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In every business, I am sure you will find a cancellation policy. This policy protects the consumer and the business to make sure that they are mutually committed to the transaction and for the business to be able to adequately schedule their staff for services.

Especially in the pet sitting world, where we can only be in one place at a time (especially for an overnight), these policies are particularly important. Our clients book 6 month to 2 days out and we need to be able to tell them if we can help them.

Cancellation Policy:

In order to best serve your needs, the strict cancellation policy is as follows – Day Visits are subject to a two (2) week cancellation period. Overnight visits are subject to a four (4) week cancellation period. Cancellation period begins the first day of the service period. Client will be responsible for half the invoice if canceled within this time period.

This has been our policy for over 7 years! It is one that we do strictly enforce for our  vacation pet sitting clients. 

Our cancellation policy is a little different when we have our daily dog walking clients  That situation is entirely different where sometimes our clients get sick. They work from home. Business is closed. As long as our daily clients contact us by 8am we will not charge them a cancellation fee and roll over a credit to the following week.

What Happens With Your Cancellation Fee?

It is shared between the business and your pet sitter who was counting on the income from the booking. Often times our sitters plan their vacations around our clients schedules!  They plan their family in town around our clients schedules. In fact,  some of them hold their clients schedules more important than their own because they love the pets so much!  So this fee, is strictly enforced to repay the staff for their dedication to the job. The client always has the ability to refuse to pay it, but the chances of us accepting further bookings are slim to none. We want clients who respect us as much as we respect them, their homes, and pets.

The cancellation policy is found under the policy tab on our website. It is also handed to the clients at the consultation. It is in the terns that they “click here to agree” and beside every single booking that they create online.

Pet Sitting Cancellation Policy

Pet Sitting Cancellation Policy

How To Break 5 Bad Dog Habits

 

Ozzie Dog

Ozzie Dog (Photo credit: merfam)

All dogs have different personalities and quirks — it’s part of why we love them so much. But while we think it’s cute when they beg for treats or hide your socks, there are some habits that can lead to more serious bad dog behavior. If your dog is displaying aggression or other bad habits, there are ways to regain control.

1. Digging

Does your dog dig up your flower boxes? This issue will make it even harder for any amateur gardener to nurture their green thumb.

To stop this behavior you need to be supervising your dog while he is in your yard. When your dog decides to dig, interrupt him with something he wants to avoid like a loud noise or spray him with the hose. Doing this several times should get the point across.

2. Barking

Your dog is your warning device. When you tell him to stop, he should. The best way to keep any behavior from happening again is to associate that behavior with something negative. Your effective negative reinforcement depends on your dog’s age, breed, timing and device. Some methods to try include shaking a can filled with coins or a water bottle to squirt him with.

When your dog barks, in an authoritative voice say ‘Quiet!’ If he barks again, you need to activate the reinforcement. For example, spray him with the water bottle.

3. Submissive Urination

Submissive urination is not a house-training issue. This problem occurs when the dog is frightened or excited. A weak bladder, or young age usually causes it. It is also more common in female dogs.

You come home, she is happy to see you. As you reach down to pet her, she urinates. She has no idea that it is happening and is wagging her tail, spreading it all over. You scream ‘No!’ and she becomes afraid because your mood changed so quickly, so she urinates even more. If this scenario is not fixed, she may begin urinating as soon as you pull in the drive in anticipation of you screaming at her.

Next time you come home, ignore your dog as if she was not there. Avoid making eye contact. After a few minutes, your dog will settle down. Now lower your hand so your dog can lick it or smell it. Lastly, squat down to your dog’s level (it is less intimidating) and greet her. Remember not to show too much enthusiasm.

4. Separation Anxiety

If your dog is not house-trained, keep him inside his crate with some toys while you are away. Have a talk radio station playing in another room. This keeps him from feeling all alone. Do not make a big production when you are leaving, just leave. The Humane Society of the United States suggests giving him a piece of your clothing that you have recently worn.

If he is house-trained and you would like to allow him to venture throughout your home, make sure he can get to his piddle pad. If he goes outside, you should consider installing a pet door. Advancements allow you to program your pet door. Some models even require a collar key.

5. Food Guarding

This is a common problem because your puppy may have learned to snap or growl at his littermates to get food. If you smack your dog or take his food away, it may only reinforce his thoughts that he should guard his food. If you challenge his food guarding once he has possession of it, he will probably increase his defensive behavior, according to the ASPCA.

