Sitter cancelled, blamed me for "Pressuring" her, THS took her side

A sitter confirmed to a sit on 18 March. Nine days later, she contacted me to ask to cancel the sit, though she would not provide a reason. I told her that she’d have to contact THS to explain why she’d be unable to complete the sit.

An hour later, I was contacted via email by Membership Services Executive informing me “It appears that Jessica was not entirely sure of how the platform works being a new member, and confirmed the sit officially after being asked to do so by yourself prematurely.” The email went on to state, “Lastly, please ensure to communicate respectfully with all members within the platform, as per our code of conduct.” I have attached a photo of our Whatsapp conversation.

At no point did I pressure the sitter to confirm the sit, nor did I use disrespectful language with her, but THS did not even request to hear my side of the story before sending this email, nor did they not respond to my reply and screenshots of the Whatsapp conversation with the sitter, and they are not allowing me to file a complaint against the sitter. They’ve repeatedly told me how to re-post my dates and that I have plenty of time, but that is not my issue.

Has this happened to anyone else?

(edited by Forum team to remove private conversation as per our Community Guidelines)

THS have to allow you you to raise a dispute/complaint against the sitter. They can issue a finding that you may not like but to actively refuse to allow you to make a complaint is violating their own Terms.

Contact them at and tell then you wish to make a formal complaint and request they detail what the process is.

If they refuse or otherwise do not provide the process detail you can then make an complaint against THS itself for not handling your request to make a complaint against the sitter.

Do all of this in writing (email) and keep copies.
If they do not allow you to open a complaint against themselves then there will be other external organistations you can approach as they have breached the Terms you both agreed to when you joined. This step will depend on the country you live in.


Thank you. I posted this just before they FINALLY responded with the email to allow me to dispute. Yesterday with the live chat, they just said “sorry” and told me how to reactivate my dates.

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It’s unusual for THS to take the side of the sitter as usually they take the home owner’s side!
Definitely talk to THS about this issue


What outcome are you actually looking for? Forcing the sitter to come? Getting compensation money? Someone with authority to tell you officially that you were right and the sitter was wrong?

Finally, what’s wrong with reposting the dates?


What was the start date of that sit?

When it is many weeks ahead, no real harm was done.


I’m just a little curious why you told the sitter she had to call THS and explain to them why she couldn’t do the sit. You can just cancel the sit, relist, and then file a complaint if you don’t think the sitter had a valid reason for cancelling. Keep in mind that sitters are not employees of THS, we are customers. It’s not typical for a sitter to be required to call THS and explain their situation in order for a HO to cancel the sit.


The outcome I’m hoping for is to not encounter a situation like this again. It takes me a lot of time to vet sitters, so I’d prefer not to waste it on sitters who are allowed to cancel after confirmation with no extenuating circumstances and no penalty. I’m not looking for approval from authority that I’m right and she’s wrong, rather I’d like to make sure that the platform is taken seriously and that agreements are honored. And honestly, I’m worried about re-posting the dates because I don’t want to waste my time again.


This is your opinion, but I value the time and effort I invest in interviewing and reviwing sitters, and I’d rather not waste it.

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I have filed the report, thank you🤗

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I don’t like the fact you “vet sitters” nor that you “interview” them and wonder if that’s something that put the sitter off? Housesitting on this platform is not a job as such but a mutual exchange and choosing who you have to sit for you should be done in a friendly manner. If you were paying for Housesitters then I would understand the jargon.


I think a lot of speculation about who THS believes or whose side they take is a myth. From what I can see with cancelations – both sides are supposed to have an “extraordinary” reason for canceling, but if disputed, THS really has no teeth to do anything. They might inquire as to why something was canceled, but will accept almost any reason. They might “watch” an account if someone may have done something wrong, but they won’t act unless there is another dispute.

Most sitters who’ve been at this more than a day know that they need to commit or move on when offered a sit. It’s not “pressure” if a petparent says, “I really need you to decide because I want to make sure I have someone.” In this case, it sounds like they aren’t going to be watching the sitter and presumably she learned her lesson. But I can see how irked you must be because the implication is that somehow you were in the wrong – which you weren’t.

But the thing is both sides of the equation are members. Neither side are employees. So THS really isn’t going to act to rescind anyone’s membership unless something major happens and happens consistently, and is consistently reported to them.

Fortunately, you have time to get another sitter. Unfortunately, you are probably now much less likely to pick a new sitter and give them a chance.


This. OP, you may want to take a breather before re-listing. Life happens, and perhaps the sitter started to feel uncomfortable with your communication. If your zeal for retribution comes through with other potential sitters, you may miss out.


Even when it is for a real paying position, many interviews and vettings do not result in the selected applicant taking the job.

Why won’t you tell when this sit is?

I’d like to know when this sit is too. Will we start guessing? My feeling is, at least a few weeks away.


Yes, I chose THS precisely because I had heard great reviews about the quality of sitters, and until now, I have only had fantastic experiences. I thought THS would immediately address this situation to keep the quality of sitters high, but I was mistaken.
I missed your request for the dates. The sit’s for 17 May- 01 June, however I will be travelling for a month and a half before that, which is why I wanted to have the sitter lined up as early as possible, because I won’t have the time to do the due diligence in selecting a sitter.

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I can respect that. My animals come from difficult backgrounds, so it’s important for me to ensure the best care possible for them in my absence. My previous sitters have all expressed positive experiences, so I do not believe that they feel that my selection process is off-putting.


Very well-thought out response. I agree with it all, especially the reticence about giving new sitters a chance. After reading other people’s responses, I feel more confident about giving THS another chance.


Ooooh, I love the wording of your response! I’m not seeking retribution, just want to ensure that THS members take their responsibilities seriously. It makes the platform better for everyone.


The sit’s for 17 May- 01 June. Finding sitters is not a challenge for me, and it’s not the issue that I raised.