Exhausted Already!

Hi @Bamboo I’m sorry you are finding your new lifestyle exhausting it can be harder when you are traveling solo especially when working remotely, even part time.

Pet and house sitting is flexible and can afford greater opportunities than being confined to an office but it also comes with challenges, if you are employed and have to juggle meetings, deadlines etc., add to that the responsibility of someone else’s pet(s) and home and it can be tiring, emotionally and physically. Working for yourself and being able to manage you own time obviously gives the remote worker/digital nomad greater freedom.

You’ve had some really great feedback and advice from members. I don’t know what length of sits you are doing but longer ones work better and make sure the on sit pet responsibilities are the right fit for you and the same with the home.

A full time nomadic lifestyle is not for everyone, constant moving at anytime can be tiring everyone needs their “time out” to recoup and recharge the batteries.

My husband and I spent 6 years sitting permanently without a base with me working remotely full time for THS. We had the most amazing experiences, made lifelong friends (4 & 2 legged) the thing that stopped us was something you may have heard of, coronavirus.

After a 2 year hiatus we have a base once more I still sit and probably always will but I have to admit I love having my own home again … I can stop and rewind, remembering we are all different and the choices we make as individuals need to be the right ones.


I’m not a full time sitter but I i have traveled for work… Best tips I could think of:

Establish a home base where you can go to when you need to charge your batteries visiting a best friend? Loved family member? Etc.

Advertise for longer sits. Just a few days ago I saw a 90 day sit. It will probably feel less draining and give you more time to settle.

Look into slower paced sits.

Take breaks in between sits for yourself.

Make friends in the ths community so that you can share experiences.


@Bamboo I didn’t find it too difficult but I have several searches to alert me when places I want to go are available. I start with an anchor sit in a place I want to be and then fill up the gaps. Most of the sits I go on now were arranged several months in advance. For example, I wanted to spend some time in Southern California and booked a sit in Long Beach last November that I did in May. Once I had that sit confirmed I started searching for sits on either side of the Long Beach dates. I ended up in the area for three months with mostly continuous sits. I would have stayed longer but needed to come back to Florida for a sit that I arranged months in advance. So here I am in Florida for three months doing sits that were mostly arranged several months ago.

One drawback is that I can’t take advantage of sits that aren’t listed months in advance so I try to make sure future sits are ones I really want because I take the commitment seriously and would not cancel a sit because something more desirable comes along.


We have been nomadic for 2 1/2 years. My husband is a software engineer and can work anywhere and i own a few rental properties. It costs us the same amount to live nomadically as it did when we owned a house.


Ah, I rent. Sound fab.:hugs:

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@Bamboo Sitter fatigue is real as we found out when we did 11 sits in 4.5 months in the UK recently. We are from Australia. We had an amazing time but were exhausted by the end. We’ve reflected on how we can do it differently next time as we are now in planning phase for 3 months in Europe in 2024. We learned:

  1. The longer sits are better as it takes us a few days to get settled with the pets and the new home routines. If you are there for only 3 days, you are cleaning and packing up before you know it. For us, 2-3 weeks is our optimum sit length. For others it will differ.

  2. Have some down time between sits. We felt rested if we took 2-3 days off between sits doing our own thing. You don’t realise the emotional stress that is caring for someone’s pet and home, as well as juggling public transport schedules, until you don’t have to do it! We certainly recognised this when we had 3 to 4 sits back to back with no break.

  3. Having a car to travel between sits makes for way less stress. We relied totally on public transport, mostly trains, that worked ok until the many train strikes, snow, ice and a million other factors that delay the UK trains! Having a car would have made it easier to get to sits, sight see and carry food. See number 4

  4. Make sure you research how easy it is to get your groceries from the supermarket to home. Because we had no car we couldn’t carry multiple bags of food on buses and trains. We stayed in mostly small villages so we also had to factor in the amount of time we could leave the pets to get infrequent buses to the shops to get our groceries and lug them home. We typically do one big shop a week but had to adjust this for shorter sits. Home delivered groceries are a god send. We would place our order online to be delivered just after we arrived at our new home. The challenge on shorter sits was not over ordering so we didn’t have to cart perishables with us to the our next place, along with our luggage. We loved Ocado for our online food ordering.

