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FAQ

Do You Have More Questions About Our Services?

(Click on a question below read our answers.) 

We’re happy to answer any questions you have about our services.

Please call us at (828) 216-0161 or email us directly using the contact form to the right.

  • Setting up services is easy.  Please call us at 828-216-0161 or use the Contact form on the right side of the page.

    We are happy to answer any questions you have about pet care for your family members.

    If we miss your call, phone messages will be returned within the same day, and as soon as possible.  Emails are also returned ASAP.

    Once we have connected by phone we’ll scheduled your Meet & Greet.  During the Meet & Greet we’ll spend some time getting to know your pets, discuss your pet’s care, gather some information about you and your home, check veterinary records, collect a key and set up your New Client account in our scheduler.

    A Meet & Greet Visit is required for all new clients at least 15 days prior to the start of the first scheduled pet service.  There is no charge for a Meet & Greet.

  • Payments for Pet Sitting Services are billed a day or two before the start of service.

    Dog walk services are billed weekly or as pre-paid services.

    Payment by credit card is preferred.  We accept Visa, Mastercard, Discover and American Express.

  • We highly recommend that services be scheduled at least 7 days in advance, especially for the Summer Vacation time and around the Holidays.

    Life sometimes sends us last minute emergencies. Please CALL 828-216-0161 for last minute service requests. Your pets are very important to us, and we’ll always do our best to accommodate last minute emergency requests from current clients.

    We do not take same-day requests from unknown clients.  A Meet & Greet is required for all new clients at least 7 days prior to the first services.

     

  • No. Your pets remain in their own home and we come to them.

    A word about in-home boarding/pet sitting:  In North Carolina it is illegal to pet sit/board in one’s home/apartment/rental property – for a fee – without a boarding/kennel license from the Department of Agriculture-Animal Welfare Division.  Earning a boarding/kennel license requires an intensive inspection by the state, and permitting by the city/county. It is highly unlikely a person living in an apartment, rental home, or their own home will be granted a permit.  Boarding/Kennel facilities are required by law to post their kennel/boarding license for public view. 

    If you decide that in home pet sitting/boarding in someone’s home is the only course for your pets, we strongly recommend asking for proof of boarding/kennel license, proof of insurance and check their references. You can check inspection reports for legitimate boarding/kennel facilities on the Dept of Agriculture/Animal Welfare Division Website: http://www.ncagr.gov/vet/aws/Inspections

    Do your homework. Don’t leave your pets with just anyone. 

    Ask us about our day-time pet sitting, hourly pet babysitting, Hotel visits and Overnight Pet Sitting.

  • Yes. Around Town Hound asks for two (2) keys to your home. Garage door openers, touch codes or remote alarm FOBs are not accepted.

    There have been occasions when those devices fail. It is much less expensive for you to provide 2 keys than to face a locksmith’s bill in the event your pet sitter is unable to enter the home because of a failed garage door opener or touch pad. Your house key will be identified with a unique code that gives no indication of your address, and kept in a secure location.

    We will collect your key at the Meet & Greet.  We require a key to set up service. After the initial Meet & Greet we charge a $35 for each trip to pick-up or return a key.

     

  • Absolutely. We encourage you to turn your alarms on when away from home. Many alarm companies will allow you to set up a code specifically for the pet sitter, so that you don’t have to give us your master code. We will discuss this at the Meet & Greet visit.

    Alarm FOBs are not accepted as means of arming or disarming an alarm system. If you have an alarm system that can be remotely controlled from phone or tablet, we will still require a unique code for our use.

    Around Town Hound is not responsible for accidental alarms activated by pets, electrical outages, or incidents where alarms have been turned on remotely and we are unaware the alarm has been set.

  • Your pet’s health and well-being is our top priority, and we take emergency care seriously. We will discuss your instructions for your pet’s emergency care at our initial consultation visit.

    If your pet suffers a life-threatening emergency (bleeding, shock, trauma) we will immediately transport them to the nearest Emergency Pet Hospital – in Buncombe County that is R.E.A.C.H.  You, or your emergency contact if you are unavailable, will be called once we reach the emergency pet hospital and put in direct contact with the emergency veterinary staff.

    If your pet is ill, showing signs of illness or suffers a non-life-threatening emergency we will call you immediately. Then transport your pet to your preferred veterinarian or R.E.A.C.H. (after hours or on weekends.). Once at the hospital we will be in constant contact about your pet’s care.

