frequently asked questions.

general.

Why should I use a pet sitter?


Many veterinarians and pet experts will tell you hands (or paws) down keeping your pets home, in their familiar surroundings is the best choice. Your pet remaining in their own comfortable space, with all the sights and smells they are accustom to, helps alleviate the stress of their owner’s leaving home. They are also able to maintain diet and exercise routines and revel in the engaging and personal attention our pet care specialist provides. Remaining in their own home eliminates their exposure to contracting illnesses from the other animals they are exposed to in a boarding alternative.




What services do you provide?


Funk + Waggers provides trusted in-home pet care, when you can't be there. This means our pet care professionals travel to our clients homes to care for their pets. We have services to support every pet parent's need: vacation or business travel, long work days or meeting that will run late, working from home and don't have time to walk the dog, recovering from surgery, back-up to kids to ensure pet care focus. Whatever the reason, we have you covered! From overnight sitting to drop-in visits to dog walking and more we are your go to pet care partner. Our clients are primarily dog and cat owners, but we also visit and care for rabbits, birds, gerbils, hamsters, guinea pigs and certain reptiles. Our client's appreciate the flexibility of our service options to customize their pet care needs. And the added security that we are watching over their home while they are away, bringing in the mail and if away for the night rotate lights and closing blinds and curtains to give your home a live-in appearance. We also offer a host of concierge services to compliment your pet care needs and routines.




What are your business hours?


Our business hours are Monday-Friday 10 AM - 5:30 PM and the best time for you to reach us. We check voicemail and email periodically on Saturdays and Sundays. Our Dog Walking service is Monday to Friday and Pet Sitting/Visits are available Monday to Sunday. We work scheduled visits 7 days a week 365 days per year.




What does in mean when you say you’re licensed, certified, insured and bonded?


While we are a compassionate and pet passionate people, we operate as a business and take the necessary steps to mitigate risk in the unlikely even an issue arises. Annually we maintain a dog walker license as mandated by the city. We hold commercial business insurance, commercial auto insurance, are bonded and above and beyond that, staff have passed a criminal record check. At Funk + Waggers we are committed to demonstrating trust and professionalism from both a service and operational perspective.




How do you manage keys?


We require two (2) working sets of keys to your home. One set of keys is provided to the dog walker or pet sitter. The second set of keys is kept on file and stored in our key safe as a backup for emergencies and provided to your backup dog walker or pet sitter when necessary. Our technology is fabulous - our key management feature makes it easy to know who the key holder is and track the history of the keys in our care. Two (2) Sets of Keys Clients agree to provide us with two (2) sets of working keys (please try them) at initial key pickup in order to avoid a charge for an extra visit. If only one set is ready, we will cut another for you for a $25 fee.
Doorman / Concierge If you have a doorman, your regular walker/sitter would be grateful if you provided us with one (1) set and one (1) set to be left at the front desk with the doorman as an emergency back-up. Your building may have best practices they follow for such services. For the safety of your pet, prior to our visit, it is imperative client's have confirmed this process with their facility manager or condo board and the doorman/concierge is aware of our scheduled visit(s). Lock Box If preferred clients can purchase a lock box to install outside of their residence. We understand the lock-box may be utilized by other family members or services. For this reason, to ensure we have access to your pet two (2) sets of keys must be stored within the the lock-box. When updating or changing the code to your lock box, remember to update this information in your Funk + Waggers Member Account to ensure we can access your pet. Key Return To avoid a "special trip" fee, we can coordinate the return of keys at our next scheduled pet appointment. For security reasons keys will only ever mail keys via Canada Post Xpresspost. The cost of the Xpresspost and a $20 service fee will be charged to the client. In the event Funk + Waggers must make a "special trip" to pick-up/drop-off keys from client residence, the client will be billed a $25 service fee. After one year of inactivity on an account keys are destroyed.




Is there an extra charge for services booked on a holiday?


Yes. There is a 30% surcharge added to the posted rates for services provided on calendared holidays. Below is our list of holidays. Holiday Services Fees Apply to the Following: New Year’s Eve New Year’s Day Family Day March Break Good Friday Easter Monday Mother's Day Victoria Day Father's Day Canada Day Civic Holiday Labour Day Thanksgiving Christmas Eve Christmas Day Boxing Day




How do I get started booking your services?


