4th of July for the Dogs

Posted by on July 3, 2015 in Dogs, Holidays, Pet Care, Pet Sitting, Uncategorized | 0 comments

The bang of fireworks, the heat, the barbecue: while there’s plenty to do on the 4th of July holiday in Reston and Herndon, it’s not a dog-friendly time of year. The commotion, stress, heat and parties can be too much for our pets. According to the ASPCA, one in five dogs go missing due running from a loud noise; including fireworks. They’ve developed an important mobile phone app that can help you be prepared in the event of an emergency.


american dog with red gloves behind banner


Don’t let your dog become a statistic. Keep him indoors, and walk on a close leash for his relief breaks. Please don’t leave your dog unattended in a yard. If you’re having guests, let them know not to feed him “people” food. And if you’re gathering outside, don’t let your dog become overheated, and keep him on a leash.

Always make sure your pet has current ID, or a microchip, to improve the odds of reuniting.

Keep the radio and TV on to help cover outdoor noise. And once dusk falls, it might be a good idea to move your pets to a quiet, back bedroom where they will feel safe. Play some indoor games, with treats as rewards. Nothing is distracting as a good treat!

If you need to be away from home, our overnight staff will be happy to stay with your pets, and keep them safe, happy and entertained. Our holidays book months in advance, so it’s never to early to get on the schedule for major holidays!

Have a safe, happy 4th of July!


Beautiful Midday Walk

Posted by on May 4, 2015 in Dog Walks, Dogs, Uncategorized | 0 comments

Today was a great day to be a dog walker! Did you know you can choose a longer 30 minute walk? A longer walk gives us more time to take a hike in the woods, or the many paths of Reston and Herndon. Check out Merlin enjoying his 30 minute midday!


Me, a Pet Sitter? (or what do we do with this dog…?)

Posted by on March 10, 2015 in Dog Walks, Dogs, Pet Care, Pet Sitting, Uncategorized | 0 comments

It started small, in September 1997. Really small. And cuddly. That’s when we brought our black lab Nikki home. She was tiny and poopy so we called her Stinky. Her name was Nikki, but like most furbabies she ended up with a multitude of nicknames. Thank goodness she outgrew her Stinky stage rather quickly.


Nikki soon became the center of our existence, as babies do. Her poop was a big topic of conversation (what did we talk about before?). And she grew, as puppies do. And nearly a year later, it was time for a vacation. And no dogs were allowed. I had no idea what to do or who to call. All I knew was that I needed someone who would love her as much as I had come to in the last year. I had heard about professional pet sitting from a friend, and our dog trainer confirmed it was a great alternative to boarding. So we signed up and had a sitter stay with our Nikki. The following year Nikki was joined by Solstice (forever known as Little Man), and of course Sam the Amazon was here to keep it all entertaining.

The more enmeshed I became in the pet world, the more I realized there was a real need for reliable pet care. I began pet sitting for friends on a regular basis. One called me the Pet Elf, and the name stuck. I began doing research and turned to Pet Sitters International for guidance. This educational association had everything I needed to know about turning pro.

As a card carrying member with my bond and insurance in place, I began my journey as a professional pet sitter.

So much has changed since those first few years. Records moved from binders and notebooks to our secure server, and staff was hired to help meet your needs.

And Nikki and Sol are gone.

What remains is the dedication and compassion I have for pet care.

I started because of them. And I continue because of them.



A Dog Walk in the Woods

Posted by on February 6, 2012 in Dog Walks, Dogs, Uncategorized | 0 comments

A walk in the woods with Mia and Beowulf.

The Pet Elf 12020 Sunrise Valley Dr. Suite 137 Reston, VA 20191