No/slow response from home owner

I accepted a THS sit 2 weeks ago for a July engagement. The telephone interview call with the HO was very brief, perhaps 8 min. I encouraged her to call me if she had additional questions, which she has not. She also has not responded to my request for a sitter’s guide.

The sit is 2 weeks out. It’s located fairly close to me and I will be driving. I’m not concerned about having to cancel flights or anything like that but would like some indication the sit is still on and details like those contained in a sister’s guide. I’d like to know what to expect.

Should I contact her again or wait until the sit is closer? Or should I just wait until she contacts me? I don’t want to appear too overbearing or anxious. How would others handle this situation?

Edited to meet posting guidelines


First of all I wouldn’t have had a telephone call but a video call, which gives you an idea what the house is like, how clean/tidy it is and to meet the pets. It’s also better than a phone conversation to see how you click with the owners, which I feel is important even though they won’t be there when you sit.
It sounds like the owner is a very busy person, but like you I’d be concerned and would definitely contact with a cheery message, maybe asking a few questions you still have about the pets/home. It’s always a good idea to get mobile number, email address and the home address in advance.
Has she had any sitters in the past and, if so, have they posted their feedback?


Live and learn. I shouldn’t have jumped on the offer without first getting more information. But now that I’ve committed, I’m trying to determine the best way to get the details I need. As you suggested, I will send another friendly note to the HO.

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@msmtabbott2 I’m on a sit like that. Two weeks out, after not having heard anything from the pet parent, I sent a note through the THS system and requested the home guide. At the one-week-to-go mark I sent an email to her personal email and sent her a text message. She responded with 3 days to go. We met in person at her home that night and I got a walk-through and the key. The sit has been going well since it started. This pet owner just had a lot going on.

I suggest reaching out using every contact point you have. Be nice and cheery in your messages (e.g., “I’m really looking forward to staying with Butch. We’re going to have so much fun! But I do have a few questions. Do you have a few minutes for a quick chat? Better yet, is there a time when I can swing by? Then we could get the walk through out of the way, leaving you one less thing to do before you leave. Thanks much.”) Prepare a list of your specific questions. If you can, have this quick chat in person at the pet’s home. That way you can have the walk-through, get the key, and get all your questions answered at once. This approach is a win-win for everyone.

Good luck!


We’ve all had to learn as we go along. It will probably turn out brilliantly, things often do when we worry. Do let us know here how you get on before and after the sit.

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Hi, what is a bit unclear to me is whether the HO has actually sent you the official, formal invitation to sit and you have accepted it thru THS (not only a verbal or written agreement, but the official invitation itself)

If the part was already taken care of after your phone call, I also suggest to send along a cheery message to the HO.

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Honestly, I wouldn’t worry too much about the welcome guide. Most home owners don’t send one beforehand.

For us, it’s very important to get exact start and end dates/times, (and an address!). If you already have those, I would just send a message one week out and say: ‘see you in a week!’ If you don’t have those, I would send a message immediately saying ‘so that I can plan my travel days, please confirm arrival date and time asap, thanks’.
If you don’t hear anything from the owner up to 7 days before the sit, ask member services to intervene.

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I’m curious why a sitter needs a home guide so early? We are super busy and I end up sending it close to our sits. There really isn’t anything in it that shouldn’t have been covered on a video call. I’m just curious.

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I wouldn’t worry about the welcome guide either (the majority of my sits haven’t had one but worked just fine), but I would worry about the lack of communication. I had one sit where the owners just disappeared for 4 days!!! - and never bothered to let me know beforehand, or gave me any alternative numbers to call for emergencies. Now I ALWAYS ask for number to call in case I can’t reach them.
Mind, that happened only once and most owners are pretty fast at responding, after all they usually want to know that their babies are well.
For your own peace of mind, please ask them for emergency numbers and if it worries you that they are so slow at responding, you might want to add that you’re a bit anxious and regular contact during the sit will be important to you.

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Can you see if they have read what you sent? Some people don’t turn on their notifications and if they are busy and not concerned about you not turning up then they might not look back on the site until just before you are due to arrive.

