Updated Jan 12, 2019;Posted Jul 18, 2014
Q: What is your background in caring for animals?
A: I grew up around animals. We owned dogs, parrots, guinea pigs, and several ducks. Several summer seasons were spent working the stalls and barn of horses at Mohican Wilderness in Loudonville, Ohio. The last seven years, foster cats for both a local shelter and for Diabetic Cats in Need have visited my home. I am an avid self-learner and observer of animal behavior, from studying the Karen Pryor Method of dog training to observing the subtle feline behaviors described by Dr. Bruce Fogle. I seek out the best and latest animal behavior information.
Q: How do you calm a nervous pet?
A: Every new client gets a free consultation. At this consultation, it is best to disclose you own a nervous or anxious pet. Let us know what makes them uncomfortable. Is it storms, loud noises, other dogs or cats, and strangers? Also include what helps to calm them down. Those kind of details make for happy and safe pets. In most cases if we know what is making your pet nervous, we can apply appropriate behavior modification techniques such as clickers, high value treats, distraction activities, or use pheromones and environmental changes to help calm their nerves.
Q: What sets you apart from other pet sitters?
A: We are members of The International Association for Animal Hospice and Palliative Care. This means we are uniquely trained to care for elderly pets, injured pets, and those facing their last few months/weeks before crossing the rainbow bridge. We can provide clients with guidelines on how to create a comfortable refuge for their pets and bring gentle closure to a life well-lived.
Q: What has been the most interesting or unusual request made by a pet owner?
A: The most unusual request came from a person wanting us to stop by once a week to check on their cats. Even with all the modern technology of autofeeders and water fountains, it is considered unwise to leave any pet unattended for that length of time.
Q: What are the rewards of this work?
A: The rewards are the happy, wagging tails that greet you several times a day. The cat who finally decides you are pretty great and jumps up into your lap. It is the parrot that starts singing to you as you walk in their room. It is all that unconditional love that comes from another creature, just because you walked in the door.
Beth Pasek with cat sitting client Sawyer