How far in advance should I book my Registration Meeting for cat care services?
Please schedule well in advance of your departure date to secure your reservation. For new clients, we ask that you book your registration meeting at least two weeks prior to your scheduled trip. For existing clients, we ask that you give us at least two weeks’ notice but we can sometimes accommodate last minute requests, especially if we already have your key on file.
• Please note: Holidays book up quickly. We recommend you give us as much notice as possible.
• For surcharges during holidays please refer to the NOTES section at the bottom of the Services page.
What should I prepare prior to my registration meeting and what should I expect?
We want to make sure that we are an ideal match to care for your cats. Our registration meeting typically will last anywhere from a forty-five minutes to an hour. Our team member will travel to your home to meet you and your cat(s) and to conduct the meeting. The information you should have handy for the meeting includes:
• Up-to-date vaccination records (if possible)
• Name and phone number(s) of one local emergency contact, such as a neighbor
• List of your cat’s medications and medication schedule
• Your veterinarian’s contact information
• An outline of your cat’s daily routines and activities
• Two copies of your house key
I live in a secure building, how is that handled?
If your building is a fob entrance then we would ask that you leave the fob in your apartment for us to get on the first visit, and then on the last visit we would leave it for you back in your apartment. We do require full access to the building during the time we care for your cats. Due to our schedule we are not able to wait for a desk person to let us in the building and up to your floor each day. If the fob is required for the elevator, then clients generally leave the fob for us in an envelope at the front desk authorizing us to enter their apartment. Again, we leave the fob back in your apartment on the last visit.
I have more than one cat. How will that affect the service charges?
We have a small charge for additional cats because we believe each one deserves and needs individual care and attention during our visit. Please visit our Services page for complete fee information.
How many visits should I schedule when using cat sitting services?
We require a minimum of one visit per 24 hours. For older cats, or those requiring medication, we suggest visits twice a day. Please note that our twice a day visits fill up fast. Our visit time frames for twice a day visits are between 9am – 10:30am and after 4pm.
What is the duration of each cat sitting visit?
A typical visit with one or two cats will take 30 minutes. Depending on the house and number of additional cats, we offer extended visits for an additional fee. Please contact us for more information.
What happens during a typical cat sitting visit?
The tasks to be completed at each visit will be determined during your registration meeting. A typical visit consists of:
• For your cat: fresh food and water, a scooped and refreshed cat box, playtime, treats as needed (if allowed) and massive doses of attention and love.
• For your home: mail and package retrieval, rotation of lights, household plant watering, and garbage take out.
If there are other tasks that you might need please discuss this with your assigned pet care provider in advance.
Do you provide progress reports about my cat during your visits?
We believe the best way to give you peace of mind is to provide you a detailed written update after each of our visits. Please see the description of the Real-Time Photo and Note Updates section on the Service Page.
Do you employ a screening process for your team members?
We put our team members through numerous assessments to assure they will provide professional, reliable and loving care for your cat. Each of our team members is carefully screened with extensive interviews, checked for a criminal-background, trained and supervised in the field. We also request that our clients provide a feedback survey on the specific team member after each assignment to ensure they were an ideal fit.
What happens when a health emergency arises?
We understand emergencies can arise with your cat when least expected and when it does you can rest assured we are trained to deal with most types of emergencies. If we are not qualified to address the issue we will then attempt to contact you and/or your veterinarian (via the phone numbers provided during the registration meeting). If your cat is ill and Whiskers At Home needs to take immediate action to safeguard its well-being, we will do so. For situations where we are unable to contact you or your veterinarian, we will call your designated local emergency vet that is open 24 hours a day, 7 days per week. Doing so allows us to consult with them to determine whether or not to seek urgent attention for your cat. We rely on their discretion and if we are unable to contact you, we will do whatever the emergency veterinarian recommends. This could range from watchful waiting to a trip to an animal emergency room. Please be aware that if we have to visit the emergency veterinarian there will be an additional fee.
What happens when a natural or man-made disaster takes place while my cat is under the care of Whiskers At Home?
