Pets temperament

Do you ask Ho how their pets react towards strange people
Different noises etc

Yes, during the Skype/Whatsapp introductory call I always ask if the pets are scared of anything particular, if they are used to other people minding them, how they react towards other dogs/cats/…

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Yes, thunder storms, random visitors, postmen :), and how well socialized they are with other dogs on/off leash, when seeing sheep/squirrels etc., people, kids etc. And, are there any particular dogs they don’t get on well with (something we’ve encountered a few times in Aussie dog parks).

We try to always organize a walk with the owners on handover, as these questions get addressed quite naturally as we see how they respond on the walk.

Sometimes we find it’s just impossible to remember to ask every question you might want to, but the walk together demonstrates so much in the moment and prompts behavioural questions too. We have our own list we refer to before the h/o leave just to make sure we’ve covered everything, but you know what it’s like when people are getting ready to travel, it’s not always a very calm time :slight_smile:

For cats we ask if they have any special hidey holes for when they get anxious about storms or people (if they do).

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Agree with you ,going for a walk is essential for me
I like to take the lead to see how to they get on.
It let’s me know the dogs behaviour with the HO
In the background.

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Always! Every pet is different, and different pets are afraid of different things. We’ve had dogs that hate children, some that hate men and others that even hate people that wear hats. On the other end of the spectrum its also good to ask what their pets love, so for example if you need to get a dogs attention you know that getting his favourite ball out will give you his 100% attention.

Always a good idea to speak with the owners to know what makes their pet tick and what makes them scared.

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Some sitters travel a lot but only speak english. If owners may speak english too, and be able to communicate with sitters from a different country, how sitters manage with dogs who are NOT bilingual ?? What about orders ??

Difficult for my puppy to understand “lay down”, “sit” or “come”, he wouldn’ t understand. So how do you cope with pets who don’t understand english ??

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Absolutely… we learned some Dutch commands on our latest sit in France. The 3 dogs really did only respond to sitting in their beds to wait for meals but saying “plaatz”. After a recent discussion where it was suggested to me that dogs understand any language presented, I thought I’d test the theory. It was plaatz and only plaatz that worked :laughing: for these particular pups!

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We’ve sat pets who understood commands in French and Spanish and I’ve ridden horses who only responded to French commands. We/I learned the commands in their native “tongue” the rest is simply communicating with them by any language, after all you are not having a conversation with them as long as the necessary commands are clearly given and understood then “Who’s a good boy/girl then?” is comforting delivered in any language, at least that’s what we discovered sitting a number of non english “speaking” pets.

As with every sit the pets care comes first and if a sitter believes they will be unable to manage the language issue then the sit is not right for them, the pet or the owner.

Not a different language and I agree that most communication with animals isn’t based on language, but this really made me laugh.

We were looking after a brilliant border collie in Scotland. When we first took her out at night to do her business before going to bed, she stood there looking at me, waiting for instruction.

I said “go pee” as I would to my dog a few times and nothing happened. I remembered I was in the UK, said “go do a wee” and she went immediately🤣

She was a wonderful dog, that was such a great sit, so many fun memories!

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We learned a little Dutch and a little Swahili for two of our pet sits. I struggled sometimes remembering what the words were for such simple things as sit and stay! :grinning:

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As an owner i leave the sentences in french to the sitters. I trained my dog to understand full sentences. Not only short orders where tone is enough or gestures.
"Tu as faim ?", " tu veux sortir ?", “on va se promener”, “tu attends”" je reviens", “pas bouger”
That’s why i insist upon speaking a minimum french.
Yesterday iit was his 1st anniversary i joined a group that liked to walk their dogs we walked 11 dogs with a wind blowing90 km /h in a hill with no car, no bike. Fantastic. All dogs free

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Love needs no words :heart:

We often say that it’s the ability to deal with an emergency or a vet visit in the local language that’s more important and that can be dealt with in a lot of cases (we’ve found) by pre-preparation and learning a few key phrases (and having them written down) and having good emergency contacts to help :slight_smile:

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Excellent point Vanessa re:vet visits etc.,

We overcame that situation in Spain with help through the community we connected with however that was on a long stay which gave us the opportunity to develop those relationships.

Consideration of all factors involved when considering applying for a sit in a country where your command of the language is basic or less is the responsible thing to do, many owners will state whether or not sitters need that requirement, it does go further than just knowing how to “Sit & Stay”

Thanks Vanessa

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Google translation app on a cell phone can help for sure

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I use this one… it’s very good:

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They wanted me to pay or i see publicity what i hate… i keep on Google

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How strange, I’ve never paid and just use the free version. Each to their own I guess - but it’s nice to know different options sometimes :slight_smile:

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