Professional Pet Sitting Services – How Do They Handle a Pet Emergency?

It’s nice to not think about all the things that can go wrong while you’re away from home. It’s also not realistic, especially if you have a pet. Sometimes their curiosity can get the best of them and create situations that need to be handled by a professional, not just the kid next door. Professional pet sitting services provide you with knowledgeable, experienced pet sitters ready to take control of any situation your pet may get himself into. The services pet sitters offer vary depending on where you live. The examples shown below are for Pinellas County Florida area but this should give you an idea of what to expect in your area.

What kind of pet emergencies are we talking about here?

Eating or Swallowing Something

This can range from human food that is harmful or toxic to your pet’s digestive system (i.e. chocolate, chicken bones, etc.) to random findings in your garbage (aluminum foil, plastic wrap, etc.) and even larger items that can get lodged in their throats like kids’ toys, ornaments, etc. Having a professional pet sitter can be a valuable, life-saving service.

Chewing on Something

Pets that are bored will find any way to preoccupy themselves and pass the time. They could chew on electrical cords, which may cause a short in the electrical system or even a small fire. A professional pet sitter will know how to hide the cord and make a bone or toy seem more appetizing. The kid next door, even with the best intentions, may just push aside whatever your pet is chewing on and temporarily distract them.


Your pet may be suffering from indigestion or a stomach flu and cannot help what he or she expels from their body or where it happens. A pet sitter can properly give medication as directed by the vet, clean up the mess, and try to get your pet to eat, drink, and stay active while you’re at work. Sometimes the kid next door doesn’t realize the responsibility you’ve assigned to him or her and may not know exactly how to care for a sick pet, other than making sure they’re still breathing.

Cuts or Blood

Say your pet accidentally knocks a vase, glass sculpture, or even a glass that was left on the counter onto the floor and it shatters in a million pieces. They don’t know that stepping on it will cut their skin and they sure don’t know that ingesting it can tear up their intestines. This can happen with multiple pets where one knocks it down and runs away scared but the other comes over to investigate and sniff around. A pet sitter can intervene and prevent any serious danger. He or she can make sure similar things are put away or secure in where they are.

Broken Bones or Sprains

This is especially possible with a multi-level home, a young pet that likes to climb everything, and even elderly pets with weak joints. A simple task of walking down the stairs or jumping down from the sofa can turn into dangerous situations.

If there are any injuries as a result of your pet’s curiosity, the professional pet sitter will know where the nearest animal hospital is in relation to your home and the quickest route to get your pet there. They may even have a contact there that can assure faster care. They are also pet first aid certified and will be able to provide emergency life support whenever needed. You may trust the kid next door in your home, but would you really trust them with the life of your beloved pet?

For Rent in Washtenaw County MI- Homes – Homes and More Homes

If you are looking for homes for rent in Washtenaw County MI, then you might be interested in rent-to-own properties, but you may want to narrow your search down somewhat. The Washtenaw County real estate market covers and area of some 723 square miles and includes many cities, townships and unincorporated communities. Here we look at what a few of the cities in the county have to offer.

The monthly payments on homes for rent in Washtenaw County MI vary greatly. As do the selling prices for homes in the Washtenaw County real estate market. For example, the median price of homes for sale in Ypsilanti is currently $189,000, but in Ann Arbor, the median price is nearly $100,000 more. Rentals have a similar range. Older ranch homes in Ypsilanti have rents as low as $850. But in Ann Arbor, you can only rent about a half a house for that price.

In Ann Arbor, largely because of the University of Michigan, average incomes are higher, crime rates are lower and property values for this part of the Washtenaw County real estate market reflect the relatively good economy in the city. The city of Ann Arbor has also limited expansion by purchasing large areas of land surrounding the city to be maintained as a “green belt”. This limited expansion has helped to maintain the property values in the area, although some residents are not particularly happy with the decision.

Even though Ypsilanti is just “down the road”, average incomes are lower, there is less economic diversity and property values for this part of the Washtenaw County real estate market are lower. In this area, you will find some of the less expensive properties for rent in Washtenaw County MI. But, Ypsilanti has much to offer in terms of historical, cultural and architecturally significance.

