Meowing cat in Seattle

Hi, I’ve just arrived in Sit. When I applied the woman was in a complete meltdown because the last sitter had left at 5 am in the morning after one night. It is 8:14 pm and I arrived at 5 pm. I can now understand why. It is a tiny apartment, there are two cats who meow constantly. And I mean constantly. Not just now and then but all the blinkin time.

The apartment is a one bedroom department in Seattle and apparently the cats are outside cats bought in from Bali so one of them has escaped outside and passed the fence and now I have to go and find it in my pyjamas.

I’m going to be totally honest. I don’t know how I am going to sleep. I have to work (remotely ) tomorrow. I will be finding a library. This is my worst nightmare. I have 15 x 5 star reviews.

I’ve sent a message to THS

WHAT DO I DO IN THIS SITUATION?

The homeowner gleefully told me that the last poor lass is now suspended.

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I don’t have much experience with cats, but is it possible they may quieten down when they get used to you?
Maybe a nervous thing by them?

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Yup……find somewhere quieter to work. And if the cats got out, it’ll come back. Some cats meoooow continuously! Not had one myself but my stepdaughter had one that did. Could be they just want to go out.

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Noise cancelling headphones plus earplugs perhaps?

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@Soultreader what a horrible situation - the owner clearly must have known the reason that the previous sitter left at 5am - and didn’t disclose this to you which deceptive and very unfair .

I suggest you call the urgent support line which is a 24/7 phone line so that you can speak with member services immediately rather than wait for a generic reply to your e-Mail which is unlikely to give any advice other than speak to the owner .
The number for the Urgent Support Line is shown on your dashboard-be sure to make the call in the flat so that they can hear exactly what is going on with the cats .
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As I understand it a sitter is only removed from the platform for serious issues such as “abandoning pets “.
A sitter doesn’t have to stay and put up with a sit that is “unliveable”/ presents danger to their health or where there pet behaviour which was previously undisclosed which makes the sit intolerable . However they must first give the owner time to make alternative arrangements for pet care .

The fact that the previous sitter left at 5am presumably for the same reason gives evidence that this is a serious issue . (They maybe suspended while THS are investigating the issue - that doesn’t mean that they have been banned as THS will hopefully investigate both sides of the story )

Is there an emergency contact who can take over the pet care ? If a sitter leaves without informing the owner that is abandoning the pets … but if you contact their emergency contact to take over and inform pet owner and THS you cover yourself .

Do you have premium membership the sit cancellation covers when you have to leave because the sit is “unliveable”

Take some video/ audio recordings of the constant meowing noise so you can submit as “evidence” -you can raise a member dispute about this later TrustedHousesitters' Member Disputes Process | TrustedHousesitters.com

If you decide to stay you could try noise cancelling ear plugs as @BonnyinBrighton has suggested and after the sit write an honest review - rating the pet behaviour category accurately- to warn future sitters .

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@Soultreader that is really rough! Can you make a 2minute video for the homeowner with the continuous mowing and ask her if that’s normal? It sounds like the two cats may be ‘bouncing’ off each other…

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Please contact THS also about that, that they should reconsider that decision.

For me, sleep is the most important thing of a stay. I can deal with cleanliness issues, hospitality, communication, dogs pulling. I cannot deal with lack of sleep.

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I agree - “suspended “ is not “banned” and indicates that THS are investigating this situation so your “evidence” ( recording of the constant noise ) could also help the previous sitter.

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I was going to suggest that but thought it sounded too flippant

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I’m all about practical solutions to cope in the moment :wink: whilst seeking a better long term solution.

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I assume the sitter will hear the cats through the night, the headphones may help during the day but can’t imagine anyone getting good sleep wearing them.

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In your place, I’d get the best earplugs that money can buy. For me, those are wax ones that mold to your ears. You can get them at drugstores or have them rush delivered.

Of course, you can give 24 hours notice that you’re leaving, so the host can find alternative care. I’d put that in writing for both the host and THS, so there’s proof that you didn’t just up and abandon the cats.

I doubt THS would suspend or kick you off in such a case, especially since the previous sitter left. And I wouldn’t worry about the host reviewing you badly. Even if they did, you could write your own review with the facts. Any reasonable hosts who’d consider you for future sits will see that you’ve had 15 five-star reviews previously.

And you could ask THS to strike the sit off your records, given the circumstances.

For future consideration, I wouldn’t accept any sits where the sitter has left abruptly. Chances are slim that someone would make the effort to turn up at a sit and then suddenly leave without a decent reason. And I wouldn’t assume that a bad host would make it known to the next unsuspecting sitter if there were something seriously wrong with the sit. Since you work remotely, it’s even more important to be careful about which sits you accept.

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My cat experience says that the cats are upset about something.
If they have the necessary items (food, drink, clean litter), they might just need attention and distraction, which sometimes isn’t as much time as you think.
Ideas:
Get on the floor with them and give them full petting attention and talk to them.

  • find various toys
  • Try to find a comfortable place for them, sometimes a lap is too intimidate when first meeting, but they’ll lay in a blanket on top of you.

Isolation rarely works for an anxious cat

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Sometimes it is a cat breed thing…so…

I underscore @tlubkin…try exercising them with play time and also @Silversitters posts…ditto.

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That sounds awful! I expect the owner has either got used to it or is a very heavy sleeper. I doubt they are behaving any differently with you than they do with their owner. I’d guess that the cats are just feeling imprisoned. Taking an outdoor adult cat and keeping it in an apartment is not smart or kind (just like caging a wild animal). Also some breeds are far more vocal than others (Siamese can be very noisy). I can’t suggest anything other than what people have said above, good earplugs and contacting TrustedHousitters.

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We had a cat years ago that was very prone to urinary tract infections. He would do well for awhile, then the howling would start when he had another one. I’m not sure how long this has been going on, but if it’s just days in between you and the other sitter, and there was no mention of the cats issues from the owner, you may want to contact the vet listed in the welcome guide and ask if the cat has had this problem in the past. Maybe it should be seen. If they think it’s behavioral, the vet may know about it, and can hopefully offer some suggestions or even medication if an issue that needs addressing.

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I initially wondered about medical causes @Voyager especially UTIs or hyperthyroidism. However, it would be pretty coincidental for both cats to be affected simultaneously. Not impossible though. My money is on behavioral cause(s).

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It would for sure. But vets also are knowledgeable about behavioral issues. If the cats have a history of any kind, the vet would know and can let the OP know the best course of action, if any.

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I went through something similar. I’ve pet sit so many cats and only ever had this problem once. Yes cats do meow but constantly has never happened to me untill this one sit. The owner did mention that the cat does like to talk a bit but I didn’t realize it meant constantly almost all day. It was a long month stay and didn’t really sleep well at all. I bought noise cancelling headphones and white noise speaker

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Sleepless in Seattle… sorry I couldn’t resist :blush:

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