Dog sitter, pet wolker or pet sitter?
Taking care of companion animals in the absence of their human companions are precisely these animal care professionals, specialized and competent figures who respond to the needs of that particular category of consumers constituted by pets and their owners.
Dog sitters are not all the same
Those of dog sitting and pet sitting are real professions but are not officially recognized by the state in Italy.
Unfortunately, there is no register or even a mandatory course of study.
At present, there are no official certified procedures.
In fact, there is a lack of a standard that regulates these figures and this market, establishing the necessary skills and possible responsibilities.
This results in the proliferation of an army of improvised dog/pet sitters who offer themselves as dog/pet sitters but have no demonstrable background or certified level of competence that would qualify them as true professionals in the field.
These are mostly college students or enthusiasts who, on the side, decide to walk the dog or clean the litter box for the cat.
Marketplaces and social platforms are chock-full of ads such as “Animal lover offered as dog/pet sitter.”
Too bad, though, that love for animals does not get a reference
But how can you tell an amateur from a professional?
The differences between an improviser and a professional are remarkable.
Here are what requirements the ideal pet sitter must have.
- Hold a license or certificate as a dog handler or educator issued by a legally recognized training institution or school.
The dog sitter, specifically, must be able to handle the dog as much in public places or places frequented by other animals as in the home.
- Have advanced ethological and dog knowledge.
The dog, cat, rabbit are not just “animals”; they have their own intelligence and character specificity, and your pet sitter needs to know this.
The “DOC” pet sitter must be familiar with and comply with animal protection and welfare regulations and traffic laws regarding animal transportation.
It is critically important for the health of our small animal friends that the pet sitter is able to provide veterinary first aid.
Professionalism means responsibility
Make sure that the per sitter you choose is covered by a liability insurance policy: in the absence of the owner, it is the dog sitter who has civil and criminal liability for the animal for any damage the animal may cause to people or property.
The civil liability of the dog sitter and pet sitter
Prevailing case law holds not only its owner but also the person who momentarily holds the animal responsible for damages caused by the animal.
Art. 2052 of the Civil Code states that “The owner of an animal, or the person who has use of it for the time he or she has use of it, is liable for damages caused by the animal, whether it was in his or her custody or was lost or escaped, unless he or she proves unforeseeable circumstances.”
The existence of damage must be proven by the injured party, but the burden of proof, to prove fortuitous event and to exclude the existence of liability, is always on the owner/owner.
The criminal liability of the pet sitter
For the purpose of identifying the person criminally responsible for culpable injuries caused by a dog, it is relevant not so much to ascertain who is the owner of the animal but rather who, in the time context in which the offense occurred, managed its custody without the appropriate precautions, and the contributory negligence of the owner by entrusting it to an inexperienced person is not excluded.
The normative reference is Art. 672 of the Criminal Code, which states as follows:” Whoever lets loose, or fails to keep with due care, dangerous animals owned by him, or entrusts their custody to an inexperienced person, shall be punished with an administrative sanction from 25 euros to 258 euros.”
Pet sitters take care of dogs, cats, birds, fish, rodents by caring for them at home or at their private facility.
If you have decided to entrust your pet to a boarding house, go to the facility and personally make sure that all the conditions and services promoted are true and real:
- Check box sizes
- Assesses sanitary conditions
- Ensure that the presence or assistance of a 24-hour veterinarian is guaranteed
- Check to make sure that the walking areas are safe
The deposit contract
Be aware that entrusting the dog to an organized facility falls under the type of fee-for-service storage contract governed by Art. 1766 of the Civil Code.
“Deposit is the contract by which one party receives from the other a movable thing with the obligation to keep it and return it in kind.”
So, the ideal pet sitter must be able to take care of your pet all-around by properly managing him or her both physically and psychologically, and for this to happen he or she must be a properly trained and accredited professional.
Moral: If you rely on an improvised pet sitter, you will have no guarantees of any kind and you only jeopardize your pet’s well-being.
Clinica La Veterinaria employs qualified Dog Educators who are always available to advise you properly.
We would also like to remind you that Clinica La Veterinaria is always open h24 every day including holidays and with First Aid service from 8 pm to 8 am.
For the joy of seeing them HAPPY