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Pet Sitters and NAPPS

Meghan Ross
March 14, 2017

Why you should join the National Association of Professional Pet Sitters and become a certified pet sitter.



When it comes to hiring someone to care for your pet, would you rather rely on the kid next door or a trained professional?

"It's similar to a child,” says Cathe Delaney, administrative director for the National Association of Professional Pet Sitters (NAPPS). “Many people who hire a pet sitter consider these animals their child."

If you're looking to build your pet-sitting business, show your commitment to your field by getting involved in professional organizations.

NAPPS-certified pet-care professional Debra Farrington of Hershey, Pa., says, "A confident pet sitter is far more likely to be a successful pet sitter, and clients recognize and appreciate confidence."

NAPPS is the only nonprofit professional trade association for pet sitters in the U.S. Membership, which costs $160 per year, is open to part-time and full-time pet sitters.

NAPPS Member Benefits

  • Become a certified pet sitter. Pet sitters can obtain their Professional Pet Sitter Certification through NAPPS University. This at-home study course is open to members and non-members, and covers pet care, business management and animal first-aid.
  • Continue your education. Members receive a quarterly magazine and have access to other educational resources. Additionally, NAPPS University offers certificate courses for increasing your pet-care knowledge. These specialized courses qualify as continuing education credits and can be applied toward maintaining your Professional Pet Sitter Certification. Members receive discounted rates for the certificate courses.
  • Get connected. NAPPS offers a variety of networking opportunities, including online chat groups, monthly teleconferences and the organization's annual conference. There is also a member directory, where members can find contact information for other members. Delaney strongly urges pet sitters to take advantage of networking opportunities, which provide ideas and support and make membership a worthwhile investment.
  • Receive discounts on insurance and bonding. Members can purchase bonding and liability, and well as health, dental, life and liability insurances, at discounted rates.
  • Show your commitment to ethical behavior. All NAPPS members sign the organization's pledge of professional conduct. Delaney explains that taking the pledge shows a commitment to being "an advocate for animals."
  • Run a professional business. The members-only section of the NAPPS website has business plans, information and resources. This includes more than 60 business forms members can access.
  • Develop your own website. Members have access to the myNAPPS service for developing their own pet sitter website. There is an additional monthly fee, however.

Membership in a national organization shows commitment to being a quality pet sitter. NAPPS members are provided the tools necessary to care for animals properly, guide families through pet questions, run a successful business and continue to develop professionally.

Meghan Ross is a freelance writer in Illinois.

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