FAQs & Policies

Frequently Asked Questions

What are your normal operating hours?

Our normal dog walking hours are 7 am to 8 pm. We do provide services outside of these hours, please contact us directly about accommodating your specific needs.

What do I need to do to get started?

We first schedule you for a free initial Meet & Greet. This initial in-home visit is the chance for us to meet, pick up your key, and share information so together we can decide the best care for your pet. We document as much information as we can to ensure we are fully aware of your pet’s likes/dislikes, any special needs they have and anything we need to be aware of when we care for them.

Do I need to sign any paperwork?

You will be asked to complete a couple of forms prior to our pet sitting/visit start date. Depending on the program you select there may be additional paperwork required. If you are a daily dog walking customer, we will need two copies of your house key.

Why do you need two copies of house keys?

Occasionally the unexpected happens and we need to ensure we can have the pets cared for no matter what. Therefore, we ask for two sets. We keep one locked up and one is taken by the sitter.

Are you certified in pet first aid?

The safety of your pet is extremely important to us. We have American Red Cross CPR and First Aid walkers and sitters on staff. If your pet becomes sick during our care, we will immediately contact you and then your designated veterinarian or the closest 24-hour animal emergency hospital.

I have a special needs/elderly pet; can you take care of him?

Maintaining order is essential for special needs/elderly pets. We are prepared to care for pets of all ages, sizes, temperaments and medical needs. We will discuss the special needs of your little one at the initial meet and greet and will maintain ongoing communication to ensure we are always current with any changing needs of your pet.

Do you require a minimum number of visits while I am out of town?

To ensure the health and safety and comfort of your pet, we require two (2) pet visits per day for dogs and one (1) pet visit per day for cat’s and small animals.

Are you licensed, bonded and insured?

Yes, we are. Kim’s Urban Hounds is licensed in the County of Fairfax, VA and insured and bonded by Business Insurers of the Carolinas.

Do your sitters go thru a criminal background check?

Yes. Part of our application process all applicants must complete a National Criminal Background Check through Sentrylink.

Do you work on holidays too?

Absolutely! Our company holidays are Easter Day, Memorial Day, Independence Day, Labor Day, Thanksgiving Day, Christmas Eve and Christmas Day New Year’s Eve, New Year’s Day. You will be charged the visit rate plus a holiday service charge of $10 per visit for these days.

What forms of payment do you accept?

We currently accept cash and checks (made out to Kim’s Urban Hounds LLC) and credit card payments thru PayPal.

When is payment due?

Payment is due by the 5th day following service start date unless other payment options have been arranged in writing.

Policies

Below is a list of our policies. Clients will be asked to sign a copy of these policies at the initial consultation. A copy can be emailed to clients prior to the initial visit upon request.

Reservations/Payments

Reservations should be made using our online scheduling system (Power Pet Sitter). We recommend that request with less than a 24-hr notice, you follow up your reservation request by calling/texting the following number: 703-717-8444. We accept cash, checks and credit card payments thru PayPal.

Visit Times

We request a 2-hr arrival window of your choosing. We will do our best to arrive at the same time within the arrival window as possible.

Last Minute/Emergency Pet Care

We understand that there will always be last minute pet sitting needs and we try our best to accommodate every request that we receive. If your request is an urgent one, contact us by phone or text message at 703-717-8444. This will guarantee the quickest response.

Early and Late Appointments

We try to accommodate or client’s routine as much as possible and therefore offer dog walks and pet sits outside of our normal operating hours of 7 AM – 8 PM. A service charge of $5 per visit will be assessed for visits outside of these hours.

Vacation Visits

To ensure your pet’s safety and well-being and as required by our insurance coverage, we require a minimum of 1 visit per day for cats and small animals, and minimum 2 visits per day for dogs during the pet sit duration. We do recommend three sits per day for dogs as they are very social and may develop a mild case of anxiety after being left alone over such a long period.

Inclement weather

We will not freeze or melt! Cold weather, hot weather and rain will not keep us away from your furry friend. In the event of a severe weather event such as a blizzard, thunderstorm or hurricane, alternate sitting arrangement will need to be made. We STRONGLY ADVISE you to give a house key to a nearby neighbor if your pet sitter cannot get to your home due to closed roads (i.e., fire, flooding, snow, etc.). Additionally, in the event of a natural disaster, As You Wish will do more than our best to procure your animals and secure your home.

