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Questions to Ask the Owner When You're Dog Sitting (Part One)

Updated on July 22, 2011

You will have a lot of responsibility if you are caring for someone else’s pet. If you’re going to be taking care of the family dog while they are on vacation or a business trip, there are several questions you need to ask. It’s helpful to have a file with the dog’s name on it and all of the important information inside. You’ll be prepared for any unexpected things that might occur.

Medical and Health Information

The most important information to ask is about the health of the dog. You want to know if you should expect any issues while they are in your care.

What is the age of the dog? If the dog is a senior, you may notice stiffness when they get up or that they don’t hear you when you call their name. They may also lay around more which is normal for older dogs. But for a young dog, this would be cause for concern. So knowing their age is an important piece of information to have.

Are there any health concerns? They may have problems with their teeth or toenails or get an upset stomach if they eat too much. These are all important things to know when caring for someone else’s dog. You need to know what kind of things require a call to the vet and what may be reoccurring issues. This is the point where you would ask if they are on any medications.

Do they have any allergies? Dogs can sometimes have allergies to shampoos, foods or even grass. Even if it’s not serious, it’s helpful to know this if they start scratching or showing other symptoms.

What is the name and phone number of the veterinarian? This would be the person you would call if you have concerns while the family is gone. That way, you won’t interrupt the owner but will have someone who is familiar with the pet in case you notice anything unusual.


The medical history and health is vital information to know about each pet you are taking care of. Once you are familiar with them, you will learn their normal behavior and be aware when they aren’t acting like their usual self. Being able to handle any issues that might come up will make you a valuable dog sitter that will make you as popular with the owner as you will be with their pet.

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