Advice on how to respond? 4 stars on organisation and pet care

Hey everyone, I’m a newcomer to THS. I joined in December 2023 and have recently completed my third sit. I just received the review for my recent sit, and I received five stars overall, but only four stars for Organized and Pet care. The feedback from the review was limited, only stating that the house was left very clean, that I sent updates (pictures included), and the pet seemed happy.

I am unsure how to proceed or respond to this situation. I am more concerned about the Pet care rating as that is my main priority. I looked after a puppy who was less than a year old and made sure to give her plenty of love and playtime. However, every time I left the room to take a shower, etc, she would whine (the owner told me she does that when you leave the room). Sometimes, she would bark at something in the garden non-stop unless I distracted her with food or playing tug, so perhaps that irritated the neighbours? Nevertheless, she spent most of her time in the field, running around with her dog friends or cuddling on the sofa with me.

Receiving four stars for organization is also upsetting because I had to change my ticket twice and pay out of pocket because of the pet owner. The first time, she confirmed the dates as the 11th to the 17th (including her time of departure and approximate arrival), even though the THS ad said the 11th to the 18th. I shared the dates and time of my train with her to confirm before purchasing the ticket on Trainline. I also asked if she would be arriving on the 17th and not the 18th, to which she responded, "Yes, that’s perfect - "

She messaged me back two to three days after, saying she got the wrong date and would be happy to pay for a new ticket. I politely declined her offer for payment and changed my ticket. I did not feel comfortable taking her money as I believe it is my responsibility to handle the transportation. I think it was an honest mistake on her part. The homeowner requested a video call, and she messaged me on the day to delay the call from 12 pm to 1:30 pm, to which I agreed. When I messaged her at 1:30 pm, she did not respond until 4 pm, and then we proceeded with the video call. During the call, I reconfirmed the date and time of my train’s arrival to her location at 1 pm since she would be leaving at 2 pm, which we had confirmed via messages. However, she said during the video call that she would be leaving at 1 pm instead of 2 pm, and if I could arrive at 12 pm, she would pay for a new ticket. As I mentioned, I do not feel comfortable taking money from people, so I booked another ticket. This is why I do not understand why I received a four-star review for organization when I was transparent about the timing of my arrival and departure, and I was not at fault.

Sorry for such a long message. I’m just a little sad as this was a lovely sit, and any help would be appreciated.

Thank you,
Kiddas x

I’d ask them directly but in a nice way, put it in a way so that you want to know how you can improve for next time, as you didn’t realise you had done anything that wasn’t totally satisfactory for them. It may well just be an error on their side, whereby they hit the wrong the button, in which case they can contact customer services to amend it.


Honestly, I’d let it go. Most pet parents are going to to take a very quick glance, see 5 stars and not overthink it. You are right of course. The disorganization was on her side not yours, but anything you say will sound defensive and is more likely to call attention to it, and make it look like you are arguing wtih the homeowner about the review. Not saying anything does not indicate you agree or don’t have a side. As has been discussed on many threads, some people don’t believe in straight 5 star reviews.


As an old codger, who remembers the days before ebay and amazon, I find it weird to be expected to give 5 stars for a service that was “OK”. Back in the day, you’d give somebody an OK score for an OK service. Giving 5 stars for an OK service doesn’t leave any scope for the person who mowed the lawn, ran chores for the neighbours, cleaned out the gutters, and left me a keg of beer in the garage.

Having said that, I do tend to conform to local practice and calibrate my reviews to everybody else’s these days, awarding 5 stars when I’m “satisfied” rather than “ecstatic”. I wouldn’t be too disappointed: your reviewer was probably old-school with an old-school attitude to reviews. It will all balance out in the end.


I am in the no response camp. If that was me, I’d just let it go. You got 5 stars overall and they didn’t write anything bad about you.


My POV: Five stars are when someone has done as expected. If they go above and beyond, then the sitter or host can mention it in their written comments. Otherwise, you’re punishing people for not going above and beyond by discounting from the five stars.

Like if someone didn’t mow your lawn, you’d discount a star? Mowing a lawn isn’t a requirement of sitting normally, for example. That would be an exception — if you’d posted about having your lawn mowed and the sitter agreed and didn’t do it, that would be falling short of expectations. So yeah, in that case, you might consider docking stars, but otherwise, seems unreasonable to me. And if I saw a host review that way (docking for not going above and beyond), I’d avoid their sits.


@kiddas have you asked the homeowner about the deducted stars .
If they’ve not said anything negative about these things in their review it may be a glitch .

I’ve seen reviews where the homeowner praise the sitter, found no faults and invited them back but only gave three stars overall ( although all the individual categories had 5 stars) so it was obviously a glitch .

If it was a mistake by homeowner or glitch member services will correct it for you .


Hello and welcome to both @kiddas and @NeilHoskins!

@kiddas I’m thinking that if you really want the feedback to use in a reply to the review then make the effort to pursue.

If you are more about not feeling recognized enough for your efforts, I would say…try and let it go…if you know you did right by the sit then your head and heart should be light.

If you just want to know the feedback for that very specific sit/setting, would it really help you in a new/specific setting?
Add quality to your life?

In the end, if something is stealing your peace…maybe it is better to turn away from it and let it go.

Good luck.