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I am all about stifling Murphy’s law as much as I can. I will need the name and number of someone who can care for your cats in case something happens to me.
I’ll need to know where your breaker box and water shut off are. I’ve had two hot water tanks go on me so far. Which means my maintenance experience in the National Park Service kicks in, turn off the water heater at the breaker box. Many valves on hot water tanks are frozen open, hence the water shut off.
I’ll need two keys because I need a back-up key. I have locked myself out of a house once when I could not get in. My very first pet sit I didn’t check to be sure the keys worked and they didn’t, that’s why it’s good to know where your spare key is. And I verify the key you give me works while I’m at your house. It’s a scary thing not being able to get in a house when a cat needs medication.
I know my contract is long, eight pages. It gives us both lots of information so we both have clear expectations of how I will care for your cats.
I have two very tough questions. I ask you who would be the guardian of your cats if you die and what do I do with the body of your cat if she dies.
I’ve had two different client’s die where this information was pertinent. And I have had three different pets die, a mouse, a bird and a dog. I usually ask if there is room in your freezer.
Neither pleasant topics, but let’s stifle Murphy’s law as much as possible.
Then we get into the care of your cats. When the garbage goes out, if there is a newspaper, where the vacuum and broom are etc.