- There are so many "new" therapies, why is massage so good?
- How will I know when my dog or horse needs a massage?
- My horse seems fine. What will massage do for him?
- Is massage the same as trigger point therapy or T-Touch?
- How long does it take to massage a horse?
- How long does it take to massage a dog?
- How soon will it be before I see results?
- If my horse has a problem in, say, the shoulder, why do a full body massage?
- My horse is navicular. Can massage help?
- What does massage do for arthritis and hip dysplasia?
- What does massage do for race horses?
- Do I need to meet with you before service?
- Can I trust having a stranger in my home?
- Are your employees background checked?
- What will you do with my keys?
- What is bonded and insured?
- What does the insurance cover?
- How many times do you visit and at what times?
- Do you provide overnight stays in the home?
- What will you do with our pets?
- Are your rates per pet?
- Do I have to pay now?
- Why is pet sitting so expensive?
- Will you care for Snakes? Rodents? Horses? Goats?
- Do you care for any animals that tried to bite you?
- What are the benefits of dog walking over daycare?
- What can I expect from a professional pet sitter?
Massage is not new. It pre-dates many modern medical procedures. There are
actually statues of Buddha receiving a massage. Prior to the advent of
"wonder" drugs in the 20th century, veterinary manuals encouraged
the use of massage. It is once again among a growing number of alternative
therapies that are being "re-discovered."
Regular massage can aid in the prevention of problem issues. Once a problem
exists, massage helps to break up the tight knots of adhering muscle fibers
which restrict full muscle extension. Massage will find any damaged or
potentially compromised area of muscle and restore it to improved function.
The best function of massage is as a preventative. A regular massage can
find issues before they become major problems. Signs of problems, though,
could include, stepping short, vague backend lameness, refusal of aids or
the opposite problem of "running through" aids. Increased lethargy is also
Massage is also beneficial for horses that are prone to "tying up." Horses
with back trouble and those that are "cinchy" could need work. The relaxation
benefits can also be helpful for horses that tend to colic. Massage throughout
pregnancy is most beneficial.
Massage may surprise you with increased performance from your horse. You
may notice a lengthened stride and a higher energy level.
Even if your horse is fine, massage can maximize their functioning.
No. The type of massage that I do is deep tissue sports massage. I actually
palpate the muscle to find areas where muscle fibers have begun to adhere, and
separate those fibers with massage strokes. Each animal is different, so therefore,
each massage is different.
Approximately one hour or more. I work 26 muscle groups on each side of
the horse. A full body massage. I do spend time, post massage, with the owner
to answer any questions you may have.
Approximately 45 minutes to one hour. I do a full body massage in which I
work 26 muscle groups on each side of the dog. I do spend time, post massage,
with the owner to answer any questions you may have.
Immediately. A noticeable improvement should be seen and felt after the
first massage. With each subsequent massage, a deeper pressure can be used
as the animal grows accustomed to the therapy.
If you are massaging because of a specific issue, and you do not see
improvement after 3 massages, you are probably dealing with something that
is not a soft tissue concern.
Muscle problems are cumulative. If your horse has an issue on his right
front, he may be shifting more weight to his left front to compensate. Also,
he may be rocking back on his haunches to take the weight off of his front.
Then, even when the issue in the right front is resolved, he may still be
body sore elsewhere.
Massage will help. By caring for the whole horse, these secondary problems
can be averted.
Not with the navicular disease itself, unfortunately. However, with the
secondary issues that may occur with navicular disease, yes, massage can help.
Clients that are navicular often have shoulder tension as a recurring problem.
Regular massage can help them.
Since massage is applied to soft tissue, it does not directly work on the
joints. However, the increase in circulation that comes with massage has a
positive effect in the joints. There is growing evidence that massage helps
with the production of synovial fluid, a valuable element in both joints and muscle.
A race horse is one of the ultimate candidates for massage. Each stride counts,
and that stride may be worth thousands. They are asked for maximum exertion in the
minimal amount of time. Massage is an essential element in the most successful
training programs. A pre-event massage will help the muscle system to be in prime
Ready to get the ball rolling?
Yes, an initial consultation is required before your first service can be
provided. This consultation is normally scheduled at least 48 hours prior
to service and usually runs between 30-60 minutes. At this meeting we go
through all the required paperwork as well as tour your home, note your
instructions and schedule your service. This first consultation is free.
Consultations for services later on are available but are not required.
Subsequent consultations and key pickups or drop offs will be charged at
our regular rates.
Please be sure to call early enough to schedule your consultation before
your service starts. We do book full periodically, and will not always have
time to schedule in last minute consultations or service. Also, although we
have an excellent record of obtaining and retaining clients, you'll want to
meet with us to be sure we are a "good fit" for your pets and home
in plenty of time before service starts.
