How many hours do you work while petsitting? (full-time petsitters & remote workers)

Hi everyone. :slight_smile:

This isn’t a very serious post, but just intrigued to hear your thoughts!

I’m a remote worker and single petsitter (full-time with Airbnb stays in between) - new to THS, but I’ve done plenty of housesits using other websites and word of mouth.

When I began petsitting, I reduced my working hours as I realised how much time it takes to organise sits/travel as well as the time spent caring for pets and homes. That’s not to say I never had longer working days with a cute sleepy pet by my side, but I’m certainly not working the same full-time hours I did when I was renting.

A friend called this ‘part-time’ and lazy. Eek! As someone who’s always been a hard worker, it made me feel a bit strange haha. I don’t have big savings, so I always make sure I work enough to keep my bank account stable or growing, but the animals come first for me. Plus I don’t want to get burnt out - especially as a single person without any additional support.

So it made me wonder… are other petsitters working full-time (40+hrs pw)? Or is it normal for petsitters to work reduced hours in their remote job?

If you’re a remote working petsitter, I’d love to hear what your ‘work week’ looks like. :slight_smile:


My partner and I are working an average of 2-3h a day, mostly 6 days a week. It’s enough to keep our bank account ticking over. We are full-time sitters so don’t pay rent or utilities anywhere.


I work remotely for my own marketing consultancy and usually have 4/5 clients in different time zones at any given time. 4 hours a day for 5 working days is enough of a work commitment if I still want to have time to take care of the pets, the home, explore a bit and enjoy the whole experience. Whenever my workload creeps over that it’s not fun and I can’t enjoy the sitting & travel anywhere as much (plus the clients, hubby and the pets lose out). That’s a good work life balance for me two years into full time sitting. Anyone who says you’re lazy can keep their opinions to themselves. Your life, your choice @wolfcub - if you can make it work then enjoy :raised_hands:t3: PS and less is fine too as long as the coffers stay topped up!


Yes, I work full-time (40-50 hours a week). I have lots of flexibility in scheduling my time, so I am able to arrange my schedule to accommodate travel days and plenty of time for pets without any issues.


I do a maximum of 6 hours a day as an online teacher. It works well with pet sitting, and it’s perfect to go on doggie walks on my breaks. I don’t earn huge amounts but enough to keep me going. I’m in my mid 40s and it’s a great adventure for me at this specific point in time, but not something I’m likely to do forever.


Thank you for this! I feel I’d be totally exhausted and have no time to explore if I was doing more than this, to be honest! It would defy the point of petsitting if it worked out more exhausting than renting/working full-time. Like you say, as long as the coffers topped up, the exact hours aren’t so important!


It’s up to you how much you decide to work. It has to work for you. What others think is irrelevant. As a teacher, you don’t know how many people have told me that I had so much free time, implied that I was lazy, etc. It’s annoying, but I think that people who say these things don’t like their own jobs very much, or secretly wish that they could work less.


Hello @wolfcub
Your question made me smile. It’s intriguing what we perceive to be “work”. The manner in which you have chosen to live has proven to be working for you it seems. I would bet you are a lot happier.
When I retired early to do this full time, like you Airbnb in between sits, everyone I knew thought I was nuts and yes lazy. I’d been a healthcare professional, educated, degreed, certified top earner in my field and plethora of other skills. “You should do blah blah blah…” and yes I could do a number of blahs. But that’s the point, I don’t want a life full of blah or meh.

If your life works for you you are okay. Who cares what anyone else thinks or does?
What we do as pet sitting, (explorers) is work. Rewarding work with compensation that compounds daily, greater than trading time for dollars.


Welcome @wolfcub!

We are a couple and have been doing this more or less full-time since 2019.

Hubby is a full-time programmer, he’s around 35-40 hours a week. He does none of the planning and not too much of the house and pet duties. I have my own bookkeeping business.

When we started our tour, I had more clients (probably 30 hours per week). But it became too difficult (not impossible) to deal with all the planning and household matters in addition to some difficult clients. Needless to say, I realised some clients had to go. Not all at once, but it’s a constant adjustment. Now, at last, I’m at the point where I have enough time to enroll in some studies for my next endeavour, while still earning enough to keep us going and saving.

In the beginning, I often put that pressure on myself, about perceiving myself as lazy if I didn’t juggle everything perfectly without running out of steam. My husband is really good at encouraging me to take it slower, as he knows all that I do for us. If you’re not like @Amparo who can get to the realisation yourself (it takes courage and experience), sometimes you need to rely on a trusted source to tell you “It’s Okay”. You don’t have to overdo it. But it’s a huge shift and it took me a while to get used to the idea.