If your dog knows how to come and sit, you can use this behavior to correct the food-guarding problem. Call him to you and have him sit. Immediately give him a good treat (like pieces of chicken) and tell him to ‘Take it’ at the same time. If he snaps at the treat too hard, say ‘Gentle!’ in a harsh voice. Try to hold onto the treat until he takes it gently. Remember to praise him with a friendly ‘Good dog.’ Delay the treats a couple of seconds, and if he jumps to get it just close your hand and tell him ‘Off!’ With this tactic, he should learn that as his owner, you have the right to control his food.

Ryan Harrison Ryan and his therapy dog Marley love making people feel better. Ryan loves writing about anything pet or health related.

ALERT! Pet Food Recall!

From the FDA:

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE – February 5, 2014 – Pro-Pet LLC, St. Marys, Ohio, has initiated a voluntary recall of a limited number of Dry Dog and Cat Foods for possible Salmonella contamination. A single field test indicated products manufactured during a two day period, on a single production line may have the potential for Salmonellacontamination. Pro-Pet LLC is voluntarily recalling the potentially impacted products made during this timeframe. There have been no reports of illness related to this product to date.

Salmonella can affect animals eating the products and there is risk to humans from handling contaminated pet products, especially if they have not thoroughly washed their hands after having contact with the products or any surfaces exposed to these products.

Healthy people infected with Salmonella should monitor themselves for some or all of the following symptoms: nausea, vomiting, diarrhea or bloody diarrhea, abdominal cramping and fever. Rarely, Salmonella can result in more serious ailments, including arterial infections, endocarditis, arthritis, muscle pain, eye irritation, and urinary tract symptoms. Consumers exhibiting these signs after having contact with this product should contact their healthcare providers.

Pets with Salmonella infections may be lethargic and have diarrhea or bloody diarrhea, fever, and vomiting. Some pets will have only decreased appetite, fever and abdominal pain. Infected but otherwise healthy pets can be carriers and infect other animals or humans. If your pet has consumed the recalled product and has these symptoms, please contact your veterinarian.

 

Product Best By Lot Code UPC Number
40 lb Hubbard Life Happy Hound Dog Food 05 06 14 096 13 SM L2 2A 1219033878
40 lb Hubbard Life Happy Hound Dog Food 05 06 14 096 13 SM L2 1A 1219033878
18 lb Hubbard Life Cat Stars Cat Food 05 06 14 096 13 SM L2 1A 1219033873
40 lb Hubbard Life Maintenance Dog Food 05 06 14 096 13 SM L2 2A 1219033875
15 lb Joy Combo Cat Food 05 06 14 096 13 SM L2 1A 7065407721
40 lb Joy Combo Cat Food 05 06 14 096 13 SM L2 1A 7065407713
40 lb Joy Combo Cat Food 05 06 14 096 13 SM L2 2A 7065407713
20 lb QC Plus Adult Dog Food 05 07 14 097 13 SM L2 2A 2351780103
40 lb QC Plus Adult Dog Food 05 07 14 097 13 SM L2 2A 2351780104
40 lb QC Plus Adult Dog Food 05 07 14 097 13 SM L2 1A 2351780104

 

These products were distributed through select retailers, distributors and on-line consumer purchases in Arizona, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Florida, Georgia, Iowa, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Montana, North Carolina, North Dakota, Nebraska, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia, Washington, Wisconsin and West Virginia

No other products/lot numbers are affected by this recall.

Customers should immediately discontinue use of any impacted product and contact Pro-Pet at 1-888-765-4190 for disposition.

For more information on the recall, customers can contact the customer service line for Pro-Pet at 1-888-765-4190. Customer service representatives will be available Monday through Friday 8 am to 5 pm CT.

Pet Pro LLC foods recalled

Pet Pro LLC foods recalled

The 2013 Good Client Behavior Awards!

 

 

winner-dog-24595925There are some clients that are just such model citizens! We have enjoyed working with them and their pets and they make our lives so enriched through their thoughtfulness, incredible pet parents ways, communication, and appreciation for our services. They make US go Bow Wow Meow when we see their booking come through and it is all due to their unique individual ways….

In no particular order:

Julie D. – Precise Instructions!

