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Old 08.08.2012, 22:25
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dog sitting is licenced & supervised? Baby sitting - not?...

hi: ))
I am a pug owner, so was browthing through the forum for pet-related info (which was very useful, by the way, want to thank everyone).
And found a very interesting (to me at least) thread about rules & licences, and trainings needed for dog-owners & dog-walkers here (Dog Sitter).

And then I was looking through job offers (since I am a housewife at the moment, and do not mind to consider opportunities)....and it was pretty shocking to me that with all these rules for dog-sitting & walking, I have found no similar discussions regarding baby-sitting...As a mother of 12 y.o. young lady, I used to have nannies...and remember how difficult it was to find the one...

to me it's a bit strange, indeed: )) is the baby-sitting in Switzerland less regulated & controlled then dog care?
My point is that such course for dog-sitting are obligatory. You must take them if you own a dog or want to make money caring for dogs...But you can have your baby (as many as you want) or take care about others - with or without special courses & permission...

or have I missed something?...
what do you think about it?...

and how do you (or would you) choose the baby-sitter? after all, there's no special government-regulater 3-year course: )))

Last edited by Sumerkirima; 08.08.2012 at 22:53.
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Old 08.08.2012, 22:33
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Re: dog sitting is licenced & supervised? Baby sitting - not?...

There are courses.

http://www.vpks.ch/deutsch/vpks-mitgliedschaft/

http://www.bffbern.ch/de/betreuung_b...fabe_k_kontakt

Keyword: kinderbetreuung
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Old 08.08.2012, 22:48
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Re: dog sitting is licenced & supervised? Baby sitting - not?...


oh, thank you. My point is that such course for dog-sitting are obligatory. You must take them if you own a dog or want to make money caring for dogs.

If I am not mistaking, these nanny corses are upon your choice....that's the question. Or are they?? My German is zero: ))))
thank you for a good point, I'll clarify the thread.
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Old 08.08.2012, 22:50
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Re: dog sitting is licenced & supervised? Baby sitting - not?...

I agree Sumerkirima - it is ridiculous!
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Old 08.08.2012, 22:57
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Re: dog sitting is licenced & supervised? Baby sitting - not?...

by the way, my pug is small, but she can run away or even bite, if someone hurts it. Or at least she has a chance to try. Babies can't.

I know it's the echo of my fears when my daughter was little. But I really was surprised with this big difference...and I must add, I've read about 2009 tragedy...in Ukraine similar things happen, and you know what? Dog owner just has to pay penalty usually. If they have not changed the law recently...
But also we all know how many people are hurt or even murdered by other prople...much more then dogs.
Why not to balance then?
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Old 09.08.2012, 15:36
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Re: dog sitting is licenced & supervised? Baby sitting - not?...

Why is dog care regulated to a greater degree than child care?

Politics.

Sheeple.

Tragedies, especially those where a child is the victim, spark intense emotional reactions among the public. The first thought is often: That could have been me or mine - something must be done. An understandable reaction, of course.

Few non-dog owners know much canine behavioral science - or much about dogs at all - and so the myths, especially those around BSL, are often swallowed without question. Repeat something often enough and it becomes gospel.

When emotions are running high fear wins out; reason and balance are often lost in the need to 'do something'. When people are afraid, they more willingly hand over to the Powers That Be what was once left to the personal sphere. Afterall, something must be done!

What that 'something' is is almost immaterial - and certainly less important to the political animal than to be seen taking action.

In the time I've been here I've noticed a tendency among politicians to embrace the symbolic law, fully cognizant that the knee-jerk measure under consideration likely won't solve the (perceived) problem. 'Doing something' wins public opinion polls, whereas the careful study of a issue, the solicitation of expert advice, the weighing of evidence, the consideration of consequences that go into crafting social change requries far more time than the average voter's attention span.

(Feinstaub? Minarets? Or even Absinthe?)

And so we often end up with ill-conceived legislation. BSL was introduced in about half the cantons - including by popular vote in Geneva and Zürich. Purely driven by emotion.

