Hello from Salem, MA, USA

Hi,
I just found this site a few days ago from a friend’s recommendation. I’m new to pet sitting and a bit nervous to leave my pets with anyone if we have anyone that’s interested. Will someone apply??? I hope so!

I have 4 rescues–2 cats and 2 dogs. My two kids got to pick out a cat each at the shelter so we welcomed Peaches-Chicken-Noodle and Tookie-Bob into our family a couple of years ago. Yes, the kids named them.

My daughter got to keep our foster dog, Pepper (chi/terrier mix). She was our only foster fail or rent-to-own foster. She was from Arkansas and we discovered that she likes to dig clams as the beach. I’ve told many people that she’s an Arkansas Clam Dog. lol. Over the years, Pepper has learned that strangers don’t mean danger although she’s still a bit nervous in some situations.

A few months after the pandemic started, we welcomed Harry Hashbrown (a saluki mix from Qatar) into our family. His mother was found wandering in a dump in Qatar and a family took her in. She had puppies (all were adopted!) and they lived in the family’s home until they got too big then they lived in their courtyard. He traveled from Doha to Texas to South Carolina then up the coast to New Jersey where my husband met him to bring him home. Harry didn’t really know how to dog when we got him. We discovered a few months ago that he could bark–we’ve only ever heard him scream bloody murder (there’s really no other way to describe him trying to bark).

Living in Salem, MA we have thousands of people flock to our city during Halloween season (well, the whole month of October!)

I’ve included a link to my listing in my profile and would love to get feedback on it from those of you with more experience than I have. Is there anything I should consider changing to make it more enticing for sitters?

Thanks for your help!

Jenny

Admin Note: Post Moderated

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@JennySalem , I for one, would love to apply for you sit - in fact I’ve been eyeing it for a while but I’m not currently sure if the dates will fit. I used to live in Marblehead and my son currently lives in Southie, so your location would be perfect for me. One thing that your listing does not mention is how long the dogs can be left alone during the day. You mention that they go for walks “thoughout the day” and they’ll ‘“let you know” when they need to go out during the day and night, but it wasn’t clear if they have any particular schedule, or if they need to actually go out during the middle of the night. Knowing how long your dogs can be left alone would allow me to know whether I’d have time to get into Boston to visit my son and then back within the timeframe most suitable for the dogs. Also, another thing you might mention in your listing is what the parking situation is – street parking, private driveway, or something else? You also mention that 3 of the 4 are escape artists, so perhaps a suggestion as to how to get inside without them escaping might allay some sitters’ fears of having one or more run out. You might want to also mention whether public transportation is walkable from the house and if it easily goes into Boston.
I hope my suggestions are helpful and I wish you the best of luck in finding the perfect sitter. I hope one day our paths will cross!

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Hello @JennySalem and thank you so much for introducing your rescues so well… I feel like I know them all intimately already!! I couldn’t help but share this picture of Pepper :heart_eyes: There are so many pets that need homes around the world, and it’s just lovely to read how you’ve helped and welcomed yours into the family :pray:

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It’s normal to be nervous the first time but I’m sure our moderators and the friendly community here are helping reassure you. @JennySalem has already given some very good feedback I see. One quick suggestion I would add here is that as soon as your deck is completed, get that photo updated so that it’s not seen as a worry in terms of safety for sitters or the pets while on their watch. Some sitters might wonder if building work will continue while you are away… so having this completed (as you mention it will be) will negate any concerns.

Have you seen the story of Holly? A pup that TrustedHousesitters helped rescue along with The Animal Pad (TAP)… Reading about Harry Hashbrown made me think you’d enjoy seeing some of the work we do with shelters - there are some great photos to make you go “ahhh”.

Finger’s crossed for the perfect sitters! All the best, Vanessa

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Hi!
Thanks for all the wonderful advice! I really appreciate it. I’ve put that the dogs can be left alone and put that I have a driveway in a more visible place (I had it as a comment on a picture but that was a bit hidden). I also put something about letting the sitter know how we prevent them from escaping and will add a bit about public transportation.

Yes, hopefully our paths will cross! This is a good location to visit your son from!!!

Thanks again,
Jenny

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Thanks for you the advice! My husband is building the deck so it definitely won’t be worked on during the holidays. lol. I should be able to get pictures over the weekend when he’s hoping to finish it up. I’ll take a picture of my backyard looking towards the house–there are two gates on either side that the fenced in yard can be accessed.

Isn’t Pepper the cutest? That day my kids and my dogs were out in the snow. My 9 year old and Harry were able to run in the snow but Pepper and my youngest keep getting stuck in the snow because they were so small.

I love Holly and her pup’s story–thanks for sharing! So heartwarming when people come together like that!

Thanks again,
Jenny

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Hi @JennySalem I’ll just mention that comments on photos display on the app but not on the website. If someone is reading your listing on the website, they won’t see your text under the photos. :slightly_smiling_face:

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Thank you…I just noticed that late last night! There seems to be a couple of little differences between the mobile and website view. Good to know!!!

@JennySalem Here’s a related post on app vs website differences. It may not be totally current, given updates and variations in additions or deletions from those listed.

Thank you, I really appreciate the link!

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Thanks to all who responded. I’ve incorporated all of your suggestions into my listing so fingers crossed. No bites yet but I understand there’s a another last minute thread that I can post on so hopefully something will come of that.

It’s all a bit nerve wracking, isn’t it? lol.

I’ll take any and all additional suggestions if anyone has them!