Being an Au Pair and caring for Pets

You may think that when you become an Au Pair that it will all be about the children and that nothing else will matter except making sure you look after them. Well while you would be right for the most part, there is also a lot more to an Au Pair job than just looking after kids! You would know that you can also be asked to do a lot of cleaning around the house and ensure that the house is kept clean, and even do things like gardening outside and making sure that they have a nice garden.

But one job that is often overlooked when it comes to being an Au Pair is the task and jobs related to looking after dogs and other animals when you stay with your host family. Your host family usually will have some type of pet, and it is sometimes just as important to look after the animals as it is to look after the kids in the house! You could almost see it like being a combined Au Pair with a dog sitter in order to really give yourself a good job description! But what if you don’t know much about pets and you really think you might struggle when it comes to looking after them? Well we have put together a few pointers for you today to read through and hopefully help make your mind up when it comes to becoming an Au Pair with the chance of looking after pets as well as kids!

  • Always make sure that you ask your host family if their pets have any type of specific care that they need because this could save you the trouble of having to find out something that may cause their pets some harm! The last thing you want is for harm or injury to come to their pets, so always make sure that you find out as much information about their animals as you can before you start looking after them. Maybe they have special medication that they need to take? Or maybe they are the type of animal that will only eat certain foods? Whatever is the case you need to make sure you know every last detail so that you don’t have an issue when members of your host family come home. This is very important.
  • Find out what animals your host family has before you get there and then do a bit of research on what animals they have so that you can be better prepared. They might have cats and you may have never experienced what it is like to look after cats so you will need to know a little bit about them before you arrive in Australia. You can do a lot of research online about all types of things when it comes to cats, or you can even purchase a book to bring with you that may help you out as you look after them. You could even get more specific with their animals by finding out the breeds, the ages and things along that nature that would help you out even further in really giving some great care to the animals.
  • Treat the animals the same way you would the kids! You would of course make sure you take the utmost care with the children and always ensure that you keep them well behaved and well cleaned and bathed, as well as never being mean to them and always being nice. Well do exactly the same for the animals, because you may find that the host family you are staying with may treat their animals the same way they would their kids, so it would really be a good idea to always make sure you are keeping your host family happy. If you are unsure about anything when it comes to looking after their pets, make sure you ask questions because you are only going to find out the proper way of doing things if you keep asking questions.
  • Never take the animals for a walk unless you have been strictly told to do so by the host family. Some animals may not be allowed to go outside, even on a leash so you should always check if this is the case. If they are allowed outside and for a walk you should find out how well trained they are when it comes to being walked as well as some areas in which they may like to be walked. There could be a beach nearby in which they really love to go, or you could find a nearby park where the animal can run around freely off a leash and have a great time. These are all potential places where you could take these animals so always check with the host families to have it further clarified.
  • Don’t forget about smaller animals that you may think need limited amounts of care! Such animals as fish, rats or mice or even some more exotic animals that the host family may have, all need the same amount of care as other animals would! They may not be super cute and cuddle or animals that you even like, but that’s not to say that your host family doesn’t treat them with the same amount of care anyway! Always find out how you can best look after them and always find out how you clean their cages and tanks and really make sure they are always looked after properly.

Being an Au Pair is already a very daunting experience, and throwing pets into this mix can make it even harder for some people! Always make sure you stay on your game and keep control, and you will always be able to do a very good job and get some great references from your host family. Read these tips through thoroughly before you go to your job and then always make sure you are well prepared! This could save you a lot of hassle upon your arrival.

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