How to Become a Licensed Pet Sitter

Updated April 17, 2017

Earning certification is the first step to developing your skill, qualification and reputation as a pet sitter. According to Sitter City, qualified pet sitters that have taken courses on pet sitting and obtained certification don't need a pet sitter license. In fact, in the U.S. there is no specific pet sitter license instituted by the government. Depending on your state however, there are laws that may require you to obtain a general business license, which is essential to have before you start working, to validate your pet sitting business.

Get certified. Access the National Association Professional Pet Sitters main website from the internet. Click on the "Become a Member" tab to set up a free membership account. Create a screen name and password so that you may access your profile and account.

Order the "Pet First Aide" and DVD series from the National Association of Professional Pet Sitters website. Educate and study the lessons on pet care and first aid, health, nutrition and behaviour, building your own pet sitting business and laws regarding pet sitting.

Expect the pet sitting course and certification process to take six weeks. Spend between 60 to 90 minutes, three to four times a week, to thoroughly read the course packet and review the DVDs.

Complete and pass the online National Association Professional Pet Sitters examination once you have completed the coursework. You must score a minimum of 75 per cent to become certified and earn a license.

Develop a name for your pet sitting business. Register your pet sitting business with your county's clerk office. Receive a tax identification number through your state's Department of Revenue Service.

Invest in business insurance. Insurance is necessary to protect the client's pet and other property. Sign up with Pet Sitters International and The National Association of Professional Pet Sitters to obtain information on insuring your business in your state.


A pet sitting license is only valid for three years and is subject to renewal after it expires. Contact the National Association of Professional Pet Sitters for information on obtaining a renewal license.

Things You'll Need

  • Business license
  • Tax identification number
  • Pet sitting certification
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About the Author

Cameron Holmes is a freelance writer, actress and model. Since 2009 Holmes has published numerous articles in topics ranging from entertainment to travel on various websites. Holmes earned an English degree from the University of Illinois in Urbana-Champaign and specializes in health, wellness and fitness topics.