Pet sitters aren’t just for when you’re on vacation. You might think that hiring a regular pet sitter sounds like a lavish move, but the average pet sitter only charges between $10-20 per visit. If you need an occasional playmate for your pet, it would be an extremely reasonable investment, and probably less than what some of us spend on Starbucks per month. Even if you need daily pet-care while you’re at work, the cost of a sitter stopping in will probably be less than the cost of shampooing rugs and replacing chewed up shoes all month long.

If you’re wondering if you can benefit from a pet sitter, here are some instances where they can be life-savers:

Busy schedule- Just because you work a lot of hours doesn’t mean you can’t be a pet owner. Pets are such a positive energy to have in our lives that sometimes I don’t know how people live without them. People with overloaded schedules are more in need of pets due to the calming effect their affection has on us. The only way to successfully be a busy pet parent is by employing the help of a sitter. Having someone to let your dog out for potty breaks, play with, and feed your pet while you’re away will result in a happy healthy pet for you to return home to.

New baby- New babies are a great reason to hire a pet sitter, as is any life-changing event that’s going to cause you to have much less time to focus on your pet. Having to suddenly take care of an elderly or sick relative can also leave you feeling exhausted and drained. If you find that after a long day of caring for others, that you don’t have much enthusiasm to throw a ball around, don’t feel guilty about hiring some outside help for these simple pet chores. Your pet will be much happier and it will be one less task for you to worry about.

Exercise- It seems that some pets need more exercise than people, and depending on your schedule or mobility, you may not be up for all the walking and playing your pet is craving. A pet sitter can easily take care of this for you, even if it’s only a few times a week. Making sure your pet gets regular play and exercise will most likely lengthen their lifespan and keep them in the best physical shape possible.

Home security- One of the great benefits of having a pet sitter visit your home while you’re away, either on vacation or simply at work, is that it deters criminals. Pet sitters will grab your mail, turn lights on, and make your house look occupied even when it’s not.

Behavioral problems- Some pet breeds are more prone to destructive behavior simply because they require a lot of exercise and mental stimulation. If you leave them alone for long periods of time, they tend to go a bit stir-crazy. Nothing is worse than coming home to find your pet has destroyed a piece of furniture or clothing. They tend to go after things with new unfamiliar scents, which usually are things you have purchased recently and are probably valuable to you. Instead of yelling at your pet every time you come home, hire a sitter, and solve both your problems.

Routine- Pets do best when they have a daily routine and a pet sitter can help maintain that routine in your absence.

Pet health- If your pet requires any form of medication, a pet sitter can ensure that your schedule doesn’t interfere with your pets needs and that no doses are forgotten.

The best thing about a pet sitter is that they work around your schedule, meaning that you can utilize them as much or as little as you want. Ultimately, they can help your pet get the same activity and stimulation everyday as you do.