both pet and human. Your trust in our expertise and experience is appreciated.
For the purposes of this Document, Ruth's Dog Walking has been abbreviated to RDW.
Cancellations – changes and emergencies happen. RDW wants to build a relationship with you and therefore accepts that last minute cancellations may occur. However, please bear in mind that cancellations can affect the smooth running of the business.
For daily dog walking and pet taxi clients, cancellations can either count as a credit on your next payment or a refund can be requested. For a refund / credit to be issued, 24 hours' notice must be given. In inclement weather, for daily dog walking clients, the 24 hour notice period will be shortened as it is often difficult to predict how the weather will affect travel, in inclement weather owners must inform RDW of a canceled service before 8.30am to obtain a credit, if cancellation is received after this time payment is due for that days service.
For pet sitting clients, a minimum of five days' notice is required to cancel. A 25% fee (of the total booking amount) applies to any bookings canceled within 5 days of the pet sit start date. Cancellations made within 24 hours' notice will be charged in full for that day/night scheduled services in addition to the 25% fee.
For boarding clients, due to the procedure of boarding only one family pet(s) at a time, a minimum of ten days' notice is required to cancel. A 50% fee (of the total booking amount) applies to any bookings canceled within 10 days of the boarding date. A 75% fee (of the total booking amount) applies to any bookings canceled within 3 days of the boarding date. Any cancellations on the date of the start of the booking will result in 100% fee being applied.
For day sitting clients and wedding clients, a minimum of five days' notice is required to cancel. A 50% fee (of the total booking amount) applies to any bookings canceled within 5 days of the pet sit start date.
Cell phone – a phone will be carried always for emergencies, however, to maintain the safety of the pets whilst in our care, phone calls may not always be answered. Please leave a message or send a text and your call will be responded to as soon as possible.
Collars and Leashes – most often the dog's own harness / collar and leash will be used for walks as this is what the dog is used to. For their safety and comfort please ensure the harness / collar has a good fitting and tags are worn. Please ensure any damaged / torn harnesses / collars / leashes are replaced.
Discounts – everyone loves a discount! If you refer another client and they have and pay for a visit, you will receive a free visit!
Dog Boarding - owners are to identify the times when they will drop off and collect their dog. A late fee charge of $5 is applicable for every hour past this time.
Donations – RDW believes in giving back and therefore will donate a percentage of its profits to WASART. The Washington State Animal Response Team (WASART) is a wonderful non-profit all-volunteer organization, which helps companion animals and livestock out of immediate crisis and dangerous situations. For information on WASART: http://www.washingtonsart.org/about
Emergencies affecting visits – again emergencies happen, should there be any emergency that prevents RDW from visiting your pet, you will be contacted via phone to inform you of the situation. In this case a refund or credit will be issued within 7 business days. Should you have an emergency which will affect the scheduled visit please contact the office as soon as possible and refer to the cancellation policy.
Emergency Contacts – clients will be required to provide the name of at least one person that can be contacted in the event of an emergency when clients cannot be reached. Thought should also be given to providing the name and contact number of your pets' guardian, should in the unfortunate event you become incapacitated whilst your pet(s) are in our care.
Employees – All employees have undergone enhanced background checks, training is given at the start of each person's employment and ongoing through their career with RDW by both internal and external sources.
Holidays - A charge of $10 per visit will be added to all visits on the following holidays:
New Year's Eve & New Year's Day Martin Luther King Jr. Birthday
Presidents Day Easter Sunday
Memorial Day Independence Day
Labor Day Columbus Day
Veterans Day Thanksgiving Day & following Friday
Christmas Eve & Christmas Day
Insurance - RDW is insured and bonded through Business Insurers of the Carolinas.
Meet & Greet – an initial meeting with you, your pet and RDW will be conducted at your home for you to meet your walker / sitter and for them to meet your pet. Please ask as many questions as you wish in order to feel comfortable about leaving your pet in our care. This initial meeting is free of charge, if additional meetings are required a charge will apply based upon the time taken.
Mileage Rate – if miles need to be traveled outside of the standard visits, miles will be charged at the current IRS business mileage rate and time taken will be charged at the timed visit rate (see Rates page for prices).
Operational Hours – RDW operates a 24/7 business. The office will operate Monday to Friday 9am to 5pm.
Photographs and Videos – photographs and / or videos will be taken of your pet on a regular basis. Photographs and videos will be posted to the RDW website and / or social media. If you do not wish for your pet to be photographed / appear in video's, please indicate this on your client information form.
Reward and Punishment – RDW is a firm believer of positive reinforcement methods, and these will be utilized during our walks / visits and will take the form of small treats, toys or petting / praise. Negative punishment (smacking or jerking collars or any other method which may cause your pet pain or distress) will not be used and cannot be requested from an owner.
Sick Animals – please inform RDW of any injury or sickness that your pet may be suffering from. This information will help us to care for your pet. Unfortunately, we will not be able to walk any pet that has a contagious disease as this may be passed on to other pets in our care or other animals we may encounter on a walk. We can however perform a drop-in visit to give your pet company and to let them out in to their fenced, secure yard. If extra time is required to care for a sick pet, this time will be charged at the visit rate.
Visits – all visit duration's begin when RDW step on your property and end when we enter our vehicle to leave your property. Visit arrival will vary within the scheduled 3-hour time period, although for the best care of your pets we aim to arrive at a consistent time each visit. For pet sitting, we require that cats have a least one visit per day and dogs have at least two visits per day. Visits will be scheduled with a primary employee, with a backup in place to cover sickness or vacation.
Weather / natural disaster policy – we will use reasonable judgment in caring for your pet in inclement weather, be this the cold, heat or environmental factors, always with the best needs of your pet and safety in mind. Visits may need to be curtailed, changed or cancelled, if this decision is made you will be informed of this as soon as possible. Any monies owed to you will follow the guidelines as listed in the cancellation section. In inclement weather for pet sitting clients, every effort will be made to reach your pet. If safety is a major concern or there is no way through to your property, you or your emergency contact will be contacted and together a plan will be decided.
Walks – your dog will be walked around the local area nature trails and parks. Each walk will consist of play, socialization, basic training, treats, potty breaks and lots of love and attention. Dogs in the main love being with other dogs, they get to socialize and hang out with their friends and have a great time, therefore normally your dog will be walked with other dogs. Each dog will be assessed and using our extensive knowledge and experience, we will determine when to introduce your dog to other dogs.