What do dogs do all day? They get up, they eat, they nap, they sleep a little. Then they take a nap, bark at the mailman, nap, scratch, drink some water from the toilet, and catch a few zzzzs until you come home.
But of course, they can’t be trusted to be home alone for too long; eventually they need more food, fresh water, walks and some social time. And when you go on vacation, that’s what pet sitters are for.
It’s estimated that Americans will spend over $109 billion on their pets this year, with about $9.7 billion of that spent on services that include boarding, grooming, training, pet sitting and walking.
Boarding vs. a pet sitter might be a personal choice, and if you’re a real helicopter dog parent you're probably going to hire someone to spend nights with your dog while you’re away. But cost is certainly a factor, and boarding a dog tends to be cheaper than an overnight sitter.
According to the American Kennel Club, a trustworthy pet sitter offers the advantage of pets being less stressed, because they get to sleep in their own beds and follow their normal routines.
To find the cost of boarding vs. an overnight dog sitter in 50 U.S. cities, CertaPet, an online platform that specializes in emotional support pet services, searched Rover.com for the costs of boarding and overnight sitting for one medium-size dog (16-40 lbs) in 50 of the largest U.S. cities and collected the average cost of the first 20 listings.
If you're looking for a dog sitter, the AKC advises checking references and making sure professional pet sitters have a business license and are insured and bonded. When boarding a dog, they suggest you look for secure, clean, chemical-free, and temperature-controlled spaces. Commercial dog boarding kennels should be certified or members of a professional organization. Find out about immunization requirements and check out the facilities, staff and handling of the dogs, the AKC says.
Based on CertaPet’s research, these are the most expensive cities to hire an overnight dog sitter.