I’ve been aware of TH for a while and am now lurking in the background wondering whether it’s for us. Husband and I love the idea of travel, but nowadays we don’t go out much! This is in part because we have 2 mini daxies with ridiculous separation anxiety, so we only go places we can take them.
Having spent an idyllic time in Germany about 4 years ago (when we had just the 1 dog) I’m insisting on an out of UK holiday next year. We would love to replicate our home life overseas - we like country walks, sitting in a quiet garden, we don’t enjoy busy towns or shops. But…. Would we take our two dogs with us, or try to get a house-sitter for a simultaneous swap (that sounds fraught with difficulties).
Is anyone in the same situation? I suspect as house-sitters that puts us at a distinct disadvantage.
We live semi-rurally near Faversham in Kent, in a Victorian 2 bed terrace house…but we can offer our house sitters use of a wood burning sauna!
Hi @Cazbo and welcome to the Forum.
Simultaneous swaps are not really something that happens on THS, and although there are sitters who travel with dogs, you will find that this will greatly reduce the sits that you would be able to do.
However, THS is an amazing group of people, many of whom understand the needs of pets and owners, and are familiar with various situations - such as separation anxiety.
The whole concept of THS is that pets remain in their own familiar surroundings, and as long as you are completely honest in your listing regarding your pet’s needs and issues, you should have no problem finding a sitter for your dogs.
Personally, I have a lot of experience with dogs which have some kind of issues, I volunteered for a dog charity for a few years which rescued dogs and fostered them until forever homes could be found, and there are a lot of very experienced sitters with similar history.
(My next sit in Singapore starts next week with 2 Dachshunds! and I have recently spent time in Bali with one - 5 weeks in November and 6 weeks in Feb/March)
There are also a number of sitters who “work from home” so as long as you have a good wifi connection, you will find sitters who are happy to spend a lot of time just being with the dogs.
I hope you decide to join THS and I am sure others will give you some great advice on this Forum.
Hi @Cazbo and welcome! There are certainly quite a few people who have a combined membership as both sitters and homeowners. They have a sitter come and look after their pets while they housesit and care for another member’s pets. I’m sure someone in this situation will come along and comment soon. I’m sure I’ve seen posts on here where someone is sitting for someone who is in turn sitting for someone else!
There are also a few sitters who take their pet with them, but this will limit the number of sits available to them. @LTD is a UK sitter who successfully does this.
I’m on a 3 week house sit now, and yes, WITH my own doggy, Brecon. I’ve just agreed a further sit when this one finishes … again, with my dog.
I always ask, and sometimes it’s not appropriate, / convenient but often it is.
Hello @Cazbo and welcome to the Forum. You can already see what a friendly and helpful community we have here.
My husband and I are both pet parents and pet sitters. We just completed another stay with 3 dogs, 2 of whom showed signs of stress in the absence of their parents. I think for some, this is fairly common. We have an Australian Shepherd at home who is going on 15 and she STILL is melancholy when we leave.
I remember when my parents would leave us with a babysitter and my brother would cry for hours (it certainly wasn’t the case with me - I couldn’t wait to get into trouble ) The good news in all the sits we’ve done and even with our girl, is that it, too, shall pass! All that said, I just created a post on this very topic which I hope you’ll find helpful:
Like others have shared above, you may want to include this information in your listing and select those who will be home more than away during your travels. Of course being a proud member of the TrustedHousesitters team, I also hope you will decide to join this wonderful organization. The world is your oyster! We look forward to welcoming you as pet parents and supporting you along your journey. Please keep us posted.
Hi @Cazbo ! My family is both sitters & owners on Trusted Housesitters. We love pet sitting largely because of what you described - replicating our home life elsewhere and living like a local with new furry friends! We simultaneously travel to pet sit while having other sitters come stay in our home with our own pets. We do not do direct swaps, but instead find & book sits in areas we are interested in visiting, then post our own sit for the same dates and find our own sitter. This way our pets get to enjoy the comfort of their own home with sitters to love on them and maintain their same routines. If you require sitters who will be home most of the time, that is something you can mention in your listing and interview sitters to find the right fit.
On the other hand, some owners are open to sitters bringing their own pets. Personally, I think it is harder to guarantee everyone will get along, unless you are able to coordinate meeting before the sit begins.
There are lots of dual sitters & owners within the Trusted Housesitters community - we just had sitters in our own home in Las Vegas, while we went to sit for an owner in Mexico, who was also on another sit in Southern California. So it is definitely realistic to coordinate booking sits while having sitters come care for your own pets.
I think the easiest thing to do is don’t think about swaps, book your trip and accept applictions from TH sitters and go enjoy! As someone said, that’s the whole purpose of this sight. Many HO posts you read disclose the same separation anxiety that your pups feel, it’s not uncommon. However, there are countless sitters who are equipped to deal with that and ensure they are comfortable. Just go!