Love of animals rescues Charlotte pet sitter
When Linda Edwards’ husband died, only animals could stop her from crying. “I moved to Charlotte from South Florida to be near my grown children, but I could not stop crying,” she says. “Animals, my pets, were the only thing that didn’t make me cry. I tried being around my children and my grandchildren and I went to church, but I kept crying. Suddenly I thought, ‘I get it. I need to surround myself with animals.’” Edwards created Nana’s Pet Sitting in 2007. “The more I worked, the less I cried.”
About four months after she started the pet sitting company, Edwards brought on independent contractors as pet sitters.
One of those contractors, Merry Bishop, has walked Judith Schlather’s dogs for around two years. “Several months ago, I happened to get home early, before her scheduled visit, and did not cancel. Upon Merry coming to my house, my dogs were ecstatic at her arrival, whining and wagging their tails,” the Plaza-Midwood member says. “They told me what I already knew — Merry cares deeply for my pups and treats them as her own. They love her.”
Bishop is one of approximately 15 pet sitters whom Edwards uses. Edwards requires all pet sitters to complete the Pet Tech training program and become Pet Tech First Aid & CPR certified. Edwards, a certified instructor, teaches these daylong courses.
Owner Linda Edwards of Charlotte started the company in 2007 and has earned the Super Service Award every year since 2009.
Communication is important at Nana’s. Edwards established a text message-based system to ensure all pet visits are completed. Each pet sitter contacts Edwards after completing a visit. She has a backup plan in case of emergencies.
“If I don’t hear from someone, I will call them. If I can’t reach them, I will go out and make the visit,” she says. The pet sitters also use text messaging to update owners and leave detailed notes about the daily activities of pets for owners upon their return.
Ballantyne member Robert Savage has used Nana’s Pet Sitting for both short overnight and multi-day trips for his young lab mix. “On returning home, we have always found our dog to be in great spirits,” he says, adding that he also enjoys “a very nice note from the pet sitter detailing the activities that were done and our mail.”
Edwards says bringing in the mail is one of many home services her company provides when pet sitting. Others include checking for the newspaper and packages and checking yards for debris. Nana’s also walks dogs, gives medication to animals and transports animals.
Service costs range from $20 for a standard 30-minute visit up to $100 for an overnight stay.
Edwards says she’s proud of her business and the work that all the pet sitters do. “They do an excellent job,” she says. “Every person is someone you’d have over for Thanksgiving dinner.”
The Super Service Award recognizes contractors and health care providers that have main- tained a stellar service rating on Angie’s List throughout the past year. Be sure to always check the List before hiring, however, as ratings can and do change.