    Please note there are additional charges for emergency vet visits.

  • Each pet care relationship is considered on a case-by-case basis. Your pet’s needs come first, always. 

    Around Town Hound is equipped to handle most pet care situations including special needs pets and medication administration. There are, however, some instances where Around Town Hound may choose not to provide service. Please call and we will discuss any questions you have concerning your pets.

    Smoking – we do not accept pet sitting or dog walking assignments where smoking is permitted inside the home.

  • For the health and well-being of your pets we do not provide every-other-day pet care. No exceptions.

    Dogs – For short trips we require at least two visits per day for healthy dogs. For young dogs, elder dogs, dogs with medical condtions or on medications we require at least 3 visits per day.  For trips longer than 4 days we require your dogs to be visited at least 3 times each day.

    Cats will be visited no less than once per day.

  • To ensure consistent quality care for your pets Around Town Hound requires that we are the ONLY pet sitter entering your home and providing pet care during the period of time for which you have hired us.

    If anyone will be providing care for your pets during that time – excepting immediate family members who live in your home – we cannot ensure the safety and security of your home and your pets, and will not agree to provide care for the requested dates. The purpose of this policy is to ensure continuity of care for your pets and your home, and for issues of insurance liability.

    We also recommend that household services like housekeepers/maids be suspended while you are away. We cannot ensure the safety and security of your pets if others are coming in and out of your home.

  • Do you need pet care over the Holidays?  We will be happy to  accommodate you. 

    The Holidays and minor holiday weekends are peak time for pet sitters, and we follow a strict NO OVERBOOKING rule, to ensure your pets receive the care they deserve.

    There are certain Holidays for which we charge a Premium rate.  Those holidays are:   Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day.

    Minor Holidays we charge for:  Easter weekend, Memorial Day weekend, 4th of July, Labor Day weekend and Thanksgiving Weekend.  Holiday charges apply to the full Holiday weekend, i.e. Thanksgiving weekend is Thursday through Sunday.

    Premium Holiday Rates:  Add $8 per visit.

    Minor Holiday Rates: Add $5 per visit.

    Holiday Reservations

    Holiday reservations are accepted up to one weeks in advance.  Full Payment is due at the time of reservation.

    Last minute reservations are reserved only for our current clients, on a first come first served basis. Please call us if you have last minute plans and require pet care.  828-216-0161

    Cancellation – Holiday cancellations must be received no later than 7 days prior to the start of the pet sitting. No exceptions.  There will be NO REFUND for cancellations received within the 7 days prior to the start of your pet sitting. This policy applies to the following Holidays:  New Year’s Eve & Day, Thanksgiving weekend, Christmas Eve & Day.

    We follow this strict cancellation policy during Holiday periods because of the increased demand for services, and to be respectful to our staff.  Once we commit to a reservation, we commit staff to the services.  We turn away business once the schedule is full.  Our staff plan their holidays around their pet sitting/dog walking schedule and plan to spend time with your pets…away from their own homes, friends, family and their own pets.  Usually we are unable to fill a spot that is cancelled within a week of the reservation.

     

     

     

  • Our Service Policies

    Reservations

    Please call or email to make reservations. Pet Sitting Reservations must be made at least 7 days in advance.   We will do our best to accommodate last minute reservation requests, especially in emergency situations, but cannot guarantee we can accommodate your pet’s regular schedule. There is a $60 minimum service requirement for all first time pet sitting services.

    Holiday Reservations

    We accept Holiday reservations up to one week in advance.  Full Payment is due at the time of reservation.

    Last minute Holiday reservations are reserved only for our current clients, on a first come-first served basis. Please call for availability.

    Payment

    Payment in full is expected at the start of service, for non-holiday pet sitting services.

    Payment in full is charged at the time of reservation for all Holiday Pet Sittings.

    Dog Walk Services are billed weekly for On-Demand walks, and monthly for our Daily Dog Walk Service.

    Additional charges that occur once pet sitting or dog walking service has begun will be billed at the end of the additional services.

    There will be a $10 late fee for every 10 days an invoice is past due.

    Cancellations and Refunds

    Cancellations are accepted by phone or email only. No Texting.

    All regular, non-holiday Pet Sitting Services are subject to a one week, 7 dayss cancellation period. Cancellation period begins seven days before the first day of the service period. Client is responsible for half (50%) of the total invoice if services are canceled within this time period.

