Hours of Operation
Office hours are Monday – Friday, 9:00 AM – 5:30 PM. Service hours are from 6:30 AM – 10:00 PM on weekdays and weekends. After Hours is before 9:00 AM and after 8:00 PM.
As long as the roads and weather permit, we will service your pet as requested. KSR Pet Care generally does not close for half-a-day Federal Government closings or delays. We do not follow school closings.
When we decide to close and cancel all midday walks free of charge, we make this decision on the basis of safety, latest weather reports, road/sidewalk conditions, notice to reach clients on time as well as considering the hard fact that our walkers will be losing a whole day of income.
If a client is out of town, we will make every possible attempt to visit these pets midst a possible delay.
In preparation of upcoming inclement weather, KSR Pet Care will send a notification email in advance, announcing whether KSR Pet Care will be closed if the Federal Government closes, or remains open. If closed, all walks are automatically cancelled, and credits added to your account. If a daily dog walking client does need service despite the closing, the client needs to contact the office by phone and/or email and await confirmation. Only with KSR Pet Care prior notification can walks be cancelled free of charge.
We accept payment by credit card (VISA, MasterCard, Discover, Amex), Debit cards or ACH. Payment is due on the first day of service. A $25 penalty automatically applies 10 days after due date and continues with increments of $25 more every 10 additional days late. All payments are final. We do not refund but instead offer a credit on your next service. Payments are accepted via phone or via our online portal. Our portal is password-protected and payment methods are encrypted.
KSR Pet Care provides services and so tipping your service providers (your dog walker/pet sitter) is allowed and very much appreciated. If you received excellent service from us, please consider a tip of 15-20%. Best method to tip is adding a tip to the payment of your invoice and have it charged to your credit card on file. The tip goes 100% to our staff members. You can ask us for assistance at 703-945-5045 and we can also add the tip amount for you, before or after service.
We also have an auto-tip option. This means a tip of your choice (% or $) is added to each invoice automatically, so you never forget to tip again...
If you want to leave cash at your house for the pet sitter to pick up, please put it inside an envelope with our employee's name on it. If you leave a check, please write your sitter's actual name on the check, not the company.
Rates & Surcharges
Our rates are competitive with other bonded and insured businesses in the area. Rates are subject to change without prior notice.
Due to the high demand for service, we ask for holiday and after-hour surcharges. After hours is before 9:00 AM and after 8:00 PM.
Federal Holiday surcharges:
- Surcharges on Federal Holidays as well as on Saturday and Sunday of Memorial Day weekend, Independence Day weekend, and Labor Day weekend: $6.25/visit.
- Surcharges on Thanksgiving, Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, New Year's Eve, and New Year’s Day: $12.50/visit
- Any other Federal Holiday: $5.00/visit.
- FREE first consultation: $0.00
- One-time registration/administration fee for new clients (non-refundable): $39.50
- Additional consultation: client interviewing new sitter/dog walker, new pet at the house: $24.50
- A 'Shadow meeting' of a dog walker/pet sitter being introduced by a senior dog walker/pet sitter at a time of a booked service: $0.00. One of the advantages of working with KSR is that we always make sure our staff is well-prepared before entering your house.
Weekend and After-Hours fees:
- Surcharges for weekend midday dog walking: $3.50/visit
- Surcharges for After-hours (before 9:00 AM and after 8:00 PM) visits: $3.00/visit
- No surcharges for administering medication or extra same-family pets: $ 0.00
- Outdoor plant care added to a regular visit (up to 5 pots or one bed only): add $8.00
- No surcharge for indoor plant care (except a green house +$8.00): $0.00
- Key/fob pick-up or return on a day where no service visit is scheduled: $15.00
- Key/fob pick-up or return for a scheduled dog walking/pet sitting visit: $5.00/visit
- Last minute (day of or less than 24 hours) or emergency visits: $7.00/visit
If service ends and we still have keys on file, we can return them to you and a key return fee applies. We value the time our sitters spend on the road, including for key pick-up or return. If at the end of service, you want to avoid this charge, we could also dispose of your key(s) securely and for free. We can send you a receipt that states it has been done. We can also mail you your keys back for free. We cannot be held liable for loss of keys through the mail.
