What is NAPPS Certification? The certification program is a broad-range and in-depth self-paced course covering all topics relevant to pet sitting, including pet care, health, nutrition and behavior for a variety of animals. It also includes business development and management, pet safety and a complete pet first aid course.
Certification acknowledges that the pet sitter is a serious professional who has obtained a level of expertise through personal study. Once the course of study has been completed and a passing score on the examination has been achieved, pet sitters and pet owners can be assured of a meaningful credential.
As a “ahem” mature adult, I have made the transition from the world of non-profit and government administration to direct customer service in the form of professional pet sitting. What that means is… I get to do what I love now! I have put in my time “making a living” now I’m making a life.
I wrote that 7 years ago when I first began my pet sitting business. I had just left a job with the State of Georgia and was glad of it. Can’t say I’ve missed it in the last seven years! I’ve learned a lot about pets and people in the intervening years. I still don’t consider myself an animal “expert”, but then that was never my goal. I am most comfortable – and I believe my clients are most comfortable – knowing my clients are the experts about their own pets. That doesn’t mean I haven’t learned a thing or two about taking care of pets in all these years! That also doesn’t mean I won’t offer advice if asked or the situation warrants (all pet parents aren’t knowledgeable about everything after all.)
I’ve learned how important the relationships I build with both my people and pet clients are to me. These relationships are the foundation of what sets my business apart.
Even though some things have changed since I first started – I’m using an online client database and reservation system. I bill and clients have the option of paying online. I carry around a computer with me – we all do now, right!? – much of the important parts of my business have remained the same. Commitment, responsibility, caring, communication, flexibility. These are some of the qualities that remain constant in working with my clients.
I won’t say my clients are like family. (That’s not always a compliment anyway.) But, I do develop a caring relationship with many of my clients. After all, I’m visiting their homes and taking care of loved members of their families. That is what makes what I do more than just a J-O-B.
Now I’m looking forward to the next seven years (or more)!