Dog sitters, do you ask if dog is crated at night and when alone?

The post by @Boulette about being done with dogs got me thinking. Asking whether dogs are crate-trained might be an important screening question. Having owned crate-trained dogs I see how it minimizes several concerns compared to non-crated pups. Thoughts?


I think every sitter should ask HO about training for dogs. I would if I were a sitter.

My pup is crate trained at night but does not go in the crate during the day. My sitters report occasional whining the first night we are gone but then she settles into her sleep routine (she sleeps in a crate each night next our bed).

Ask these questions and your sits will be much more pleasant, really. Owners should be held accountable for leaving you with reasonable (no dog is perfect!) dogs to sit.

As a HO I get so annoyed with untrained dogs! Can’t understand how you all cope with what you do. Really, ask questions and demand better from owners.

1 Like

Crates are not allowed in this country (Sweden).

Of course, I always ask where the dog sleeps. I did that today. The dog was described as cuddly so I was getting a bit worried. But no worries, she was not allowed in the bedroom. I think that will be a nice sit.


Where crates are not allowed (or in some cases dogs just don’t tolerate them) baby gates along a kitchen or other small room are fine.

I always tell my sitters up front that my pup sleeps in a crate, but if they prefer (some actually seek snuggles) I am fine with her sleeping downstairs in or near the downstairs guest room. We leave a travel crate (soft sided foldable) downstairs open in case our pup wants to sleep there for part of the night. She usually sleeps on the sofa if downstairs, all fine. It’s a conversation between owner and sitter.

I got my pup at 8 weeks old and I know firsthand the insanity that lack of sleep from a whining dog brings. Not what I want for a sitter! I want them well rested :slight_smile:


I find out where the dog(s) sleeps. I prefer pets that are allowed to roam or sleep freely on the bed or nearby.

If they’re crated, it’s best to ask why. Like the last one I sat that needed crating was a year-old dog and her humans didn’t trust her uncrated and unsupervised. She also didn’t get along with the cats, would try to tackle them.

I usually sit cats or midsize dogs and enjoy having them sleep on the bed, as long as the bed is roomy enough for us all. Right now, I’m sitting a sweetheart who’s used to sleeping next to her humans’ bed, in her own dog bed. She’s doing the same with me.


I understand where you are coming from, but I’m pretty confident there are more untrained dogs about rather than even partially trained dogs unfortunately.

1 Like

I have learnt that crate training seems to be a bit of a cultural thing. I have never met a dog in Australia that’s crate trained, nor any other country in Europe that I’ve done pet sitting in. Meanwhile during 6 months of sitting in the UK last year, many dogs were crate trained. I also use Nomador and some other sites, and the culture is quite different to THS… many dogs in Italy and France for example sleep outside at night or are kept mainly as guard dogs outside, which is definitely not the culture on THS. I don’t think there’s any right or wrong as long as a dog is happy, healthy & loved… just culture differences :woman_shrugging:t3:


That has not been my experience at all.

There may be areas for improvement (some dogs were pulling on the leash, some dogs would attack other dogs), but all dogs that I have encountered on THS were in general pretty good.

It depends on the quality of the training you are used to. We all have different baselines :smiley:

@NCSitterPD We’re currently looking after two smaller dogs in the UK who are crate trained, both for overnight and also when we go out during the day for a couple of hours. They are used to this as they could easily get up to mischief! The owners were forthcoming about this; we did not have to ask.

@Nagy26 My niece’s golden retriever was crate trained right from being a puppy and still sleeps in it and she’s three. It is her safe haven away from the young children! She knows her routine and when it is bedtime and heads straight to her crate. They live in Melbourne. I have also looked after dogs in Australia who also use a crate overnight.


Great! Of course there are people in other countries who crate train too, I just think the percentage is much higher in the UK and is culturally relative compared to other countries :blush:

On one sit, I sat two dogs and both dogs were put into one crate. Prior to accepting the sit, I was not aware that the dogs would have to be put in the crate for sleep at night and during times when I would leave the house. I did not like having to crate them as it seemed they did not have much room to move around. The HO did not like having them to have free roam of the house and did not want them jumping on their furniture.

In the mornings when I would let them out of the crate, they would be so happy / excited. When leaving the house, I tried not to be gone longer than 3 - 4 hours because I just did not like the thought of them being in the crate. Had I known that both dogs would be crated in the same space with restrictions, I would not have accepted that sit.

On another sit, the dog’s crate gate would be left open so that he could go in / out as he pleased. The crate was considered his quiet, comfortable, and safe space. When I would return to the home, he would be laying in his crate. It was like his private little home.

And then there was the young pup that I cared for who was a little mischievous. I only had to crate her when going out because she had a tendency of chewing things / counter surfing.

Whether to create a safe space, unable to supervise, or prevent mischief, I agree with @Maggie8K in that it is a good idea to ask the HO why their dogs are being crated.

Asking HOs why their dogs are crated has become a question that I have added during video chats.


Thanks for all the feedback. It gives me excellent food for thought.

Excellent idea. It wouldnt change my perspective because I have decided to no longer sit dogs but I think it would be a very wise question for those who do.

Almost 60 sits, and the only time I met a crate-trained dog(s) was in Australia (:smile:). A 4-month-old puppy under training and his fully trained 4-year-old brother. Both had all their meals in the open crate and slept at night in a closed crate.

1 Like

That is funny.