    Holiday Cancellation – Holiday cancellations must be received no later than 7 days prior to the start of the pet sitting. No exceptions.  There will be no refund for cancellations received within the 7 days prior to the start of your pet sitting. This policy applies to the following Holidays:  New Year’s Eve & Day, Thanksgiving weekend, Christmas Eve & Day.

    We follow this strict cancellation policy during Holiday periods because of the increased demand for services, and to be respectful to our staff.  Once we commit to a reservation, we commit staff to the services.  We turn away business once the schedule is full.  Our staff plan their holidays around their pet sitting/dog walking schedule and plan to spend time with your pets…away from their own homes, friends, family and their own pets.  Usually we are unable to fill a spot that is cancelled within a week of the reservation.

    Dog walk service cancellations must be made within 24 hours of the next scheduled walk. Client will be responsible for 100% of the cancelled walk for same-day cancellations. There are no refunds or credits for unused portions of dog walk packages.

    Refunds:

    We do not offer refunds or service credits once service has begun. There are no refunds or service credits issued for early returns during the course of a pet sitting reservation. There are no refunds or credits for un-used walks in dog walk packages.

    Minimum Visit Requirements

    Dogs: For trips up to 3 days, we require at least 2 visits per day. For trips 4 days or longer we require at least 3 visits per day.

    Cats must be visited no less than once every 24 hours.

    For the health and safety of your pets, we make no exceptions to these requirements.

    House Keys

    Client is to issue two (2) keys to their home at the time of the initial consultation. Keys must be received at the Meet & Greet to set up service. After the initial Meet & Greet, we will charge a $35 service fee for each pick up/drop off of client keys. Client keys will be identified with a secret code. For households in apartment /condos which require a secure entry FOB or door access FOB, we require two copies of the security FOB to keep on file. All costs for the security FOB are the responsibility of the client.

    Aggressive Animals

    Around Town Hound accepts all dog breeds, regardless of unfair reputation. However, Aggressive pets are not accepted. We will consult with you and your pets if there are concerns about aggression.

    Pet Supplies

    Clients must provide all supplies related to the care of their pets including but not limited to food, water, bowls, collars and leashes, litter, cage liners, medications, toys, jackets/sweaters, vaccination records and flea/tick control products. If in the event Around Town Hound must purchase supplies in order to continue care for pets, the pet owner will be billed for the cost of the supplies purchased, the trip and time.

    Early / Late Returns

    Please call when you return home! It is the pet owner’s responsibility to notify the pet sitter regarding early or delayed returns.

    In the event your return travel is delayed, or you are having so much fun you are staying an extra day or so…we can accommodate additional visits for delayed returns.  Please call us or email to add these visits.

    There are no refunds for unused visits due to early returns.

    Inclement Weather Policy

    Extreme weather conditions will possibly change scheduled visits, either later than scheduled or shortened, per our discretion. Extreme weather is classified as snow, ice, extreme cold, extreme heat, hurricane/tropical storm, tornado on the ground, fire and flooding. Every attempt will be made by your pet sitter to arrive safely for scheduled visits. The schedule will be adjusted based on driving conditions.

    In dire conditions, visits may be cancelled or we will call on your emergency back up for assistance. (This is why it is so important to have an emergency contact or neighbor contact.) You will be contacted by phone in the event that any emergency weather protocol be put in to action.

    Co-Pet Sitting/Shared Pet Sitting

    To ensure consistent quality care for your pets Around Town Hound Pet Care Service requires that we are the ONLY pet sitters entering your home and providing care during the period of time for which you have hired us. If anyone will be providing care for your pets during that time – excepting immediate family members who live in your home – we cannot ensure the safety and security of your home and your pets, and will not agree to provide care for the requested dates. The purpose of this policy is to ensure continuity of care for your pets and your home, and for issues of insurance liability.

    Communication and Updates

    Around Town Hound will contact the pet owner immediately if there are any issues with your pet’s health and well-being. Our emergency protocol will be explained during the Initial Consultation. Additionally, we will be happy to provide you with communication by email after each service visit. Sometimes we can catch your pet on camera and will send a photo so you can see your furry-kids are doing well.

    Confidentiality

    Around Town Hound is grateful for your trust in our care of your pets and home. We highly respect your privacy and, barring exceptional circumstances, will maintain complete confidentiality on all matters concerning you, your pets and your home.