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Why I do a free new client visit

It always surprises me when people call me up for the first time to hire me to sit their pets and then proceed to give me all the instructions over the phone. I tell them I need to come over first and do a free new client visit and they are surprised by that. I have had people on vacation call me from the hotel expecting me to just come over and sit their pet while they are out getting messages, true story, with out ever meeting them or the pet or them meeting me. So that begs the question why do I need to do a free new client visit?

- Most important I want to meet the pet(s) and see if it is the right fit for both of us. I try not sit aggressive pets, although you don't always find out untill you get to the first visit with out the owners home. Sometimes pets have a male/female preference and won't take to me. If it's a rescue dog they are sometimes fear agressive and I can determine if I can handle them for a period of time.

- People don't remember every detail over the phone like meds., routine, etc. and may not remember to leave every thing out. Some even forget small animals like fish & turtles.

- It is important to learn where everything is kept (food, leashes, etc.) When dealing with senior pets it is important to get the lay of the land as some have special set ups like boards over stairs, so knowing which door to take them out is important. I've had dogs crated in wierd places that I would miss if not shown at the house.

- Many clients just give me the code to the garge door which is fine until the power goes out. So I like to get a key as a back up.

Many times the new client visit is an interview for me, however I am surprised that most times people hand me their key as soon as I walk in the door. Then I make sure the sit is right for all of us, pets and client. So it is a great opportunity to lay the foundation for a good future working relationship.

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