No, that is why we would like to build a trusting relationship with you.
At Guardian Pet Care & Massage, we strive to be honest, reliable,
trustworthy and careful. But we know that having a stranger come into your
home for the first time is nerve-racking, as it should be! To put your mind
at ease, we welcome you to ask us lots of questions at the initial consultation.
You may contact our previous clients as references, and we will provide a list
upon request. Most clients feel completely at ease after the first or second
service, and recommend us to others with enthusiasm.
All services will be provided by the sitter/walker you meet at the initial
consultation. If an emergency should occur with that sitter, all fill-in sitters
or independent contractors that we contract with are thoroughly introduced to
your information, are insured, have a great reputation, and are personally known
by the owner of Guardian Pet Care & Massage. We trust them to come into our
home for our own pet care needs.
We recommend that you do not allow other services or people into your home
during vacations. If other visitors are allowed, they should leave a note of
their visit, and what interaction occurred with the pets, such as feeding, walking,
potty breaks, etc. All other visitors should schedule visits in advance, or leave a
note on the front door or mailbox when they arrive. We will call the police if
we see unexpected visitors.
Yes, all persons employed by Guardian Pet Care & Massage have had criminal
background checks conducted on them and they have clear records. Once hired,
employees are continuously monitored for any new criminal activity.
The owner of Guardian Pet Care & Massage, Jim Fitch, has a background of
38 years in law enforcement and makes honesty and trustworthiness a top priority.
Keys are normally picked up during the initial consultation.
We prefer to receive 2 fully tested keys that we will code with an
identity code instead of your name or address. If only one key is
provided, we will make a backup copy and charge you for it. The second key is kept in a
safe location in case a key is broken or fails to work.
After your sit, your keys will be stored in our secured safe
until your next service request and in case you need emergency
service. This is referred to as our Ready Key Program. The
program allows for quick and easy performance of your routine
service requests and those which are emergencies or unexpected
by you. It also provides you with a source for your keys
if you should ever lock yourself out of your home or if there is
an emergency at your home and you are unavailable. You may
also add us as an additional contact and key holder for your
home alarm service. In these cases, Guardian Pet Care & Massage
will respond with your keys for the cost of a Home Care visit,
avoiding high locksmith charges or damage to your home. The
Ready Key storage service is free of charge to our clients.
Due to concern for the ongoing health and safety of your pets
and for security reasons, keys will NEVER be left in your home
after the last scheduled visit. This would preclude us
from providing further care for your pets if you were unable to
return home on time. If you would like your key returned at the
end of your service, you will need to call us upon your return
and schedule a time to do this transfer, and it will be charged
at the Home Care visit rate plus any travel fees. If you would
like to pick up your key, this can also be scheduled. Keys will
only be returned personally to provide the maximum protection for
your pets and your keys. Any future key pickups will be charged
at the Home Care visit rate plus any travel fees.
Guardian Pet Care & Massage is insured and bonded through Pet
Sitters Associates, LLC to assure the health and safety of your pets and the
care and security of your home.
The insurance covers any pets in our care, custody, and control up to
$10,000. Other claims are insured up to $1,000,000 with a $2,000,000 aggregate.
The insurance also includes coverage for theft, accidental breakage and
Our regular hours are from 7:00 AM - 10:00 PM. You will normally
be scheduling within 2 hour time slots for your visits. Most people choose 30 or 45 minute
visits, about every 4 - 8 hours. If you would like to schedule time
before 7:00 AM or after 10:00 PM, you will be charged $3 extra per visit.
Please schedule us to come frequently enough that we will not be
cleaning up unnecessary accidents. If you do not, the time to clean
up accidents may be charged extra.
We do offer overnight stays, and many new clients initially ask for this service.
However, overnights add significantly to the cost. As a result, most clients that ask for an overnight
decide instead to try 2 - 4 visits during the day and find that it works out great
for them. Many dogs and cats actually prefer not having a non-family member staying
overnight in their home while they sleep. And during the day, after 30 - 45
minutes with a pet sitter, they are done playing and getting attention, and are
ready to go back to a nap until the next visit.
We also find that many pets that are "accident prone" actually have fewer
accidents once they realize that their pet sitter is coming on a schedule. It takes
about 2 days for some dogs to get into a routine. In the meantime, we are happy to
cleanup accidents, put out newspaper or plastic, or do more frequent visits.
Feed, walk, play with, pet, brush, take out for potty breaks, clean up - whatever
you specify. One thing we will not do, we will not take a pet out unleashed on a walk
or run outside of a fenced area. This is for the safety of your pet and is a requirement
of our insurance. A leash and collar must be provided for every dog.