If you live in a condo or neighborhood where a fob is needed, we need at least one fob to start service and we have a minimum visit requirement of 30 minutes. If our walker has to pick-up and/or return a key/fob from a leasing office or concierge there is a pick-up/return fee per service visit. This fee goes entirely to your walker. If the key pick-up/drop-off is not going smoothly and takes longer than 5 minutes, the sitter will report this and deduct the time up to 10 minutes of your visit time. If waiting time is longer than 15 minutes, we will contact you and let you know of the additional charge.
If you live in a condo/apartment building and walking time from a sitter's car is longer than 5 minutes, we will reduce your visit time with 5 minutes (or more, if walking time would be longer than 10 minutes). This will then be discussed at consultation.
Keyless entry/ Lockboxes
We are going keyless at KSR and digital locks and lock boxes are now preferred. If you want us to work with a garage keypad code instead, that is fine. If, however there is a power outage or a faulty mechanism, we may not be able to get inside if we only have the garage keypad code.
You can purchase a lockbox before start of service with us at either a hardware store or online. The cost of a lockbox ranges between $9 to $30 online. Our owner Karen personally recommends Puroma and Master Lock ($18-30 + shipping). Giverare, Oria and AMIR also have quality waterproof $9.00 lockboxes (+shipping) available. (Click the links to view on Amazon.com)
Lockboxes may be purchased from KSR Pet Care for $40 which includes delivery to your home. Please notify the office before our initial consultation if this is your preference.
We recommend that you keep two keys inside your lockbox at all times.
We are aware that lockboxes are not always allowed or wanted in condominiums. In those cases, please have a key/fob/parking permit ready at the concierge for pick-up. Please keep in mind that there is an additional pick-up charge per visit for pick-up. We could also discuss having your primary KSR Team Member hold on to your key on a key chain for the duration of a trip or for daily dog walking. If so, you need to either have a lockbox or a back-up key at all times available at the concierge, at the sales office, at a neighbor’s who is home in case another Team Member needs to step in. We cannot do service if we are not able to get to a back-up key.
A lockbox can only be used by KSR Pet Care staff, no other contractor services please, unless we have been made explicitly aware ahead of time and in writing. We cannot be held liable for a missing key.
Having a lockbox or keyless entry enables KSR Pet Care to easily provide service for last-minute needs or emergencies. KSR Pet Care can quickly schedule an available Team Member and dispatch them directly to your home. There is no time delay, as someone waits for a key to be delivered (our current method). With the use of lockboxes, you get to be the one in charge of your keys; you own it, and you set the code.
We need all cancellations in writing by email to email@example.com or via our portal.
Our general rule of cancellation is 24 hour notice to receive full credit back. Please see exceptions below! KSR Pet Care assigns 3-hour time blocks to your appointments and therefore the 24 hours is calculated starting with the start time of your time block. For example, if you cancel a Friday noon-3 pm appointment, we need your cancellation in at the latest by Thursday noon. Same-day cancellations or the day before after 5:30pm (regardless the time frame) involve the value of the visit(s). (Explanation: our office closes at 5:30 PM Monday-Friday, Saturday and Sunday, so if you send us a notification outside those times, we will only be able to alert the sitter the following business day). Thank you for your understanding!
Exceptions to the 24-hour notice rule apply for :
- Monday appointments. For a Monday appointment we need cancellation by closing of business on Friday. Our offices are closed on the weekend and although we sometimes do check our email, we cannot guarantee a same-day reply.
- Temporary suspension, cancellation of, or reduction of duration time of dog walks/ pet visits in your monthly dog walking/ pet sitting service: please cancel or request change with a 2-week notice, or two weeks of dog walking/ pet sitting will be due. The monthly due date for confirming your new month’s dog walks does not apply if suspending or changing your account. If you want to cancel or change as of the start of a new month, you need to give us two weeks’ notice (=before the start of the new month).
- Holiday periods: for appointments on a Holiday or part of a series of appointments including the Holiday, cancellations are due 7 days in advance, or 50% of the full invoice is due. For overnight cancellations including Holidays we need 14 days' notice, or 50% of the full invoice is due. If the cancellation is within 24 hours, the full invoice is due including the Holiday and Holiday surcharge. Holiday surcharges are non-refundable.
