Sitter confirmed but unresponsive

I’m looking for some thoughts on what to do please! We have confirmed a sitter via private dates. The sitter had previously looked after our cat for a weekend and we were happy to invite them to come back to stay again. We are going away for two nights on Friday of this week (in two days time!!). The sitter immediately responded to my initial email about a month ago (via the Trusted Housesitters site) to say they would would like to sit again for us and accepted the dates to confirm the sit. Last week I emailed again via the site to ask if we could have a catch up online to prepare for the sit. I received no response. After no response for a week (and I could see that the email on the Trusted Housesitters site had not been read) I emailed the sitter directly as we had previously communicated outside of the site. Again no response. Since the sitter had previously texted me updates I found the number and texted to say please could contact be made and yesterday I eventually called and left a message again asking for contact to me made and to check the sitter was actually OK. I can see that the message on the website has now been read but we are two days away from the sit and there has still been no contact with me to confirm arrival times and any final arrangements. Obviously I am also concerned for the welfare of the sitter. I am now not sure what to do, and will need to line a neighbour up to feed our cat. The sitter does know I have a key box to gain entry to the house but surely recognises that I would change the key code after each sit. I would be unhappy if they just turned up to stay in my home without any contact at this stage, I now feel like I am hounding the sitter, but surely it is not unreasonable for a sitter to respond a week or so before a sit if a homeowner wishes to speak with them? I’ve never had this problem before every sitter (including this one) was previously really happy to talk to me ahead of arrival.

Hi @Camkat I’m sorry to hear about the communication issues with your confirmed sitter, this is most unusual I’m going to tag @Therese-MembershipService who will connect with you directly and assist.

Hi @camkat I will email you through membership services. Kind regards Therese

Thanks Therese I’ve also just communicated via the chat online on the website with Jennifer C - so you may wish to liaise with her?

Hi @Camkat I have just heard from @Therese-MembershipService all is well with your sitter arrangement … a problem with a phone I believe.

Have a lovely weekend away and get ready for your sitter Fluffball

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Thanks Angela yes Therese has been in contact and so has the sitter. Many thanks to you, Therese (and Jennifer on the website chat function) for your prompt assistance, it is very much appreciated.

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I’m sorry you’re going through this. It’s frustrating when people ghost you. As a sitter, if I were you, I would send a message to the sitter letting them know that you hope they’re well but since you’ve not heard from them you’ve made other arrangements for your pet so their services are no longer needed. Remove the ambiguity of the will they/won’t they show and just move forward with making sure your pets are cared for. You could even try posting a last minute sit on the site or forum.

I had to do this with a sit once on another platform. I confirmed a sit 2 months out. Then I never heard another peep. I contacted them a month out and asked to coordinate specific arrival/departure times so I could coordinate other plans. No response. I continued contacting them via the platform, email, and whatsapp multiple times over the next weeks. All messages were left on read, but no response.

A week out, I sent them a message stating that since I’d not heard from them in almost 2 months I was considering the sit cancelled and unless I heard from them within 24 hours, I would be making other arrangements. Nothing.

The night before the sit was supposed to start I got a text (on the same thread as all of my previous messages, but still ignoring them) asking me when I’d be arriving the next day. They were not happy when I told them I wasn’t coming and accused me of cancelling with no notice and leaving them in the lurch. I screenshot the dozen+ times I’d tried to contact them in the last month, including the final warning and sent that over. They sent me a few choice words, which I reported to the platform. I never saw a listing from them again. So either they were banned or I ruined house sitters for them. But really, there is only so much you can do before you have to protect yourself.

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@CreatureCuddler Thanks for sharing your experience, sorry that you had to go through that. I’m delighted to report that the team at Trusted Housesitters have been super responsive to my post and have managed to contact the sitter for me, who has also now been in direct contact with me. It seems a dropped phone that has taken a while to replace had caused the lack of communication and we are now reunited! More than anything I was concerned about the sitters welfare as it felt out of character for them not to be in touch! All is well!

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Glad you got it handled. Safe travels!

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I had a similar experience with a sitter I confirmed. Once she started the sit, she rarely kept in contact with me. I had asked for one update a week and had to hound her for a day or two to get a response. I wonder why your sitter didn’t just use a computer or someone else’s phone to check her messages.

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I agree. A phone problem is a poor excuse for being unreachable. The sitter should have used a computer or borrowed some else’s phone. You may want to include this information in your review. I would never use this unreliable sitter again.

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@Camkat I have to agree with the people who said that this sitter was unreliable. I don’t quite buy the phone excuse. This happened to me too with a sitter on another platform and when I realized there was no more communication I went ahead and interviewed other sitters. The excuse I got for the disappearing act was that she was busy with her studies and could not actually afford to travel to my city. I didn’t doubt that what she was saying was true, but to leave me hanging was just a huge red flag that I should find someone who was more reliable and considerate about the sitters planning responsibilities.

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I will chime in with agreeing that the phone issue isn’t a valid excuse given you contacted her in multiple ways. I could see if you only texted and she couldn’t get the texts. But you also used email and the platform - both of which can be accessed on any device. Knowing she had a sit coming up and not trying to communicate was pretty irresponsible.