If you read the 'Federal Dog Control' sticky thread, you might get an idea of the level of anti-dog hysteria post-Oberglatt and the truly draconian measures that were mooted under the guise of 'doing something'. With official action such as puppies of listed breeds being killed at birth, dogs seized and killed after failing (unscientific and the way over-the-top) Wesenstests, as well as isolated incidents such as stoning dogs, mobbing dog owners - it was not a nice time, to say the least.

This heartbreaking thread illustrates what life was like for many of us back then:
Much loved Rottweiler, Sad Story

Having felt the sting of anti-dog hysteria in our neighborhood I was terrified of what the proposed legislation might entail - I had the kennels packed ready to leave if necessary. And I don't have breeds affected by the cantonal BSL. Owners of the listed breeds had a truly awful time.

While there were push-back efforts here and there, there was no real unity among dog owners, no counterweight to public opinion. Those that popped their heads above the parapet tended to get shot at (metaphorically), so many dog owners stayed quiet. There was no 'voice of reason'.

So after three years of living under threats, when the final (for now!) federal measures were revealed to be the very mild SKN courses many dog owners breathed a sigh of relief, considered ourselves lucky that it wasn't much worse - and complied.

The legislation was indeed incompletely though-out, poorly publicized, and in places ineptly rolled-out. It's taken several years and fine-tuning for awareness to percolate through the population. In fact, it's really just now that there is a general understanding that dog sitters have to meet standards as well as owners. I'd guess a good number of sitters don't know that they are working illegally - nor do their clients.

That said, I am all in favor of the SKN courses for dog owners and dog sitters. Let's face it: there were, and still are, plenty of irresponsible dog owners, and far too many irresponsible dog sitters. (Some of whom are decades-long dog owners who do not fall under the SKN mandate.) These folks are giving all of us a bad name, making our lives harder and our dogs' lives less enjoyable. I hope that the SKN will eventually have the intended effect on those folks.

So why not similar measures for child care?

Dog control was easily enacted because dog owners are in the minority. There are only 500,000 dogs in Switzerland, and some number smaller than that of voting dog owners. In a vote between dog owners and those who do not have dogs, the numbers are against us. This is not a culture overly keen on empathy with the 'other' - many are unable to understand why someone would value a dog.

Not true of parenthood. Most people are, were, or someday will be parents. Most people are able to extrapolate from their own current lives and empathise with parenting issues. The idea of state intrusion into the private - nay, sacred - realm of parenting is political poison. Can you imagine the hue and cry if someone tried to restrict parenthood? Such measures simply are not politically viable.

The dog control measures are self-financing. We pay dog taxes, we pay our own course fees, we pay the chip registration fees, etc. No skin off the taxpayer's nose.

But can you imagine the hue and cry if one tried to impose additional taxes on parenthood? The only way some kind of parenting class would ever see the light of day would be if state financed. Again, not politically or economically viable.

---

Now, as I understand it, commercial child care is indeed regulated, at least at the Tagesmutter or day care center level. Nannies are not, but it is assumed that the employer/parent will do the necessary quality control. An au pair's responsibility is strictly limited by the conditions of the visa, so again quality control lies with the parent.

Last edited by meloncollie; 09.08.2012 at 15:46.
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Old 09.08.2012, 16:58
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Re: dog sitting is licenced & supervised? Baby sitting - not?...

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Why is dog care regulated to a greater degree than child care?


But can you imagine the hue and cry if one tried to impose additional taxes on parenthood? The only way some kind of parenting class would ever see the light of day would be if state financed. Again, not politically or economically viable.

---

Now, as I understand it, commercial child care is indeed regulated, at least at the Tagesmutter or day care center level. Nannies are not, but it is assumed that the employer/parent will do the necessary quality control. An au pair's responsibility is strictly limited by the conditions of the visa, so again quality control lies with the parent.
dear meloncollie, thank you again. I have read many of your posts here, and have a strong feeling you know dogs well, and care a lot.
We can go on dispute as long as lifetime, and there always be pro & contra, and any side will be to certain extend right.
My question, if to put it in simple & straight way, is: why not to impose at least teast for psychological health, as well as medical analysis as obligatory for baby-sitters? I mean, ok, the person could be as nice as an angel, as educated & smart as professor...but caring psychosis (just came to you at remission phase) or, lets say hepatitis?
Is it legal here for me as a parent to request from the baby sitter the medical data on the health state?
Even if it is legal, why not to make it obligatory? So that there's no need to ask for? Just if you apply for the job, you must have it - that's all?

