Set up your own business or work for someone else.
Pet minding involves looking after other people's pets
while they are away on holiday. For the pet owner, it
is an alternative to a cattery or a kennels, which means
the animal is able to stay in their own home and get
some individual attention.
A pet minder will arrange to visit the family home
once or twice a day to feed the animals, clean out any
used bowls, change the litter in a litter tray and give
them some attention for 30 minutes or so. There may
be some other small duties, like bringing in the mail,
watering plants or putting out the bins on rubbish collection
This works well for cats, especially the outdoor kind
with a cat flap. They are able to stay in familiar territory
and still be fed and get some attention while their
owners are away. It saves a lot of stress for the animal
and means they still have their space to roam around
in, rather than being kept in a cage for an extended
For dogs, the duties may vary. It might include dog
walking duty or some supervised outdoor time in their
garden. This could be something that is done not just
when the owners are away, but also on a regular basis
if they work long hours.
Requirements for pet minding
Obviously you need to enjoy looking after animals.
You also need to be trustworthy and reliable, as you
will have access to someone else's home. Building up
your credibility will be important. Perhaps start with
family and friends, looking after their pets while they
are away. You should be able to get a series of good
references, and it is perhaps useful to have a police
check to hand so you can prove you are a good upstanding
Getting known at the local vets would also be useful
as they will be able to confirm that you live in the
area and you're honest and reliable.
A professional brochure and website describing your
services would be useful, and you need to put together
a contract to cover yourself in the event of a mishap.
After all, if you are looking after cats with indoor
and outdoor access, you cannot be responsible for them
wandering while you aren't there.
You also need to know that if something happens to
the animal and they require a visit to the vet, that
you can take them and costs will be covered.
Look at some contracts from existing pet minding businesses
if you don't know where to start with this.
Hours of work in pet minding
Usually home visits are once or twice a day and can
be 30 minutes or an hour. It may not be possible to
do all your visits during school hours, as the agreement
might be morning and later afternoon, but this is one
job that your children can do too, and will probably