It has the second largest historic district in the state of Michigan, hosts numerous summer festivals and has many museums. Even the city’s water tower is architecturally significant. Designated as both an American Water Landmark and a Historic Civil Engineering Landmark, it bears more similarity to a lighthouse than a modern day water tower.

No matter which area of the county you choose, buying Washtenaw County real estate is a good investment. You may be looking for houses for rent in Washtenaw County MI because you think that you cannot afford a mortgage. However, some people get into home ownership by buying a home on a rent to own basis — also called a lease option.

You may be looking for houses for rent in Washtenaw County MI because you do not have a large downpayment. Rent-to-own properties or lease option agreements do require a few thousand dollars for an “option consideration”, but most landlords will charge a security deposit, pet deposit if applicable, application fee, and of course the first months rent, likely amounting to several thousand dollars.

You may be looking for rent in Washtenaw County MI because you have bruised or damaged credit. If so, you are not alone. One of the reasons that experts say the housing market is slow relates to credit ratings. Numerous foreclosures have caused lending institutions to require higher and higher credit scores in order to qualify for a mortgage, even though interest rates have gone lower and lower.

In order to buy a home on a rent to own, you still need reliable income of course. You need to be able to afford the monthly payments. You will need a few thousand dollars for a lease option consideration. But, your credit rating is not an issue, as long as you are willing to work to repair it.

Are Pet Conflicts Putting Strain on Your Relationship?

Much like children, having pets brings a lot of joy into a household. Unfortunately, also like having children, pets can introduce new elements of stress. And when pet-related conflicts escalate, it can wreak havoc on your relationship.

One scenario is that a couple enters into a relationship (as many do) with “pre-existing” pets. When you meet someone you want to be with, it’s great if you adore their pet(s), too-but that’s not always the case. Let’s say Sarah, whose beloved cat she’s had since childhood, meets Joe, who has a dog he adopted a couple of years ago after he found it roaming the neighborhood, flea-ridden with no owners to be found.

Visiting each other’s apartments, they notice small things about each other’s pets that seem a little unnerving. Sarah’s aged cat is incontinent and doesn’t always make it to the litter box. Meanwhile, Joe’s dog keeps chewing up Sarah’s shoes when she visits.

In the intense early stages of a relationship, these may seem like little things. Although he’s not a cat person anyway, Joe thinks it’s endearing that Sarah is so attached to her childhood kitty. Sarah laughs that she never liked those shoes to begin with so maybe the dog did her a favor.

You can see where this is headed. If Sarah and Joe enter into a serious relationship or even get married, those pets come with the package. And as Sarah loses her fourth pair of shoes to Joe’s dog and Joe finds the cat has missed the litter box for the umpteenth time… well, it’s not so endearing or funny anymore. And as with any tension in a relationship, you’re going to have to find a way to address each other’s concerns with respect, honesty and compromise.

Even when a couple makes a joint decision to adopt a new pet, problems can arise if they have different expectations about how to divvy up the caretaking responsibilities, deal with problem behaviors, or even how much money to spend on the pet’s care.

Common pet disputes couples report include:

  • Who should walk the dog, empty the cat’s litter box, etc.
  • Whether or not the pet should be allowed on the bed/sofa
  • What to do with the pet when you travel
  • What to do when a pet is destroying your furniture or other belongings
  • Jealousy over how much time/interest one partner pays to the pet

I can’t stress enough the importance of taking time-well before you go to check out the cute puppies and kitties at the local animal shelter-to talk through each person’s expectations about pet ownership. These conversations might not be as fun as gazing together at the doggie in the window, but establishing some ground rules and anticipating potentially difficult scenarios will pay off tenfold down the road.

Other issues, like jealousy over the pet, can be far more serious. Say Emily and Jack have a golden retriever they both love, but Emily begins to feel that Jack is paying almost more attention to Fido than her. He comes home from work and spends his first five minutes home roughhousing with Fido instead of greeting her with a kiss and asking about her day. He lets Fido horn in between them on the couch when they watch movies.