: ))

regards,
N.
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Old 09.08.2012, 18:18
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Re: dog sitting is licenced & supervised? Baby sitting - not?...

I agree that it is incongruous that qualifications are required of those who care for dogs and not from those who care (privately) for children. I'm not arguing against doing so - I am absolutely neutral on the subject - but having watched the process that got us to the SKN, I can see why there might be obstacles to something similar in the child care sphere.

Do you think a majority of citizens would like to see some kind of state regulation of baby sitters? This is the crux of the matter. There would have to be a groundswell of public opinion asking for something like this.

Switzerland is by and large a conservative society, in that things tend to stay as they have always been until something well and truly upsets the apple cart. As of yet, there has been no 'Oberglatt-like' incident that would spark a cry for regulation of baby sitters at the federal level.

Contrarily, there seems to be a strong feeling that the state should not overly intrude on family life - so as above, without some kind of catalyst I imagine it would be a political (and economic) hard-sell to try to introduce further regulations.

As said, commercial child care is already regulated.
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Old 09.08.2012, 18:28
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Re: dog sitting is licenced & supervised? Baby sitting - not?...

oh: )) come on...
does anyone know & can answer my question?:
is it legal, and is it normal from parent side in Switzerland to ask for health (mental & physical) proove from a future baby-sitter? Or, in other words, if I will ask something like this, will candidate think I am insane myself or not?: )))
In Ukraine, for example, normally baby-sitter (if it's someone you do not know in person) gives medical document, proving general acceptable health state, absence if infections etc.

and it's not regulated by law, just habitual: )) is it so here?
I'm just curious: )
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Old 09.08.2012, 19:23
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Re: dog sitting is licenced & supervised? Baby sitting - not?...

Some parents are desperate, and as properly qualifed nannies are very expensive and rare - anything goes, sadly. There was a recent study in France showing that many parents have no idea whatsoever about the staff they employ, often illegally, apart from a short interview, before leaving their children, including babies in sole care with them.

On this Forum, there is often confusion between babysitter, Nanny and Au-Pair. In the UK a babysitter is someone who comes to look after little ones once in a while whilst parents go out to Dinner or the cinema. For us it was the older teenager next door, with here mum as back-up just in case- and paid a bit of pocket money.

A Nanny is qualified, usually NNEB, and is paid the same as a primary school teacher.

An AuPair's personal and job description is very highly regulated. Has to be foreign and live as a family member, can't have sole charge and shouldn't be expected to do heavy housework, and has to have time for language lessons, normally paid by the family.

A 3 terms are used here, most often wrongly.

Last edited by Odile; 09.08.2012 at 19:38.
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Old 09.08.2012, 19:32
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Re: dog sitting is licenced & supervised? Baby sitting - not?...

There's a big difference between baby-sitters and nannies.

Tom
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Old 09.08.2012, 19:36
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Re: dog sitting is licenced & supervised? Baby sitting - not?...

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Some parents are desperate, and as properly qualifed nannies are very expensive and rare - anything goes, sadly. There was a recent study in France showing that many parents have no idea whatsoever about the staff they employ, often illegally, apart from a short interview, before leaving their children, including babies in sole care with them.
that's exactly what a friend of mine said. She was asked to take care of 6 y.o. boy, her neighbours' son. And they just moved in, across the street, hardly new each other, and so on.
Next day my friend had these neighbours keys, and job.

Is it so in countries all around, or in Switzerland & France only?

