Sitter Profile Help Please?

Hi all, hope everyone is good this long weekend. can i please get some constructive criticism on my profile please. So far I have been turned down for every HS i have applied for , for 2 of them i was the first applicant. Out of all I have tried only 1 person has got back to me with a nice message.

Thanks pete

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@Dogfather - the pictures are fantastic, wouldn’t change them. I’d add two things.

  1. You mention maintenance - if you have handyman skills I’d mention things like that. It can be a comfort to some HOs to know if something happened while they were gone, someone who understands basics of home care could either take care of it or call a contractor and communicate what was going on.
  2. Under experience, great to mention the volunteering but I’d go into more detail. Have your given medicine to cats and dogs, walked dogs that “dog play well with others”, befriended a shy animal. It looks like you’ve had experience with larger dogs and I’d zone in on that as well, not every sitter can handle a large dog.

Get some local sits to begin, you’ll have no issue in the your area, then once you’ve got enough, begin to plan your trip to America!

Best of Luck

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It can take a while to get started here, and getting some THS reviews by sitting locally is a common tactic, as @Peg suggests. I did that. Try to get a few more external references until you have THS reviews.

Definitely change your first photo to one of you with animals. The one with you bottle-feeding or with the Great Pyr (I think that’s the large white dog breed) are much better.

Check out other sitter profiles that you like for examples. If you were a homeowner, which sitter profiles would appeal to you?

Good luck.

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Hi @Dogfather. After creating your profile, it’s good to search to see how it appears to others. If you search your hometown, looking for a sitter, this is how you display:
Screenshot 2023-04-30 at 9.25.51 AM

Many sitters start with a close-up photo, often showing a warm smile. Also, if you view all your photos, you’ll see that some taken in portrait mode don’t display as well as those done in landscape. In particular, the one mainly displaying the back of a cat and not much of you isn’t ideal.

I wonder if you have set your calendar choices in reverse. Currently you show you’re only available in May. Green means available, and the calendar defaults to unavailable.

I would aim for more than one reference. They don’t need to specifically be about pet sitting experience, but it would show you are making the effort to do more than the minimal requirement.

As well as showing that you’d like to travel the US, it would be good to state that you welcome sits in the UK. As has been said, starting out with local sits, so that you get TrustedHousesitters reviews, will help with your success rate for sits further afield.

Correction: My suggestion about the first photo should have been referring to your profile photo, not the collection of full-size photos. My apologies for the confusion.

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@Lassie The photo you mention (the large white dog) is the one that pulled at my heart strings. I agree with your suggestion about the first photo. I realize now I was focussing on his profile photo. :slightly_smiling_face:

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Ha ha I’m not good looking enough for a close up photo, but I will take all your ideas on board and see how well I can rework my profile wording. Tbh I’m not the best at things like this, never been that great at selling myself.
Yes I only joined this site 3 weeks ago and made my self available till the end of my which is when i plan to go to the states, i was hoping to get in some local sits in that time and have applied for 8 but with the time it has taken for some people to reply or their ad to expire, we are now here

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Thank you for replying, i will badger my mates for a few extra refs and i will change my first photo … The big white dog was a Gsd/Malamute, he came in at 74kg but most of that was his heart.

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Ok thank you that’s great advice, i will have a go at redoing my profile, My volunteer experience covers everything from going out and rescuing from puppy farms, pounds etc to finding forever homes for them after house checks of course. They would come in, in all states and some would take many months to rehabilitee and teach to be dogs walk on leads etc.
I have only tried local and uk sits so far but after 8 turn downs, I thought it was time to reach out.
Thank you again

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Pete: another vote for making your photo with the large white dog as your main photo.

