Advice for our first nightmare sit

If I couldn’t contact the HO and the vet wouldn’t carry out a procedure without advanced payment I’m afraid the HO’s emergency contact would take the brunt of the decision making and any payment…. it certainly wouldn’t be me as I’d have no way to get the HO to pay me back and ‘hope’ isn’t sufficient to my mind.

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Ask the homeowner to leave a credit card on file at the vets. There was no mention of THAT being against the rules of 5.3.

Which I strongly recommend be amended. People do THS to save money. This can be a strain on many sitters.

None of the so called terms and conditions are legally binding on THS. There are no contracts. THS is fundamentally merely a matching service

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I happily decline sits that do not have a deposit account or a credit card on file at the vet and those sits where the PP refuse to setup a deposit account. I verify this during the video chat before confirming the sit. I explain to the pet parent that I do not provide financial assistance to cover pet related expenses - food, medicine, vet care etc. regardless to what is stated in the THS T&C. So far I’ve only had 1 sit where I had to take the cat to the vet in the Philippines the PP had left 20,000 pesos on the account which was more than enough to cover the vet bill.

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Update: Thank you all for your support and suggestions. Sadly, the cat had to be put to sleep. When we took her to the vet and it turned out that the HO had refused to pay for her bloods to be monitored for her health condition, so she had lost a huge amount of weight and was not looking well. The owner paid over the phone during the appointment. It was very sad as there was more thought put into the cost than the welfare of the animal.

We are no longer bothered about the fuel money, we just want to leave, which isn’t too long now. There is no way the owner would pay upfront for decent flea treatments for the house, and quite frankly I’m done fixing all of his problems! We will be very careful to avoid transporting fleas with us when we leave.

Thanks again everyone!

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Reality: there will always be inconsiderate, irresponsible and selfish people in any arrangement, not just Sits.
The system ONLY works well when both sides are truthful, fair, considerate.
I am so sorry you are enduring this situation. I realize that having made arrangements to stay in a place for a long sit you may not have had many options.
I do hope this doesn’t sour you on doing sits. We have done dozens. I can honestly say only one was at all like you describe - thankfully it was short.
I believe in giving people the benefit of the doubt but this person is obviously irresponsible.
My recommendation would have been to phone the vet, ask if the HO left a CC to cover expenses and if they have not, have the vet’s office call the HO asking for a CC to cover expenses, letting the vet’s office know that you cannot pay for any bills with them.
ALL the HOs we have dealt with who had animals dealing with issues pre-arranged with their vet to leave a CC for costs and none had a vet an hour away (that in itself is odd.)
Given all you’ve described, it was questionable this HO would reimburse you. Seems he (thankfully) couldn’t ignore the vet’s office call.
If you have THS Premium Membership perhaps THS can address this. We upgraded specifically because we encountered a similar situation and recognized our vulnerability.
Thankfully we have never had a long nightmare, have never needed to fall back on THS Premium benefits.
However we have friends who have arrived to discover a home and pets were nothing like portrayed, home in disaray, dirty, animals clearly in a neglected state.
In BOTH cases (one in Greece, one in Croatia) the friends (different people, but all in their 60s) contacted the sitting organization (in one case THS, in the other a different org) with documented evidence of the issues and stated they would leave within 48 hours.
NOT as a request. As a statement.
So - lesson learned? I’m thinking we all need to be prepared for a situation like this.
Some off the cuff ideas:
(1) Always have a backup plan
(2) Always ask in the interview process what arrangements they have with a vet.
(3) If you arrive to such a situation, document it as discreetly as possible. And don’t bring in your stuff until you’ve done a bit of a walk-around.
(4) Say that clearly you arrived earlier than expected, you’ll give them time to get ready for your stay, and ask them to contact you when that’s done - and be prepared NOT to do the sit (why #3 is important).
Lastly, I hope THS removes this HO from the system. They were clearly irresponsible about their pets and they have NO right to to take advantage of people in this way.
Best of luck

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That’s very sad. You’ve been through the wringer with this sit :cry:

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There is no need now for if’s, buts and maybes. These sitters have been through enough and I’m sure are feeling quite low so let’s just give our heartfelt sympathy and not advice. Losing a pet is never easy, even when not your own. I’m so sorry for the loss and what you have been through @imissmomo :pensive:

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I would never pay a vets bill up front. i would simply explain that i am only looking after the pet and could they please send the bill to - give owners name and address etc. So far there has always been an account set up. On one occasion I was left money to cover medication I needed from the vets.
There should be a clause to state that pet owners are responsible for all vets bills. Nothing to stop them phoning the vets and giving over their card details if required.

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Oh my, I’m so so sorry you’ve had to go through this. That poor kitty. What a nightmare for you.

Thank you on behalf of all animal lovers for taking sweet care of the animals during your time there.

I’m glad you get to move on soon, and glad you’re being careful not to take any fleas with you. Be gentle with yourselves as you move on from this stressful situation!

:black_heart: :broken_heart: :purple_heart:

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