  5. Travel light. We absolutely nailed living for 5 months with only carry on luggage. We had a cabin size wheelie bag and a backpack each as we didn’t want to end up with back, shoulder, neck injuries lugging around big cases on public transport. Our load still felt heavy when we each added a shopping bag of pantry staples, tea, coffee, crackers etc. Below is one of the many photos of our transit days on train platforms as our friends and family said we wouldn’t be able to do it! We did it and felt very clever as I’m a chronic over packer!! We sent a transit day photo home each time.

  6. Manage your own and the home owner expectations. There are plenty of threads on this forum about this. Things will not always go perfectly for either parties, that’s ok. Just be honest with each other and communicate well and learn from it. But stand up for yourself, this is not a one sided relationship, find the middle ground. Don’t be a sitter who gives up everything. You are still allowed to do the things you like, you do not need to be glued to the pets 24/7, their owners aren’t! Be choosy about what sits you take on.

  7. Be kind to yourself! Give yourself a break! I broke a wine glass at every second sit, 4 wine glasses in all plus burnt an expensive kitchen towel. I was devastated each time! I told the owners and offered to pay and each time they were ok and forgiving. I am still learning to not be so hard on myself!

We had an amazing time and are ready to do it all again now, and we have only been home for 5 weeks. But funds and family mean we have to wait until next year. But a full time nomadic lifestyle is not for us. Short bursts, yes but permanently, no. At least not yet. We recognise that and applaud those who can do it.

Do what ever works for you, pivot and adjust until you find your sweet spot… and that’s OK.

Enjoy your adventure xoxo


Well said! Thanks @Crookie for sharing your hard-earned wisdom!


Hi @MarieHuggins. I own a few businesses I run remotely. For me I’ve been very good at fitting my work into 4 hours a day! Have been doing this online thing for nearly 30 years now although in those days no remote working as my computer was the size of a dining room table!! :laughing:

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@Bamboo another important factor is to work out what level of animal care you are happy to accept. There are HO’s with animals that are in perfect health and those that unfortunately not that need pills or injections daily. There are HO’s that want you to walk the dogs 4 times a day or as I saw recently feed the cats 5 times a day and walk a neighbours day twice daily.
As someone said previously I now start with checking what the pet is, how many pets, medicines or not and how often do I need to feed them?

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Hi @Bamboo I really hope you are feeling encouraged by the feedback and support from the community. Sometimes feeling alone can exacerbate negative thoughts and feelings, hopefully you now know that you are not alone… :smiling_face_with_three_hearts:

In @Crookie’s wise words … “Be kind to yourself”


The lifestyle is not for everybody. Nor is pet-sitting life a vacation. I mix up times when I sit and when I always prioritize my own schedule. Sometimes I get a long-term Airbnb. And sometimes I can travel cheaper without petsitting especially when I join up with working nomad groups. Most of all I don’t depend on the sitting lifestyle. I travel on a budget and pay for travel and lodging. Occasionally I pet sit to help with that lifestyle. I only take pet sits when they work out for my personal and work situation.


Hi @SunshineAndAloha. It sounds like you’ve got your life nicely balanced. Good for you! Balance certainly is the key to staying relaxed and happy.

You mentioned that sometimes you “… join up with working for no mad groups”. What groups are these? I’m nomadic and always looking for opportunities to try new things, so you’ve sparked my interest. Thanks for sharing.

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Gosh, there are so many nomad groups. Some are paid memberships and others are free networking. For free you can always use Facebook to find local groups. For instance, if you are in Split Croatia, type in nomads + Split on your Facebook, and many groups will pop up. There are a ton of groups that offer housing+workspace+community all over the world. I don’t want to recommend a group because it depends on the lifestyle you want to lead. Some are younger who party and others are serious working nomads, and others are in sport-oriented communities. An internet search will bring up many various groups. I use Facebook for accommodation also. You can find lodging for half the price of airbnb through the Nomad and Expat groups


I still have a home base but have only been there for 2 nights in the last six months so I guess I am a full time pet sitter. I work for myself and I consider THS as one part of my professional business even if it doesn’t compensate me. The communication, coordination, travel and execution of pet sits is real work if taken as a professional endeavor and can feel overwhelming at times. However, I love the rewards that come with it which are neither free rent or travel for me.

