I am currently on a six month sit, previous was six weeks and after here my next two are for just over a month each. I personally prefer the longer sits now just to feel a little grounded for a while as I have been full-time sitting for just over four years. Starting out I liked the short sits but now I prefer a mix of both. When travelling and sitting internationally, I prefer minimum two weeks maximum probably three so as I am free to travel around.
Being that you have already done a sit for these people, you have the advantage of knowing ahead of time what the experience may be like. So it is important to consider if there was anything about the assignment you did not like that much, and if so, would having to deal with that issue long term be something you think you could do?
Having house sat pretty much full time for 9 years, my husband and I have developed a pretty good sense of what works for us and what doesn’t. We know that aspects of a sit that seems really desirable wouldn’t compensate if we had to deal with some of the issues we prefer not to deal with.
So we base our decisions on whether the assignment fits our criteria, and if it doesn’t, we really aren’t swayed by an exotic location, a really nice home, the assignment fitting into our schedule, the opportunity to save some extra money,etc…
The longer the sit, the more important it is to really consider your preferences–some less than ideal things may not make or break your enjoyment of the experience, and you may feel okay putting up with those things. But if there are aspects of the animal’s behavior, routine, or the home or location that would really bother you, take a pass, having some trust and faith the right opportunity will come along.
Have just completed a three month return sit and really there is not a huge amount of different things to consider if you already know the house and pets. We just discussed more details about maintaining the house - checking where energy meters were situated, what to do if there was an issue with plumbing or repairs etc which may not be necessary on a sit of just a few days. We also discussed communications - whilst on a short sit many pet owners like a daily update but this may not be necessary on a longer sit with just an agreement to get in touch a couple of times a week and/or when there are any issues to be discussed (this depends very much on the owners of course). Luckily for us our pet owners are now firm friends so it was very much the sort of communication you would have naturally - they would send pictures from their travels and we’d send videos or pictures when we took their dog on an interesting walk etc.
Did our first long term sit just after christmas.
6 weeks which isn’t a long time compared to Ziggy’s!
They’ve since invited us back for 10 weeks.
Personally i didn’t mind, we agreed to limit our updates to them on the house/animals, but sent slightly bigger update when we did. We also had more fun as the weather was nicer.
It was a little difficult in that when we used stuff up we tried to replace like for like but not always possible without knowing where stuff is from and also the cleaning is alot harder than our place!
But otherwise you’ll love it. If you are concerned about being alone for such a time, ask if a friend can pop over a few times and stay a night or 2.
With longer sits you get the sense that you have lived somewhere for a while.
You really get to know the pets and their idiosyncrasies. often get to meet the neighbours, the owner of the corner shop will greet you as a regular, you can join in with local activities, - on occasion, even get to make new friends!
For very short sits, for us, the connection is far less. We arrive, do the job and leave.
Some good advice given by others and I’d mirror what @Colin has said; a longer term sit means you can feel part of the community and feel a bit grounded.
We finish a 10 week sit tomorrow and I have mixed feelings about it; we’ve really settled where we are, the village is super friendly and we have chatted at length to several neighbours while out walking the dogs. The lady who runs the local shop is lovely and waves every time we pass and I often stop for a chat. Our next 3 back to back sits range from 4 to 10 days and while it will be nice to be in new areas and meet new pets it’s a bit of in/out job done scenario. Also a lot of faff with our stuff!