Stocking fridge

This is our first time using a house sitter/dog sitter. I know I supply all the dog food my dog needs but not sure on the protocol for stocking fridge/pantry for my sitter.

There is no obligation to feed your sitter.

Some hosts like to leave food and maybe some wine, some will leave basics like milk and butter, but some will leave nothing at all. There’s not really a right, or a wrong way to do things.

As a sitter, I never expect food or drink, so plan for there to be none. It’s far more important to me that there’s space for storing my groceries, that the pet food is well stocked and that there are household essentials such as soap, toilet paper, cleaning supplies and laundry detergent. :smiling_face:


My current hosts have left a fridge full of food and urged me to eat whatever I want.


I think as a sitter I’d love to be asked. Personally it’d be nice to arrive to : milk, teabags, bread, butter, biscuits; some AirBnb places do this which is always appreciated by me. But of course people have allergies so it’s always good to ask.


@Ramona62 There is no particular protocol, and you are not obligated, but I am grateful when an Owner is generous and tells me to help myself to use oils, spices, condiments. Most say “help yourself to whatever.” They might specifically exclude alcohol. Many Owners leave a gift of a bottle of wine or chocolates when I arrive.

If there are certain items that are “off limits,” just be clear. Most Sitters would not eat a bunch of food from your pantry or freezer without replacing, but there have been stories on this Forum of Sitters eating lots of food and not replacing.

I always tell the Owner that if there is some extra fresh produce, milk, eggs in the fridge, please leave it, and we will try to use it up before it expires.

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I have been left everything from a Waitrose shop to nothing at all. I take some shopping just in case. I am often asked what I would like and I usually just say the basics, milk, bread, eggs, cheese etc. Most people say you can use anything from the store cupboard, which in remote places in Scotland is often vast. In the last few months I have been left home made soup, cakes and biscuits and a chef delivered meal. All are lovely. When I leave I check they are having a shop and always leave some fresh milk and bread. I hate waste and also say just leave anything in the fridge that needs eating and I will use it up. It’s nice to have a fair exchange and be appreciated

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@Ramona62 as others yave said, you aren’t expected to leave any food for your sitter. If you like you could ask them if you can get any bread, milk, eggs for them, and letting them know what they can use (for example, cooking oil & spices). I have allergies and prefer to buy my own food, so all i would need is a clear shelf in the fridge and space in the freezer.

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As a sitter, I always do my own grocery shopping and would never expect an owner to provide me with food. Personally, I actually much prefer when owners provide a clean and empty fridge (or fridge shelf). I’m a very picky eater and my partner has dietary requirements, so we almost never touch food and perishables owners have left for us. Which is a shame, because it can be a waste - but we simply can’t eat it most of the time. Sometimes, owners have asked in advance if they can get us anything, which is a lovely gesture, but we always say no thanks, as our diets are too tricky. There have been times where owners have left us with an entire, new carton of milk, and lots of eggs - and neither of us can eat it! Instead, we really appreciate when owners leave a little thank you gift, such as a small box of treats, a card or some flowers :blush:


Hi I always leave a well stocked fridge with basics plus I always allow access to my freezer. I usually ask the sitter what they prefer me to leave.


That is crazy! Anytime I’ve used anything like the first night of a Sit when I flown in and haven’t gone shopping yet I always replace it before I leave. I would never eat someone’s Frozen food!

@Nagy26 I completely agree with you I keep seeing people on here say they would like homeowners to leave them with the basics of milk butter bread and eggs and I don’t need eat any of that stuff!!! I always bring my own food as I have dietary restrictions as well. I also don’t understand the closet and drawer space as I don’t unpack I leave it all in my suitcase.

Totally get it. For us though, we really appreciate closet & draw space. We only do sits that are longer than 2 weeks, and do back-to-back sitting for most of the year, so our suitcases are packed full and it would be difficult for us to use them as closets.

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That’s very considerate of you :smiling_face_with_three_hearts:

No obligation but we usually have the normal spices, etc and necessities, there is always something in our fridge or cabinets that would suffice in getting them through a day or two to make it to the store.

I asked our latest sitter what bread and milk she would like me to get in… and ended up with a shopping list as long as my arm and was quite taken aback at the cheek of it. I don’t mind buying the basics, but this was meat, eggs, cheese, fruit, vegetables… I felt like she was taking advantage a bit tbh, and just wanting a freebie.

Rude, but you can buy what you feel like. Some people have bad manners and try to take advantage.


Quite a few owners will leave things in the fridge for you, or at least tell you to eat up what is there, as would go off before they return. Most say help yourself to things in pantry, such as pasta, rice, condiments etc. I have even had some say help yourself to wine. It does vary considerabvle though, as some leave very little and others are extremely generous.

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I appreciate generosity in various forms, but prefer to buy and eat my own food.

Like I arrived at my current sit with bags of groceries and I’ve been to the market at least twice since.

Meanwhile, I’ve thrown away various produce and such from my hosts that have gone off. If I don’t feel like eating something, I’m not having it, even if someone bought it especially for me. And I don’t cook at all.

I’d rather they left a gift card if they really wanted to give me something, but it’s not important to me at all.

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