Pet care shortage in Boston vexes pandemic adopters - Axios Boston

2022-12-29 09:44:01 By : Ms. vivian zhang

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Pet owners in the area are struggling to book care for their dogs and cats this holiday season, following a pandemic that transformed the local pet service industry.

Why it matters: A number of dog daycare centers, kennels and dog walkers cut back or went under in 2020 when pet owners could mostly stay home.

What they're saying: "Christmas is our Super Bowl," Boston Pet Sitters' Jennifer North, who's been in the dog-walking business in the Back Bay and Beacon Hill for 33 years, told Axios.

Axios reached out to a number of local pet caregivers, most of whom said the holidays are their busiest time of year as more dogs need to be boarded overnight and more cats require in-home check-ins.

Yes, but: Now that some workers are back at the office, demand for pet care has spiked outside of the holiday rush too, but the local industry hasn't been able to scale up to meet the market.

The current crop of dogs adopted during the pandemic, (a new breed, if you will), have never known a life without their humans at home all day, haven't received as much training and aren't as socialized as they should be, according to several pet services workers who spoke to Axios.

Ted Teller's Above and Beyond Pet Services has 2,000 pet clients and 40 employees in Belmont and Arlington locations.

What's next: Some of the pet caregivers would like to scale up their operations to meet the increased demand, but without a stable labor pool of qualified workers, they say they're unlikely to risk it.

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