List of questions for HOs to ask the potential sitters?

@LadyandtheTramp first of all I LOVE your tag…very well chosen! Yes I think its important for a sitter to establish early on when a HO plans to leave and when they plan to be back. As a sitter I have worked with all sorts of arrangements (as most sitters will have) from HOs who want the sitter to arrive two or more days before; these can be particularly anxious people and to be honest thats abit of a ‘red flag’ for me though I have done it but would certainly not consider this in the covid situation (nor should a HO), to keys left out and without good communication and a solid WG with a back-up person in place, that can also be a ‘red flag’. Ideally to arrive the afternoon/early evening the night before I think works best for both parties and gives time for a decent hand-over and for any questions arising to be answered. For me it helps to establish trust and its really important that a HO can leave the following day with as little anxiety as possible and just enjoy their trip. It works very well for anxious animals especially some rescue dogs who have possibly been passed ‘from pillar to post’ and while many people have been in lockdown, the amount of time we can leave animals alone is far less before they get stressed I think. I will say that when I arrive the day before and the owner has been careful in keeping distance and is not put off by my wearing a face covering and has gone out of their way to reassure me that I am coming into a covid safe environment, that makes me feel a whole lot more comfortable than where a HO is not taking this current pandemic seriously. I do get abit irritated if I am going to be honest where HOs spend the best part of the leaving day getting ready to leave. I can’t understand why somebody knowing that a sitter is in place and all bases are covered with a hand-over etc would not have packed at least most of their stuff before the sitter arrives and make the most of an early away the next day to get ahead of traffic and make the most of their holiday. I have had HOs still packing in the late afternoon! If there are dogs involved, I will just take them for a long walk and if not I will make an excuse to explore the local area making sure I have a key! I am happy to be at a sit when the HOs return but I have found most HOs like to come back to a clean but empty home especially if there is only one bedroom! I am actually happy with that arrangement especially given the covid situation as I am never sure how safe the HOs have kept while away. I do get concerned for dogs especially though as flights can be delayed and cancelled , traffic can keep a HO from getting home, and some HOs actually try to extend the trip and if I am doing a back to back sit that can be really problematic; another reason why a HO needs to have a solid back-up plan and trusted person in place.

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