Wednesday, March 16, 2016

Dover NH Pet Services: About On the Fly Pet Sitting

Looks like we were meant for each other.
Volunteering at the New Zealand Dog Show

When compared to other service jobs, pet sitting services are unquestionably unique.  For example, we are expected to enter your private home, and provide the highest level of care and love for your pets -- while you are away, we are responsible for your financial and emotional investments.  That being said, our clients work with us because:

  • We demonstrate exceptional personal character and kindness to all animals.
  • We are actively socially responsible, and conduct business in a professional manner.
  • We have passed all state and national criminal background checks.

Personal Pet Story

Each pet owner has a story.  I am happy to share my story with you.

On my fifth birthday, I received the best present in my entire life -- a Black Labrador Retriever. When we first met, I can remember both of us being so excited that we knocked each other down several times.  She was wagging her tail as fast as a hummingbird, and from ear to ear, I was all smile.  She lived for twelve years and peacefully died in my arms from old age.  I buried her in a field of natural grass and flowers.  This is where I wanted her to be -- it was her favorite spot, where she spent endless hours being a curious, playful Lab. Before she left me, she gave me the best twelve years a boy could ever wish for.  We spent countless hours walking in the woods, and she was a good fishing partner. She even produced three healthy litters of the cutest puppies known to man.  We kept one puppy from each litter, so my daily chores of dog care (water, food, walk, training, and clean-up), kept me busy. From the very beginning, my chores and relationship with my dogs taught me a lot about life -- things you just can't learn in a pet book or video.  I also took care of neighbor's dogs and cats, when they were away on vacation. After high school, I was busy being a student-athlete at Iowa State University.  I was far from home and only saw my dog a few times per year.  However, going into my senior year, I found myself greeting my dog at the Des Moines Airport -- I felt like I was five years old again! College ended in a flash and we were both off to begin our new lives in Chicago. 

I spent almost twenty years in the medical sales business.  As a National Sales Manager, my travel schedule was demanding -- I was busy and could not personally care for my dog each day. Pet Sitting was not as common back then, so I worked with friends/neighbors and reluctantly, worked with kennels -- it tore my heart to pieces leaving my very outdoor loving Lab at a kennel.  Eventually, my dog passed away, but rather than opt for modern Aftercare Life Dog Services, I drove her home, to be with her family.  The natural field of grass and flowers has never looked better!   

At the age of forty-one, I left the medical business and started a new career/lifestyle.  I became a fly-fishing guide, a certified fly-casting instructor, and created an international fly-fishing organization called First Cast Fly Fishing During this time, I also was the care-taker of a highly intelligent Standard Poodle, and my in-laws, age eighty three and ninety six. Unfortunately, age has taken all of them, and I am currently exploring a new dog ownership opportunity.

PS.  I have completed two obedient school programs with my dogs. 

Certifications and Training

Though not all certifications are directly related to pets, my overall training and education offers diversity and value.  To obtain these certificates, I had to pass oral/written test, state and national criminal background checks, and pledge to uphold ethical standards.

Pet CPR and First Aid 
Advance First Aid 
Human Trained and Certified
Fly Fishing

Fly Fishing
Trained Fishing Instructor
Advance Open Water & Rescue
U.S. Coast Guard Boating Safety

Personal Resume

Why share this information?  Again, you're not just hiring a pet and house sitter.  You are hiring a professional who is responsible for your investments.     

Community Development and Non-Profit Activity

  • Volunteer at New Generations Women Shelter.
  • Founder of First Cast Fly Fishing, a fishing educational organization.
  • Volunteer Fishing Instructor, New Hampshire Fish & Game.
  • Great Bay Trout Unlimited: Fly Fishing Youth Instructor, Cancer Retreat Volunteer, Conservation/Restoration Volunteer, Community Education Volunteer, Board Member, online Content Administrator.
  • Three Rivers Stocking Association: Board Member, River Clean-Up Coordinator, Youth Instructor, Director of Fund Raising, Online Content Administrator, Community Auction Developer.
  • Phillips Exeter Academy: Outdoor Educator, Fly Fishing Club Creator and Volunteer Advisor, Field Trip Coordinator, Weekly Fly Casting-Tying Instructor, Initiated Trout in the Classroom Educational Program.
  • Exeter and Dover Adult Education Programs: Created fly-fishing classes for the communities of New Hampshire.
  • Seacoast New Hampshire Parks & Recreation Departments: Created educational programs for families.
  • Boy Scouts of America Volunteer Merit Badge Counselor.
  • New Heights Teen Center: Offered after school fishing education activities.
  • Community Donations (free lessons): NH Public TV Auction, Southeast Land Trust Auction, Cross Roads Women Shelter, Amy’s Treat Cancer Foundation.

Education and Personal Accomplishment Time Line

  • Folcon Painting: created business to 100% self finance post-secondary education. 1985-1992.
  • Diploma, Trinity High School. Manchester, NH.  1986.
  • Diploma, College Prep Program. Maine Central Institute. Pittsfield, ME.  1987.
  • Bachelor of Arts Speech Communication, Iowa State University, Ames, IA.  1992.  
  • Big 8-scholarship athlete: varsity football player at Iowa State University.  1987-1992.
  • Elected Vice President of Iowa State University Student Government.  1991.
  • Psychology Concentration.  Oakton Community College. Des Plaines, IL.  1997-1998.
  • Accepted into MA of Counseling at Roosevelt University & The American Schools of Psychology. Chicago, IL.  1999.
  • Deferred acceptance for language/cultural immersion: South America, Mexico, and Africa.  1999-2001.
  • New Hampshire Licensed Fly Fishing Guide. 2008 – Current.
  • Inductee: Catholic High School Athletic Hall of Fame. 2013.
  • Certified Fly Casting Instructor – International Federation of Fly Fishers. 2015 - Current.
  • Exploring Masters of Social Work.

Professional Experience

  • Owner.  On the Fly Pet Sitting.  Dover, NH. 03/2016-Current
  • Founder/Owner.  First Cast Fly Fishing.  Dover, NH. 1/2009-Current
  • National Sales Manager.  Aplicare, INC.  Dover, NH. 1/2004-1/2009
  • Owner-Territory Manager.  Amigo-Med International.  Dover, NH. 1/2001-9/2009
  • Territory Manager.  Tillotson Healthcare.  Evanston, IL. 1992-1999

Background Verification        

To hold the following positions, I passed all state and national criminal background checks.

  • New Hampshire Licensed Fly Fishing Guide.
  • New Hampshire Fish and Game Volunteer Fishing Instructor.
  • Phillips Exeter Academy Head Advisor Fly Fishing Club.
  • Volunteer at New Generations, Inc. 

Professional References

It's pretty darn important to trust your Pet Sitter.  At your request, I am more than happy to provide a list of references -- professional colleagues that will verify my character and work experience.

Final Words

It would be hard to imagine hiring a Pet or Home Sitter (inviting them into your home) without knowing their complete profile.  If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to ask.  We want to make sure you and your pet are 100% comfortable with our services.