If this is your first time requesting a booking with us it's easy-peasy: REGISTER: Click the 'NEW MEMBER REGISTRATION', complete and submit. You will a 'Welcome' email with account verification from us. LOGIN: Complete your pet parent profile -- the more detail the better. REQUEST SERVICES: Go to 'My Schedule' and request the services you require. CONFIRMATION: We're alerted to your request, assign a pet care specialist and send you a confirmation accepting your request. Ta-da -- you're all set.




Who is your typical client?


We work with pet owners of all backgrounds. The one thing they all have in common -- they are all looking for top quality pet care and absolute peace-of-mind when they travel or have to leave their pets for hours due to work or other commitments.




What is your service area?


At Funk + Waggers our engaging dog walking, puppy care and pet sitting services are available to from south west downtown Toronto, along the lakeshore through south Etobicoke and south Mississauga. More precisely we are avaialble to clients living in these postal code areas: TORONTO M5T M5V M6G M6H M6J M6K M6P M6R M6S M8V M8W M8X M8Y M8Z MISSISSAUGA L5E L5G L5H L5J




What makes you different from other pet care services?


We put our heart and soul into living our mission: to be your pet’s SECOND favourite human -- and your number one pet care partner. Being easy to work with and providing peace-of-mind that our client’s pets and homes are well cared for when they’re absent, is no random promise. Our Pet Parent Pledge is the foundation of our business and sets us apart. We created the Pet Parent Pledge to define our commitment and ensure every client consistently receives the best possible service and their pet has a great experience.




What is the Pet Parent Pledge?


We want our client’s to leave their home confident that Funk + Waggers is delivering a fun, safe, engaging, and caring time for their pet. We accomplish this by living our Pet Parent Pledge. Our 10 motivators are: Safety Customized Service Fun & Engaging Unparalleled Service and Communication Professionalism Extensive Services at Competitive Rates Experience and Ongoing Education Convenience and Technology Continuous Improvement Pet Passion




What kind of results can I expect when working with Funk + Waggers?


From a client perspective our greatest result is peace-of-mind. Whether you’re traveling, leave for work, work from home and have a crazy deadline or have to leave home for a plethora of reasons -- you can carry-on guilt-free knowing we are looking out the well being of your pets and your home. From your pet’s perspective our visits are always engaging and fun. They receive top-notch care and attention and are remain in the comfort of their own home surround by everything that is special to them.




Are you hiring?


We are always looking for responsible, heart-centred pet care professionals to join our team. If you are interested in a Pet Sitting and/or Dog Walking position, please click "Employment" review the requirements, submit an application and we will be in touch.




ADDITIONAL SERVICE CHARGES


ADDITIONAL SERVICE CHARGES Solo Walk $5 Additional Dog or Cat $10 Hourly Pet Sitting Rate After 10:30 PM $8/15-minutes Early/Late fee for Visits before (before 9 AM or after 6 PM) $5 Holiday Service Fee 30% surcharge to posted rates. Late Booking Fee (less than 24 hour notice) $10 Key Pick-up/Drop-off (if a special trip is required after initial meeting) $25 Xpresspost Key Return Cost of the Xpresspost + a $20 service fee Late Payment Fee: $10 (applied on payments received on or after the first day of service) Pre-depart Meeting (if requested after initial meeting) $20 Key Cutting $25
Emergency Vet Visit Stand-by $22/hr




Can I leave my keys with a neighbour, friend or relative?


No, it is imparative for the safety of your pet the Funk + Waggers have 2 sets of keys. While it is great for you to have a trusted person with a back-up key for your personal need, we cannot rely on an outside party to remember our schedule.




HOLIDAY CALENDAR


Funk & Waggers Holiday Calendar: New Year’s Day Family Day Good Friday Easter Weekend Mother’s Day Victoria Day Father’s Day Canada Day Civic Holiday Labour Day Thanksgiving Christmas Eve Christmas Day Boxing Day New Year’s Eve





pet care.

Do you care for pets with aggression issues?


