Maintaining Care for Your Reptile While You Are Away

Friday, September 18, 2015
Reptile Care - Houseguard Housesitters - Pet Sitting Winnipeg, ManitobaReptiles are a unique type of pet and require the same caring and attention as a dog or a cat or a bird. In fact, because many reptiles are of an exotic species, they may require extra care. There are many different kinds of reptiles that people house as pets, ranging from turtles and tortoises to various breeds of lizards: the gecko, salamander and iguana, the Pogona (more commonly known as the bearded dragon), and various types of frogs.  
Each, however, has special care requirements, both for the reptile itself and its environment. If you are planning to be away from home for a lengthy period of time, it is important that you make the proper arrangements for the care and maintenance of your reptilian friend(s). In general, snakes are the easiest to care for as they don't eat often. However, depending on the breed of snake it might be wise to have a qualified and reptile-comfortable pet sitter make visits to make sure the snake has sufficient food and water on hand. A pet sitter should definitely be required for lizards, turtles and tortoises during your absence as they need to be fed and watered daily. While greens are sufficient for tortoises and bearded dragons, many lizards are big eaters. If your reptile's diet consists of insects, ensure that you have an ample supply on hand for your sitter, who ideally should also not be afraid of handling bugs come feeding time.
Again, depending on the type of frog you own some can go for a week between feedings, but the more delicate and active breeds should be fed at least every other day. Geckos have become a popular pet (due in no small part to their prominence in TV advertising). They are an easy pet to care for and their diet can be prepared quickly and efficiently by a pet sitter instructed on their culinary preference. It is also important that the pet sitter be informed of feeding schedules as the needs for reptiles are different. For diurnal species, feeding should be performed in the early morning. Nocturnal reptiles are best fed during the early afternoon. These specific schedules also allow for the pet sitter to get into the enclosures to put out food and clean water before the reptiles awaken. Enclosures, be they tanks or cages, should be cleaned out on a weekly basis so it is necessary that your pet sitter not be squeamish either in this process or in the handling of the tenant reptile.
While caring for reptiles is not everyone's cup of tea, Houseguard specializes in the care and comfort of your reptilian pets while you are away. Regardless of the species, given the proper instructions prepared to your specifications, we guarantee your lizard, snake or amphibian will remain clean, happy and well-nourished as any other valued household pet. 

Maintaining Care for Your Fish While You Are Away

Friday, September 11, 2015
Fish Care - Houseguard Housesitters - Pet Sitting Winnipeg, ManitobaFor many people, fish are the preferred perfect pet. From a health standpoint alone, owning a fish aquarium has been shown to alleviate stress. Fish are also ideal for a beginner or first-time pet owner as they do not require a great deal of care. But fish still need attention to keep them happy and healthy. To that end, if you are planning a vacation or trip away from home, it is important that you do not neglect the needs of your fish. This is especially so if your absence will be for a lengthy period. 
First and foremost is the feeding of your fish. Fish are generally voracious eaters and will gobble up everything that is poured into the aquarium, which can produce unwelcome consequences, such as discovering your finny friend floating belly-up in the tank. A measured sprinkling of fish food is recommended, just enough so that your fish eat everything before it sinks to the bottom. While there are several options to providing and supplying food to your fish during your time away, the best method is to have someone you can trust or a qualified and licensed professional pet sitter give the care needed for your aquarium pets. The benefits of the latter are plentiful. For instance your fish - like most house pets - may be fussy eaters and require a specific nutrition. Your caregiver should also be advised of the different dietary requirements of the type of fish you own. Carnivores require live food or carnivore pellets. Omnivores (which are the most common house fish) generally feed on a food block (which gradually dissolves in the water over several days) or in some instances pellets and dried foods which can be dispensed through an automatic vacation feeder. Finally, herbivores depend on a strict vegetable and plant diet. Your fish caregiver should be given complete instructions on their proper feeding. This is particularly important if different species of fish with different food needs share the same environment; your pet sitter must be informed to ensure that each need is satisfied. 
Perhaps you have invested in expensive tropical or exotic fish. Understandably they entail even more special and precise care. These types of fish require tank equipment not necessary for goldfish or other cold water fish, such as a water thermometer and heater. These are items crucial to maintaining the good health of your fish. Gravel is also essential and rocks and ceramic ornaments provide areas for your fish to hide.
Attention must also be given to maintaining your fish's environment: the fish tank or aquarium, as water health is of fundamental importance. At Houseguard, we provide daily maintenance, ensuring that aquarium lights are turned on and off and that the water temperature is monitored to remain constant. Weekly maintenance includes keeping the water clean and refreshed to remove toxins and contaminants from the tank. If monthly maintenance is required we will clean the filter or replace the charcoal and filter pads. 
If fish are your choice of pet, rest assured that with Houseguard your fish will receive the same care and attention as we would service your dog or cat or other special animal friends.