I love the nomadic lifestyle and have learned to have faith first and a plan B second. If you have chosen this lifestyle for pure financial reasons, I would highly advise to not do it. You must have a cushion to pay for places if things do not come together. However, if you are close to major cities, there are always last minute sits due to cancellations or pet owners knowing they can post last minute due to the desirability of the location. A go with the flow, flexibility and sense of humor for the horrible pet sits due to desperation are all part of embracing this lifestyle.

With all the above being said, I have found with the new 5 cap application it has increased my stress level exponentially. It is much more difficult to build a series of quality sits and I am having more home owners desperate for good pet sitters begging us to help.

In the next month we will only be together two nights since we split up to help more people in NY who are only getting young kids with no reviews applying. I could not get an application submitted months ago for easy planning and as it got closer to when we would be in the city, everyone immediately wanted to chat and invite us. I took pet sits that were not the best fit due to fear nothing better would come along. I now feel over extended and exhausted prior to the first sit even starting. I do not believe in cancelling on people but I see that as becoming an increasing problem. People secure pet sits and keep searching for something better and ultimately cancel last minute.

I believe THS is going through growing pains right now and if you are able to be patient, dedicated and passionate about this lifestyle, it will become easier. Most of our pet sits are now repeats. We have to turn down people all of the time.

As with any job and lifestyle there are pros and cons. The nomadic lifestyle and petsitting is a lifestyle choice. It is not easier or less stressful than paying rent and staying in one place.
Social media has really mislead people with showing a carefree and easy life. I am extremely annoyed with those who are promoting THS as this great way to travel and live an exciting life. They have an ulterior motive that is about themselves not the pets or homeowners.

Knowing yourself and what makes you feel comfortable, peaceful and happy is what you need to ask yourself. If you crave structure and predictability, a nomadic lifestyle is not for you.


Social media has really mislead people with showing a carefree and easy life. I am extremely annoyed with those who are promoting THS as this great way to travel and live an exciting life. They have an ulterior motive that is about themselves not the pets or homeowners.

100% agree with that comment. Too many people looking upon THS as a great way to get free holidays.


Compared to my previous life working full time and limited to two weeks of vacation, I find that sitting IS a carefree and easy life. I had to learn the ropes and find the right balance between myself and the pets but feel like I am there.


Don’t do it full time. Look into working away opportunities or volunteering overseas.

That is a fantastic comment - wonderful and insightful advice! Such a great and supportive community.


I have similar refrains to others’ posts. There are two keys for me is prioritizing what I want out of it. I sit locally, so I want flexibility to do that things I need to do on my own time. Yes, I look for a long-term sit for the continuity, but I prioritize sits where I can have balance my professional life, social life, and errands along with being an attentive sitter.

The second key is forecasting well in advance and checking the listings daily to see if there’s a perfect sit for me. This might mean a 5-minute scan every morning or evening within my region. Usually this is for anchor sits of 2+ weeks. Further, I have a list of a dozen questions I ask in our first interaction that will tell me whether this is going to be a great sit or a dud. I immediately know after our 1/2 hour convo whether I want to pursue it or not, or politely & honestly keep the tepid opportunities on hold to see if something better comes along. I schedule about 3 months in advance so I have ample time to find “the right one” and not just “settle.” When I first started, I was taking whatever sits I could get (3-14 days, and it didn’t matter what the situation was). With a 2-4 month buffer now, I can be more selective. Though yes, sometimes I squeeze in a short “bridge” sit between those longer stays, and sometimes I’m simply doing those brief ones out of convenience.

I also try (with moderate success) to negotiate with owners around start and end dates; sometimes they are willing to get a family member or friend to cover the first or final couple days in order for me to get a whole weekend to myself. I cherish those weekends to get out of town and be free for a bit!

It also helps that I keep it local, so I minimize travel time, and I can meet pets and owners to really get a feel for it before committing.


@LizBCN Glad it was helpful!