Emergency medical bills — additional thing to consider

Thanks for the reminder that I need to reach out to a HO today. I just got a welcome guide for a sit for a pet that has a health condition. Vet info was provided along with their hours - not open on the weekend and very limited hours during the week. It also indicates there is not an account set up at the vet, but says nothing about payment arrangements. No emergency vet info and no emergency contact either.


As sitters, we always include a discussion about the Welcome Guide during the video chat with HOs.

We inquire of its status, and request that the HOs send it to us no later than 48 hours after our video chat, so that “we’re all on the same page.”

This open discussion, so far, has been successful for us.


I’m more relaxed about that, timing wise. Like I have sits booked through October via THS and Nomador. I’m OK with hosts sending closer to when our sit will happen. Some hosts have various sits with other sitters before mine, so I expect they’ll be updating, etc. And personally, I don’t want to read multiple versions of the same welcome guide needlessly. That’s actually more likely to be confusing or overwhelming for me as a sitter.

Separately, I have a pair of hosts who are new to THS. I’m hoping they’ll learn from sits before mine and, by the time our sit rolls around, they’ll be able to offer me a more thoughtful welcome guide than they can now.

Interestingly, my Nomador hosts for Hong Kong for much later this year quickly sent a robust and thoughtful welcome guide. I wasn’t expecting that, because of the Wild West nature of Nomador. The hosts happen to be teachers, so maybe that’s why.

Hi @Happypets

I, like @Maggie8K , mention the Welcome Guide before I confirm.

On a couple of occasions, when I received it, it has differed from the conversation that we had, which has materially changed the sitting. I asked the HO to cancel

Another occasion, despite requesting it several times over a few weeks, it was not forthcoming. Again, I asked the HO to cancel which she did.


@Itchyfeet , We too always request the welcome guide, but often we don’t receive it until the sit is imminent, or sometimes - as at our current sit - it’s printed out and only available on arrival (in varying degrees of completeness).

Like you, we once received a welcome guide and found a sit was materially different from what had been advertised (one of the dogs was urinary incontinent, blind, deaf and snappy. The welcome guide stated it was necessary to ‘move her with your foot’). We knew nothing of this until we read the guide (which the pet parent had continually avoided supplying). The PP ignored our requests to cancel, so we sent screenshots of the welcome guide to Membership Services, who cancelled the sit. The pet parent subsequently readvertised the sit, still without info relating to this one of her two dogs. The section for the second dog was left entirely blank!

We totally agree that the welcome guide is necessary prior to arriving at a sit, so sitters know what is expected in greater detail. We’ve never threatened to cancel for non-receipt, but might well stipulate that from now on.


@Itchyfeet So glad to hear that you stand your ground and cancel if you either don’t receive the WG in a timely manner or the Guide is very different from what you previously discussed and agreed to.

That’s why, for us, if the Guide isn’t received in a few days or once received, is very different from what was discussed, we can cancel right away. That gives the HO plenty of time to find other sitters.


The problem is i forget to put the sealed envelope with the credit card out and I’m not sure where I left it. Probably in a drawer that’s a mess. I don’t want to ask the sitter to go through everything looking for it. But honestly I don’t anticipate any issues at either the back up local vet – where my nephew used to work as a vet or the 24 hour emergency vet that is happy to take credit card info over the phone.

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If you use something like the letter in the future, I’d suggest always leaving it in the same place. If you forget, then you could just tell the sitter where to look.

Tangentially, this reminds me that I once went on vacation and decided to hide a company credit card at home, because I wouldn’t need it. I figured if someone broke in, I wouldn’t want to risk them stealing it and running up charges. Well, I came back and couldn’t remember where I’d hidden it. Then embarrassingly, I had to ask for a replacement at work. I ended up never finding it.


Apart from the vet and card details, transportation is also important. At most times, a car is not provided and in case of emergency, how can the pet be brought to the vet. In my case, I was taking care of a very old sickly cat that was already under medical care. My homeowner had a trusted friend that I can call for emergencies. She even arranged for me to meet up prior to the sit.

And I have had to call her.


Yes, great example.

I was very glad I had a rental car when my sit dog had her emergency.

Personally, because of where I sit, I typically have access to ride share platforms, cabs or a rental car if hosts don’t loan me theirs. Currently, I’m just starting the first sit where I have my own car with me.

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Yes. A lot depends on where owners live and whether or not sitters have a car or access. My main vet is a car ride away. My backup vet is fortunately a 1/2 mile walk (and cats are light) or very short Uber ride. Emergency 24 hour hospital is an Uber/Lyft/Taxi ride, so always discussed with sitters.

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Point well made @Anne.323 .
We discuss this with homeowners before agreeing to sit .
Some homeowners have given permission to use their car only in the event that the pet needed to be taken to the vet and this was already written in the welcome guide . Others have provided a local emergency contact neighbour/ friend who would be on standby to help out with transport if such an emergency arose.
For cat sits we also ask where their cat carrier is kept so that we already know and don’t have to go searching in the event of an emergency .

+1 on carriers. On the sit I just started, for instance, my hosts showed me where both carriers are and they’re labeled for each cat.

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Off to a good start with two kitties. Their humans left this morning and we weren’t sure either cat would come out and engage during a short sit (one is especially shy), but they’ve both already begun.

I find that sitting around like a baked potato often works. (I stay quiet and don’t move around much — the more predictable you are, the more quiet and patient, the better, especially for skittish cats, to decide on their terms whether to approach.)