Been told we won't be alone in the upcoming pet sitting

Hi everyone, was wondering if you could give me your opinion on this.
Me and my husband are supposed to pet sit for this family in about a month. A couple weeks ago I reached out to ask what time they’d want us there, and they nonchalantly told us that their (I suppose adult) son will also be in the house as he couldn’t get time off work. They said not to worry that he keeps himself to himself and he’ll stay in his room, and he’ll also go out to work during the day.
They then asked something on the lines “you don’t mind do you?”… I’m not sure what I was supposed to say at that point, it’s their home after all, but I’ve been thinking about it since: first to be sharing the house with a stranger, second I understand that if he’s working they need someone looking after the pets anyway, but I feel so uncomfortable I really don’t know what to do… This guy may be the nicest guy around, but I really don’t want a house share… Thoughts? Would you do it?


I’d certainly cancel the sit because of this change, also it’s against the THS T&Cs. Tell the HO to cancel you on their side as you’ll no longer be coming, and that you’ll let THS member support service know the reason why you’re cancelling. Disappointing, but has to be done. You’ll find another sit a month out….good luck.


I’m not worried about my travels, it’s only a train ticket as it was a way for me and my husband to spend our 20th anniversary out of the house and also with pets, but this is weird isn’t it? Is it really against policy? I’ve been a member for 4 months so still new.


Yes it’s definitely against policy- no 3rd parties in the home. The point is if it was listed and had included the son in the description THS would’ve been alerted to take down the listing. This would be a 100% cancel for me. Look for a better sit and enjoy…. this one has become non viable.


I would definitely cancel, besides being against the rules I would be very uncomfortable in the house with someone else living there. Walk away.


@BlueOcean87 Tell the homeowners to cancel your sit with them.

This is expressly against the terms and conditions, and tell the homeowners this is why they need to unconfirm you as the sitter and to make other arrangements.

Then email to tell them why you withdrew.

THS needs to talk to the HO so they don’t try this on future sitters, too.


Run away very fast! Totally against the rules and do you really want to share with a stranger. Do you have to share a bathroom? What about food - will you be expected to cook meals for him and clear up after him. No. No. No. You have plenty of time to find another sit and they cannot complain if you cancel the sit as they are breaking the Ts&Cs.


I agree. This is completely not the intention of having a sitter come in and be with the pets. You are perfectly within your rights to withdraw from the sit and get them to cancel it.

This happened to my daughter (also a THS member). She arrived to find not the son, but the HUSBAND staying at home. As he was WFH, they wanted someone to walk the dog while the wife was away. She was very new to THS and only discovered this on arrival, so she stayed and it was fine - she barely saw him during the four or five days she was there, plus she had her own bed and bath - but still. :frowning: I also wasn’t aware of the no one in residence policy at the time, sadly.


That’s what I was thinking too :woman_facepalming: especially on the cooking. Then we all wrap in a blanket and watch tv in the evening?


Welcome @BlueOcean87
@ the THS third party policy is here

You can give the owners a choice either they cancel the sit and son looks after the home/ pets or the son finds alternative place to stay and sit goes ahead .


@BlueOcean87 have canceled yet???!

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Dont even hesitate. “Thanks for letting us know but as this is against THS policy - and not what we agreed - we will not be coming after all.”

How they deal with the pets whilst their adult son is working is their problem, not yours.


That’s your answer. You already know.

You are not obligated to do anything you don’t want to.
In any situation


@Elleann I should hope so :wink:


If it’s through THS, I would get out of it, it breaches their terms. We’ve had people staying in other properties on the pet owners land before, we have no problem with that, but not in the same house, unless it’s the day before/after a sit starts/ends, and a pet owner had to come back early once for a really good reason, but they said we could still stay if we wanted, that’s totally fine.

But what they are doing is wrong, it needs to be a win-win for both parties, you don’t gain anything by that. Simply explain nicely that it’s against the t&c’s of THS, so both of your insurances would be invalid, as you’d be in breach of their terms.

Like others have said, you are totally within your rights to cancel without worry of any sort of ‘penalty’ since the HO wants to do something that is in direct violation of the terms and conditions. The reason I mention that is in case you were worried about any repercussions from the site-- THS claims to track sitters who do not cancel for a ‘good’ reason. Though even if that weren’t part of the terms, that is a totally valid reason to cancel regardless.

That most HOs seem to mention this so casually, like it is no big deal to have to be living with complete strangers in the house, is so odd to me.

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A host tried to pull the same thing on me months after we’d scheduled a sit. I kept our conversation friendly, but held up boundaries. I said I could either do the sit as planned, without anyone else in the home, or they could have their son sit instead. They then said their son would be traveling with them for part of the time, but I stayed friendly and didn’t budge. So they chose to cancel the sit, which was fine with me.

There was zero chance I’d do the sit with anyone else in the home. THS doesn’t allow such, but it wouldn’t matter if it did — it’s always my choice as a sitter.

That host ended up offering to help with any extra costs for travel changes and said they’d like to have me sit in the future. They’ve even referred another host to me for sitting.


We have shared houses with the owners (first and last), but this was previously agreed and for handovers and stuff, so we have absolutely no issue with that, but this is a very quick sit and it was agreed that we’d arrive on the day they’d leave. I was baffled because didn’t I check with them on the times, I would have probably found that out on the day of our arrival…


I had something like this happen with a teenage (17 year old) son who unexpectedly needed to hang back from the family vacation. I was told he’d go stay with a friend, but might come by for some clothes … well, he came by with his girlfriend and they stayed together for 2 nights! Hmmm, was I supposed to rat him out? Very uncomfortable situation for me.


You could have blackmailed him!

“I won’t tell if you walk the dog.”