If you’re a deprived animal-lover with a Fido-forbidding landlord, this might be the job posting for you. A Brooklyn pet care business is looking for “pet care professionals” for a variety of part-time jobs in and around Brooklyn Heights and Park Slope. The extensive Craigslist ad says the business is looking for dog-walkers, occasional dog-walkers, private boarders, cat-sitters and pet-sitters. Sounds fun if you needs a part-time friend, but these jobs aren’t just cuddles—all positions require experience, and prospective staff will be vetted big-time.
All applicants must be over 21, be willing to submit to a background check and sign a written agreement for a six-month commitment. And each position has its own needs: Dog walkers will have to brave any weather; boarders should be home a lot and free on the big holidays, you get the idea. Basically, you have to show that you can be a true “pet care professional” and not just some dope with a leash or litter box.
You can read the Craigslist ad for all the details, but we wondered about some of the ins and outs of being a pet care professional. So we called Deborah Price, owner and provider at Brooklyn-based Furry Poppins pet nanny service, for some tips.
When walking dogs, Deborah says, “It’s important to be sensitive to the temperament of the dog. They’re all individuals, like people.” Seems natural enough, but “learning how to juggle all the leashes” can take some time, and Deborah recommends keeping them all on a single clip. “You might have to rotate the leashes, depending on who’s done their… constitution.”
And when pet-sitting, the treat-them-like-people rule still applies: “Be reassuring and sensitive to the client’s needs,” says Deborah. “Everyone has specific concerns and a particular routine.” Ok, she meant the owners there, but the same applies to your four-legged charge: “Meet the dog or cat on its level. If the animal’s aloof, give it some space. If it’s skittish, let it come to you.”
Here’s the Craiglist listing again, with all the details on becoming a pet care professional.