Frequently asked questions

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What areas of Jacksonville do you serve?

  • Beaches: Atlantic Beach, Neptune Beach, Jacksonville Beach, Ponte Vedra (as far south as Solana Rd)
  • Intracoastal West: As far west as Kernan Blvd, as far north as McCormick and as far south as Butler Blvd

 

Are you Insured?

Yes, we are fully insured through Business Insurers of the Carolinas. We can provide a copy of our policy if requested.

 

How long have you been in business?

We have been providing professional pet sitting since 2003.

 

Do you have references?

Yes, we will provide references upon request.

 

I'm interested in using your services. What's the next step?

We will need to set up a New Client Consultation. You can call us at 904-220-4990, email us at info@afriendinthewoods.com or fill out the Contact Us form on the Contact page.

 

What information do I need to provide at the New Client Consultation?

We'll need new client forms, detailed information on the services you'd like to book, and a key so we can access your residence.

 

Why is it necessary to set up a New Client Consultation before you begin caring for my pet?

We like to give both owner and pet the chance to get acquainted with their new pet sitter. This is a good time to discuss your pet's habits or requirements with their new caretaker.

 

Do you require a minimum number of visits per day while I’m out of town?

In order to provide the best possible service and in keeping with the terms of our insurance policy, we require a minimum of one visit per day for cats and small animals and two visits per day for dogs during the duration of your trip. It is recommended to schedule 3 visits a day for dogs if you will be out of town more than a few days. If you have elderly pets or puppies you may need 4 visits per day.

 

How do I know that my pet sitter was at my home?

Your pet sitter will leave daily notes for midday dog walking/visits.

For vacationers, we will send an email message from our scheduling system after the first and last visits. You may call or text to check on your pet at any time or request a specific update schedule.

 

Who are the pet sitters who will be coming into my home?

We hire only the most passionate, 100% reliable animal lovers. After a careful screening, we put each candidate through a criminal background check and we personally train them on our policies and procedures. **Currently we do not have any employees.

 

What hours do you provide services?

Pet Sitting and dog walking visits are generally between 7:00 am to 9:00 pm. Other times may be arranged. Overnight visits are available from 9:00-10:00 pm until approx. 7:00 am.

 

Is it acceptable if my friend or neighbor comes to visit my pets as well?

We would prefer to be the sole caretaker of your pets. If you insist on having other parties share pet sitting responsibilites while you are away, we cannot be held liable for any damage or injury to your home or pets.

 

What if I scheduled a visit, but it turns out I’ll be home early. Can I cancel the visit?

Yes, just call or text 904-220-4990 as soon as you find out you won’t need us. If you cancel with at least 2 hours notice, we won’t charge you for the visit.

 

I see that you offer overnights. What do those entail?

We arrive at your home between 9:00 - 10:00 pm. The pet sitter will provide a late night let out/walk for your dog(s) as well as social interaction. This also includes a morning let out/walk and breakfast. The sitter will provide fresh water for your pets and ensure that your home is secured upon leaving in the morning. The sitter will depart your home at approximately 7:00 am.

If you have more questions about overnights, feel free to contact us.

 

What happens during inclement weather?

When local municipalities close schools due to potentially dangerous weather conditions such as approaching Tropical Storms or Hurricanes, our midday dog walking services may be canceled and our pet sitting service schedules may be altered.

We ask that all clients provide us with an inclement weather emergency contact that can care for your pets in the event that we cannot access your home. Your emergency contact should be able to walk to your home and have working keys for entry. All visits that are canceled as a result of inclement weather are credited to your account for use toward future services.

Please also note that your sitter is empowered to shorten exercise time during heavy rainfall and lightning and/or thunderstorms or extreme heat. In such cases, exercise time will be replaced with indoor playtime and TLC.

 

What if I require last minute services due to an emergency?

We do everything we can to accommodate last minute requests. But, of course, we can't guarantee that we'll be able to help as we tend to stay busy. Please contact us immediately in these situations, so that we can try to make necessary schedule adjustments to accommodate your needs.

 

Once I am a client, how far in advance do I need to book services?

As our schedule can vary depending on the time of year, we require as much advance notice of your needs as possible.

Normally, during non-holiday portions of the calendar, we can accommodate requests placed at least 1-2 weeks in advance of a trip.

Approaching major holidays (Thanksgiving, Christmas, New Year's) we require at least a month notice for any services needed. Requests made within a month of major holidays will be added only if we still have availability.

 

Are there additional fees for services during the holidays?

Yes. Our Holiday Surcharge is $10.00 per applicable day. Please refer to our Rates page for details of which holidays are subject to this fee.

 

Can you visit my cat every other day?

No. In keeping with the terms of our insurance policy and to provide the best possible care of your pets, cats must be visited no less than once every 24 hrs.

 

What is your cancellation policy?

For daily dog walking, we require cancelation notice be given at least 2 hours prior to the beginning of the visit window. Cancelations made with less than 2 hour notice are charged in full.

For vacation/business travel, cancelations made with less than 48 hrs of departure will be charged a fee.

 

What forms of payment do you accept?

We accept Checks, Cash and Credit Cards via Stripe.