Rest assured that when a disaster happens we have protocols in place to handle the situation. We will make every reasonable effort to ensure that your cat and home are safe and secured. Whiskers At Home will first notify the emergency contacts listed on your Emergency Procedures Agreement. If we are unable to reach your emergency contacts, Whiskers At Home will exercise the instructions noted on your Emergency Procedures Agreement. We can either transport your cat to a local pet boarding facility, a designated friend’s house, or he/she can remain in your home. If a disaster occurs but you are not able to return at your scheduled time, Whiskers At Home will continue the care of your cat unless we hear otherwise from you. We will discuss the complete protocols during your registration meeting.
Should I have my neighbor check in on my cat that you are currently caring for?
You are more than welcome to have your neighbor check on your cat. However, we do ask you to let your neighbor know that Whiskers At Home will conduct the primary cat care tasks (feeding, administering medicines, etc.) It is very important that you notify your neighbor that they should not duplicate feedings and medication administration. They can feel free to refresh the water or scoop out the litter box. We would also appreciate it if your neighbor would leave a note for our team member indicating which task they’ve performed.
When will you visit my cat?
Our twice a day visit time frames are between 9am – 10:30am and after 4pm. Once a day visits are normally completed during the time frame of 11am – 3pm.
What are your hours of operation?
Our service hours are from 9am to 6pm 7 days a week. We will make every effort to minimize any delay or interruption of your and your cat’s schedules to ensure a distraction and stress-free day or vacation.
How safe are my keys?
When not in use, your keys are kept in secured lock boxes. Your keys are labeled ONLY with your cat’s name. Your personal information will never be identified on the label. We recommend that you use our Key Service to avoid extra trip fees if we need to pick them up or drop them off. If you are uneasy about using our Key Service, we will make arrangements before and after each pet service to meet with you to get and return your keys. (To find out about our trip fees please go to the Services page.) Alternatively, you can purchase a key lock box and provide us the access code and the location of the lockbox.
Using our Key Service has other advantages. If you have a last-minute trip you would not need to first arrange for us to pick up the keys. Also, if you are ever locked out of your home we will already have copies of your keys on file for you to use and return to us.
We do not leave your keys in your home when our services are completed. Your cat’s well-being is important to us and we want to be certain we can access your house and continue their care if there is an unexpected change in plans such as a delayed flight or family emergency.
What other cat related errands are provided?
We offer Key Service, Lock-Out Service, Emergency Vet Trips, and Supply Runs to our current clients.
Are you licensed, bonded and insured?
We are licensed, fully bonded and insured and will gladly provide a copy of this information. We are also proud members of the National Association of Professional Pet Sitters (NAPPS). Having these credentials shows a level of commitment and professionalism you can trust. You will have peace of mind when you hire our services.
How can I help prevent damage to my home caused by my cat?
You know your cat better than we do. If they have unruly habits such as chewing, getting into trash, clawing furniture, etc., we ask that you take proper precautions (pet proof your home) to ensure your cat does not have the opportunity to act unruly. If something does happen that causes damage due to our negligence we are fully insured and bonded. You can rest assured we will cover the loss if Whiskers At Home is responsible.
What happens if my plans change (delayed flight, extra hours at the office, family emergency) and I cannot make it home on time?
Our primary concern is always the health and well-being of your cat. If for some reason your plans change just give us a call and we will make sure your cat is taken care of. If Whiskers At Home is not able to reach you at the time of your scheduled arrival to ascertain that you have returned home, we will assume that you have been held up and will continue care until we reach you.
What procedures are in place if I am no longer available to care for my cat?
Should something happen to you while your cat is under our care we will release them along with any of their care equipment to the person listed on your authorization release form.
What are accepted forms of payment?
We accept checks. Please contact us to find out more details.
What is the cancellation policy?
Whiskers At Home requires a minimum 4 days’ advance notice for cancellation of any scheduled cat care service. Failure to provide 4 days’ notice will result in a cancellation fee of no less than 50% of the invoice for the cancelled service.
Failure to provide 24 hours advance notice for cancellation of any scheduled service will result in a cancellation fee equal to 100% of the invoice of the scheduled service.
Returning home early is the same as a last minute cancellation and is charged at 100% of the original scheduled service.
Holidays are our peak service periods. Any cancellation with less than 7 days notice will result in a cancellation fee of no less than 50% of the invoice for the scheduled pet care. These holidays include New Year’s Eve, New Year’s Day, Memorial Day, July 4th, Labor Day, Thanksgiving, Christmas Eve and Christmas Day.