There isn't a relationship that isn't built with a foundation of trust, but in our duty as pet sitters we're not only entrusted with the care of an individual's pets we are also entrusted with the safety and security of their home. As professional pet sitters/dog walkers this is of the utmost importance to us and building the relationship with our clients and their pets builds that trust. However trust is a two way street and distrust from one party can lead to disastrous results.
Imagine if you will that we aren't talking about pet sitting/dog walking, but are instead talking about going out for dinner. You've read some recent news articles about people finding teeth in their food and your entire dinner you're poking through your food making sure there aren't any teeth, because of this you aren't able to enjoy your dinner. Your level of distrust at the restaurant industry caused you to judge all restaurants unfairly and distrust the one you were at.
As professional pet sitters/dog walkers we are often judged for the crimes of all pet sitters/dog walkers. The rise of the on demand dog walking services has not made this any easier and now more than ever we're hearing people say they aren't sure they'd trust a stranger in their home or how they aren't comfortable paying up front because they don't know if we'll show up. The former complain is easy to dis-spell thanks to our use of Time to Pet, and the latter I often tell people that this is a business built on trust and if they aren't certain we will show up then perhaps in home pet care isn't the best choice for them.
My point of the last two paragraphs is pet sitting/dog walking companies should be judged like any other business. It would be ridiculous if you read an article about someone finding teeth in their food in an Orlando area restaurant and then felt that you had to check the restaurant you went out to that night because restaurants put teeth in food. The same is true of pet sitters. There is a list of crimes miles long that pet sitters have committed when entrusted to care for people's pets and homes ranging from the comically absurd of trespassing in order to take a nap to the deadly serious of stealing prescription medicine to peddle on the streets. That is why the meet and greet is so important. It isn't just our opportunity to go discuss the care of your pet it is your opportunity to get to know us and see if we're people you feel comfortable having in your home while you're away (just to note the reverse is also true for all we know you're a family of cannibals using your cute miniature poodles to lure unsuspecting pet sitters to their untimely end).
Relationships are built on trust and as in home pet care professionals providing the services of dog walking and pet sitting relationships and trust are key to our business. If there isn't trust then it becomes that much harder for us to do our job and in all honesty we don't want to work for people that have no interest in trusting us and establishing a relationship built on a solid foundation of trust.