Sitter says they "Might" need to cancel due to Illness

Hi all,
This is a little time sensitive. I have a sitter who says they might need to cancel due to an extenuating illness. The sit is 5 days away and if they do, I’ll need to find someone else. How long before I start looking? And if they don’t “cancel” the sit, will I still get my insurance coverage if I have to hire someone?

Hi @KelGal
Sorry to hear of your sitter situation. While the sitter can’t help being ill I think you need to agree to cancel the sit today otherwise it’ll be too late to get another sitter.


They need to decide today so you can make plan b & c. Not fair to make you wait. You can post the sit on last minute sits and ask the moderators to put it on social media too. Good luck @KelGal


It’s a bit of a tough spot since they may go through with the sit as planned, and you may not find someone else last minute. But being it is already 5 days before, you really can’t wait too much longer. Overall I think the safer bet is to relist as soon as possible. With a message like that, I feel it is more likely than not they are going to end up cancelling.

Let’s assume that the sitter is being 100% truthful about what’s going on. They would understand if you decided to cancel NOW so you could start a “last minute sits” thread, get THS help with last minute postings on FB, AND if premium start working the insurance. This would be very reasonable on your part.

If the original sitter decides they are well enough BEFORE you confirm a second sitter, than you can rebook the original, and ttell the other applicants they sound lovely, and you’ll let them know next time you have dates.


I just had a similar situation this morning. My husband and I were confirmed for a sit five days from now. My husband ended up in the hospital last night and not sure how long he will be in. I immediately emailed the owner and cancelled so she could find someone else. Certainly didn’t want to leave her looking at the last minute. Felt really bad having to cancel but better now than the day before. I’m sure the sitter will understand if you cancel and start looking for someone else.


Hope he’s okay (& you too) @Globetrotter :hugs::hugs:


If they are not coming they need to cancel. Do not cancel it yourself or the insurance will not be valid (I’m assuming you mean the insurance you get for being a Premium member?). They must cancel - If they simply don’t turn up you would need to get hold of THS and get them to sort it out.
Assuming they cancel you would need to look for another sitter. Also contact THS so they can assist both with finding another sitter and get you started on the insurance.
Read the insurance terms VERY carefully. It’s an insurance company so they will do their best to not pay out.

The sitter can’t cancel. They have to tell the HO they need to cancel. Unless the sitter is supposed to call THS???

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Thanks so much Cuttlefish - we’re hanging in there.

I’m not sure what the process is for canceling. But I’d go ahead and cancel.

I have an unpredictable health issue at present. So my profile is on hold and I’m not taking any sits.

This also happens on the HO side. My last sit the HO canceled two weeks in advance due to a health issue. I was left with a non-refundable airfare. I changed my trip duration up a bit and went anyway.

The HO never canceled and I contacted member services and they made it happen. She had chemo on her mind at that time.

This is the helpful response! You’ll need to have the sitter cancel then go through the THS steps of relisting your sit and attempting to find another sitter (I think you have to accept a sitter that applies?) before they will pay you out for hire.

DO NOT initiate the cancellation. If you do the Premium insurance will be invalidated and they will only tell you this after you have spent money and put your claim in. Sitters must contact THS and tell them they need to cancel or you must call THS and get them to speak to the sitter.

That’s why I said I wasn’t sure what the process was for canceling.

In my case a simple email was adequate. It was the HOs cancelation, but she was thinking of other things.

She needs to connect to customer services and find out. If she explains to the sitter she can’t do a “maybe” and needs a backup. Under the system sitters technically cannot cancel, they can ask the HO to cancel them. That’s how sits get cancelled. Yet, HOs with premium have gotten reimbursement when sitter’s “cancelled.” So it would be a big Catch-22 if sitter’s had to cancel. Perhaps sitter’s have to “initiate” the cancelation? Which the sitter has done here by basically saying I might or I might not be able to do this.

How does the sitter cancel? Can a sitter unconfirm a confirmed sit? I thought that wasn’t a thing and the HO had to do it. Am I wrong about this? I’ve seen sitters complain about this. Was it updated and I didn’t get the memo?

My only experience with this was as a HO when a sitter came to me with a reason why they would not be able to stay in my home and do the sit. The choice was drop ins for pay OR I could find another sitter. I had to cancel them to find the other sitter. THS helped me to find another sitter. I didn’t have premium at that point, but I wasn’t dinged for cancelling at someone else’s request. If the sitter had disputed the cancellation, they would have lost the dispute.

If the sitter who “might” or “might not” come disputes the cancellation than maybe that’s the issue, but I don’t see the basis for the dispute if they are no longer sure they are coming.

I could be wrong about something here and given the insurance, it’s best the HO checks with THS about “how to cancel a sit to activate insurance”.

Thank you all for your support and guidance.
It is true that a sitter needs to contact THS to cancel in order for insurance to work. I reached out to THS and they are trying to reach my sitter. Thanks again, everyone!

No sitter shouldn’t leave you hanging if it was me I would just cancel so you would have time to get someone else.