeting with this sitter in advance of your trip, if possible.

Q?

What are your service areas?

A.

Generally, we serve primarily in the Santa Rosa area, but will also occasionally offer services (depending on availability) on the outskirts of the city, including Larkfield, Windsor, Sebastopol, Kenwood and Rohnert Park.

Q?

Do you take dogs out on group outings or walks?

A.

We generally only take one customer’s dog out on a walk at a time, or sometimes 2 or 3, depending on whether they are all handleable together, and get along.  We don’t take dogs on ‘play dates’ or go on group walks with other dogs they are not familiar with, as we just don’t feel comfortable with them being exposed to a potentially risky situation that may get out of control.  Therefore, you can be assured your dog(s) will get personalized and individual attention when we are in charge of their care.

Q?

Why is it necessary that I call you when I return from my trip?

A.

It is very important that we hear from you once you have returned safely to your house, so we are assured that you and your home and pets are all fine.  We feel our job is not done until we know that your pet(s)’ regular routine is not interrupted and you are also safe and sound back home again.  If for any reason you are delayed and can’t reach us, we will automatically assume that something has happened, and will continue care at your house until we hear from you.  Our first and foremost concern is your pet(s) and would not just let them fend for themselves, just because our service contract period had ended…!  Please call, text, or email at ANY hour and leave a message as soon as you return that all is ok at the house.

Q?

Do you charge extra on holidays?

A.

Yes, we do have a small surcharge for holidays, which is spelled out at the bottom of our Rates and Services page.  This also goes either directly to us, or given to whichever sitter who is caring for your pets, as compensation for taking time away from our holiday, to ensure your pets are well taken care of while you are able to get away to enjoy yours.

Q?

Can you recommend a veterinarian or groomer?

A.

Yes, we can offer referrals of ones that would be suitable for you.  You can also visit our Resources page for a full list of pet care professionals.