Daniel Reitman, owner of Dan’s Dog Walking and Pet Sitting in Port Washington, has been named Pet Sitter of the Year by Pet Sitters International.
PSI, the world’s largest educational association for professional pet sitters, presents the award annually to a pet-sitting business owner who embodies the passion and professionalism of the pet-sitting industry, according to an organization statement
As the 2021 Pet Sitter of the Year, Reitman will serve as the “face of the professional pet-sitting industry” throughout the coming year and be officially recognized at PSI’s 2021 Pet Sitter World Educational Conference in October.
Reitman started as a solo pet sitter in 2009 with the goal of simply making enough to match his previous salary as a veterinary technician. He says he “never imagined his business would grow to generate actual salaries for actual employees.”
Since that time, however, Dan’s Dog Walking and Pet Sitting has employed hundreds of pet-care specialists, onboarded over 2,000 clients, and completed more than 250,000 pet-sitting visits.
“I hope that the growth of my company from a one-man show to a larger scale operation—with much more planned for the future—will help inspire other companies to power through and grow, especially in our current climate,” Reitman said in the statement. “As Pet Sitter of the Year I want to share ways those in our industry can grow their businesses, both ethically and responsibly.”
Reitman’s company has collected over 40,000 pounds of pet food for local shelters and organizations, raised more than $50,000 for various pet-related organizations locally and nationally, and even went to Texas after Hurricane Harvey to help rescue cats and dogs.