California couple Bryce and Amanda Horton were shocked and horrified when a motion alert on their home security camera alerted them to tune in and they saw their dog sitter slamming their puppy, Lucy, to the floor.
Bryce, who was able to talk to the unidentified dog sitter through the security camera, told her to “get [her] stuff and get out of the house.” The woman, who was allegedly hired by the Hortons through a dog-sitting app, reportedly said that she threw Lucy because she was “frustrated.” Frustrated or not, there’s no excuse for treating anyone that way.
— New York Post (@nypost) August 7, 2019
Lucy’s veterinarian miraculously gave her a clean bill of health. The dog sitter, however, has been removed from the popular dog-sitting and -walking app Rover, and officials have launched an investigation that could lead to criminal charges against her.
What’s a vacationing guardian to do?
When choosing someone to care for your dog or cat, using a trusted sitter is imperative. Ideally, choose someone you know well and can depend on, such as a relative, close friend, coworker, or neighbor who loves your animal companion. If none of these is available to you, try asking friends or relatives who watches their beloved animal companions. If they have a trusted sitter, ask for a referral.
Another option is to hire a professional sitter, but—as proved by the footage above—you must be very careful to screen potential candidates, even those who are bonded, licensed, and insured. Click below to learn some basic rules to follow when hiring a professional sitter.
Take a page from the Hortons’ book and invest in a security camera or two—just be sure to let your sitter know about them upfront. Because the Hortons witnessed the incident and took action, it just may have saved Lucy’s life.
Remember: Our dogs and cats are treasured family members and should be treated as such. We must take many of the same precautions for our animal companions that we’d take for our children, elderly parents, and other loved ones.