While pet sitting is a useful service for pet owners, just know that there are only two registered pet boarding facilities on the island.
Those boarding facilities are Tat-Targa Kennels and Niveksu Kennels. Anyone else who offers a pet boarding service is doing so without a license.
On the other hand, Malta has dozens of pet sitters offerting pet sitting services, whether it be for a few hours or a few days, and none of them are regulated or licensed.
That’s because legislation on the matter doesn’t exist and that applies to pet groomers and pet trainers too.
The issue of legislation and regulation when it comes to animal rights and services has long been an longstanding issue. Lax enforcement that has resulted in self-proclaimed trainers, groomers and boarders building their business based on trust and not merit.
In some cases, borders and pet trainers have come under fire for their alleged ill treatment of pets in their care – but there are no laws governing the individual and their practices, resulting in no real action being taken in response to these claims.
A quick online search on pet sitters in Malta reveals that there are at least 25 facilities ranging from one star reviews to five star reviews.
Speaking to Lovin Malta, Animal Welfare Commissioner Alison Bezzina said she was in favour of regularising these services.
“I believe that anyone who has anything to do with animals, without the owner’s presence, needs to be registered and qualified,” she said.
Under the current legislation, boarders have to follow a specific criteria including date of arrival, health requirements and a veterinarian’s endorsement.
Moreover, boarding establishments must provide suitable accomodation suitable to their species “with respect to construction, size, temperature, lighting, ventilation and cleanliness”.
There is also stipulation on the maximum number of animals allowed to be boarded in any establishment which will be determined by the accommodation available.
However, none of this applies to the 25 plus pet sitters out there.
The issue now remains on creating legal definitions for what constitutes a pet sitter, groomer and pet trainer, including what qualifications they require in order to be able to offer such services.
What do you make of this? Let us know below