Sitters avoiding dogs?

We have had four excellent sitters since we joined in 2019, mainly to care for our cat. Each time we were absolutely inundated with applications very soon after posting. Now we are looking for a sitter to also care for our dog and have had hardly any interest. Is this usual? Dogs clearly need more attention but with so many sitters out there we’re surprised at the lack of applications.

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I think that’s more likely just a sign of the times. Where are you located? A poor-weather area? A covid hot spot? I’m sure there are as many dog lovers as cat lovers in this organization — most are both! Be patient, as long as you have the time cushion); if not reach out to @Vanessa-ForumCMgr or @Angela-HeadOfCommunity for additional assistance for last-minute sits.
We dog lovers are out here in droves!

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Hi Edith. We’re in a good position between London and the Channel ports in a pretty village. The only difference this time is our leggy hound :smile:

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Hi @KaitK Grace and Badger are adorable, you home and location are really lovely plus you have great feedback from previous sitters, I believe the only reason is your dates are not until May - June. These are very different times, with still so much uncertainty, members are making plans closer to their preferred dates, both sitters and owners.

You can also add your listing link to your forum profile so that other members can access and view here are the instructions How to add a listing or profile link to your FORUM profile and you can reach out to sitters, especially previous ones who applied in the past.

I really wouldn’t get disheartened you do have time to begin getting applications in.

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Thanks Angela. I know it’s early days.

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We would not apply for a sit in the UK unless we’re already in the country, since it’s difficult to predict if you can travel there in May/June or will be allowed back without quarantine. It’s possible that a cat sit would be more attractive to some people, but we love dogs just as much and enjoy spending time with them.

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Hi Timmy. We specified only UK residents for that very reason and through this horrible time have only chosen sitters who had somewhere to go if plans had to change suddenly. Happily, sits have gone smoothly right through the pandemic.

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So, we’ve decided to take the sit off the platform until nearer our dates. Over the last two years we’ve booked our sitters early but I guess things have changed. I still have a sneaking feeling that just one cat is seen as an easier sit though :wink: Time will tell…

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Hi @KaitK I agree with you in that one cat can be seen as an easier sit than caring for a dog. However, there are a wide range of preferences amongst sitters. You are just as likely to come across someone who only sits dogs, or any number of other preferences. Some will want dogs that need long walks, others who only have to let them out in the yard. The variety of sitters is endless.

I think your requirements on location and flexibility of sitters is reasonable in current times. Although I didn’t see your listing, I think you would again have great interest for May and June in England, as it can be a beautiful time of year there. The complicating factor for your listing was most likely our current unsettled times, not the fact that it was for a dog. I hope all goes well for you.

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Hi @KaitK

Although we have carried out many cat sittings, our majority of sittings is dogs. We are already booked up for May and June with sittings postponed from last year and one from 2020 which were all cancelled due to Covid. Maybe other sitters are in a similar position and are therefore unavailable for your months.
Good luck for your new listing

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We love sits with dogs because we enjoy walking. That being said, we have sat for almost the same number of cats as dogs.

As a family with children at school, we sit in the school holidays, and we haven’t started looking as far ahead as May/June yet. Possibly a couple of years ago, we might have been looking a bit further ahead.

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FWIW, I choose to sit for dogs seasonally based on location. Like, I would not want to sit for a dog in August in southern Spain, and I would not want to sit for a dog in January in England. I am a weather wuss. If it’s yuck out, I don’t go out. :slight_smile: I don’t do dog sits before May in the UK. I agree it’s likely a result of the uncertain times we’re in that you’re not receiving responses as quickly.

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Hi KaitK, Unsure why you should have a lack of applicants for a dog. I do tend not to book too far in advance but having said that I was booked a month ago for nearly three weeks by the coast in Dorset June/July with one dog liking plenty of exercise. I tend to look at location and type of property first and then what pets there are? Prefer to be by the sea, or river or lakes during summer months. More than happy with dogs providing not very large ferocious looking ones. In fact I have happily sat for a combination of dogs, cats, goats, geese, chickens, sheep etc. Just a dog and a cat I would consider easy. Maybe posting a little later will make a difference. Good Luck!

Hi @KaitK

We are in the same position. Having been full members for such years we only had two house bunnies that needed looking after until a year ago when Poppy our lovely rescue collie joined us. Previously we were always inundated with applications and it was like a full time job replying to them all. Since adding Poppy our dog to the sit we get very few applications. I am hoping that this will change otherwise we will have to look at other options for getting house sitters.

Lisa

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Hi @LisaRoads54, please don’t think the reason you have not had the same amount of interest from sitters as previously is because of Poppy. It is more the current situation with covid and both sitters and owners being a little more cautious about booking too far in advance because of cancellations. Poppy is a beautiful border collie and a lovely breed to look after and you will find suitable sitters but you might have to be patient. There are far more sits advertised that include dogs than cats so sitters are not avoiding looking after dogs. Far from it!

@LisaRoads54 , I agree with @temba, a border collie is a wonderful breed. For me, the chance to take care of a border collie would make your listing even more appealing!

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Hi Lisa. I’m not sure the pandemic is so much to blame. Our first sitter came in the autumn of 2020 when cases were rising, and we’ve had three other sitters since then. We were absolutely flooded with applications each time, and I had posted two to three months in advance. We also specified UK residents only, with somewhere to go in case plans had to change. The only difference this time is that our dog is included. We’ll be leaving mid May, so I’m going to post again mid February, but like you I’m beginning to think I’ll have to make other arrangements.

We have gone through the screening process for several dates and confirmed a sitter for two of our dates only for one of them to cancel their travel plans and the other has decided to withdraw from pet sitting. So we are back to the drawing board again with those dates! Like you we had been selecting house sitters that we’re U.K. based with somewhere to go if Covid restrictions changed our plans at short notice.

We actively look for sits with at least one dog as we enjoy walking and exploring an area, and it is much more fun to do this with a dog!

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I agree it’s probably just the current times. Many people are on this site because of their love of dogs — me, for one. The world is just so uncertain these days.

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