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Pet Sitters Service More Types of Pets, Survey Finds


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There has been a sharp increase in the number of professional pet sitters offering care for fish, cage pets, birds, and reptiles and amphibians, according to a new survey from Pet Sitters International (PSI).

PSI found in its 2018 State of the Industry Survey that more pet-sitting companies are serving a wide variety of pets. This year’s results indicate a significant increase in the number of PSI members offering services for fish (from 60.9 percent in 2016 to 82.7 percent in 2018); cage pets, such as guinea pigs and hamsters (from 57.5 percent to 79.6 percent); birds (from 60.9 percent to 78.3 percent); and reptiles and amphibians (from 39.2 percent to 61.5 percent).

There was also an increase in the number of pet sitters offering care for livestock (from 26.3 percent in 2016 to 37.9 percent in 2018), horses (from 20.1 percent to 28.2 percent) and exotic pets (from 2.9 percent to 7.6 percent).

“We were happy to see these numbers increase,” said Beth Stultz-Hairston, PSI’s vice president of marketing and operations. “While many of our members have long offered services for a variety of pet types, it appears the demand is growing for more pet sitters to make these standard services.”

PSI’s 2018 State of the Industry Survey also revealed that cats rule when it comes to professional pet-care services, with 97.3 percent of responding pet sitters now offering services for cats, surpassing the 96.2 percent that offer services for dogs. In 2016, 96.1 percent indicated they serviced dogs and 95.5 percent indicated they serviced cats.

“We are glad more and more pet owners are recognizing the benefit of securing professional pet-sitting services—whether they need care for their chinchillas, cats or pet birds,” said PSI president Patti Moran. “With the growth of the pet-sitting industry, pet owners are able to leave their pets at home when they travel and do not have to rely on untrained or unwilling friends, family members or neighbors for their care.”

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