(WHTM) — If you need a pet sitter, there is an app for that now. Rover, a new service sometimes called the Airbnb of pet sitting, is a lot easier than asking neighbors, but one couple learned that it does come with some risks.
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Jonathan Cage and his wife, Jessica, love their “pandemic puppy” Buckley. So when they went away over Christmas, they hired a dog sitter from Rover who said she would be at the house with Buckley all day. But Jessica says her home security system’s alert told a different story.
She says the sitter did not spend hours with Buckley, but instead was barely there. “I noticed that she had come and gone. She had come to do a check in and left again in five minutes. I thought well that’s strange!”
So the couple reviewed their outdoor cameras. “When we were going back through the camera footage, we pieced together that in between 11:00 in the morning, and 9:00 at night, she had been there for maybe 5 minutes total,” Jonathan said.
Jonathan and Jessica say not only had Buckley been left alone for hours, but they then discovered droppings in several places on the first floor. “He had gone to the bathroom several times on the rug there, and maybe once or twice in the hallway.”
Rover has an A+ rating from the Better Business Bureau (BBB), but it has been sued for dogs dying or getting injured under a watcher’s care. To protect yourself and your pets, the BBB suggests:
- meet personally with any Rover sitter before hiring them;
- read sitter reviews thoroughly;
- and look for sitters who have passed Rover’s Enhanced background check, not just the basic one
Rover tells us it is investigating Jonathan and Jessica’s complaint, and wants to make things right with them. Next time, however, they will spend time with a dog sitter before trusting them with Buckley.
“Get to know the person yourself, trust yourself. If something seems off, maybe it is,” Jonathan said.
If you have any issues with a dog sitter, be sure to report it to warn the next family so you don’t waste your money.