For liability reasons we cannot accept a pet that has aggressively bitten a person or another pet. If your pet is skittish and maybe growls around folks they don’t know we are happy to work with the client to designs a pet socialization strategy. If it is determined additional visits are required to socialize the pet with our pet care specialist the client may be required at these visits and regular rates apply. If at anytime our pet care specialist or pet owner feel it is unsafe to perform a service, we will reserve the right to discontinue service without notice.




Are you guys dog trainers?


We are not dog trainers, but we definitely work on basic manners, leash work and common commands. Supporting what is means to raise and maintain a confident, respectful, well-rounded, happy dog. If you are working with a trainer, we completely follow the regime and processes your trainer has prescribed, to ensure command and behaviour continuity. After each visit we provide a pet parent journal update, so you have a handle on how your dog's visit went. We document their successes, and issues, mood and their all around adorable outlook on the outing. We even document their bio-breaks and provide you with a poo-score!




Do I need to supply treats?


We are always packing single ingredient, dehydrated liver treats appropriate for both dogs and cats. We use these treats as rewards to focus on positive behaviour, create a bond between your pet and pet care specialist and build a trusting relationship. We love sharing these treats with your pet and most dogs and many cats are thrilled to get them, but we understand many pets have special dietary requirements. If your pet has dietary restrictions, please advise within your online pet parent profile and we know not to share. It would be terrific, if you can provide treats that make your pet happy and keep them healthy. This will help contribute to a positive experience and build a trusting bond with your pet care specialist.




Do you administer medications?


Due to the stress many pet’s experience we strongly urge our client’s to administer all medication to their pets. However, when it is not possible and your pet requires medication we will make our best attempt to administer medicine orally only. It is important that the client provides detailed and clearly written instructions.




How do your pet care professionals discipline a pet?


Funk + Waggers believes in force-free, positive reinforcement only. We will never spank, slap, shake, hit, or scream at pets in our care. If any disciplinary issues are encountered (i.e. leash pulling etc.) our pet care specialists will share these experiences in their after visit client update and together work with you on a positive corrective strategy.




What happens if my pet becomes ill and I’m out of town or unable to leave work?


If our pet care specialist suspects your pet is in medical distress, we will call you at the emergency phone numbers we have on file. If the client believes their pet should see a veterinarian immediately, we will transport the pet to the clinic/hospital for examination and treatment. In the event we cannot reach the client, we will reach out to the emergency contact listed to advise of the concern. If we believe it to be an emergency situation, we will err on the side of safety and take your pet to a veterinary clinic/hospital for treatment. Client’s are responsible for all veterinary charges resulting from the visit, and will be billed for any extra time incurred by our pet care specialist.




Will you care for my pet exclusively 24/7?


Due to the number of clients we work with, we are not able to focus our attention to a single pet, one-on-one, over a 24-hour period. We offer a plethora of pet sitting options both overnigh, visits and hourly sitting that our clients have used in combination to meet their pet care needs.





dog walking.

Do I have to sign-up for daily walks Monday through Friday?


No way. Everybody has their own unique schedule, we get that folks need us at different times a week or month. With our app and online scheduling system you have the freedom to schedule visit dates and times that work for you. We’ll receive a notification when your account is updated with your schedule. Then, we’ll assign a dog walker or pet sitter, approve your schedule, and send you a confirmation. And, of course, visit within the time range you requested.




How many dogs will my dog be walking with?


Morning and mid-day walks are scheduled in small groups of 1 to a maximum of 3 three dogs. We do our best to keep our “pack” members consistent so your dog can have friends to get to know, but can not guarantee it. Walks are coordinated based on pooch personalities and size of dog. Please know that we never do giant pack walks of 4+ dogs and will never tie your dog up outside or leave alone when in our care.




Are there requirements for my dog?


Current identification tags attached to collar. Up to date on all vaccinations. Friendly and socialized towards people and dogs. Have a 4-6 foot leash, no retractable leashes. Please ensure the collar and/or harness is fitted appropriately to your dogs size. Poo bags are not required, but most certainly appreciated.




What type of leash should I provide?


We prefer to use a 4 - 6 foot standard leash. No retractable leashes please.




Do I need to supply poo-bags?


We are always packing poo-bags but are always very appreciative of you providing bags for our staff.




How long are your dog-walks?