Some homeowners won’t give you the welcome guide until just right before the sit. I’m sure it’s because there’s some private info on there. I had one lady who gave me the info I needed the night before the sit


I have read here that there are occasional surprises in the Welcome Guide, e.g. additional pets or responsibilities, so for this reason it’s good to have the Welcome Guide as soon as possible. After reading it, if the sitter has any questions, these can be discussed with the pet owner and sorted.


I’ve had some folks who don’t use the Welcome Guide at all because they have a printed binder of information waiting for me. Still, a little disconcerting because they didn’t tell me in advance. Also, sometimes the guide has information we didn’t discuss in advance. I usually request about a week before the sit starts, to read, yes, but also to touch base and remind them that I’ll be there soon!


No response happened to me in the past too. At the beginning I just cancelled my application. Later on I did send a message nicely reminding
them that I did apply. Mostly I got a reply with reasons they had a hard time with what ever. It’s fine for me and this happens.
What I do after no reply following the reminder is still cancel my application as it shows these people don’t care. Not now and most likely not when I’m on the way or in their house.
It’s a different story when already a sit is agreed already. I would remind them nicely and ask for their mobile number and call them.

I find the guide invaluable for getting to know the pets’ routines etc plus info about any medication. I find questions always arise as a result of the guide, and while the video chat reveals much, often things are overlooked.
If the handover is just a morning or afternoon then sending the guide well in advance is more important. A sleepover means you have plenty of chances/time to ask questions but this isn’t always possible. Plus I always like a written note of vet’s numbers etc. and info on any tradespeople who may be coming so I can plan around that.

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Send a text to the phone number you have - wouldn’t worry too much about not having a welcome guide yet

Um, everything? For the house & pet, I like being prepared, and reading the guide in advance lets me establish an idea for the schedule and care needs, and allows me to clarify what might be ambiguous.

Personally, it helps with planning transportation, where I might go shopping, what I might need to book reservations for in advance, what I need to bring vs. what the house already has…

If done well, the welcome guide answers SO MANY QUESTIONS and keeps me from having to pepper the HO with dozens of individual inquiries.


I would like some second opinions and advice.

I am an experienced sitter of cats and dogs with many good reviews. In Nov 2022 I applied for a 3-week sit for an elderly dog to take place in Sep 2023 – 10 months in advance. Without a zoom call, the pet parent invited me to the sit with a note saying I am a good fit and let’s talk soon. At the time I thought, okay we will have a Zoom call later, but I feel really comfortable and the sit is far down the road. I accepted.

In May 2023, I dropped a message to the pet parent letting them know that my plans (to travel from late June-late November 2023) are on track, I have a plane ticket, etc. I asked if their plans/travel dates are confirmed, and also verified that I could still borrow their car, which was part of the original offer. I also asked if I could have their address in order to mail a box to myself.

I received an immediate, friendly reply that their trip would be 2-weeks (not 3) – asking if I was still interested in the new dates – and confirming the car is available (but not asking me for a copy of my drivers license). They said they would share their address to mail the box, once I confrmed I was still interested. Right away I said I was still on board and started working on a way to cover the extra week. It meant more travel time, but I found a replacement sit. And waited.

I never received a reply, or the mailing address. On June 24th, I followed up asking if everything was okay, including that all is well with their elderly dog. I asked if there was anything we should discuss. (I found another way to get my box delivered, so didn’t ask about the address again.)

It is now July 2. I have not heard anything. They may be on vacation or just busy with work/life. I am worried about their dog too. But now I am getting nervous for myself. A year ago, I would have gone with the flow and filled the dates if they cancelled on me last minute, but these days it is a lot harder for me to find sits that meet my needs (not too far from where I will be in England, accessible by public transit or includes a car, reliable wifi for work, and I can leave Fido alone for 4-6 hours or so now and then.)

My gut has gone from all positive to very nervous. What should I do? Am I being too Type A? Should I withdraw from the sit? The pet parents still have 2+ months to find someone else – if they still need a sitter at all. If I cancel, what does that do to my track record/reputation on TH?

Looking for honest but kind advice. Thank you in advance.

@Shella_in_the_Forum is the THS inbox the only way that you have of contacting them ? Have you exchanged phone numbers ?
The problem with only using the THS inbox to communicate is that if either party is not logged into the app they may not realise that they have a message .
Member services may be able to assist you in contacting them .

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Hi @Shella_in_the_Forum I have DM’d you