With your pet’s health and safety in mind, there may be a few times per year when we deem weather conditions to be too extreme for your pet to walk or run. We reserve the right to alter plans for our activity, be that complete cancellation, indoor play or shortening visit.

Home Access

Please inform us at the time of initial consultation or appointment scheduling of any alarm codes (and/or changes) and anyone else who may be entering your home while you are away. This includes cleaning services, repair persons, friends, family and neighbors. Kim’s Urban Hounds does not accept liability for other persons who will be in your home during pet care and overnight care service periods.

Job Sharing

No one else should be taking care of your pet during our contract period; this is to help alleviate any possible missed visits or confusion. We will not be responsible for anyone else who has been requested to care for your pet or injury that was caused to your pet by someone other than a Kim’s Urban Hounds dog walker or sitter; our insurance will not cover them.

Key Pick up/Drop off

All key pickups outside of the complimentary in-home Meet & Greet will incur a charge. Also, note that we will not leave the key in your home after our last visit. Flights get delayed, out of town visits can be extended and that work trip sometimes takes an extra day or two. Keeping your key allows us to ensure adequate care and visits until your return. The key will be returned to you upon your return home or held onto in preparation for our next visit.

Vaccinations/Immunizations

Kim’s Urban Hounds requires that all pets have the necessary vaccination and immunization before service begins. We must have documentation showing Rabies & Distemper Vaccinations/dates. All pets must be on flea and tick medication as well as up-to-date on vaccinations to stay at a pet sitter’s home. For the health of all pets, we will request a copy of current vaccinations.

Pet Waste

Kim’s Urban Hounds will properly dispose of all pet waste. We do request that you provide plastic bags for this purpose and indicate where you would like these waster bags disposed of.

Fences

Fenced in yards are wonderful playgrounds for our dogs and allow them additional space to exercise and play. However, no fence system is totally secure. Kim’s Urban Hounds will not accept responsibility or liability for any client’s animal that escapes or becomes injured when instructed to leave the clients pet in the yard.

Unforeseen Purchases

We will purchase pet food, littler, cleaning supplies or other necessary items that contribute to the health and wellbeing of your pet while you are absent. We will retain a receipt and the pet owner is responsible for reimbursement of these items. In addition, a $10 shopping fee will be charged to your account.

Privacy Policy

All your information will be kept private and confidential. Kim’s Urban Hounds highly respects our clients entrusting us with the care of their home and their loving pets. We do recommend that you inform a trusted neighbor that while you are away, Kim’s Urban Hounds will be caring for your pet(s) and your home.

Household Emergencies

Please leave the name and number of a trusted maintenance company or a person you can rely on to attend to any household emergencies that may arise during your absence. This includes but is not limited to: leaking pipes, malfunctioning water heaters and heating and air conditioning units.

Major Holidays

We are devoted to our clients and provide pet care services 365 days per year, including all holidays. Our company holidays are Easter Day, Memorial Day, Independence Day, Labor Day, Thanksgiving Day, Christmas Eve and Christmas Day New Year’s Eve, New Year’s Day. You will be charged the visit rate plus a holiday service charge of $10 per visit for these days.

Holiday Cancellations

Except for severe weather, all cancellations prior to a major holiday with less than a three-day notice will result in a 75% charge of the total invoice for scheduled pet care to be paid. We request your understanding that holiday travel is a peak service time for pet care.

Overnight Care Cancellations

There is a 50% non-refundable deposit due at the time of booking overnight care services. Cancellations with less than a 48-hour notice will result in an additional 25% total billed services being due. 100% of this additional fee goes to the scheduled over-night care provider.

Cancellations

A cancellation fee will apply to any walk cancelled with less than a 24-hour notice. No credits will be given for same day cancellations.

Returned Check Fee

We assess (and you agree to pay) a $35 fee for all returned checks.

Late Payments

A $15 late fee will be assessed for all payments not made by the due date. Unless other arrangements have been made, payments are considered late if not received by the 3rd day following the start of the service period.

Pictures

Customer agrees to have pictures taken of their pets and allow Kim’s Urban Hounds to utilize them for marketing purposes. The pictures will only be of the pets and no breach of security will be at risk.