The standard “Get-up-and-go” dog walk is 30 minutes. However, depending on the needs of the dog, weather, walking length may vary. We offer 30 and 60 minute walks as well as a 1-hour Adventure Hike and for puppies there are 30 minute private puppy visits that include a walk, bio-break, playtime and practice training and manners.




Do you offer discounts for daily dog-walking programs?


Yes. We offer various levels of pricing based on frequency of weekly schedules. To find out more please contact us.




Group walk or solo - which is best?


There are many benefits to walking in groups or ‘packs’ as well as benefits to walking solo. Please read our blog post: Dog Walking: Group vs. Solo for information regarding this topic.





pet sitting.

Can I meet my pet sitter?


Absolutely! We completely understand you may want to meet who will be entering your home and caring for your furry friend(s). We are happy to schedule a time for you and your walker/sitter to meet. However, please know we work together as a team and this sometimes means someone other than who you have met will be sent. Our first meet and greet is complementary and on us. There is a $20 fee for any additional meeting (i.e. pre-departure meeting) scheduled after the initial Meet + Greet. The fee is charged to compensate the pet sitter or dog walker for their time.




Will my pet always have the same pet sitter?


We do our best to provide you with the same dog walker or pet sitter. However, there are occasions when your primary pet care specialist won't be available due to time off or staff changes. Our roster is full of excellent, vetted, pet care providers that love to care for our client’s pet when your primary pet care specialist is unavailable. With our focus on technology, our pet care specialists are assigned access to your pet's profile to ensure consistent quality care. However if you feel more comfortable and want to meet with the alternate pet sitter, we are more than happy to schedule a “Pre-Departure Meeting.” The cost of this meeting is $20, which covers the sitter's time and expense.




How often do I receive updates from my pet sitter about my pet?


After each scheduled visit you will receive a pet parent journal update. Your pet sitter will email you an update on your pet, what they did while they were there caring for them -- including a photo or two. Your Pet Parent Journal update is sent directly from our Member portal and can be viewed online in your profile history.




How can I correspond with my pet sitter?


Our technology make it easy to communicate with your pet care specialist. With our specialized app -- connecting with your pet sitter is a click way through your member account. Message you sitter, review pet parent journal entries and even check out picture of your pets antics. When you send them a message, it will automatically appear in the system for them to read and respond to.




Can I get my pet sitter's phone number and email?


No. We do not provide personal contact information for our sitters. While our sitters love caring for your pets, they are not always available outside of your pet sitting needs. They may have another job, be in school, etc. But no worries you can connect with your pet sitter, review Pet Parent Journal updates and pictures through our app. This provides our office with the ability to respond when our pet sitters cannot.




So you don't board animals or bring them to you home for care?


No. We believe in the pet benefits of in-home care which is why we have chosen not to have a boarding facility. The flexibility of our hourly pet-sitting, pet visits and overnight care are super popular options. Whether used in combination or on their own, we have the services to help you cover all of your pet sitting needs.




What happens if I am delayed returning home from my vacation?


We get it sometimes things just don't go as planned. If you are delayed it is super important that you contact us. Simply log on to your account, call of email us. We will extend care for your pets until your arrive home. This way your pet remains safe and there is a continuity of care and you have peace-of-mind knowing we there to care for them.





scheduling.

What is your cancellation policy?


We understand that sometimes life just happens and you need to cancel services -- so we have implemented an extremely accommodating cancellation policy. - All Dog Walking, Puppy Care Services, Pet Sitting, Hourly Sitting and Gate-keeping Services_24-hours prior to scheduled service avoid paying for services in full. - Almost Overnight or Overnight Dog and Cat Sititng_7 days prior to schedule service, if less than 7 days notice the client must pay 25% of the total fee. Should the client return home early from vacation, full services scheduled are charged.




Why do you have a cancellation policy?


Our team members very much rely on the income from your schedule appointments. When a last minute cancellation occurs, it is very unlikely that we will be able to find another appointment to fill in the slot on their schedule that you no longer need. This means our staff won’t get paid. By guaranteeing regular appointments and a steady income we are able to attract the best pet care professionals to work for Funk + Waggers. We do not settle for unprofessional or inexperienced dog walkers and cat sitters. We believe our clients deserve the most reliable, conscientious pet care specialist. Having cancellation policy we reduce the time spent managing last minute scheduling changes, so we are able to focus on what we do best, caring for your pet. Client’s are able to cancel online through their member account and it will automatically inform our staff once processed by the office.




