The Updated Code Of Conduct

Hi Angela,
Thanks for publishing this updated Code of Conduct. I second the suggestions made by @Snowbird. With so many members, both old and new, it would be great to see this being emailed out to the THS Community. It doesn’t hurt to have a reminder of this.

4 Likes

Hi @Provence every member has to agree to the Code Of Conduct … sitters and owners.

2 Likes

Hi Angela, we prefer it if an Owner has an Account set up at the Vets. Rather than us pay out and then ask for a refund from them.
Of course we would never contact a Vet without the consent of the Owners, it goes without saying there would be full communication with the Owners of any pets were showing the slightest sign of being unwell.

3 Likes

HI @Julie thank you for highlighting, veterinary care and preparation for an owner’s absence and sitters presence is covered in the T&C’s which all members agree to.

Though experience I know there are issues with some owners being able to set up accounts or leave CC details with a vet, it can be rather complex but I know, from experience again, that this can be overcome when an owner has a long and established relationship with a vet.

Having prior sit communication with owners and knowledge of what is in place, in the unlikely event of an emergency, and agreeing to their plans is so important and will leave nothing in doubt.

1 Like

Thank you Angela for you helpful reply. Think we have been lucky with all Owners apart from one that had Veterinary Accounts set up, the other 2 set up accounts when we mentioned it. As you say lots of communications between owners and sitters about any situations occurring is key.

1 Like

I also have concern about the following

  • Sitter: “Once on a sit, I will never arrive later or leave earlier than the agreed date and time.”
    It has been mentioned on numerous threads that some sitters have arrived at a HO house which was indeed uninhabitable on arrival.
    Other sitters on the Forum have added their opinions that they would not stay either.
    What support would THS give to the sitter upon arrival, bearing in mind that the sitter would not have any photographic evidence of the house at that stage. The HO is unlikely to allow the sitter to take photographs.
    I understand that the sitter would be at risk of having their membership suspended if they left.
    Also, a sitter may have problems contacting MS services as evidenced in other threads.
    @Angela-CommunityManager
    What should a sitter do in these cirmcumstances - you have stated in other threads that no sitter should have to accept these conditions.
    Can the sitter refuse to carry out the sit without fear of having their membership suspended?
    Does any sitter or HO have any experience of THS support in these circumstances?
1 Like

Hi @Itchyfeet thank you for your feedback.

As you reference Membership Services I have asked one of their senior team members to respond and I will update when I hear back.

1 Like

I would love to see the feedback here!

2 Likes

Hi @Angela-CommunityManager
I am just wondering if MS have had a chance to look at this question ?
Thanks

1 Like

Hi @Itchyfeet Just to let you know Angela isn’t around today, but I’m sure she’ll get back to you once she’s next in the forum. Thanks.

1 Like

Living in a rural area of southern Italy where it is still very much a cash economy our vet wouldn’t have any idea about us setting up an account but if a sitter brought one of our animals in sick he wouldn’t hesitate to treat it and expect us to settle the bill when we got back. It’s important that any rules and regs, T&C or whatever allow for flexibility to suit local conditions.

5 Likes

Hi @Itchyfeet I do apologise for the delayed response to your question I’ve asked @Therese-MembershipService to pick this up and reply …

Hi @Itchyfeet … Let me have a look into this for you and I will respond via Membership Services. Kind regards
Therese

Hi @Itchyfeet @snowbird @Vanessa-Admin @Angela-CommunityManager
We did write to @Itchyfeet directly from MS, but as they rightly pointed out, we need to share it directly here on the forum for other members … Here was my reply. I hope this helps.

''Thank you for your email and your comments on the Forum, and we take into account every suggestion from all our members.

I will attempt to answer them as best as I can here to your following concerns.