If Emily expresses her feelings about this, and Jack is open to hearing them, they may resolve the situation fairly easily. (After all, there’s plenty of room for Fido to sit on the couch without literally coming between them.) But if their communication skills are poor or the relationship has other unresolved conflicts, Fido may just be a proxy to avoid dealing with deeper problems. Is Jack focusing his attention on Fido to avoid talking with Emily, because she always seems to be criticizing him for something? Is Emily feeling insecure in the relationship and threatened by everything that takes away Jack’s attention?

If you suspect that your pet problems are becoming true relationship problems for any reason-either because there may be other issues at play, or you lack healthy dispute-resolution skills when it comes to pet ownership and other household matters-talking with a professional couples counselor can really help.

Finding a Lost Pet – Why the Dog Catcher May Be Your Best Friend

Losing a pet is a frightening experience. Dog and cat owners will often go to almost any lengths to locate and retrieve their four-legged companions. Unfortunately, many pet owners consider contacting authorities at the “pound” either a last resort or absolute taboo. While there are many other good resources to help locate your pet, your city or county animal control facilities should actually be your first contact if your pet is missing.

Dog catchers and animal impound shelters get a bad rap all too often. City or county facilities for animal control are usually staffed with people who are in that particular line of work because they love animals. Yes, an unfortunate part of the job is to euthanize animals that are hopelessly ill or injured, a danger to the public or other animals, or unwanted. So, the key is to make sure the shelter staff knows your pet isn’t unwanted, by notifying them first that your pet may be “at large” and asking them to add him or her to their lost list and “into the system”. Taking this step first is important for several reasons:

Time may be short.
Many shelters work under a legally mandated waiting period after a stray animal is impounded. A healthy pet may go up for adoption during this waiting period, but overcrowding and increasing costs for many of these facilities have become such a problem that the waiting period may be short. If your pet is already impounded at a shelter, you want to know as soon as possible.

Incoming animals are checked.
Getting your dog or cat on the “at large” list means that if he or she is picked up for impound, you should be contacted immediately to come and retrieve your pet. In most instances, you won’t have to worry about your pet going up for adoption.

The network is in place.
Shelters and pounds are connected via sophisticated networks to law enforcement, highway departments, veterinarians and other regional services and facilities that report back to the shelter when lost animals are spotted or brought in. This means that you almost immediately have all these services working to help find your cat or dog.

Shelters have media connections.
Many animal impound shelters make use of a wide range of media resources. Your lost pet’s photo and description is very likely to be posted to at least one internet site, in the local paper and perhaps on local television news. By contacting the shelter, you can probably save yourself some time and expense.

By the way, a personal visit to the shelter is much better than a phone call. First of all, if your pet is already there, you can identify him or her and take your pet home. If not, you can at least have a good photo of your pet in hand to be copied and posted to bulletin boards, lists, etc. If you can’t get to the facility quickly, go ahead and call first, but follow up with a visit as soon as possible. Remember that your verbal description of your dog or cat isn’t necessarily going to be interpreted correctly.

Is there a possibility you’ll have to pay a fine when your pet is found? Yes. In some cases fees may be waived for an animal that has been reported as lost and is retrieved by its owner immediately, but this isn’t always the case. Pick up fees can vary greatly according to your location and circumstances. In addition, if your dog or cat comes in without rabies tags or required license tags, you will probably have to pay for shots and licensing in addition to any other fees before your pet can go home with you. Most pet owners would agree that the investment is justified by the safe return of a loved one.

There are a number of steps you can take to help authorities find and identify your pet in the event of loss or theft. First and foremost is the licensing of your pet according to your local regulations. License tags are checked by shelter officials if they’re found on your pet. The number on the tag can be referenced to lead back to you as the owner. Other collar tags, engraved with your contact information, can be helpful. For a small fee, your vet or the shelter staff can quickly and safely implant a microchip that can be scanned by authorities. Tattoos have been used as well, but some pets have been mutilated by thieves to remove these markings.

Contacting the animal shelter won’t replace any of the other things you can do to find your pet. You should still search your neighborhood or the area he or she was last seen, make and post flyers, contact neighbors, post to online classified sites, etc. Calling the shelter should, however, be the first item on your “to do” list. Why not put some of your tax dollars to work to help get your best friend home safely?

One last note: If you do find your pet by some other means after contacting authorities, be courteous enough to call and notify the shelter. One less animal at large will be welcome news and might save a few dollars as well.