In my place, if you hire someone by classifieds (no agency or not through someone you know well), you usually are asking to bring the passport, make the copy & keep it. And the same with medical analysis - you have full right to ask for it - to know that there are no infections at least...

by the way, returning to the initial topic: to the opposite with pets. Anyone can take care about, it's up to owner - to decide. And normally you choose the person by recommendations, or the one you know well - that's it.
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Old 09.08.2012, 19:37
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Re: dog sitting is licenced & supervised? Baby sitting - not?...

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There's a big difference between baby-sitters and nannies.

Tom
so?...: )))
there should be something after it: )))
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Old 09.08.2012, 22:39
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Re: dog sitting is licenced & supervised? Baby sitting - not?...

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that's exactly what a friend of mine said. She was asked to take care of 6 y.o. boy, her neighbours' son. And they just moved in, across the street, hardly new each other, and so on.
Next day my friend had these neighbours keys, and job.

Is it so in countries all around, or in Switzerland & France only?

In my place, if you hire someone by classifieds (no agency or not through someone you know well), you usually are asking to bring the passport, make the copy & keep it. And the same with medical analysis - you have full right to ask for it - to know that there are no infections at least...

by the way, returning to the initial topic: to the opposite with pets. Anyone can take care about, it's up to owner - to decide. And normally you choose the person by recommendations, or the one you know well - that's it.
From what I recall in the US, there also are not any regulations on child care until the point you claim it as a "business", aka day care center, preschool, etc. I can not say if there are specific regulations for "nannies" vs babysitters - I can say that for casual babysitting, there are no obligations for anything, it is up to the parents to select someone who has had first aid courses and such.

So, no, it isn't just here.



As far as your sticking to the differences between regulations for (paid) dog care and child care, while you say that "anyone" can take care of a dog while hopefully it is true, the thing comes to experience actually. Most people have been around children at some point in their lives, and thus have some level of experience... the same can not necessarily be said of dog ownership.

My husband's only significant contact with dogs has been through me, my dog when he visited me in the US and the dogs I watched for friends here. His family always had pets growing up, but never dogs. So, if he had a dog in his care and it started "acting up", he wouldn't know what to do.

The courses for dog care begin with the teachings for that, and the ones required for folks who watch many dogs (such as at a kennel), or wish to own a dog, go further into actually teaching you, along with a dog at your side, how the dog is to behave, how you are to behave (with regard to your dog), and how you are to help your dog react to the behaviors of others.

As Meloncollie points out, while it is one thing for the government to step in and make these sorts of classes mandatory for dog care / dog ownership, I think it is a very hard sell to try to enforce similar classes to baby sitting and parenting. (Although tbh, some days, when my nephew is being particularly... well, himself... I can see how such training could be of use. )
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Old 09.08.2012, 22:50
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Re: dog sitting is licenced & supervised? Baby sitting - not?...

There is no legal definition of what a nanny is, it is a general term for someone who looks after children. Normally a nanny is experienced and has sole charge of the children but there is nowhere that states that someone who calls themselves a nanny should be qualified.

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A Nanny is qualified, usually NNEB, and is paid the same as a primary school teacher.
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Old 09.08.2012, 23:10
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Re: dog sitting is licenced & supervised? Baby sitting - not?...

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There is no legal definition of what a nanny is, it is a general term for someone who looks after children. Normally a nanny is experienced and has sole charge of the children but there is nowhere that states that someone who calls themselves a nanny should be qualified.
Indeed, while a baby-sitter is someone who watches you kids while you go out for dinner, hardly the same thing.

I was a baby-sitter at 14, as I was too young for a real job.

Tom
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Old 10.08.2012, 09:49
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Re: dog sitting is licenced & supervised? Baby sitting - not?...

so the baby-sitter is like dog-walker: ) short-term care, and the nanny is the long-term, full day (or even night) permanent care. Thank you for the explanation: ))
the qualifications are also clear, as well as the fact, that situation is more or less the same everywhere.
Still, I am curious if it's ok for me to ask the nanny (lets say baby-sitter is short-term, less crusial)...so...can I ask future nanny for her health check for some basic illnesses (mental & physical) here in Switzerland, or in Europe, or in USA?
I know that health questions are very sencitive, and could be treated as impolite.