''I have concerns about the following :

Sitter: “Once on a sit, I will never arrive later or leave earlier than the agreed date and time.”
It has been mentioned on numerous threads that some sitters have arrived at a HO house which was indeed uninhabitable on arrival.
Other sitters on the Forum have added their opinions that they would not stay either.
What support would THS give to the sitter upon arrival, bearing in mind that the sitter would not have any photographic evidence of the house at that stage? The HO is unlikely to allow the sitter to take photographs.
I understand that the sitter would be at risk of having their membership suspended if they left.
Also, a sitter may have problems contacting MS services as evidenced in other threads.

What should a sitter do in these circumstances - you have stated in other threads that no sitter should have to accept these conditions.
Can the sitter refuse to carry out the sit without fear of having their membership suspended?
Does any sitter or HO have any experience of THS support in these circumstances?’

"As a member, you’ll know that everyone in our community has agreed to a code of conduct promising that listings are always truthful and that a clean environment is provided. So if this is not the case, we would investigate any matter impartially. If a sitter was unable to complete a sit due to it being uninhabitable and would need to see photographic evidence of any of the areas of concern. Also, you would need to let us know whether you visited the home or video called the owner before the sit?

In the meantime, we would recommend you contact the owner as soon as possible. They may be able to offer a quick solution and get your sitting experience back on track. For example, they may be able to send a cleaner/service around immediately to help.

If a sit is completely uninhabitable or unsafe, then we of course would never wish any member to be in this situation and would want to investigate further.
However, if you ultimately decide that you’re unable to stay on the sit, please don’t leave until alternative pet care arrangements have been made. This we take very seriously. While we don’t want any of our members to stay in a situation that makes them uncomfortable, the safety of pets must always take priority.

Talking to the owner will hopefully resolve the issue so best to try and work together on this. We would ask that the sitter not leave the property without speaking and addressing any concerns with the owner first.

We are now operating on a nearly full membership services team so we are working at responding very quickly to members in the future.’’

3 Likes

Thank you @Therese-MembershipService for your detailed response.

I am hoping that everyone on the Forum will read this.

As I suspected there is no support from THS

It is up to the sitter to speak to the owner to resolve any issue.

Mention has been made again about photographic evidence which I have already said would be near impossible if the sitter wanted to walk away immediately.

There is still no response to my query of whether a sitter would have their membership suspended if they walked away? (Of course, no sitter would leave the pets which leaves the sitter having to complete the sit if the HO refused to make alternative arrangements)

I am concerned that many sitters on this site have said that they would walk away assuming that THS will step in with a resolution which won’t happen.

Maybe sitters have some ideas as to how they would proceed?

2 Likes

A good and simple document. It makes sure both parties know where they stand and what to expect. Of course there will be circumstances not covered by this document but we are all reasonable grown ups who can work out things between us.

3 Likes

This is a good idea @Vanessa-Admin to add these resources for members on the forum. However, I would like to see THS email the newly updated “Code of Conduct” to all members. When any company/organization (and THS is this) updates or makes changes to their Terms of Service or Code of Conduct, they notify their customers/clients/members of the said changes.

4 Likes

This is a good point @temba and I will check with the wider team to see how this new information is being presented to existing members. I know it is available on the dashboard to view at anytime but I don’t have information about emails. All new members will of course see the updated terms. Leave it with me and I will get some feedback.

2 Likes

Hi again @temba - we’ve had an internal meeting today and the CoC hasn’t gone out to existing members as it hasn’t changed in terms of the items covered. The main adjustments have been in the way the CoC document is delivered on the website. Some content wording has also been simplified or adjusted to encourage readability but the items remain the same. As we all know, it’s hard to get people to read T&Cs of any type, so the team made changes to help improve this particular aspect after reviewing feedback. Hope that helps explain. All the best, Vanessa

4 Likes

Thanks, Vanessa, for following this up and clarifying what has been done to the CoC document. As you say, it is hard to get people to read T&Cs of any type so we’ll still have many members who don’t bother to read the CoC, but hopefully for those who do, they’ll find the readability much simpler.

2 Likes