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i am not a prejudiced pet sitter: Blog the Change for Animals

As a professional pet sitter, I can’t tell you how many times people say the following things the first time I speak to them on the phone:

“Do you take care of big dogs? I hope you don’t charge extra.”

“Sweetie is a Rottweiler, but she’s really nice…she’s never bitten anyone…she loves kids…you’ll love her…”

“He’s a Chihuahua, so he’s little. So you don’t charge as much, right?”

“She’s a Golden Retriever. She’s a lover, and she’ll be super easy.”

And my all-time favorite “Do you sit for Pit Bulls?”

I always provide the same answer: “I don’t discriminate based on size or breed. Every dog deserves the same amount of attention and love. I won’t take care of a dog that shows hostility toward me, regardless of the breed or size, and I take wonderful care of all animals that will let me, regardless of the breed or size. There is no difference in price.”

Sure, Goliath’s poop is HUGE, but that’s not his fault. I’ll pick up his, and I’ll pick up Chi-chi’s, just the same.

I have slept in bed with many a Pit Bull’s tongue in my face (in a good way) and I’ve been barked out of town by a Golden Retriever. I have learned through experience not to prejudge the animal. I greet each animal with the energy that is appropriate for the energy he shows me, whether that be positive or negative, big or small. Just like people, dogs are individuals and deserve the right to shine (or not).

So let’s judge them, but let’s judge them fairly after getting to know them. Just as most of us refuse to judge our human friends by their color or size, might we do the same for dogs? My motto: assume the best, but be prepared for the worst. I apply that to everyone I meet.

Hi! It’s nice to meet you…



19 Comments on “i am not a prejudiced pet sitter: Blog the Change for Animals”

  1. What a great post!! If I needed a pet sitter, you would be the one. I think it’s so awesome to do what you do. And I love the photo!

  2. Mel says:

    Amen sister! I was a professional pet sitter for 3 1/2 years and loved every minute of it (well, most every minute – hated cold winter rains the most).

    The one thing I did not do was discriminate based on breed or size of a dog. I cared for two Akitas that I absolutely adored and boarded dogs as tiny as a Min Pin who was fierce and sweet all at the same time. Love you Shea!

    Dogs are dogs. You can only judge them by who they are and what they do. So love this post!

    Mel Freer
    No Dog About It
    BtC4A Team

    • well minded says:

      Thank you so much! I think maybe because we’ve seen so many, we feel the way we feel. Sometimes pet owners pigeon-hole their own dogs, which is a shame.

      I have cared for some Akitas who were about as dangerous as teddy bears, but when I walked them, everyone would look at me like I was walking down the street with a machine gun.

  3. Love, love, love your post!! If only more people were like this.

  4. Completely agree, awesome post!

  5. Jan K says:

    Great post! My dogs often do things that are totally out of character for what I expected from their breed (my beagle loves to swim and play fetch, which I didn’t expect). So I can’t imagine why we would judge dogs solely by their breed….yes, they are individuals with their own unique personalities!

  6. Paula says:

    hi, really enjoyed your post! as a pet sitter, i find many people do have trouble boarding their pit bull. i volunteer for a pit bull rescue and a huge fan. i don’t understand charging by the weight and many kennels do this. i found out size is not the issue, it is the activity level of the dog. I charge more for pups than a 100 lb. dog. they are more work! i have had lots of mellow huge dogs. my requirement-dog friendly. and some dogs are just like humans, they don’t get along for no particular reason other than personality clash.

  7. Great post. Agreed – :assume the best, prepare for the worst” are words to live by!

  8. We agree whole-heartedly. thanks for a great post!!

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