Novice sitter needing advice

What are some questions you should ask of the pet parent prior to committing to the sit?

This is a fabulous question and a very valid one at that.

As well as asking about the pets, their temperaments in addition to whether they may have any specific medical needs, I always make a point of asking about 3 things in particular as they are very important to me.

  1. I ask what level of communication the pet parent/ home owner would like. This enables me to determine whether they are ‘high maintenance’ and whether our pace of communication is going to work.

  2. I always ask whether there will be any cleaners, window cleaners, gardeners, workmen or even family members on or in the property at any point during my stay. I have had situations in the past where I’ve had unexpected people enter the property that I haven’t been informed about and it has been quite frightening and very unsettling. Therefore, I always make a point of checking about this beforehand before I ever commit to the sit.

  3. I always ask whether there are any cameras in the property. I personally don’t mind outdoor cameras but I do object to indoor ones given that it’s a serious privacy breach. I gather this is also against THS rules.

These are the three main ones that I always ask. These are just my personal dealbreakers!

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Lovely list!

I would add to this to

  • make sure you know what parts of the house you’re permitted to use, and what is off limits and make sure you’re comfortable with that. I would also advise asking for a tour of the property so you can understand how everything is laid out.
  • I personally only confirm in either direction after having done a video chat…not a TH requirement but just what I’m comfortable with.
  • make sure to ask if there’s anything you should be made aware of regarding the house. I’ve seen stories on here about undisclosed mould and the HS became stuck in an unhealthy situation.
  • ask about transportation and make sure you will be able to get to and from the place and around town to get things you need.
  • ask about logistics…for instance, I like to have an overlap day at the start and end of our sits to buffer transit delays and also do an orientation with HS at start of sits.

If you do move forward and are confirmed, make sure to get a phone number and the welcome guide asap so that you can reach the HO if they go silent on the platform and the guide so that you have a chance to look through it thoroughly in case some information is missing or there’s a red flag that you weren’t initially aware of.

I typed a response already but I recommend you do a search in the forum for “ Questions to ask” as your post has been asked many times over and you will find a wealth of information already exists on your topic. X

Welcome @Cmckenz

I ask What arrangements they have in place for paying vet fees in the event of their pet(s) requiring medical treatment during the sit .

The reason I ask this is discussed in another thread if you have not read this thread I recommend that you do before committing to any sits.

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Hi @Cmckenz , and welcome. As @bakindoki says, this has come up before.
Take a look at this topic for more information:

Ask if they have plans to get any more animals or if they foster animals. Ask if any pets belonging to neighbours are in the habit of coming into the house.

Both of these happened to me in a recent sit and it turned out very stressful with a huge amount of animals, and this was not made clear to me when I accepted the sit.

If sitting for dogs ask where they sleep at night. Its not often mentioned in listings. Some dogs are used to sleeping in/on the bed with humans- this may/may not be a deal breaker for you!
Ask how long the dogs can be left alone.
Ask about any behaviour patturns you should be aware and if they are good off lead & have good recall.

If the sit was for dogs, I would want to know how they behave on walks - on/off lead? Do they pull on lead? Recall? How are they with other dogs?

Great response. Thank you.
If anyone thinks of others , please add to the chain THANKS FOREVERYONE’s input

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