What is a time range?


Time ranges represent the window of time staff will arrive between, to visit your pet or walk your dog. For example: Dog walking services are Monday to Friday and can be scheduled for Morning (10 AM-12 AM) or Mid-day (12 PM-3 PM). Pet Visits are available all week, Monday through Sunday and can be scheduled for Early Morning (8 AM-10 AM) Morning (10 AM-12 PM), Mid-day (12 PM-3 PM), Evening (3 PM-6 PM) and Night (7 PM-9 PM) ​​ Your pet care specialist will arrive within that selected time range to care for your pet.




Why do you have time ranges?


When working with pets each day we schedule our activities with your pets best experience in mind. Ensuring the best care and fun time for your pet. And traveling our service area there can be times when "stuff" out of our control happens. By working with time ranges, we are confident about how we schedule our day to ensure your pet and everyone else's receives focused and engaging care. Time ranges mean our attention is 100% on your pet. Rushing through a visit or walk, to tear off to the next booking for an exact time, isn't not good for your pet or our staff. Providing our dog walkers and pet sitters with a time range allows them the flexibility to manage situations that are out of their control and still arrive at your home on a timely basis.




Can I schedule or make changes to a booking directly through my pet care professional?


No!! We are defined by our attention to detail -- accommodating our client’s and the needs of their pets, but when is comes to bookings, schedule changes or cancellation for the safety of your pet, and transparent communication, client’s must process these requests through their Funk + Waggers member site. For the safety your pet our office holds responsible for choreographing all bookings and schedule changes through our scheduling software. This ensures best practice process implementation and ensures your pet care specialist is focused on what they do best -- create a great experience for your pets. Funk + Waggers believe strongly in systems and processes to ensure best practices and will not be held liable for any type of visit scheduled without office knowledge.




Do you take last minute booking requests?


Of course! We are happy to support last minute booking requests as best we can with short-notice. Booking requests are only confirmed during regular business hours (Monday to Friday 10 AM to 5:30 PM). There is a $10 late booking fee for services scheduled with 24-hours notice or less. Booking requests received on the weekend for the upcoming Monday will incur the late booking fee.





billing.

What methods of payment do you accept payment?


We accept payment by: Credit Card: MasterCard and Visa. All payments are facilitated through our secure member portal. E-transfer: 1) Send to tori.funkandwaggers@gmail.com 2) Email your security phrase separately to the same email. Weekly Dog Walking: Payment is due on or before the last service provided that week. Pet Sitting 9-days or less: Payment is due on or before the last day of service. Pet Sitting 10-days or longer: Payment is required prior to first day of service.




Do you accept cheques or cash?


With approval from our administration office we can accept cash or cheques. If this is your preferred method of payment please advise when registering as a new member and our administation team will review and advise.




When do I pay for my services?


Weekly Dog Walking: Payment is due on or before the last service provided that week. Pet Sitting 9-days or less: Payment is due on or before the last day of service. Pet Sitting 10-days or longer: Payment is required prior to first day of service. Your invoice for services will be available in your member account once Funk + Waggers has confirmed your service request. Invoices are open and can be paid on or before the due date. Should an invoice remain outstanding past the due date, and the member has a credit card on file, the day following the due date the credit card will be charged for the invoice and a $10 late payment fee will be applied. After 5-days, if the invoice remains outstanding, remaining services will not be considered bound and will not be provided.




Where can I view my invoice or update my billing information?


Simply log into your Funk + Waggers Member Account and select the “INVOICES” tab to see your open and paid invoices. To add or update credit card details click "Payment Methods".




Should I tip my dog walker or pet sitter?


Our dog walks and pet sitters don’t expect a tip, but most certainly appreciate it. If your dog walker or pet sitter did a nice job and you would like to leave a tip, you can do so online. Our technology provides you the option include a tip on any invoice payment. Going old school with a cash tip is lovely as well, but if you choose this method please insure the tip is made ovibious to your pet care professional. If it is not 100% obvious that it is a tip meant for your pet care specialist, it will be left behind.





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