Incidentally, the first time I heard about someone working ‘just enough to enjoy life after work’, I also thought he was lazy. This was back in 2010! But I’ve come to admire that quality. It leaves beautiful space in your life for beautiful things to happen. :heart:


Happiness is a journey, not a destination, slow down and take time to smell the roses on the way.


The greatest work happens in the school of life :wink:.
Definitely requires “constant adjustment” and the results are beyond anything we expect.


Hi @wolfcub !
Firstly, try to let the “lazy” comment fall down your back. Our culture is so work/productivity focused that anything that isn’t a 40+ hour/salary/benefits position is considered less-than. And that’s just not true or fair, but also there are SO MANY OF US who are living alternative lifestyles, who don’t want to work full time and who are getting creative with how we life and make ends meet.

I’ve been sitting for 4 years privately (first summer on TH, on my 1st sit now in South Shore, MA and love it!) - and I work as an assistant for a biz owner, basically fully remote, and minimally have to hit 25 hrs a week, which I do, but not much more.

Sitting DOES take up time! For me, move in-move out days are full days of packing, schlepping my stuff to my car, into and out of a house and either tidying/cleaning before I leave or arranging/settling in when I arrive, etc. While we get to live in cool spaces, there is still a lot of time required - to do interviews or meet & greets, travel if needed, etc. Not to mention, if you have dogs that need walking or playtime, etc. Over the years, I’ve also come to prefer cat sits because firstly I’m obsessed with cats, and secondly, dogs are very high maitenance! (I grew up with big dogs and love them, but they often require long or various walks, playtime, being let out various x, etc) - so I tend to choose cat sits or smaller dogs vs. larger more active dogs, so that I can have a peaceful work day.

Last year I sat for 6 months out of the year. This year, I’m probably doing more, like you with Airbnbs in btw. Also, I would say it’s easier or harder depending on your location & ability to travel. I’m in New Jersey and TH is still a kind of new thing on the East Coast and folks do not travel for months at a time as they do in Europe or Canada. So piecing together longer sits takes time and some magic :slight_smile:

For me, my work as an assistant is an hourly job, and I do make money from my private clients in NJ. TH is a new thing for me and obviously it’s not paid, but it helps me live a life without rent for now, which is helpful.

That is a lot! But whatever you do, just own your choices and let people say what they say. It’s your life and you’re figuring out what works best for you! And, by living an unconventional lifestyle, you may seem to be in the minority, but you are in good company!


I’m so pleased you asked this question, as I’ve been thinking about what you asked myself. I’m a remote worker and I’ve chosen a zero hour contract so I am able to choose between a 20 HR and 40 HR week. Before starting housesitting I’ve been doing around 40 but dropping down to around 20 as I feel more than this will be too much. I am lucky that I can work evenings up to 8pm so this could work well.


Thanks so much, @Amparo and everyone! Thankfully I’m not worried about those sorts of comments, and don’t lose sleep over them! But as I don’t know any other petsitters or remote workers, it’s quite nice to hear how other people with similar lifestyles spend their days! Not so much because I feel the need to compare or switch up the routine that works for me, but just for some solidarity and relatability. (We single petsitters spend a lot of time alone in our own worlds sometimes!) It’s lovely reading your responses.


Us lonesome wolves do have our challenges don’t we. I used to feel the same way until over three years into this I met my first sitter @toml. I felt validated. And then in this forum.
You’re okay, I’m okay, we’re all okay. Just different.
Meetups help. See you out there.

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I usually work full time, 40 hours, same as when I’m at home, but I do have some flexibility in my schedule which allows me to change time zones, explore, etc.

The time spent taking care of someone else’s pets & home isn’t really any different than taking care of my own, except that I’m more diligent about tidying up when it’s someone else’s home! But I don’t take on sits with more responsibility than I have time for. I’m not a full time sitter though, and I’m choosy about where I want to go and which pets I want to spend my time with.

Don’t be upset about the friend thinking you’re “part time & lazy” - they are probably just jealous. To me, part time & lazy sounds fantastic, I’m hoping it will describe my life someday!


welcome @wolfcub !

Any time we choose to do something out of the norm, or outside the accepted off-the-beaten-track, there will be people who find a way to look down on it. It’s unfortunate that your friend would be one of those voices, instead of being curious about the how and why of what you’re doing. Or, you know, just being supportive of your choices as a friend :wink:


I run my own businesses but tend to work between 3 hours and 5 hours 5 days a week.

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We are full-time sitters. My husband works full-time remotely and I am retired.

This means that I do most of the sitting duties midweek and we share the load on weekends.

It works well for us. The only issue that arises is when we are moving from one sit to another. Ideally, we do it out of office hours, early morning, late evening, or weekends.

On the rare occasion this is not possible then I go ahead to start the sit and he follows me later in the day

Hi @Colin, you’re lucky being a man of leisure! :wink:
I think it’s good sitting as a couple as it gives you a bit of flexibility.

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