Julie D has created an entire house and yard especially for her fur kids (Payton and Abby) . They have a doggie door, tile so it isn’t a big deal when their dripping wet fur bodies come running through the door after a nice dunk in the pool. They have beds in every room, and books far in advance! Every booking, the kids notebook is laid out with their entire routine typed out by the time of the day. She updates the book as the kids grow and change, and updates the office as well.  Julie also books her pet visits for all her trips well in advance. This creates such a calm and easy experience for us as pet sitters, and we never have to refuse her bookings because there is no room.

 

Karini L. – Most Flexible

peach

Karini, also know as “Karini-dude” is a ball of energy and love. It is easy to understand where her fur kids get their

lovingness from. When Karini leaves the kids (Maddie and Poppy) behind, they enjoy pajama parties with us and three visits a day. They have a breakfast routine that takes an hour and Karini is always on it with the detailed notes, emailed to the office before the trip. It is so important to email the notes because we have a chance to review before the booking starts and ask questions if we have any. Because of the frequent visits and time slots, it is necessary to put multiple sitters on some of her bookings. We appreciate her allowing us to be the professionals and understanding that our entire team will always provide her babies with a tail wagging good time!

Kim P – Booking Online Expert!

Kim is the Mama to a sweet little Riley, a purrrfect kitty in our book!  Whenever Kim travels, she is so good at scheduling all her trips online and even works the “notes” section to remind us on particular visits about texting, garbage, and other little details. She always calls when she arrives home, so we don’t worry about her, and has been such a pleasure to work with. Riley is lucky to have a mommy that understands that kitties need lots of attention too!

Jennifer B –  Social Media Mama Extraordinaire

Jennifer to Mom to a pack of 5. They are hilarious and amazingly well loved and cared for. One of her babies, Peaches The Wonder Pit  has her own face book page with over 4500 followers to date! Why is she on this list? We love being able to interact with our Bella’s family online… and the effort she has put into Peaches platform is very well respected in the Bella’s family!

Susan W. – Respects Booking Policies & Judgement CallsIMG_7725

Susan is Sophia’s Mommy and has been part of the Bella’s family for longer than I can remember. She is such a wonderful delight to work with, is hilarious, and so respectful of our staff. Sometimes if she books last minute she trusts my decision with which sitter I am able to send to her. If she has last minute requests, she always calls or emails and is so polite about her request. This is huge because often we get requests with people making demands and not realizing that the staff do have work and personal schedules to keep. Susan is always mindful of this and we jump at the chance to help her and Sophie. Whether it be taxi rides to day care, or sleep overs with her baby – we just adore Susan and Sophie!

Dana K. – Hilariously Real…

Sadly, this year, Oscar became an “only child”  His fur sister passed over rainbow bridge and his two legged sisters have moved out. He has had some adjusting and to help with that we visit him in the middle of the days. When we receive emails from Dana, they always find us rolling with laughter. Dana has a hilariously funny way of describing Oscar while giving us the latest instructions and updates on him. He is such a good boy and we love him. He really is part of our family. :)

 

THANK YOU!  THANK YOU!  THANK YOU!

We have so many clients that we are thankful for and love each and every one of you. Without our clients, we wouldn’t be here since 2002 being able to provide you with home and pet care. From the bottom of my heart, I want to thank you ALL for being a great part of the Bella’s family. We know that there are many choices out there for pet care and we really value you all as clients.

 

18 Good and Bad Foods For Your Pets On Thanksgiving

If your pet is like Rocco, they are always “watching” you in the kitchen. In fact, Rocco watches the floor to make sure nothing drops on it and if it does, he looks up like, “Mom, I’m gonna get that ok?”  But what you might not know, is that not all foods are good for our pets. Always thinking that the family dog or cat is a disposal could cause vomiting, a trip to the vet, or worse :(

Here is a list of common foods that are bad and good for your pet this Thanksgiving. Keep in mind, this list is not

Rocco the Rockstar

Rocco the Rockstar

comprehensible and everything should always be given in small portions. (For us and our pets!)

Stay Away From These Foods:

Dog Bones
Raw Meat
Turkey Skin (or any fatty foods)
Dough/Cake Batter
Macadamia Nuts
Mushrooms
Onions and Garlic
Nutmeg
Beer Alcohol
Dairy

Good Foods For Your Pets

Peanut butter
Cooked Chicken
Cheese
Salmon
Pumpkin
Eggs
Apple Slices
Oatmeal
*In small quantities

From our family to yours, we hope you have a Happy Thanksgiving!

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