- Cancellations for extended pet service (this is, 7 days or more) for dog walking (other than monthly service), pet sitting and overnight bookings must be received at least 5 business days in advance, or 30% of the full invoice is due. If the cancellation is within 24 hours, the full invoice is due. For partial cancellations, you can cancel up to 5 visits free of charge made with at least 24-hour notice. For partial cancellation of dog walks or vacation dog walking/pet sitting with twice or more visits a day: you can cancel up to 5 visits free of charge made with at least 24-hour notice.
- For service starting Sunday, we need notice before closing of business on Friday. For service starting Saturday, we just need 24-hour notice.
These exceptional charges are implemented as a courtesy to your sitter who is losing a job and income without sufficient time to replace it with another. One of the benefits of working with KSR Pet Care dog walkers is to have a primary and back-up assigned to your household which means the dog walker reserves a spot in their daily route for you. They rely on this income week by week, month by month. It makes a big difference in their pay if you cancel too many times.
Billing & Payments
Our pet sitters and dog walkers work for KSR Pet Care as employees and signed a non-compete agreement with KSR Pet Care. As a client of KSR Pet Care you may contact your KSR pet sitter and/or dog walker directly for any pet or house related updates. For any billing, bookings or payments you work via KSR Pet Care office only. No service can be set up directly with the dog walker or pet sitter without the knowledge of KSR Pet Care office. If service were to be set up without KSR Pet Care knowledge, this service would not be protected by KSR Pet Care insurances and would also violate your KSR Pet Care client agreement as well as the non-compete agreement we have with our employee.
KSR Pet Care services are fully bonded and insured. This means that if a pet sitter or dog walker working under the capacity of KSR Pet Care make a mistake and something happens to your pet(s) or inside your house, KSR Pet Care is insured for this. We also carry bonding insurance in case of theft. We are also fully licensed as stipulated by the Commonwealth of Virginia’s Corporation Commission. We send you a copy of our business license as well as insurance certificate before we meet.
Health & Hygiene
Although we are not veterinary technicians, we consider it our responsibility to observe your pet's health and alert you if we notice anything unusual about the appearance, behavior, or the stool of your pet that might suggest an illness. We also ask all our customers to provide us with emergency and veterinary details, so we know what to do if something happens that cannot wait.
KSR Pet Care staff also consider it their duty to practice good hygiene and eliminate germ spreading by washing or sanitizing hands after each pet visit. It is essential to wash hands with soap and water after petting, feeding, handling, or having any other contact with animals, their living quarters, or their waste. Washing your hands with soap and water for 20 seconds and rubbing with sufficient friction helps to clean. If we are unable to use a sink and soap at a client's home, we will use a hand sanitizer that we carry and keep in our car. Antibacterial soaps and hand sanitizers are designed to offer the extra protection of killing germs. We follow the guidelines of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
In case of illness, emergency or time off of your regular/primary sitter/walker, your secondary/back-up sitter or walker will automatically step in. One of the benefits of working with KSR Pet Care is we do our best to have up to 3 people assigned to your household so that we are able to provide back-up support when needed. In case your sitters/walkers are unavailable, we will contact you as soon as possible. At that time, service can be cancelled without fee, or upon availability and with timely notice, KSR Pet Care will arrange another sitter/walker to meet your pets before doing service during a shadow visit. We never send sitters/walkers to a house they are not familiar with. For that reason, we highly encourage booking as early as possible so that an additional consultation and back-up is still an option.
For the convenience of our clients, the walker/sitter will be personally introduced to each pet that requires service by another KSR Pet Care staff member and this free of charge. We call this a shadow meeting. If the client chooses to meet with the walker/sitter instead, a consultation fee applies.
All sitter meetings following the initial client consultation are considered additional and incur a charge.
KSR Pet Care employees use a GPS tracking program on their phone via an app that is created by a pet sitting software company. Employees check-in via this app when arriving at the door of a client home and check-out when leaving and just outside the client home. The GPS coordinates that are saved are a time stamp of check-in and check-out as well as a location stamp at check-in and check-out. In an effort to protect our sitters' privacy, clients will not have direct access to the program data. Only by written request and with a valid reason for worry could KSR Pet Care management decide to disclose data to a client.