Also from your photos you seem quite comfortable and in control with large breed dogs, that’s definitely a skill to highlight. I’d suggest to put more information about that in your profile. While it might be obvious to you, it makes it easier for the HO to understand:

I have experience with taking care of larger breeds including: x, y, and z. I have taken care of x dogs in one home including walking them around other dogs, taking them into town, practicing their commands…(fill in whatever details make sense here to show your experience). I have been responsible for (abused, frightened, untrained) big dogs in my role as a rescue volunteer. For example I was able to get an aggressive German Shepherd to trust me after 10 weeks of consistent care and attention…

I’d also include something about the skills you bring as a security officer: In my profession as a security officer I am entrusted to…(be a key holder, deal discretely with large properties, fill in details) so you can be sure that I will treat your property and dogs with the same careful consideration that I bring to my profession. (I’m thinking that if a homeowner lives in more of a remote place, they’d be comfortable to have a clear headed responsible guy there, or maybe they worry that someone physically cannot handle their dogs but you have the experience or training, so spell that out.)

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Hi @Dogfather
Your profile is lovely! Really great pics of you with various pets. And your written profile is great too! I am a fellow sitter but if I was a host I’d certainly consider you! You look & sound caring and responsible.
I’d definitely suggest, though, that you get some more external references from friends you’ve sat for, and from the rescue centre. And any character/employment references you can get too. The more the merrier! These will help you get started and then when you have a few real THS reviews under your belt you’ll be on your way! I would also suggest applying for a couple of short local sits where you could even pop in for a personal visit- this could really help! You are living in the country with the most sit opportunities in the world so I’m sure you’ll get your breakthrough soon! I wish you great success!!

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I agree about getting more references if you can (as a rescuer you must have many possibilities). But other than that, if I were a homeowner and not a sitter, I’d be delighted to have you watch my pups.

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Hello @Dogfather I can see that you have received lots of helpful tips here which is great! This thread might also help and give you some reassurance. It discusses sitters starting out and how they went on to successfully secure sits.

Good luck with securing your first sit :grin:

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Hello Dogfather
I suggest looking for local sits to gain experience. Offer a video call for an informal chat. Show you can be flexble with dates. Read experienced sitters profiles to see what they offer. Good luck.

Let’s be honest, most of us aren’t drop-dead gorgeous, but our looks aren’t what matters! It isn’t a beauty contest; we need to show that we are trustworthy, happy people who love animals. We could look like Shrek but that shouldn’t be relevant - but would be interesting :wink:

Hi @Dogfather
Your profile looks great, unfortunately, I do think single men have to work a bit harder initially to get the confidence of Home hosts. Once you have managed to get a few reviews it will get much easier!
If it is any consolation we were declined for more than 20 before getting our first acceptance - now we have our reviews our acceptance rate is far higher.
As your profile is looking so good and you mentioned that you are not good at selling yourself I wonder if your application message needs tweaking? Are you using a template that you change slightly to personalise each time you apply? If you want to send me privately a copy of your application message,I will see if I can help to improve it

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Hi Pete, your profile looks great and you have lots of good suggestions here. One thing : obviously you did great work for the rescue and they loved you but calling you a “rolling stone” and saying they “never knew when you were going to turn up” sets off a few alarm bells about reliability, which is crucial to homeowners. Could they do you another review that keeps the emphasis on how fantastic you are with the animals?

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Your profile is really good and the photos too. You have some great skills. Have you been applying for sits in the US? Maybe get a local one to start, then others in the UK, before applying for sits in the US. It is difficult to start but once you get a review it will become far easier.

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I agree with many of the replies, friendly first photo, try to do a local sit or two - last minute sits may work well for you to get.
The animal rescue saying they never knew when you would show up should be explained, For example, if you were able to do drop in assistance due to your work schedule or something along that line. As well, I agree with the suggestions of putting in if you have experience giving medication to animals, if you have specific experience such as with reactive dogs.
Adding another reference, even if it has nothing to do with animals, for example a work reference that talks about your trustworthiness.
I realize you have written United States as a preferred place to sit but in your writing you write “America”. As a Canadian, I really suggest you specify that you’re talking about the United States. Not somewhere in north, central, or south america!
Do you have any experience driving on the right side of the road? If so I would write that in.
Currently I dropped my listening as a sitter and i’m only looking for pet sitters myself but I have done both. If you were looking for a sit in the area that I live, I would definitely be contacting you back but I need to know whether or not a sitter can drive my dog to a private dog park for example, So offering to give information about your driving record if there’s a chance that someone would leave you their vehicle to use, may be useful.
Good luck.

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