Yet, again, my first background is psychology. And I know well, how nicely could look the one suffering with, for example, affective insanity at the stage of remission. Which can last long or very long...but you never know.
The same with some physical illnesses, which might be dangerous for entire family.

OMG...am I stubborn asking the same question for the third time?: )) I even have no babies yet: )) lol, and my daughter is 12, no need in nanny: )))))

thanx anyways to everyone involved. Somehow the topic cought me: )
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Old 10.08.2012, 10:03
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Re: dog sitting is licenced & supervised? Baby sitting - not?...

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Still, I am curious if it's ok for me to ask the nanny (lets say baby-sitter is short-term, less crusial)...so...can I ask future nanny for her health check for some basic illnesses (mental & physical) here in Switzerland, or in Europe, or in USA?
I know that health questions are very sencitive, and could be treated as impolite.

Yet, again, my first background is psychology. And I know well, how nicely could look the one suffering with, for example, affective insanity at the stage of remission. Which can last long or very long...but you never know.
The same with some physical illnesses, which might be dangerous for entire family.

OMG...am I stubborn asking the same question for the third time?: )) I even have no babies yet: )) lol, and my daughter is 12, no need in nanny: )))))

thanx anyways to everyone involved. Somehow the topic cought me: )
I know that in the US, folks who set up day-care businesses or work at them are supposed to go through background checks. These look for criminal offenses which could impact the care of minors, which may or may not reveal psychological issues, as with your stated background in psychology, I'm sure you know.

So far as direct health related questions, I have no idea in either country. I imagine it is seen as invasion of privacy (and not allowed), just like it would be with nearly every other employment situation excepting actual health care.

Alas, my inroads into child care here have to do with helping care for my nephews, I have no experience with caring for the children of strangers here (and to be frank, have minimal interest, 2x - and sometimes more - a week with my nephews is enough ). One of the sites I was directed to when I DID have some interest in that direction was liliput.ch, perhaps there is some info there which delves further into regulations for child care and people's personal experiences with it.
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Old 10.08.2012, 11:33
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Re: dog sitting is licenced & supervised? Baby sitting - not?...

Your analogy of a babysitter being like a dog walker is pretty good. I hire a babysitter when I go out for the evening, usually a teenager I trust and is known to me. If you don't know anyone then your geminde will keep a list of registered babysitters who have completed the Red Cross course.

When I employ my nannies that is a much more formal process. I carry out interviews, get them to spend time with my children to see how they get on and I check references they have provided. I also ask them for the background check form to see if they have any criminal convictions. I don't know of any way to check their health though. I really don't care if the nanny is qualified or not, I have hired 2 qualified nannies and I fired both of them. My best ever nanny actually had very little experience but she hit it off with my boys immediately and was fantastic, I am really sorry to be losing her.

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so the baby-sitter is like dog-walker: ) short-term care, and the nanny is the long-term, full day (or even night) permanent care. Thank you for the explanation: ))
the qualifications are also clear, as well as the fact, that situation is more or less the same everywhere.
Still, I am curious if it's ok for me to ask the nanny (lets say baby-sitter is short-term, less crusial)...so...can I ask future nanny for her health check for some basic illnesses (mental & physical) here in Switzerland, or in Europe, or in USA?
I know that health questions are very sencitive, and could be treated as impolite.

Yet, again, my first background is psychology. And I know well, how nicely could look the one suffering with, for example, affective insanity at the stage of remission. Which can last long or very long...but you never know.
The same with some physical illnesses, which might be dangerous for entire family.

OMG...am I stubborn asking the same question for the third time?: )) I even have no babies yet: )) lol, and my daughter is 12, no need in nanny: )))))

thanx anyways to everyone involved. Somehow the topic cought me: )
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Old 10.08.2012, 11:39
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Re: dog sitting is licenced & supervised? Baby sitting - not?...

The babysitting/childcare is regulated by Canton. For example in Canton Vaud, it is very regulated. To be a maman du jour you have to go through a mandatory training class, be approved, and then be registered. I don't think it that much different than the dog thing.

Unfortuately Geneva does not have similar laws.
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