Caring for senior pets can be challenging. It can include: vet appointments, a gentle touch, special medication, and extra attention. This specialty niche for a pet sitter is nothing short of miracle work. San Francisco’s Five-Star Rover sitter Cesar C. has made a name for himself by focusing his much needed pet sitting services on this special group of pets. Pet sitting is not Cesar’s full-time job; however, Cesar and his husband, Hoa, are building a strong side business, and it’s making a difference in the lives of senior dogs and their owners.
Cesar’s love of “old souls” started when he and his husband began fostering senior dogs. “I was amazed at how unique and special each senior dog was,” Cesar recalls. Some of the dogs that Cesar fell in love with were often deemed unadoptable. Unfortunately, as many adoptions go, older dogs generally don’t find homes right away and are passed over for the younger puppies. “I take them in and give them space and care,” Cesar adds.
Over the years, Cesar’s expert hands have helped dogs show their “real spirit.” He and Hoa have helped facilitate over 15 senior dogs being adopted. Finding these dogs homes that “really wanted them” was how Cesar found his first Rover sitting client. “The new owner realized how well we knew the dog and she also trusted us,” Cesar explains. Months before, Cesar had hired Rover sitters to look after his own dogs. When the adopter request Cesar sit her new pet, Cesar logged into Rover.com, and it took the less than 10 minutes to set up a profile. The rest went from there.
Apparently, something resonated with the local population because Cesar quickly found himself inundated with messages for sitting requests. Now, Cesar and Hoa are hosts to 5-6 dogs per month.
It’s more than just dog sitting for senior dogs. It’s a “joyous thing” for Cesar to be a Rover sitter. Whenever he gets a new client he goes above what he would consider the norm to make sure the dog and owner are comfortable and taken care of through his services.
“I specifically request that they fill out the Care Instructions in their profiles,” Cesar says. When owners complete the Care Instructions, Cesar can ensure there’s consistency in their pet’s feeding and walking schedules. He also makes sure he uses the same training and commands that the dogs are accustomed to. “When they go back to their owners, they are pretty much the same dogs that were dropped off,” Cesar says. This creates peace of mind for the owners and also reduces the stress on pets. This is especially important for senior pets.
“Having taken care of my dogs into their senior years, you begin to realize that you and these loved ones won’t be together forever,” Cesar says. “And that puts your relationship into perspective.” Throughout his work as a foster parent for senior dogs, Cesar built the skills and knowledge required to also become a Five-Star Rover sitter for senior dogs. “All that comes with it [caring for senior dogs] gave me the confidence and experience to care for other senior dogs,” Cesar says.
Most Rover pet sitters earn $1,000 per month. However, Cesar’s passion for dog sitting goes beyond just the extra income he makes as a Rover sitter. “I just get so taken in by these souls. They are so receptive to love and kindness and caring,” Cesar explains. “My heart goes out to the senior dogs.”
With his experience as a foster dog parent, he knows that after a few weeks of love and care their “real spirit” shines through. This is what gives Cesar his motivation. It takes persistence and patience to foster a senior dog and to trust he will eventually be adopted. As a sitter, it also takes persistence and patience. “It never fails that after a while their real selves come out of their shell,” Cesar says with a smile.
Being a Rover pet sitter has many perks beyond the income. Rover sitters love the flexible schedule, the ability to create a business that works in their life, and the Rover Guarantee that gives sitter’s access to 24/7 support for dogs in their care including vet assistance.
In addition, Cesar shares, “It’s really helped me with the loss of two of my dogs,” Cesar says. His remaining dog, Pepe, is 18 years old, and it’s good to have other dogs in the house. This gives Pepe the chance to socialize and play with other dogs. “Whenever the time comes for Pepe to cross that rainbow bridge it helps me to know that there will always be dogs that need love and care,” Cesar says.
Visit Rover.com, and learn more about the benefits of starting your own dog sitting business.