Animal caretakers with a natural, positive approach

It’s A Date: All About Our Meet And Greets

DC Pet Sitters Meet and GreetIt’s a date! We have officially scheduled our initial meet and greet (M&G) consultation. Here’s what we think you should know so that our first meeting can go as smoothly as possible:

Have your phone close by.

We won’t ring the door bell or knock on your front door. We will call when we arrive! This is in effort to start off on the best foot possible. If we ring the door bell, chances are your dog will start barking and/or your cat will run and hide. Why would we want to start off that way? If we call, chances are your pets are not going to be startled by our arrival and we’ll be able to start on a much better note.

We’re really boring at first.

If your dog is out and about, we will have the quietest, most uneventful entrance you can imagine. We will walk in, greet you, and move to the location where we will sit and chat. If you’ve indicated that your dog is shy, nervous, or fearful, we will not greet or look at him/her (see tip below). If your dog is not fearful, shy, or nervous, and greets us exuberantly, we will wait until we are away from the door to return the happy greetings. We know that you’ve been working on teaching him/her not to jump, so we’ll do our best to pet your pup once all four are on the floor. Usually this is attained easiest by us finding somewhere to sit that’s closer to your dog’s level so that they don’t have to work so hard to see our faces and give them kisses.

Chit Chat

The rest of the M&G will pretty much consist of us chatting about your pet’s personality, their schedule, their meal-time routines and potty habits. You can give us a tour of your home and show us where everything is, too, if your pup is already comfortable with us moving about.

DC Pet Sitters Happy Kitty GreetingBut what about cats?

I know, we keep discussing all-things-dog. M&Gs with kitty parents are pretty similar. We won’t approach your kitty unless it’s clear that they’re asking for lovin’ from us. We’ll talk about their likes and dislikes, quirks, favorite treats and what makes them happy and playful. We hope that we’ll be able to see your kitty on our first visit, but if not, we’ll schedule followup meetings so that we can eventually be properly introduced — we want to know what our kitties look like, even if they don’t want to interact with us yet!

End on a good note

This is almost as important to us as the first impression we make on you and your pets. Although we suggest you to leave about an hour time-block for our initial meet and greet, we may decide after 20, 30, or 40 minutes to wrap it up and end on a good note. This is especially prevalent in homes with shy or anxious pets. We could be sitting in your living room, having a wonderful conversation, and a delivery truck driver could ring your doorbell and send your cat under the bed or your dog into an upset, barking frenzy. We want to spend time with you, but we also want to end on the best note possible. The happier they are while we’re there, the better.

Our Tips:

    • DC Pet Sitters Meet and GreetIf you know that your dog is anxious, shy, fearful, or otherwise worried about meeting a new person, it is best to have them in their “safe places” prior to us arriving at your home. Bring them to a room (and/or their crate) where they feel most at ease and give them something yummy to work on. Give it about 5 or 10 minutes prior to our arrival so that they’re already deeply involved in working on their yummy treat, Kong, bully stick, marrow bone, etc. Once we are in and seated and have chatted some, you can let your dog out to come explore and say hi. We’ll already have placed some extra yummy treats on the floor around us so that if they choose to come near us, they’ll be rewarded profusely. We avoid giving shy dogs treats from our own hands on our first meeting. We prefer to toss them on the ground so that they don’t feel uncomfortable approaching us directly for them.
      • We ask that you have your dog’s favorite treats ready for the meet and greet. You should have some treats handy during the meeting itself and we ask that you have some to give to us, too! We don’t typically bring treats with us and ask that you provide them in effort to keep them from getting bellyaches. You know what they like way more than we do, so it works out well when you have their treats prepared.
      • Our M&Gs are typically pretty casual. We email you the quotation and any paperwork in advance since we come to your home empty handed. The reason we come empty handed is because many dogs think people look weird and/or suspicious when they’re carrying a bag or briefcase. Since we live in a very digital age, we reduce the risk of giving your pets extra reasons to be worried by only bringing ourselves to the meeting. Bags can fall over just as your pet is getting comfortable, for example. That would be the worst — so we just avoid it all together.

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