Pet Sitters International Celebrates Professionalism in the Industry

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Pet-care providers honored during Professional Pet Sitters Week, March 1 - 7.

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Professional pet sitting has become a significant part of the pet care service industry in the past 15 years

Pet Sitters International, the world's largest association for professional pet sitters, asks communities and pet owners to help recognize professional pet sitters and the value of in-home pet care during Professional Pet Sitters Week, March 1-7.

Introduced by Pet Sitters International (PSI) in 1995, the Professional Pet Sitters Week campaign seeks to educate pet owners about the advantages of in-home pet care, and encourages the public to explore professional pet sitting as a viable and rewarding career opportunity.

"Professional pet sitting has become a significant part of the pet care service industry in the past 15 years," said Patti Moran, PSI's president. "Many professional pet sitters put in long hours, seven days a week, 365 days a year, so they can provide personal in-home care for pets of all kinds."

"These small business owners and their staffs truly deserve recognition for their tireless efforts and the optimal care they provide to pets," Moran said.

According to PSI's 2008 State of the Industry Survey, 98% of pet-sitting businesses are independently owned

The majority of PSI members service both dogs and cats (97%) while two-thirds also service fish, birds and caged pets. The top five services offered by members are basic pet care, dog walking, care of special needs pets, pet transportation and overnight pet care.

In the last decade, pet sitting has become a unique and preferred alternative to boarding facilities or having to rely on family and neighbors to check in on their pets. With 63% of U.S. households owning a pet, more households are turning to professional pet sitters for pet care they can trust when working or traveling.

"Peace of mind" is an added benefit that pet owners receive when using a professional pet-sitting service. With 97% of PSI members carrying pet-sitter liability insurance and 84% carrying both insurance and bonding, pet owners' pets and their homes are secure when they must be away.

Further setting professional pet sitting services apart from hobbyists or fly-by-night pet-care businesses is a commitment to continuing education. PSI members take advantage of a diverse offering of educational resources, including PSI's member magazine, The Pet Sitters' WORLD, and an increasing number are taking advantage of the association's rigorous accreditation program.

To locate a PSI member pet sitter in your area or for more information about pet sitting as a profession, visit PSI's Web site at http://www.petsit.com or call (336) 983-9222, ext. 1.

About Pet Sitters International
Established in 1994, Pet Sitters International (PSI) is the world's largest educational association for professional pet sitters, representing more than 8,000 independent professional pet-sitting businesses in the United States, Canada and abroad. PSI provides members with access to affordable bonding and liability insurance and educational resources such as PSI's Accreditation Program, The Pet Sitter's WORLD magazine and PSI's annual Quest convention. PSI provides pet owners with The Pet Owner's WORLD magazine and thepetsitBlog.com. For more information, visit petsit.com, home of the Official Pet Sitter Locatorâ„¢ or visit the PSIStoreOnline to select from more than 2,000 pet sitter and pet owner products.

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Beth Stultz
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