No, there is no extra charge for multiple pets, all rates are by time only and most
all tasks are included. However, you will be required to reserve enough time for us to
complete all tasks requested as well as unexpected tasks like accident clean-up, general
clean-up, necessary contact with you, etc. We will strive to get everything done in the
time you request for your service, but any extra time needed will be charged to you and
must be paid within 14 days of bill receipt.
Deposit in full is due prior to each service period.
For your first service, you will pay at the initial consultation. The
cancellation credit schedule is listed on the
After you are an established client, agreements can be made
for you to leave payment in your home to be picked up at the
first visit by the sitter.
Cash and personal checks are welcome. We also accept payment
with a credit card or debit card through PayPal.
Many people are new to the pet sitting experience, and when they
think of a pet sitter they may automatically compare us to baby-sitters
or teenage house sitters. There is an enormous difference between
professional pet sitters and having friends, family or teenagers
watch your home. In fact, many of our clients have minor to major
horror stories of previous non-professional pet sitting experiences.
As professional pet sitters, we are experienced, trained, insured
and bonded for your peace of mind. We pride ourselves on being
trustworthy, reliable and providing exceptional care for your pets
and home like they were our own.
Yes! We have experience with many animals, personal and professional.
And we take fastidious notes on all your pets, so even unusual pets that
we have not previously cared for will get the best care possible.
Guardian Pet Care & Massage will often take on pets that that other
sitters have rejected. We will not put ourselves in a dangerous situation,
where we might get mauled, attacked or harmed, but we have lots of experience
with more aggressive pets. We know how to work with nippy dogs, terrified cats,
protective dogs and defensive pups. We are also very patient, and find it often
just takes some time and space to get desired behaviors.
For many dogs, daycare environments can reinforce undesirable behavior and may
cause anxiety from the ever changing group of other dogs. Many common dog illnesses
can also be contracted in the daycare settings, making it unsafe for puppies and some
older dogs. A dog walker provides personal and specialized attention for you and your
pet. As your personal pet professional we can help tackle any issue you may have and
help your dog be the best they can be!
Scheduled care with NO SHORTCUTS. We are there when we are scheduled to be there.
In the rare emergency case that we have problems making it to your home in the time span
you select, we will use a backup plan to care for your pets. Part of the backup plan may
be to split a visit into 2 evenly spaced visits, to have an emergency backup sitter cover
the sit, or to call you or your emergency contact to reschedule. If your pet is
inconvenienced in any way we will refund your money or give you a partial credit. And of
course we will clean up all accidents for free, and spend extra time with any pet that
has been distressed.
You are welcome to call at any time to add tasks, check up on your pet, and to verify
upcoming service dates and times. We carry a cell phone, and return most calls the same day.
We use detailed notes to properly and consistently care for your pets and home. It is
important that you fill out all paperwork in a detailed manner, because we attempt to
follow your written notes carefully at every visit.
We leave a detailed written log ( and online blog entries or
email messages, if you request ) of how things went and any problems we came across. We may also
leave answers to your questions, and ideas or tips for better caring for your pet ( things
you may not have thought of - NOT judgments - we know that you know your pet best! ).
Little extras performed to make your home comfortable to come home to, such as: sweeping
up after an excessively shedding cat or dog, cleaning up litter tracks, grooming and brushings,
toenail clippings, ear cleanings, hairball checks, taking garbage out, and temperature
monitoring. All these and more are included in our service.
We are insured, including optional coverage for "mysterious disappearance or
breakage." We are extra careful to secure your home, to not overexcite your pets inside
( in a way that they cause damage to your home or injure themselves ). We don't bring along company
or visitors, except other professional, insured sitters.
We are American Red Cross Pet First Aid and CPR certified. Our vehicles contain a first
aid kit, local veterinarian numbers, and pet first aid and health manuals. We are experienced
with many different types of animals, both large and small.
Our pet sitters will never hit, kick or abuse your pet. If we feel your pet is a
"danger" and may attack us ( so far this hasn't ever happened ), we'll notify you
- but we will not use jumping up or aggressiveness or anything else as an excuse to abuse any
animal. We use generally accepted positive training techniques to dissuade pulling on leashes, jumping
up, biting and other unwanted behavior. We are happy to follow any alternate techniques and
use training items you provide, as long as they don't harm the pet.
Our service is performed discreetly and confidentially.
No worries. You deserve a worry-free time away!
Our enthusiasm is contagious. We love this job. Even on our "worst" days, we work
hard to be enthusiastic and comforting to your pet and usually they return the favor.
Schedule your free consultation now!